Monday, October 26, 2009
Domestic Abuse/Domestic Violence
October is National Domestic Violence Awareness Month. Recently, our local newspaper ran a full-page series of articles on the subject on the front of one of its inside sections that extolled the virtues of various local agencies and people dealing with the problem in our community.
Sadly, the reality of this is something quite different. Local "insiders" know this newspaper is published by close associates of my ex-husband and his family (so close that they regularly sneak out in the middle of church services to hold secret meetings together in the senior pastor's private office) and that these articles are actually an inside joke about the rampant, community-wide abuse and violence that are occurring.
Don't believe me? Consider the case of a woman who signed herself "Willa" in a letter she wrote to the Kerrville Daily News on 12/19/06. Her nightmare began when she learned her controlling, womanizing husband was looking for someone to kill her so he could avoid a divorce. She knew, as I now do, that if you know the right people around here, this is frighteningly easy to do, whether it's for reasons of domestic violence, to steal assets, revenge, jealousy, euthanasia, or whatever, and that corrupt law enforcement will not help you (they will, in fact, actively assist in the murder and cover-up if certain people are involved, so it is actually dangerous to go to them for help, even at the highest levels). "Willa" wrote that she immediately realized the danger she was in, threw some personal effects into her car, and fled her "well appointed home in a golfing community" immediately. She was also aware, as I am, that the local women's shelters are not safe (she said her husband actually volunteers with an associated agency, which probably means he's a doctor or lawyer), so she fled the area to seek help elsewhere. As of the time she wrote her letter, she had not yet found it, and although it was several months later, she was still living out of her car in 100+ degree heat and without needed medications. I don't know her true identity or whatever became of her, but I continue to pray for her, Tracy Shue (widow of Col. Phillip Shue), Angela Dilday (mother of another murder victim), and the many other local victims, both known and unknown.
Here's the bottom line: aside from (but definitely related to) the rampant organized crime that's going on openly here with the full knowledge of the U.S. Department of Justice, entire communities are not only conspiring to commit serious domestic abuse and domestic violence but actually find it amusing enough to brag about it and make jokes about it. Even more unbelievable is the fact that all this is taking place an hour or less away from the headquarters of the National Domestic Violence Hotline in Austin--and that they are aware of what's going on here and do NOTHING.
Recently (on 8/26/09, well before the domestic violence articles came out), there was a small glimmer of hope: a senior "insider" couple who are highly regarded within our community and have substantial outside contacts wrote a letter to the local paper in which they bravely spoke out against what's going on here (in veiled terms, of course). Unfortunately, they seemed more concerned with how this area would be perceived by others ("When history looks back at us, how will our positions be judged?") than by the fact that things being done and condoned here are morally, ethically, and criminally wrong, and they expressed no sympathy or empathy for victims. But the fact remains that this letter was the first sign of proper concern I've seen within this community in a very long time. Hopefully, it's a sign of increasing awareness within the region that the current state of affairs is absolutely unacceptable and that swift, positive action by local residents, communities, and state and federal government agencies is imperative.