If only people would stop being violent towards others, we could eliminate violence.
In part one of this blog, we took an initial look at what I term as “The Euphoric Approach” to preventing violence. So, if you haven’t read or listened to that one yet, please check it out! In addition, thank you to those that did read or listen, and also commented and shared the blog with others.
We looked at how, for many initiatives, the focus is on ideal world philosophies. We looked at understanding that this would be the perfect solution to eliminating violence.
As we continue on this topic, I remind you that we all have a part to play in preventing violence, but how important it is to face the reality of violence.
One thing that comes up in discussing violence prevention and especially the victims of violence is how that proverbial finger, and sadly at times, the literal finger, gets pointed or focused on the victim. As published by the Prince Edward Island Advisory Council on the Status of Women (link), it was written in the “How to Support Survivors / INSTEAD OF SAYING” section… “Women and girls need to take more steps to protect themselves. Women need to change the way they behave and the way they look to prevent an assault.” Again, this is in the “Instead of saying” section. As agreed, there is still far too much blame put on victims. This doesn’t help!
I absolutely agree that this way of thinking is not in anyone’s best interest. As published in the same document “How to Support Survivors, but the “SUPPORT SURVIVORS BY SAYING” section… (link) “Violent men need to stop sexually assaulting women and children. Violent men need to stop predatory, abusive, and controlling behaviour towards women and children. Men need to treat women and children with respect and help to keep them safe.” I will add to this last point by saying “that we ALL (men, women, and children) need to treat each other with respect and help keep each other safe.
There is no question that if this was done, the problem of violence pertaining to men (or anyone for that matter) assaulting others, would diminish.
This sadly is where I see the divide existing between “The Euphoric, and Realistic” Approaches. As this blog image quotes “No one asks to become a victim of violence, and no one should have to protect themselves from it.” Furthermore, we should be able to go where we want, wear what we want and drink want we want without fear of assault… Understand Reality versus Euphoric, and your situational awareness heightens.
During part one of the blog; a comment was posted regarding the thin line between right and wrong being lost or blurred somewhere when such acts of violence happen. Thank you for this comment Dr. Paradkar. Indeed, at times there is certainly a thin line. It is difficult to prevent this line from blurring unless people take the time to listen and understand versus jumping to conclusions.
One of my favourite quotes is from Stephen R. Covey. He wrote, “Most people do not listen with the intent to understand, they listen with the intent to reply.” A quote I have used many times over the years and one I see valid for both words and thoughts. Ask any law enforcement officer if violence is as black and white as many may think, and they will tell you, in most cases, it is not.
As an instructor of self-protection, I like many, have been accused of victim-blaming, Yes, that hurts! I have been teaching people to protect themselves for decades and my focus has and continues to be on helping people face the realities of violence by providing them with knowledge and skills to better protect themselves from it. I and other professionals like me dedicate their lives to helping people face reality by preventing people from becoming victims, to begin with. Self-Protection is not about telling someone where not to go or what not to wear. It is not about telling someone not to drink too much but helping them understand the realities of where violence comes from. Simple awareness and understanding of violence help to prevent victims and save lives. By saving lives, I don’t just mean in the literal sense, this also includes preventing having to manage the trauma associated with violence.
Hopefully, you read or listened to part one and now part two. What are your thoughts?
Please remember to keep your interaction positive in thought and in response. The purpose of this continuing blog is to bring us together in understanding the roles we all play. T.E.A.M, remember!
In part three and beyond we shall continue to look at the reality of violence through the understanding of Contributing Factors, not excuses!
Thank you for following and sharing this blog. Until next time!
To be continued…