Sorry, Janay Rice, but domestic violence isn’t a private matter

After the public’s outraged response to violent video of football player Ray Rice punching his wife, Janay, in an elevator, today she defends him on Instagram:

I woke up this morning feeling like had a horrible nightmare, feeling like I’m mourning the death of my closest friend…no one knows the pain that the media & unwanted options from the public has caused my family.

Janay’s words echo a public domestic violence case in San Francisco where I live, when in 2012, video evidence surfaced that city’s new sheriff, Ross Mirkarimi, had abused his wife, Eliana Lopez. At a news conference after his swearing in, Mirkarimi called the situation “a private matter. A family matter.” A few months later, upset that the Bay Area public didn’t want an abuser as the sheriff, Lopez defended her husband in an op-ed for the local paper:

From the beginning, my public voice has been ignored and treated as irrelevant. Many in the media keep saying that I just don’t get it. But I do get it: I get that I am being used to bring my husband down…Ross has paid an unfair price for his side of our family disputes. I have paid a terrible price, too. So has our son, Theo. The man I married is a wonderful man, a considerate father, and a loyal public servant who is demonstrating his ability to become better in all ways.

Violence is not a private matter. Abusers tend to offend repeatedly, often ending with the death of the woman. When Janay Rice or Eliana Lopez defend the violence, it’s much more than “not getting it” but helps to put all women at risk. Until we all take a stand and recognize that violence against women is not a private matter, it will continue to be epidemic in the USA and around the world. Here are some stats:

 One in four women (25%) has experienced domestic violence in her lifetime.


Nearly three out of four (74%) of Americans personally know someone who is or has been a victim of domestic violence.


Domestic violence is one of the most chronically under reported crimes.


Only approximately one-quarter of all physical assaults, one-fifth of all rapes, and one-half of all stalkings perpetuated against females by intimate partners are reported to the police.


On average, more than three women are murdered by their intimate partners in this country every day.

While some argue to look away, that watching the video of Rice abusing his wife is voyeurism, Peggy Orenstein, author of Cinderella Ate My Daughter has another opinion, writing on her Facebook page:

So, I’ve decided one should watch the video and discuss it with kids who are of an age where they will likely see it, ESPECIALLY boys. Because it is adult men who decided Rice only warranted a 2-game suspension when they saw him dragging his unconscious fiancee out of an elevator. And because when they handed down that suspsension they made this comment, which shows that they really can’t conceptualize what domestic violence really is or what it means to hit a person so hard she goes unconscious: “We respect the efforts Ray has made to become the best partner and father he can be. That night was not typical of the Ray Rice we know and respect. We believe that he will not let that one night define who he is, and he is determined to make sure something like this never happens again.”


I agree with her. We need educate the next generation much better than we have in the past about violence against women. If we can’t recognize it, we can’t stop it. Goodell didn’t see the video, do we want to look away too? The Washington Post reports on Goodell’s reaons for ignoring the footage:

The NFL claims in a statement that no one in the league office had previously seen the tape. That is almost surely not the truth, unless the NFL wanted it that way. This is a league that works with Homeland Security, confers with the Drug Enforcement Agency, collaborates with law enforcement and has its own highly equipped and secretive private security arm. You’re telling me it couldn’t get a hold of a grainy tape from an Atlantic City casino elevator? But TMZ could?


Of course, as someone comments on Reel Girl’s Facebook page, when Goodell saw the first video, what did he think happened inside that elevator, that Rice kissed his wife on the ear? Last May, when Brown’s receiver Josh Gordon failed a marijuana test, Goodell suspended the player for a full year, but after watching Ray Rice drag his unconscious wife out of an elevator, the commissioner opted for a 2 game suspension.

I’m deeply sorry for Janay and the horrible time that she’s going through, but this isn’t only her problem. As long as Americans look the other way when domestic violence happens, it will never stop being a national epidemic. A crucial next step? Fire Roger Goodell. He doesn’t deserve to be the Commissioner of the NFL.

Update: Janay Rice makes another public statement: I want people to respect our privacy in this family matter.”

Jeffrey Toobin makes a similar point as I did here, writing for CNN: “It’s not up to victims to decide whether their husbands should be prosecuted. Abusers damage the community, not just the women they assault.”

I am not blaming Janay Rice. There are complicated reasons why women stay, and I have no idea what she has to say right now in order to be safe, but again, her abuse is not a private matter. To support that myth of privacy, of abuse being “a family matter” is to support a culture of violence towards women.

