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  • Because No One Should Have to Live In Fear Of Violence

    Abuse needn’t be shuffled into the closet or swept under the carpet. Abuse knows no geographical boundaries or cultural difference. Abuse knows no sexual orientation. Abuse knows no age or gender barrier. We all have lived with abuse on a daily basis and have feared it. Unable to say what you think, unable to leave for fear of retaliation. Being perpetually bullied by an abuser usually ends with a one way road to retaliation or death. In a nation where 40% of all gun violence is in the form of harming a former intimate partner or family member, we needed as a nation to have this discussion. Not in a back room, whispered behind closed doors discussion, but openly to acknowledge that all women, men and children who live in fear, who live in abuses terrible shadow have the choice to live their lives in a different way.

    This is not a party affiliation measure, this vital discussion keeps our sons, daughters and grandchildren safe. This bill cleared both houses of Congress with overwhelming bipartisan support. Today, a bill was signed into law reauthorizing the Violence Against Women Act. It builds on a law that Vice President Biden wrote 18 years ago – which has helped to decrease the rates of domestic violence across the county. It includes provisions aimed at reducing dating violence among teams and strengthening protections for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender victims. It also seeks to bring justice to Native American communities where rates of domestic violence are among the highest in the country.

    The strength it takes to call for help, after being repeatedly beaten, is beyond many peoples ability to comprehend. To stand up for yourself and say I will not be beaten again, I will not put my children in harms way, I would rather leave you forever, even though I’ve loved you, than be abused by you another moment. Then to pick yourself up, act and be able to do it. Actually have a place to go, a safe haven. You can.

    As Americans, we should be proud that we acted together and were heard.
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