Effective solution to domestic violence
I have come up with an idea on how domestic violence can be reduced to a much lower level. While this does not address all abuse situations, it addresses a large chunk of them. And the solution that I propose is in consistence with constitutional intent.
So far, the struggle against domestic violence has been dominated by red herrings. One major red herring has been the idea that the woman brings on the abuse through low self-esteem. While there are situations in which the partner exploits low self-esteem, there are many other situations in which the abuse is an attempt to break the woman's high or moderate self-esteem in order to bludgeon her into subservience. Along with these situations, there are many others in which the abuse has nothing to do with self-esteem at all and is a result of - the partner hating or thinking badly about the person, the partner hating the other gender, or the partner believing that abuse is the way to go (is ordered by God, is part of loyalty to one's gender, is traditional, is "family values," and futher on along the same line). Ascribing all of these situations to low self-esteem when low self-esteem is a culprit in only a fraction of these situations completely misdiagnoses the problem and prevents real solutions from being achieved.
Another red herring has been the idea that romance or passion causes abuse. This idea is most easily shown to be wrong through cross-cultural analysis. In Middle East and rural India, where romantic love is forbidden and marriages are arranged by families, the violence is worse than it is in the cultures where romantic love is allowed. This red herring likewise completely misreads the situations and does nothing to address the bulk of abusive situations while attacking many situations that are not abusive.
Unlike the proponents of these red herrings, I am not going to be saying that there is a single reason for abuse. Clearly there can be many reasons for it. I am however going to talk about a factor that, while not causal, highly correlates with abuse; addressing which factor would go a long way toward doing away with domestic violence.
What am I talking about?
Most abuse situations in the Western world are also situations of false advertising. Most women would not go into a relationship knowing that they are going to be getting battered, tortured, slandered or treated like trash. Instead these women fall for the lie of a conman. And in addressing this conmanship - this false advertising in relationships - most of these situations can be prevented, and most of those who have been entrapped in them can be freed.
There are any number of men who woo with roses and keep with fists and with whips. There are any number of men who present themselves as kind, loving and caring people while wooing but turn out to be brutes and bullies when the woman is theirs. In situations of false advertising, the partner misrepresents himself, pretending to be everything that he is not. Then he springs the violence on the woman when she is reliably his (is pregnant, has no one to help her, has given up her career, is in a conservative area where divorce is hard to get, and further along the line).
This means the following: Most abuse situations can be prevented by putting into place statutes against false advertising.
In business world, false advertising is a crime and one that is punishable by jail time or fines. How much more needs to be the case in relationships, where at stake is not product sold but people's lives. If a person acts nice while wooing but becomes brutal or malicious while married, then that person has misrepresented himself. And that makes him as bad as the dealer selling a car with a broken fuel tank, the real estate agent selling houses with asbestos, the broker selling stock that he knows will lose most of its value, or the doctor who gives his patients Hepatitis C.
Implementing statutes against false advertising in relationships will deter the bulk of such fraudulent schemes and will do away with a vast chunk of domestic violence. It would not address the situations in which the woman goes into the situations of abuse knowingly, and personal freedom demands that such women be left to their own choices. It would however save everyone else. The woman who has been wooed with roses and kept with fists would be able to tell the court that she's been falsely advertised and would be able to leave the situation before it becomes even worse.
Unlike the proponents of red herrings, I do not claim that there is a single cause for domestic violence. Instead I am addressing a factor that accompanies most domestic violence, addressing which factor can go a long way toward reducing domestic violence. Instead of blaming the victim or attacking good situations, a much better solution is to confront the fraud that accompanies most domestic violence situations and criminalize that fraud - in the same way as such fraud is criminalized in economic situations, political situations or indeed in any other situations in which there is the possibility of fraud.
Implementing statutes against false advertising would be consistent with the intent of the constitutional law: To protect people from force and fraud. It could not be claimed to be unconstitutional, as have been any number of efforts that have been made against domestic violence. It could not be seen as being based on a questionable psychological theory or on a radical or a feminist agenda. Rather it would be seen as being consistent with constitutional law and its intent: To do away with force and fraud against citizens of the country. And its effect would be to do away with the bulk of domestic violence and give those at its receiving end a way to get away from it.
I believe that this is an idea whose time has come.