Thursday, May 28, 2009

Shall I compare thee to a summer's day?

I couldn't help but notice this the moment I picked up today's edition of The Borneo Post. Here's the front-page headline that greeted me in big bold letters when I read the local paper today:

Watch your tongue, hubby: Telling your wife she is not pretty will be an offence

That sure catches your attention doesn't it, especially if you're male and you're married (and I suppose, even if you're female or you're not married!). My first reaction on reading that headline, of course, was: Huh? What's this all about?

Here's the opening explanation:

"A husband telling his wife that she is no longer pretty in an attempt to humiliate her can be classified as an emotional violence offence if ammendments are made to the Domestic Violence Act (DVA) 1994.

That made things slightly clearer but even as I read the rest of the news article, I couldn't help but think of how such an inclusion in the law can be misused and go against the very spirit on why the powers that be deemed it necessary. But, I suppose that would also be true of other laws in the country if you're cunning and resourceful enough. According to the article, the whole idea for the expansion of the definition of domestic violence is to include not only physical abuse, which is visible and therefore easily identifiable, but also emotional, mental and psychological forms - the kinds that are often not as visible and therefore, not as easy to identify.

What drives a person to despair? What triggers someone to hurt another person? What causes people to take their own lives? I think it's the unseen things, the inner workings of the mind that pushes people to do things that they would not normally do. And such people need all the help and support they can get, especially if such mental, emotional and psychological torture is not of their own doing as in the case of domestic violence.

So, I applaud the efforts of the government for looking into increasing the protection of married women against violence at home. I just hope that there will be clear markers within the amendment that will enable it to function effectively.

Love your family, peeps.


Nick Phillips said...

While I applaud the effort like you said, I think it's a ridiculous thing to do. Soon, I'll have my wife reporting me to the authorities for asking her to make me a cup of coffee!

Roslyn said...

Here's how I like to think of people who hurt others.

We all have a metaphorical cup of poison in our hearts to contain the toxins in our lives. However, when it overflows, we either pour it out onto ourselves or we pour it out onto others. Sadly, too many of us aren't self-sacrificing enough. So we afflict others, especially those closest to our hearts.

So when someone hurts me with words, I always think,"His/Her cup overfloweth..."

But when I'm not feeling in the mood, I whack back :)

Miss Mathew said...

Simple. Don't do to others wht u don't want done to u.