Wednesday, September 13, 2006


The widow wrote a touching and very private letter. She had been in a situation of escalating domestic violence and on one particular evening her husband got the gun. He held it on her chest, backed her into a corner. She wrote that looking into his eyes, she could see that he was going to kill her. She says that the look was unmistakeable.

She chose not to die and not to beg. She chose to walk out and force him to shoot her in the back. In one of the weird twists of this dynamic he couldn't put up with her making a decision. He said that he would leave and stepped outside. He had no less intention of killing her, you must understand this. This type of violence is about control and he couldn't let her make a decision, couldn't let her be an actor in this drama. He stepped outside purely to deny her the chance to be the one acting.

She locked the door and dialed 911 as she frantically locked up the other doors and windows. The husband began slamming his weight into the door, trying to shatter his way in.

This is why I'm writing this- in her letter she talked about how amazing and humbling it was that when she called for help, perfect strangers showed up to rescue her. Three men (one a brand-new trainee) who had lives and families and children showed up at her door step to save her from a man with a gun. She read the reports later and was hit hard by how they described what was going through their heads at the time, the fear and mission.

The husband decided to fire at the deputies. The woman is a widow now. The deputies stayed with her for the next several hours and it was the first solid information she had ever received on the cycles of domestic violence. They got her counseling. They took care of HER.

Remember this, if you can. That there are people everywhere who risk their lives and the possibility of orphaning their children every day to help strangers. Because the stranger called for help.

1 comment:

Mac said...

Why then, starting about 30 years ago, are the sheepdogs consistently punished for doing their job - even when the action was clear? What has changed? Is it a natural cycle - the final spasm of male domination before the sheep take over and the world becomes a peaceful, harmonious place? I don't think the warriors will allow this to happen - they will rebel and destroy what they most love and have been trained to protect. Or will we learn to adapt, to find new applications of our power, more subtle, far-reaching and effective, in achieving the warrior's goal - peace, love, harmony.