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My Brain Stays Asleep

Filed under: Domestic Violence — JohnPotter @ 10:59 am Mon 17th October 2005

In an October 22-28 2005 Listener article titled: ‘My Eyes Stay Awake‘, Dennis Welch writes about the “effect on children exposed to domestic violence”. Personally, I can’t help wondering if the article is more about the effect of young, attractive, blond interview subjects on aging male journalists!

To enlighten us, Welch interviews Jane Drumm, Executive Director of the organisation Preventing Violence in the Home, an “Auckland agency formed to help women subject to domestic violence”. The information that Drumm is actually a prominent Women’s Refuge [JP edit: her organistion, previously known as the Domestic Violence Centre (Auckland) is no longer formally part of the National Refuge Collective, but the website is still unambiguaously aligned with Refuge’s radical feminist ideology] activist is inexplicably omitted; in fact the words ‘Women’s Refuge’ do not appear anywhere in the article.

Drumm tells the Listener that out of “concern about the effect on children of violence between their parents”, the organisation set up a child crisis team of social workers who supposedly give “kids the tools to cope with what they have to cope with… and to be safe”. It also presumably opens up huge new opportunities for getting public funding to pay feminist activists.

I’ve copied every mention of violence in the article below – who can spot what is wrong with this picture?

Dad had been drinking. He threw my mum on the floor and got a big knife from the kitchen. He strangled her. He said, “I’m going to kill your mother tonight” I said “No, Dad don’t hurt mum” but he wouldn’t stop. Mum was saying to me “help me” but I didn’t know what to do.

My dad hit my mum. Dad pushed mum onto the fridge. Dad is naughty for hitting mum ’cause it makes Mum say “no, no”

All blood came out of her face. She needed a towel. I cry lots of times.

My eyes stay awake at night. My dad might kill my mum and the night. He hit her bad before. There was lots of blood.

“I want to get in between I am too scared”, said a seven-year-old girl who saw her mother abused. “I am mean not helping her”.

How do you help a three-year-old cope with Dad hitting Mum?

Katy Reeves asked the mother about the danger posed by her violent husband — now living apart from her but still paying threatening visits.

Drum and colleague and Rachel Williamson surveyed the child crisis team over a period of five months and found that nearly half the children spoken to (27 out of 62) had witnessed their father’s or stepfather’s violent abuse of the mother.

The article concludes with a promotion for the National Network of Stopping Violence Services conference “Courageous Practice” to be held at Waipuna Lodge on October 20-22. Why is the Listener colluding with these radical feminist organisations in promoting hatred towards men and the removal of fathers from involvement in children’s lives by spreading this type of disinformation ?

If this article had been written by a wet-behind-the-ears journalism student straight out of school, the lack of balance and uncritical reporting of an extreme ideological agenda might be understandable, even if unacceptable. That it was written by a senior and experienced reporter like Welch should be of grave concern to us all.


  1. I see several problems with the article. The first on a practical front. Who is funding the use of Waipuna Lodge, a somewhat upmarket venue.

    I also suggest that the cases mentioned are somewhat extreme.

    It is not all doom & gloom, I had a letter supporting Judge Recordon and Refuge Manager Glenda Ryan in Today (Monday 17 October) Dominion-Post as Did Another member of Pauls news. My letter was also published in the Wanganui Chronicle.

    I encourage all readers to newspapers, the media use thes letters as a gauge of grass roots opinion. For those uncertain there is cood advice in letter writing on the Maxim Instituite Web Site plus email addresses of all news papers

    Comment by Alastair Laing — Mon 17th October 2005 @ 11:41 am

  2. This issue reminds me of the Women’s Refuge’s recent announcement that women found to have made false and malicious domestic violence complaints to the police should not be charged with a criminal offence on the spurious and highly disingenuous grounds that it might dissuade genuine domestic violence victims from coming forward!

    This strikes at the heart of the issue: the Women’s Refuge don’t want the increasing numbers of false domestic abuse complaints becoming “official” statistics by way of criminal convictions. They don’t want us to provide them with the “evidence” that they have for so long demanded. If there is no “proof” of false and malicious domestic violence complaints then how can it possibly exist?

    Don’t forget, for every woman bold enough to actually go to the police with a false complaint, there must surely be hundreds of others who threaten to.

    Comment by Blaise — Mon 17th October 2005 @ 2:00 pm

  3. Why do dogs lick their own genitals???
    Cos they can!!!!

    Why do women make false complaints???

    Comment by triassic — Mon 17th October 2005 @ 6:34 pm

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