Ribbon effort offers hope

By Anna Wallis

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The White Ribbon riders who rode into Wanganui yesterday have their work cut out.

In this day and age there is still so much rubbish talked about violence.

Only back in July, a defence lawyer described a fatal attack on a Bay of Plenty woman and the stabbing of her daughter - the defendant's former partner - as a "crime of passion".

The lawyer went on to say that the killing had its roots in a deep love between two people but when that love was dashed, it caused the defendant to descend into despair.

On what planet do some people live?

Fortunately, the judge took little notice of the justification and sentenced the culprit to 17 years in jail. He called it a senseless, needless death which was followed by needless serious injury to the victim's daughter.

What occurred was the result of an utterly unnecessary outpouring of anger, he said.

Violence is never love and it is never passion.

Connecting it with those two emotions is a cop-out that has to stop, even by lawyers looking to defend the indefensible.

But violence is usually anger, and that seems to be the crux of the matter. Seething anger and frustration is channelled into abuse and violence, usually within the family.

Anger and violence are often seen as the same thing, with no steps in between.

However, violence is also often learned behaviour and with the help of the White Ribbon campaign and other measures, it can be unlearned.

The White Ribbon march in Wanganui on Saturday deserves support as does the White Ribbon Whanganui Action Group, which started about four months ago. Hopefully it will make a difference.

Feedback: editor@wanganuichronicle.co.nz

- Wanganui Chronicle

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