Fall Movie Preview: Insidious misogyny in ‘Gone Girl’

I haven’t seen the movie “Gone Girl,” and neither have you as it’s hitting theaters on October 3, though I did read the book this summer. I was horrified by the misogyny woven through the narrative. Perhaps I was so surprised by the sexism because the only controversy I’d heard of before I read the book was that people didn’t like the ending. I did like the ending. I’ll tell you why, and also go into the plot points of “Gone Girl” but before I do, consider yourself warned: spoilers will be in this post. If you’re going to read Gone Girl— and it is, like so many sexist books I critique, well written and well plotted, I’m talking about technique here– you may not want to proceed much further, except, perhaps, to take a look at this cover of Entertainment Weekly. There you see Amy, the protagonist of “Gone Girl,” shown as a “beautiful” female corpse, a trope Anita Sarkeesian dissects in her latest video: Women as Background Decoration: Part 2 – Tropes vs Women in Video Games. This image of the dead, sexualized female body is, quite literally, everywhere in popular culture. After you check out this cover, I want you to know just one more thing.


My final comment to those who don’t want spoilers: I have absolutely no problem with women not being “likeable” characters. I want that. I was so excited when I read the comment by the excellent writer Claire Messud who, when asked about her protagonist by Publisher’s Weekly (I wouldn’t want to be friends with Nora, would you? Her outlook is almost unbearably grim”) responded:

For heaven’s sake, what kind of question is that? Would you want to be friends with Humbert Humbert? Would you want to be friends with Mickey Sabbath? Saleem Sinai? Hamlet? Krapp? Oedipus? Oscar Wao? Antigone? Raskolnikov? Any of the characters in The Corrections? Any of the characters in Infinite Jest? Any of the characters in anything Pynchon has ever written? Or Martin Amis? Or Orhan Pamuk? Or Alice Munro, for that matter? If you’re reading to find friends, you’re in deep trouble. We read to find life, in all its possibilities. The relevant question isn’t “is this a potential friend for me?” but “is this character alive?”


Get that, people? Is this character alive?

OK, moving on to spoilers, if you don’t want them, it’s time to leave.

It turns out that the protagonist of Gone Girl, Amy Dunne (played in the movie by Rosemund Pike) fakes her own rape, pregnancy, stalking, beatings, and murder. That’s right, Amy goes through a veritable list of practically every act/ crime that a wicked and conniving (are men ever conniving?) woman can manipulate. While Amy fakes her victimhood, her husband, Nick, played in the movie by Ben Affleck, is falsely accused of killing his pregnant wife. Why, you ask, is Amy motivated to be so awful? She’s a woman scorned, of course, who discovered her husband’s affair with his student.

Here’s one passage describing Amy’s fakery:

I took a wine bottle, and I abused myself with it every day, so the inside of my vagina looked…right. Right for a rape victim. Then today I let him have sex with me so I had his semen…

That particular scene, by the way, refers to another man Amy is setting up, not her husband.

Here’s the problem, and once again, it’s not that Amy is a villain or unlikeable.

In the USA 20 percent of women, 1 in 5, report experiencing rape or attempted rape. The Department of Justice estimates that 60 percent of rapes go unreported. As for false accusations of rape, the FBI estimates that 1-2 percent of claims are fake. Here’s another important fact about false accusation: A 2002 survey of male and female college students shows that they believe a woman lies in 50 percent of reported rape cases. “Gone Girl” perpetuates the popular narrative that rape isn’t real and isn’t happening, that women lie, and falsely accused men are the real victims.

But Gone Girl is fiction not fact, you say. Why am I listing stats here? Am I trying, once again, to censor artists with my PC beliefs? Surely Amy’s story can fall into the 1- 2% of women who falsely accuse men of rape. This is a free country.

This is also a country where Washington Post columnist George Will, a man known as the “most powerful journalist in America” recently wrote that being a rape survivor is “a coveted status.” When others challenged Will that rape is not, in fact, something women want, the conservative group, Women’s Independent Forum called a conference “Rape Culture and Sexual Assault,” putting out this press release:

The White House has embraced the statistic that 1 in 5 women is sexually assaulted while in college…The White House has released its “first ever report” on the issue and are using it to push their policy agenda…But many question the validity of the White House’s one-in-five statistic, even as those who challenge this figure are silenced as being uncaring about women…The IWF takes any accusation of sexual assault very seriously. But we are concerned that there is a potentially harmful hysteria developing about this issue. Where does this come from? Where is it going? And who will be harmed?

