Violence is wrong at any level and should be punished

On February 15, Ray Rice, an American football player, hit his then fiancée, Janay, in an elevator. She collapsed unconscious for a few minutes. He dragged her out of the elevator face down. TMZ got the video of the footage. They published it.

Many people were outraged, from CNN news anchors, to ordinary fellows in Jakarta and Gulu watching the drama unfold on their TV sets and the internet in their homes and offices. Rice has been indefinitely suspended from the National Football League. He still has support from some fans and his beautiful wife too, but by and large, he is a hated man right now.

On May 5, Solange Knowles kicked, hit and rained whatever blows she could on her brother-in-law, Jay Z, in an elevator, in the presence of her sister, Beyonce, and a bodyguard. They all managed to leave the elevator looking calmer than you would expect. TMZ got the video of the footage. They published it. Most people were shocked and quite amused, from TIME magazine writers to ordinary fellows in Sao Paulo and Jinja, watching the drama unfold on their TV sets and the internet.

Solange has been vindicated by many people, saying she was angry on her sister’s behalf [It is thought that Solange was angry at Jay Z for cheating on her sister]. It is likely that after that incident, she is probably a little bit more popular. She might even get some hundred more copies of her albums, new and any forthcoming, being sold.

Ray and Solange were two angry people on the nights they lashed out. Ray’s acts have been condemned and vilified and they should be. He has suffered a big career blow and we can collectively say he had that coming.

Solange on the other hand has been justified with many people laughing the incident off. And that is wrong.

It is wrong because it promotes the idea that violence meted out by women on men is understandable, even forgivable. But it is not. Indeed, we must teach our men to understand that beating a woman because you are angry, or because you think it is a way to prove your love, is wrong.

They must be made to understand and believe that being a man does not equal to
lording it over any woman, psychologically or physically. But even as we do so, we must let the women know that the same is expected of them. We are all equal before the law. Yes, many more women than men suffer domestic violence, but that does not make it okay for a woman to hit a man because she is angry or frustrated.

As cliché as the saying is, its truth remains – two wrongs do not make a right. Throughout history, we have seen people influence others greatly because of what they said, but mostly because of what they did. They have led by example. If we want the men to know that domestic violence is wrong on any level, then the women who do it must be punished too. Because then, we show that it is not the gender of the person who beats, that is necessarily the problem. It is the act that has been done.

cbeyanga@ug.nationmedia.com

SOURCE: Daily Monitor

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