The abuse that women are subjected to in backward Islamic nations (are there any other kind) is truly sad. To marry off one’s daughter at 14 years of age, which is not uncommon in these countries, is all one needs to know to realize the backward mentality of these people. TGO
Refer to story below. Source: Associated Press
Flayed by a fire she began herself, Aatifa’s childlike frame is painstakingly wrapped in thick bandages — her shrieks of “Allah” echoing around the hospital ward where surgeons prepare to graft skin back on to her skeletal torso.
Her wide blue eyes alternating between flashes of anger and wells of tears, the 16-year-old Afghan girl struggles to explain what led her to douse her own body in petrol, step outside and light a match.
Married at the age of 14, the young carpet-weaver, who has nine brothers and sisters, said her mother-in-law criticised her housework and encouraged her mechanic husband to beat her for allowing her mother to visit too often.
She complained to authorities but was berated for causing trouble. Later told that her husband hated her and would marry a second woman, she swung between anger and depression before carrying out her masochistic deed.
Aatifa poured petrol over her head and, once outside her home, lit the flames that engulfed two thirds of her body. Her brother found her and smothered her with his clothes before neighbours took her to the hospital.
“I just wanted to kill myself, this was my goal,” she said, her bone-thin arm etched with flaring purple burn scars. “What can I do? I’m not useful anymore. I want to get a divorce, it’s better to stop everything.”
Bound by early marriage into a life of domestic disharmony, dozens of girls like Aatifa in Afghanistan’s sophisticated but conservative main western city of Herat are choosing a brutal form of escape by setting themselves on fire.
In the past one year alone, doctors at a burns unit at the city hospital have seen 83 cases of self-immolation, with nearly two-thirds proving fatal.
The disturbing phenomenon is considered to be a cultural import from neighbouring Iran. But feuding between poor and uneducated families who marry off their daughters as young teens is usually at the heart of the problem.
“Sometimes it’s for very small reason they burn themselves, and most of them complain about the in-law’s family,” said chief of plastic and reconstructive surgery at the burns unit, Ghafar Khan Bawa.
“There’s an accumulation of depression, stress and domestic violation and then the woman just seeks a way of getting out of the situation. A way of expressing their anger, a way of expressing their depression.”
Police, tribal elders, Mullahs and courts all exist to resolve family disputes which are common within Afghanistan’s impoverished and illiterate societies. But it is considered culturally taboo for a woman to complain.
“There’s a defect in the system because a woman cannot complain here. And if they were not accepted before burning themselves, then how will they be accepted with disfigurement and deformities and disabilities?” added Bawa.
Sitting propped up on a pillow at home across town, 18-year-old Zarkhuna’s occasional smile is largely concealed by an enveloping neck brace, while her body scarred by 65 percent burns is clothed in a black burqa and red blanket.
She said the family of her husband, a rickshaw driver, had seemed nice before marriage, but when his mother and sister moved into their family compound fighting erupted.
Now banned from seeing their 10-month-old baby since she set herself on fire four months ago, she said she hopes not to divorce, but for her near-fatal action to provoke a peace settlement between the families.
“My husband wasn’t cruel to me. But my mother and sister-in-law were complaining all the time about my job — they became jealous,” she said.
“The mother and sister wanted me to be under their control not under my husband’s. If he behaves nicely with me I will continue with him.”
Her father has said she must not take the case to the authorities, but leave their fate to God’s will.
“I leave those people to God. I just want them to pray for my daughter because they’re also poor people and I didn’t do anything against them because they’re also poor,” said her father, Khor Mohammad, moving prayer beads and wearing a thick white turban. “I don’t think the government can help us.”
Herati women’s rights advocate Suraya Pakzad said that early marriage and family feuds commonly caused dangerous levels of stress for women in the home, with many too young to cope with the wifely roles expected of them.
“Maybe not all of them decide to die, it’s just a warning for their family to stop, and they never thought fire would immediately go to all of their body,” said the head of the Voice of Women’s Organisation in Herat.
The organisation operates two shelters for women, although all cases must be referred through the government. Once they realise there could be other options for escape she said the self-harming teens all wish things could be different.
“Whenever we meet them and talk to them they say they really regret what they did.”
Just the kind of woman one would want to marry… TGO
Refer to brief story below. Source: Associated Press
EVERETT, Wash. (AP) — Police in Everett, Wash., say a woman is accused of cutting her sleeping husband’s neck and shoulder with a power saw.
Officers who arrived at the home say they could hear the man shouting: “You tried to cut my head off. You’re going to jail.”
The Daily Herald reports the 43-year-old woman appeared in court Monday on a charge of domestic violence assault and a judge kept her bail at $250,000. The newspaper did not identify her.
Police say the woman told officers she grabbed the reciprocating saw Friday night because an intruder escaped out her daughter’s window.
Sgt. Robert Goetz says there was no evidence of an intruder and a child lock prevented the window from opening more than a few inches.
The 36-year-old man was treated at a hospital.