Lucky for us, Gone Girl answers every single one of the IWF’s (hysterical) questions: Where does it come from? In Gone Girl, overachieving Harvard grad, Amy Dunne, was used but never truly loved by her egotistical writer parents. They penned a best-selling YA series based on their daughter. Where is it going? Female anger and, yes, hysteria, not to mention jealousy, vindictiveness, and aging, leads to violence. Who will be harmed? Nick, of course, innocent men in America who are falsely accused, lied to, manipulated, and victimized by the scorned, bitter women in their lives.

Yes, Of course Gillian Flynn can write about whatever she pleases, but I find it sadly ironic that when I argue for more diverse stories to permeate our popular culture, a culture where people believe that 50% of rape accusations are false, a culture where stories of rape remain secret to the point that the media hides names and identities of survivors, a media dominated by the same old trope ridden narrative, that I am the one who’s accused of stifling creativity. Gone Girl is a best-selling book about to be blockbuster movie that will help to perpetuate  the myth/ story that rape and violence against women is not epidemic but mostly exists in our imagination.

By the way, the end of the book, you know why people don’t like it? Because Amy ends up OK. She and Nick get back together, they’re going to have a baby. (Pregnant for real this time, she stole his sperm.) Apparently, the no punishment-for-Amy-finale is so unpopular that the director changed the ending to make it more of crowdpleaser.

I’ll leave you with some facts about domestic violence in the USA from the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence):

One in four women (25%) has experienced domestic violence in her lifetime.


85% of domestic violence victims are women.


Nearly three out of four (74%) of Americans personally know someone who is or has been a victim of domestic violence.


Domestic violence is one of the most chronically under reported crimes.


Only approximately one-quarter of all physical assaults, one-fifth of all rapes, and one-half of all stalkings perpetuated against females by intimate partners are reported to the police.


On average, more than three women are murdered by their intimate partners in this country every day.


 Reel Girl rates Gone Girl ***SSS*** for gender stereotyping

After I read Gone Girl, I searched the internet about the book’s misogyny, here are some interesting posts


The Misogynistic Portrayal of Villainy in Gone Girl

Is GONE GIRL a Misogynist Novel?

Ex-wife of Ariel Castro charged him with domestic violence, case dropped

In 2005, Grimilda Figueroa, the ex-wife of Ariel Castro, the man who imprisoned, beat, and sexually abused three women for ten years, brought domestic violence charges against him. Court documents state that Figueroa suffered two broken noses, broken ribs, a knocked-out tooth, two dislocated shoulders, and a blood clot on the brain.

Jezebel reports:

However, nothing could be done to protect Figueroa and her children as her lawyer didn’t show up for the court hearing, and the case was dropped. Apparently her counsel cautioned her against speaking for herself, and she didn’t make any objection to the judge’s decision to dismiss the protection order. Both Figueroa and Castro were judged to have “waived their right to any further hearing”, the case’s final document stated. Tragically, Figueroa died last year.

How did the judge decide to dismiss such a case for something so simple as a lawyer not showing up? Why don’t we have better legal resources for victims of domestic violence? How ill-equipped, poorly run, understaffed, and overworked must our legal system be to let a case like that slide? It’s infuriating and heartbreaking to yet again witness the ease with which such cases are dismissed.


America is failing half of its citizens. This violent man, Ariel Castro, was more protected by our legal system than the women he abused. In 2013, there is slavery in America’s backyard and we look the other way and just let it happen. Here are the stats one more time from National Coalition Against Domestic Violence):

One in four women (25%) has experienced domestic violence in her lifetime.

85% of domestic violence victims are women.

Women ages 20-24 are at the greatest risk of nonfatal intimate partner violence.

Nearly three out of four (74%) of Americans personally know someone who is or has been a victim of domestic violence.

On average, more than three women are murdered by their intimate partners in this country every day.

Domestic violence is one of the most chronically under reported crimes.

Only approximately one-quarter of all physical assaults, one-fifth of all rapes, and one-half of all stalkings perpetuated against females by intimate partners are reported to the police.

How are we going to stop it? Support the feminist movement. Here’s a report published in SFGate, 2012:

A new study on violence against women conducted over four decades and in 70 countries reveals the mobilization of feminist movements is more important for change than the wealth of nations, left-wing political parties, or the number of women politicians.


