Just live right

 

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Category: Reflections 21 May 06

 

A friend asked me if I’d seen the full-page advertisements in our daily newspapers that urge readers to live right. I hadn’t. Or if I had it hadn’t registered.

 

He thought it a typically useless bit of government propaganda and was more appalled when he found out it was paid for by a group of concerned citizens who’d pooled their funds to do their bit to uplift a county that has recorded 150 murders in the last 137 days.

 

He said he was sure the man who allegedly brutishly raped, buggered, suffocated and assaulted four-year-old Emily Annamunthodo thought he was “living right.”

 

Emily’s mother who got pregnant at 15 and who was living with the alleged abuser thought she was “living right.”

 

The neighbours who witnessed the abuse to malnourished Emily, saw her put out of the house at night, heard her crying when she was shoved down the stairs, saw her dislocated shoulder, they too thought they were “living right” by not reporting these acts to the police.

 

My friend and I agreed it was not enough to tell people to live right. It was more important to define what this means, and to put systems into place to ensure we live right.

 

Emily’s mother is only 19, and seems she doesn’t know what it means to live right.

 

She herself reportedly lived with the man who publicly stripped a woman naked and dragged her through the streets, a man who body-slammed a woman onto a wheelbarrow, before throwing grass on her body and threatening to set it afire.

 

Abuser types

 

Since the horrendous news about Emily broke, (just weeks after six-year-old Sean Luke was buggered and murdered) two more children have been reportedly buggered.

 

Chairman of the Coalition Against Domestic Violence Diana Mahabir-Wyatt asked the only relevant question in this scenario, “Why can’t we move to crime prevention in this country rather than wait until children are brutally murdered, then cry horror?”

 

We can. One man can help us: Mr Lundy Bancroft who has written a book titled Why does he do that—Inside the minds of angry and controlling men.

 

Bancroft’s book, which should be a bible for victim’s abuse, answers the questions:

 

Why does he do that? Is his behaviour my fault? Can I get him to change? Did bad events in his childhood make him turn out like this?

 

Bancroft reveals the nine types of abusers and shows how to assess how much danger you could be in from each.

 

• The early warning signs of a potentially abusive relationship.

 

• The tactics and techniques abusive men use to confuse and control their partners.

 

• The reasons so many men get away with abuse and how and why friends, family and even some mental health professionals ignore, condone and encourage their behaviour.

 

Bancroft enables readers to see inside the minds of men who control, bully, physically and emotionally injure and kill the women who love them.

 

I would like to see this book in every library in this country, in every school, every household. We should fill ships and planes with orders of this book.

 

Until we do that, I will use this space to summarise this book. There are abusers out there. It’s time we recognise them, rout them out and get them to change or get them to jail. That’s “living right.”

 

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All Articles Copyright Ira Mathur