Violence Against Women Essay

942 words - 4 pages

In the past century, America has made great leaps in terms of equality. With the efforts made by the suffragist and civil rights movement, all people gained the right to vote. We are even moving forward with marriage equality, and currently fifteen states recognize same-sex marriage. But regardless of all of our progressive institutional movements forward, we continue to socially oppress women. Men’s violence against women has grown to be an internationally recognized epidemic, and will continue to grow unless measures be made to stop it. Domestic violence continues to be prevalent in the lives of many families, and is the primary cause of homelessness in half of cases for women in children. Many women have been forced to alter their behaviors out of fear of being sexually or physically assaulted. One out of every three women is sexually or physically abused in their lifetimes. The first thing that comes to mind after that is, there are a lot of people abusing women out there. Many people with opposing ideas may claim that men can be victims of violence perpetrated by women, but in instances not used for self-defense, it is rarely part of a systematic pattern of power and control through force or threat of force. In fact, 99% of rape is perpetrated by men, but when trying to confront men about the issue of violence against women, it is often combated with denial. Jackson Katz writes in his book, The Macho Paradox, “We take comfort in the idea of the aforementioned child-rapist murderer as a horrible aberration. A monster. We’re nothing like him.”(Katz 30). The sad truth is that most women who are raped are raped by men they know, or even men they love. Many men have a hard time believing that saying that most violence is perpetuated by men does not mean that most men are violent, just that most violent people are men. More often than not people blame the violent actions of some men on biological determinism and use the ‘boys will be boys’ mentality as an excuse for the actions of these men. The blame should not be on the genetics of males, but the socialization of men in male-peer culture and the normalization of violence against women by the media in movies, video games, and advertising. Men have been taught to take charge and express that they are entitled to whatever they please. This entitlement is mocked on the blog Men Taking Too Much Space on the Train, which showcases men publicly asserting their privilege by taking as much physical space as they need. In many of the images shown, women are visible doing the opposite. From a young age girls are taught to be docile and behind the scenes, and in the public transportation environment, these socializations are extremely...

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