The study in the latest issue of American Political Science Review (APSR), published by Cambridge University Press for the American Political Science Association (APSA), found that in feminist movements that were autonomous from political parties and the state, women were able to articulate and organize around their top priorities as women, without having to answer to broader organizational concerns or mens’ needs. Mobilizing across countries, feminist movements urged governments to approve global and regional norms and agreements on violence.
The scope of data for the study is unprecedented. The study includes every region of the world, varying degrees of democracy, rich and poor countries, and a variety of world religions – it encompasses 85 per cent of the world’s population. Analyzing the data took five years, which is why the most recent year covered is 2005.

2005 also happens to be the year that Ariel Castro’s wife brought the charges against him and her lawyer didn’t care enough to show up in court.

Safeway punishes worker after he rescues customer from domestic violence

On April 21, Quyen Van Tran was in a Safeway store near Monterey when he began abusing his pregnant girlfriend. He was in full view of customers and workers but no one did anything to stop him until a meat clerk, Ryan Young, intervened.

KION, a local news channel in Del Rey Oaks, reports on how Young described the incident:

“Every few seconds he would turn around and push her and then he actually kicked her,” Young said. “I told him to calm down and he was just irate.”

Young said Tran refused to stop and jumped in to stop the assault.

“I saw no one was intervening in the situation and I just became afraid for her safety and also other customers safety,” Young said. “The guy was out of control and pretty much lost it in there.”

Not only did witnesses corroborate Young’s story and applaud his reaction, so did local police. Police Chief Ron Langford said that if Ryan had not intervened, things could have become much worse.

But Safeway didn’t commend its hero-worker. Instead the company suspended Young without pay with Safeway spokeswoman, Wendy Gutshall, making this ambiguous statement:

“Safeway is taking this matter seriously. We have store security video of the incident and have been engaged in a careful and thoughtful forensic review of what transpired.”

It’s been a month since Young has been without work and without pay. Young also has a pregnant wife and he says that earning no wages has been a hardship and a stress on his family. Yet Safeway has not shared any information with him about when or if he can expect to get his job back.

Then last Tuesday, Safeway held a shareholders meeting at which the company’s General Counsel, Robert Gordon, made a sexist joke where he compared Nancy Pelosi and Hilary Clinton to pigs. A blogger, Kaili Joy Gray, posted the joke and an audio clip. The news spread around the internet; Congressmembers heard it and wrote this letter to Safeway asking for an apology:

We are writing to express our strong disapproval of inappropriate comments reportedly made by Safeway General Counsel Robert Gordon at Safeway’s May 15 shareholder meeting. We are deeply disappointed by these comments and believe Safeway must take corrective steps immediately.

According to an audio recording reportedly taken from the shareholder meeting, General Counsel Gordon inappropriately used House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton as the butt of his joke, as follows:

You know, this is the season when companies and other institutions are interested in enhancing their reputation and their image for the general public, and one of the institutions that’s doing this is the Secret Service, particularly after the calamity in Colombia. And among the instructions given to the Secret Service agents was to try to agree with the president more and support his decisions. And that led to this exchange that took place last week, when the president flew into the White House lawn and an agent greeted him at the helicopter. The president was carrying two pigs under his arms and the Secret Service agents said, “Nice pigs, sir.”And the president said, “These are not ordinary pigs, these are genuine Arkansas razorback hogs. I got one for former Speaker Nancy Pelosi and one for Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.” And the Secret Service agent said, “Excellent trade, sir.”

Poking fun at politicians is part of our culture, and TV comedians carry this out nightly. But sexist jokes told by a top executive of a Fortune 500 company to an international audience are completely inappropriate and demonstrate a shocking lack of respect, not only for two of the most important and respected people in our country but for all women.

Safeway owes an apology to Secretary Clinton, Leader Pelosi, and the country. It is up to the Safeway board to decide what action to take against its general counsel for his comments but let there be no doubt as to our strong disapproval and deep disappointment in your company for what he said.


Reps. George Miller, Anna Eshoo, Zoe Lofgren, Mike Thompson, Lynn Woolsey, Jerry McNerney, John Garamendi, Doris Matsui, Barbara Lee, and Mike Honda

Robert Gordon then made this half-hearted response:

“I sincerely apologize if the opening comments I made at the recent annual stockholders meeting offended anyone. As these comments have been interpreted, they are not a reflection of my personal beliefs or that of my employer. I understand how my comments have impacted others and I hope they will accept my apology.”

As these comments have been interpreted? Huh? Is there some other way to interpret them that I’m not seeing here?

Because of links on the internet, that sexist joke story combined with the Ryan Young story to fuel public awareness about Safeway’s mistreatment of its worker.

