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The Connection Between War & Violence Against Women

By       Message Mary Wentworth     Permalink
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Violence Against Women Is Tied to the Need To Make Men Violent.

It is in the military, then, that violence against women and the violence that is necessary to fight a war are revealed to be part of the same system.

The ideal patriarchal male has characteristics that are in direct opposition to building solid relationships with their families. Women and children need compassionate, emotionally healthy, socially oriented men who can abstain from violent behavior and recognize war as the sociopathic behavior that it is. The patriarchy's goal is to cripple the emotional side of men that would endorse the establishment of a humanitarian global outlook.

The negative values of our warrior culture are seen all around us--in the obsession with guns, in overly aggressive play in team sports, in the film industry's gratuitous mayhem and victimizing of women, in violent video games, in the thrill of speeding cars, in attitudes that tell young males that dominating women and treating them as sex objects are part of being a "real man."

When patriarchs declare wars, this socialization leads men into literal violence--into the odious, face-to-face work of bludgeoning other people into submission. Experiencing the hell that is war means coming home physically and/or psychologically broken. It means expending throughout a lifetime an enormous amount of psychic energy in trying to forget war crimes. Meanwhile, the country's elite revels in victory and thanks the young for their "service."

New Efforts To Stop Male Violence Against Women.

A message to stop male violence toward women was heard on March 8th of this year, on the occasion of International Women's Day. Two-hundred men gathered at the Diplomat Ballroom in the United Nations hotel in New York to launch "Ring The Bell." This global campaign seeks to enlist one million men--one million!--to agree to take some kind of concrete action within the next year to end violence against women.

Hosting the event was Sir Patrick Stewart, the British-born actor, who pointed out, "Every nine seconds a woman is assaulted or beaten in the United States." He added, "Violence against women is the single greatest human rights violation of our generation."

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Having gotten a similar initiative underway in January, Dallas Mayor Michael Rawlings urged that a man who commits an act of violence toward a woman should be "shamed. You can call a man who hits a woman many things, but you can't call him a man." [3]

As we move toward still another war, can we hope to mobilize not just one million men, but millions of men, in a campaign to persuade our young males to boycott war or, if they are already in the military, to refuse to fight? Since these wars are wars of choice, and therefore illegal, young men have not only a right to refuse to fight but a moral obligation to do so. There are many men who have rejected the patriarchy's ideal, but unless they speak up publicly they are supporting the system by their silence.  

It isn't only women that the patriarchy has in its grip. Men need to be emancipated, too.



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Now retired and a writer, I am a feminist and political activist, a radical Democrat (have come to dislike the term "progressive"), and a blogger. Have done political tours of Cuba, Nicaragua, Honduras, West and East (way back when)Germany, China, (more...)

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