In a May 8 press release, the National Organization For Women condemned the Republican version of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), which was passed by the House Judiciary Committee on a mostly party-line vote.
Among other provisions, the Republican version provides greater protection and services for boys and men along with more inclusive "gender neutral" language than does the Democratic version, which presumes that only men are violent and only women are innocent victims ("Domestic-violence law advanced by House panel," Web, May 8).
A few days before the vote, the Dallas Morning News and Dallas TV stations reported that a naked and blood-covered Cristal Paulette Richardson was charged with castrating and then murdering Cedric Lamont Owens by slitting his throat and stabbing him multiple times in the chest. In this heinous act Ms. Richardson joins at least three other women implicated in castration cases that received media attention: Lorena Bobbitt, Monju Bengum and Catherine Kieu Becker.
As the House girds for a floor vote on the Republican version of VAWA on Wednesday (and a likely showdown with the "War on Women" folks in both the House and Senate) I very much hope that all House members will be thinking about the Richardson case and what more they can do to protect boys and men from demonstrably violent girls and women.
GORDON E. FINLEY
Professor of Psychology Emeritus
Florida International University
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