Information from: The Daily Herald, http://www.heraldnet.com
Refer to brief story below. Source: Associated Press
The Orleans Parish Sheriff’s office says Cage was booked into the Orleans Parish Prison at 11:30 a.m. Saturday.
Cage has been a frequent visitor to New Orleans, where he has owned property and shot movies in the past.
New Orleans police did not immediately disclose details about his arrest. An agent for Cage did not immediately return a phone call Saturday.
GhostRider of http://ghostriderandfriends.wordpress.com/ghostrider-friends-come-to-life/ fame here with the first of series of three guest blogs.
Just a week ago in a phone conversation with my long-time friend, TGO, your blog host, I ended it passionately by saying how, “…the cycle just had to end.” In that conversation – and my friend and I must have somewhat matured over the years because we would have never discussed the topics we do today – the context was of a different nature but this article caught my attention as there are many “cycles” that we must bring an end.
Kudos to Eminem for being able to look deep into his own abyss and write a song like this. Needless to say that it has its critics and a generation ago, it would no doubt have had twice as many. When I was a teen, I don’t even think that the label, “Domestic Violence” even existed and people certainly didn’t talk about it much.
With stars like Eminem and Rihanna bringing more awareness on the subject matter, it does not take a big stretch of the imagination to see it less and less of an issue in future generations.
An applaud to Megan Fox, which according to Yahoo! Finance, and stars opposite Lost actor Dominic Monaghan as one half of a physically abusive couple, has given her salary to the Sojourn House, which provides battered women and their kids with a place to rebuild their self-esteem and their lives.
Refer to story below by Rochell Thomas, and then watch the video.
Come Back on Monday for the second in this series…
In Eminem’s controversial new video “Love the Way You Lie,” love and violence intertwine seamlessly. One moment, a couple sleeps in each other’s arms, the next, they’re violently fighting, tossing bed sheets. Later, they kiss passionately, pressed up against the same wall the man has just punctured with his fist. All the while, Rihanna croons the chorus which includes the line, “That’s all right because I like the way it hurts.” But is it really all right?
Less than 24 hours after MTV debuted the video for Eminem’s chart-topping single about the evolution of his relationship with his ex-wife, Kim, many are wondering: Does “Love the Way You Lie” glamorize domestic violence?
“The most important thing the video is doing is raising the topic of dating violence among young people,” Stephanie Nilva, executive director of sexual assault and trauma resource center Day One, told MTV News.
An expert in relationship violence and domestic abuse prevention, Nilva praised the clip for accurately depicting a pattern typical of abusive relationships. The video stars actors Dominic Monaghan and Megan Fox as a couple involved in a relationship that starts out passionately and lovingly but quickly devolves into a violent affair.
Nilva said the video is especially potent because of Eminem’s and Rihanna’s personal histories with violence or abuse. “Eminem’s history is …as someone who sings a lot about violence,” she said. “And Rihanna’s experience [is] as someone who was abused by Chris Brown.”
That history, she added, is what will make people look at the video and see “that the message is not ‘Don’t you want a relationship like mine?’ The message is a warning sign.”
During the four-minute span of “Love the Way You Lie,” Rihanna alternately sneers in the frame and seems to physically diminish before finally crumbling to the ground in front of the burning house that serves as her backdrop throughout. The images may be melodramatic but symbolically, they are accurate, according to Nilva. “Someone who is victimized in a relationship does become smaller, does lose their power and their strength.”
“I think we tried as hard as we could to not glorify the violence, to try and explain that this was a relationship that is by no means ideal and a relationship that probably should have ended a lot sooner than it did,” Monaghan told MTV News recently. “The concept of ‘Love the Way You Lie’ was essentially a look at the relationship that Eminem was in with his wife, Kim, so I kind of felt like I was playing Eminem a little bit, and Megan Fox was kind of playing Kim.
“It’s the story of them getting to know each other, and it’s the story of their tumultuous relationship, and it was the story of the breakdown of their relationship,” he continued. “Ultimately, what I think he’s trying to say in the song … is that he should have walked away a little bit quicker than he did and not let it get as messy as it did.”
To learn more about how you can prevent or get help for dating abuse and domestic violence, visit DayOneNY.org. If you are involved in an abusive relationship and would like help you can also call 1-800-214-4150. Love should not hurt.
Charlie Sheen arrested. These people have the world at their feet and still can’t stay out of trouble; and on Christmas Day no less. TGO
Refer to brief story below. Source: Associated Press
Police spokeswoman Stephanie Dasaro says Sheen was arrested Friday on charges of second-degree assault and menacing, both felonies, along with criminal mischief, a misdemeanor.
Police say the alleged victim didn’t have to be taken to the hospital. That person’s name wasn’t released.
Police say the 44-year-old actor will be held without bond until his first court appearance. The court was closed for Christmas, and no date for his appearance has been set.
Jail officials said Sheen wasn’t available to comment. After-hours messages left for his managers weren’t immediately returned.