A future free of VAWA just eliminated.
As most of you would have predicted, The House has passed the Senate version of VAWA, and it will be sent straight to President Obama’s desk where he will undoubtedly sign it into law, maybe before you have a chance to read this.
There is no real story here. Once again the politicians have ignored the science about intimate partner violence, ignored most of the victims, including children, in order to pass a federally sized barrel of feminist pork. They have ensured that for the foreseeable future that the corruption of money and public perception continues, and that sexual ideologues can continue to finance an agenda to destroy families, exert unfettered legal power over men and wantonly enable female abusers of men and children.
Again, there is no story here; no new one, anyway. But there is a lesson, if we are willing to learn it.
For the last several years there have been activists hard at work, trying to lobby the Republican Party to intervene on VAWA insanities and bring the corrupt legislation down. The result has not only been failure, it has actually served to further demonize opposition to VAWA and subsequently etch it deeper into the cement of American political institutions.
The Republicans have inched us closer to making VAWA as American as Mom and apple pie. And it is long past time that we recognize that and act accordingly.
There is no doubt whatsoever that Senate and Congressional Republicans have been educated about the rampant corruption, the financial waste and lack of accountability that pervades VAWA. They have been informed of the sexual bias that runs through the legislation, and how that bias does grievous harm to children and anyone else who might be the victim of female perpetrators. They have been made aware of the lack of services for male victims and the pernicious nature of primary aggressor laws and mandatory arrest polices.
Make no mistake about it, the Republicans that help govern our nation are fully aware that VAWA is nothing more than a cash cow for ideologues and that it operates at the destructive expense of the citizens they have sworn to serve.
But what did they actually do in how they went about “attacking” VAWA? Well, they raised objections to the inclusion of provisions for the GLBT community, illegal immigrants and expanding Native American tribal authority in domestic violence matters.
In effect, they ignored the corruption, the sweeping bias, the Constitutional undermining, the disaffected children and men and instead claimed the three worst and most easily demonized objections to the new version of the legislation. That in part explains why they just dropped all opposition and helped usher in the new version of the bill.
They embraced a trivial trifecta of objections to be cast as their talking points in the media without a single objection. They never even pretended there was anything wrong with the old VAWA, when they knew damn well there was.
It was not a week ago I watched Senator Marco Rubio, the great new Republican hope, on Fox News telling reporters that he would have voted for VAWA without the changes.
Lest anyone forget, the feature image of this article shows an American president signing VAWA into law once before. His name isn’t Clinton.
Indeed, if you take a look around the media at the supposed detractors of VAWA, it reads like a who’s who list of social conservatives, all of whom are insanely intent on raising objections to VAWA so lame and off target that they would need to improve before we could dignify them by calling them laughing stocks.
From the Family Research Council, whose deepest concerns were about the extension of tribal laws.
From Concerned Women for America, who got so lost in echoing feminist rhetoric about domestic violence that I lost interest in reading before I got to any of their supposed objections. For pity sake, Penny Nance was even parroting the one in four rape canard by the time she got to paragraph 3.
Then there is Focus on the Family, who should rename their organization Focus on Abortion:
Now, of course I am not saying that the concerns raised by these organizations, or by some Republicans have no validity. For sure, I am concerned that VAWA incentivizes false accusations as a fast track to a green card. But that is just one of a boatload of other problems with the legislation that Republicans lack the political grit to face.
It is time to stop kissing their asses and recognize they have abdicated their responsibilities to their constituents and to the Constitution and are nothing more than proxy agents for the very ideologues they purport to oppose.
It is time that we wake up to the fact that if there is a political solution to VAWA and legislation like it, it will not come from either of the two mainstream parties.
I am fully aware of what an uphill battle that leaves us with. But an easier slope won’t do us a bit of good if it leads to the top of the wrong hill.
In some of the discussions I have had with Republican supporters, at least those who feel that the Republican Party might be an ally in this fight, I’ve heard it said that we cannot expect them to sacrifice political careers from efforts to oppose VAWA.
I cannot tell you how sick I am of hearing this impotent, mealy-mouthed excuse making. All it amounts to is asking us to rationalize that it is somehow in our interest to place the job security of career cowards ahead of the truth and ahead of the justice we are entitled to demand.
If it takes the sacrifice of political careers to hammer home the truth, then so be it. We have kids still dying for oil. The least we can do is expect the truth from someone whose worst consequence is returning to their fucking law practice.
I know I am speaking idealistically. I know that the men in government now bear no resemblance at all to the men who willingly signed their own death warrants so that America would have a chance to escape tyranny.
But the idea of surrendering to a path without ideals, led by gutless men who do not believe in anything strongly enough to pay a price for it has reached a level of offense in me so heightened that I can no longer stand it.
In the future, the next time VAWA comes up for reauthorization, you will likely see some noise again about ending the legislation. Don’t buy it on its face value. More likely than not, if it is not coming from AVFM, it is a pig in a poke.
We will be working hard here, as we always do, to continue to educate the public in the truth about domestic violence, and domestic violence law.
I will be asking our DV Policy Advisor, Erin Pizzey, to work more closely with us on this issue. Perhaps, though I am not holding my breath, we may find some allies involved in Libertarian politics.
But wherever we start, it will have to be with the truth.
History gives us many examples of where the truth, pounded incessantly into the public’s consciousness can eventually manifest in change. We are even starting to see some of that change in the mentality of people about men’s rights issues.
What we will not gain from, though, is obsequious, politically driven compromise and capitulation. The only result of that you are ever going to see is right around the corner, when President Obama, with the help of the Republican Party, signs VAWA right back into our lives.