A petition on to get Ryan Young his job back had about 3,000 signatures on Friday. But as of this writing, the petition has grown to 177,630 signatures. Safeway’s Facebook page has also been deluged with comments from customers upset about how Young has been treated.

Yesterday, Safeway came out with another statement in reaction to the public outcry. Here it is in full:

We’ve heard from a lot of customers who don’t feel Mr. Young should have been suspended following an altercation with a customer in our Del Rey store.

We understand this reaction.  We agree that Mr. Young is to be commended for choosing to intervene and come to the defense of the woman involved.

However, a videotape of the entire incident appears to reveal actions we cannot condone.  It is those actions, subsequent to the initial confrontation, that we are trying to understand more clearly.

We wish to be very clear about the fact that Mr. Young was not suspended for coming to the aid of one of our customers.  That action was courageous and correct.

At the same time, we believe we owe it to our employees and our customers to understand as fully as possible everything that took place in this incident.

It is important that we complete a thorough investigation of this incident and respect the process we have in place with the union representing Mr. Young before we reach a decision on his status with our company.

Safeway is obviously indicating that there is something on that video tape, something the public doesn’t know about, something quite separate from Young’s “courageous and correct” action, that somehow justifies suspending Young without pay. It’s curious that Safeway would think that when police condone Young’s actions.

If there is something we don’t know about here, please release the tape, Safeway. Or be more clear about what you have an issue with. Because right now, from your ambiguous statements and slow reactions, it seems like your first priority is to prevent potential lawsuits rather than prevent domestic violence.

What is also disturbing about this story is that Safeway’s fear of getting involved in stopping a crime, its abysmal treatment of Young, is symptomatic of culture that consistently doesn’t get, doesn’t respond to, and doesn’t care much about stopping domestic violence.

Domestic violence is the most common health problem for pregnant women. Do you know how many health problems pregnant women have? And DV is the most common?

One in four women (25%) has experienced domestic violence in her lifetime. On average, more than three women are murdered by their intimate partners in this country every day.

If DV is so widespread, why do so few people know basic facts about this epidemic?

Part of the reason is that because only approximately one-quarter of all physical assaults, one-fifth of all rapes, and one-half of all stalkings perpetuated against females by intimate partners are reported to the police.

Survivors are often too ashamed or too frightened to follow through with charges. It’s pretty hard to imagine how survivors have much hope of of getting over being shamed when the people who try to help them also get punished.

That’s actually a major reason why DV is so common: time and again, bystanders look away. People who could help instead decide that DV is none of their business, that it’s a private matter. That intervention taboo exists without even taking into account worry about a lawsuit or job loss.

Nearly three out of four (74%) of us personally know someone who is or has been a victim of domestic violence. That means you probably know a survivor.

For years, direct service workers in the DV community have been working hard to educate bystanders so more people will do their part to stop the violence.

Right now, Safeway has the opportunity to take a leadership role in educating the public about violence against women. Instead, the company chooses to punish its worker by suspending him without pay and hardly communicating with him for one month.

Please don’t be a passive bystander. Tell Safeway that its behavior is unacceptable. Go to and sign the petition to get Ryan Young his job back with back pay.

Update: The Mayor of Del Ray Oaks, Jerry B. Edelen, wrote this letter to the Monterey County Herald:

The recent incident involving the Safeway employee who intervened to protect a pregnant woman from being struck by her male companion represents a gross miscarriage of justice on the part of Safeway.

Del Rey Oaks Police Chief Ron Langford, a law enforcement officer with over 30 years of experience, has thoroughly investigated the incident, including viewing a videotape of occurrence, and has concluded that the employee was justified in his actions. Chief Langford has written the employee a letter praising him for his actions.

Of course Safeway has the authority and responsibility to conduct its own investigation. Where Safeway has erred is placing the employee on unpaid leave. This action, in effect, is punitive. By theoretically saving an insignificant amount of money by not paying the employee during the investigation, Safeway is losing considerable sales revenue and customer goodwill. Citing “having to follow set administrative procedures” is no excuse. Leadership means that sometimes standard operating procedures should be modified to ensure justice.

I will place this matter on our next City Council agenda and ask that the council support a resolution praising the Safeway employee for his courageous actions.

Jerry B. Edelen
Del Rey Oaks mayor

(Full disclosure: My father is a former CEO of Safeway. He left the company in 1993 and the board in 2005.)

Tiger Forgets to Apologize to Women

Update: If sex really is an addiction, Tiger should have apologized to all the women he used as drugs.

