A metal taste fills your mouth as another blow hits. Your bones ache as you force yourself to stand. Your arm oozes blood as you cover your swollen face with it. The red dirt below clings to your sweat stained skin. Your muscles tense as you feel the rope around your neck pull taught. A car starts. The idle of the engine reverberates through your already shaking body. A voice calls out over the roar of the vehicle.
“I want to see you run… come on dog- see you run”.
The tale reads as if a novel. Perhaps something you might pick up in the thriller or horror section of your local library. A fictional fable.
But this is fact.
And it is reality for countless Australians including domestic violence victim, Sandy Wolfe.
The South Australian woman has a harrowing tale to tell about her 28-year abusive marriage. However, her story failed to see the light of day as numerous media outlets favoured frivolous news items instead.
Everyday we are pugnaciously exposed to the media’s depiction of domestic violence. A depiction that entails provocation rather than realism. As a nation, Australia needs to become aware of this media manipulation and seek a realistic portrayal of such issues.
In fact, a report put forward by ‘Our Watch’ and ‘Australia’s National Research Organisation for Women’s Safety’ revealed that Australian media consistently presents a simplistic, distorted and inadequate report on domestic violence. This distortion comes in a myriad of forms including victim culpability and lack of representation.
It’s far from an unusual occurrence to see victim blaming in the media. Whether it be tweets, tumblr posts or comments, victim blaming engulfs the virtual realm in which many spend their time. Versions of “bu...
... middle of paper ...
... door. Australians need to change this. We need to strive for media coverage that provides equal exposure for all victims. It is only when we become aware of the way in which the media manipulates domestic violence reportage that we will be able to attack the problem at the root cause.
Revealed by Erin Pizzey, “The roots of domestic violence lie in our parenting. Both mothers and fathers can be violent - we need to acknowledge this.” It’s not enough for individuals to be aware; Australia’s media needs to aid in this acknowledgement.
But there is some good news. Despite over 40 percent of domestic violence coverage being sensationalised, this number is no longer on the rise.
We are making progress.
Australians need to be more aware of the manipulation present in the media. We need to keep the progression going. We need to make sure that the issue hits home.
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