Wednesday, November 18, 2009

The Most Important Questions

Yet another Maine woman allegedly died at the hand of her husband this week. In Old Orchard Beach, according to MPBN, a man despondent over his crumbling marriage shot his wife, then himself.

Journalists' lack of understanding of battering and abuse is evident in the fact that in none of the three online news accounts of this all too common tragedy is the question, "Was the alleged murderer under a Protection From Abuse order?," answered. Come on reporters, do us a favor, ask the question. Call the sheriff's department.

It's like reporting on a nasty car accident and failing to ask whether victims were wearing seat belts. Not to say that PFAs are as useful as seat belts, in fact, it may be that they are totally useless. It would be helpful to know, however.

Domestic violence is pretty much the only way women end up murdered in this state. We don't have much stranger danger, almost no crack murders or gang violence. Nevertheless, the tools we use to keep women safe seem not to be working all that well.

Also, how about always including what number murder this is for domestic violence in the state?


mommyk said...

Here's another one from last night's news:

Two questions/comments/whatevers to your story.

1. Did you know that in Maine you can't get a lifetime PFA from someone? You have to keep going back and renewing it, and after the third time it's nearly impossible.

2. Did you notice all the volunteer firefighters in the news this week? 2 set fires in unrelated incidents, and the guy that shot his wife was also a firefighter.

I agree wholeheartedly with your post, and also would like to add that Maine needs better reporting in general. But you already know that.

Lee Roberts said...

Wow. Same problem. It's implied that the alleged murderer had been identified as an abuser, but there's no clue what constraints had been placed.


PFAs are all but useless. It would be good for that information to get out, though.

Those socialist volunteer firemen are ruining our country.