by William Skink
A little over a week ago the Missoula Current had an article about the pandemic elevating risk of domestic violence. The article caught my attention because of how an individual male abuser was depicted by YWCA staff. Here’s an example:
“With COVID-19 there is a lack of control over everyone’s life. It can be hard to manage,” said Murphy. “If there is an abusive partner it is so much harder.”
Some survivors “were being threatened that if they left and were exposed to COVID-19 then they wouldn’t be let back in the house,” Murphy said. “There was a real fear of leaving and not being able to come back.”
Threatening consequences if a member of the household doesn’t follow the rules? Kind of sounds like the health department. Here’s more (emphasis mine):
The perception of COVID-19 risks themselves have caused concern to potential clients, according to Murphy. She said that some individuals have cited current health problems and are hesitant to come to the shelter because of the perceived risk of exposure.
Fear about these risks is also being exploited to increase control. “Abusers are not sharing accurate information about COVID-19,” Murphy said.
First, why depict worried clients as having “perceived” risk of exposure to Covid? I thought we were SUPPOSED to be afraid of leaving the house? Isn’t that what months and months of fear mongering from corporate media was designed to do?
Second, the notion that abusers are not sharing accurate information is a concept that’s ok to apply to an individual male abuser, but taboo to apply to corporations with financial interests and political operators.
But ask yourself this question: if an abusive man sees the opportunity to exert MORE CONTROL by limiting access to information about Covid, why wouldn’t an abusive SYSTEM do the same thing?
Will the obvious answer to that question get you thinking differently about this pandemic?