At this morning’s press conference, Tiger said he was sorry to his family, his wife, his kids, his fans, his sponsors, but he left out the more than a dozen women he had sex with. Tiger further objectified these women when he only referred to them in his speech as the “temptations” of power and fame.

Tiger, do you get that women are human? Or does that insight come later in your recovery– around day 56 or so?

When porn star Jocelyn James calls a press conference, flanked by Gloria Allred, it’s challenging to have sympathy for anybody in this story. But Tiger had sex with Jocelyn for three years– along with many other women. What enabled him to do that if she’s so sub-human? At the press conference, Tiger apologized to his wife, as he should, of course; he supposedly loves her. But the skill many men acquire to divide women into wives or whores really creeps me out. If there really is such a thing as sex addiction, this dichotomy must fuel it. I imagine any 12 step recovery program would require that Tiger make amends to those he used as part of his “addiction.”

I’m not saying Rachel Uchitel and the porn stars and models and single moms who slept with Tiger are all victims; they could very well be sex addicts themselves who used Tiger just to get off, get fame, or money. But, as far as I know, they aren’t the ones in intensive recovery programs making public apologies. Tiger is. Maybe he’s not there yet in his program, or maybe his other amends will be as private as he famously is. But it would be nice if Tiger– or Kobe Bryant or Bill Clinton or whomever the latest sex scandal powerguy is– added to his standard mea culpa that he’s sorry for treating women like tissue paper. Because these so called private matters become so public, and I’m sick of seeing women split up into homemaker or homewrecker all over the media. I’d like an apology for subjecting women to that all over again.

Here’s what I wrote yesterday:

Are the rumors true? God, I wish she’d just take 300 million or whatever it is and get out of there.

See what I mean about “wife school?” Stand by your man, cheer him on, no matter what.

Gross. Women are biologically capable of putting up with anything! “Family” is so important to us, nothing else really matters. What a horrible example to all of us married people. A talk show host I used to work with would disagree, he’d say it’s a good move, it shows family values, you stick around no matter what.  And then I would say: but reverse their genders– the story becomes unimaginable.

Young woman golf star falls in love with her friend’s hot “manny.” They marry and have two kids; she keeps winning tournaments and doing endorsements. After a few years of appearing as the perfect family, wife and husband get in a huge, violent fight. He goes after her with one of her golf clubs. Soon after, the public starts to learn she’s been sleeping around, about 15 men come out and claim they were with her, including porn stars and hosts. (Does “hostess” in this context even have a male equivalent meaning?) He takes off his wedding ring and retreats with the kids to his home country. Everyone says he is not the kind of guy to take this behavior, he will get the money he can and divorce her; he’ll never take her back. Photographs show up of her in sex rehab in the South. Then they are

pictured at the rehab together. An announcement is coming tomorrow…

You can see the sexism, too, in how the public reacted to the alleged violent fight; because it was a woman who supposedly attacked a man, even sending him to the hospital, there were jokes about the reports of abuse on Letterman and SNL.  Lots of people were saying, empathically, that whatever happened, it was a private matter; police should just stay out of it and the media should back off and leave the couple alone. But domestic violence isn’t a private matter; it needs to be investigated, not ignored. Victims typically recant their stories. It’s not anyone’s right to let himself get beat up or murdered by his mate. It’s against the law.

So I guess today, Tiger will ask for forgivenss for his sexual indiscretion,  just like Bill Clinton, Ted Haggard, Jim Baker and Kobe Bryant before him. (I think I’ll start a list.) I actually believe in forgiveness, I think it’s a skill you can learn just like any other skill. I learned that at a class I took at Stanford taught by Fred Luskin; the class was amazing. Also, anyone who has ever been through a 12 step program knows forgiveness is a crucial step towards recovery, for totally selfish reasons, you must forgive to get well. Forgiveness, by the way, doesn’t mean Elin has to stay with Tiger, or that anyone has to stay with anyone. It means you get to move on with your life and devote your considerable energy to something else instead of nurturing the grudges you were clinging on to for years.

My issue with Tiger and Elin is really that I am so sick of this same, old story, just watching it again again, the version I get of it, as a person in the world, the repetitive scenario: the cheating, powerful guy and his loyal wife. It bores me. I’m so tired of it. I want a new narrative. And I don’t mean the occasional exception (I’m trying to think of a powerful woman that’s cheated and her husband and he’s taken her back after public humiliation to insert here.) I want new archetypes, repeated upon centuries and ingrained into our subconscious, then translated back into our stories, movies, lives, and tabloids. I’m craving something original.