Roundup: 10% of Alberta men OK with DV; is Britain’s “Clare’s Law” a band-aid?; S.F. sheriff pleads guilty in DV case

Besides the 10% of men who think it’s OK to physically assault a women if a man gets angry at her, according to reports on CalgaryHerald.com  and TheProvince.com, the good news is that 52  percent said it’s okay for a woman to leave a violent relationship if she wants to. And 52 percent don’t agree with the statement, “If a woman wears provocative clothing, she’s putting herself at risk for rape.”

Now that’s putting a very positive spin on the fact that essentially half of the men in Alberta, Canada think it’s NOT acceptable for a woman to leave a violent relationship, and they place some responsibility on a woman for being raped.

The results of the survey didn’t go down well with Alberta Premier Alison Redford. According to TheProvince.com report, she said that some of the survey results “made me sick to my stomach.”

Redford said one of the statistics that stood out for her was the fact that 21 per cent of men surveyed said slapping a child’s face is acceptable. “That is very troubling, I want us to do better as a community,” she said.

“Clare’s Law” was passed in Britain, but not everyone’s enthusiastic about it. Although the pilot program “seems to be setting it up so police are encouraged to make information about known violent offenders more available,” says a report by Jessica Wakeman on Frisky.com, some women’s advocates say it’s “a band-aid.” She quotes Refuge’s CEO Sandra Horley, who did a piece in the Guardian about the woman for whom “Clare’s Law” is named. Apparently Clare had many contacts with police before she was killed by her ex-boyfriend.

She described his threats to kill her. The police arrested and bailed him — at one point arresting him after he had reached his bail, only to immediately de-arrest him. … What good will costly, bureaucratic new schemes do when the police so consistently fail to perform the most basic duties towards victims of domestic violence?

A couple of days ago, San Francisco Sheriff Ross Mirkarimi took a plea deal to end the headline-generating trial. This SFGate.com report by Rachel Gordon (and this one, too) does a good job at showing how old arguments — Mirkarimi’s wife, Eliana Lopez, not wanting to testify; Mirkarimi saying this was a private matter; no acknowledgement that a child is traumatized by witnessing its mother being battered — were defeated by modern research-based and evidence-based approach to reduce and prevent domestic violence and child trauma.

Under the plea agreement, Mirkarimi will be sentenced Monday to three years’ probation, one year of weekly domestic violence batterers classes, parenting classes, 100 hours of community service, and fines and court fees nearing $600. Mirkarimi originally had faced more serious charges of domestic violence battery, dissuading a witness and child endangerment in connection with the incident, which authorities say took place in front of the couple’s 2-year-old son. He had pleaded not guilty to those charges.

According to an Associated Press report, a big reason for the plea bargain was that it “derailed a trial that promised to smear the sheriff with tawdry allegations of abusive behavior, infidelity and another woman’s underwear.”

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