Growing up, I was always taught that no matter how angry someone got, violence was not an acceptable solution. Beyond that, as a young lady, I was also told that you should never raise your hand to a man because they may not have been brought up with the same set of values.
Which brings us again to the discussion of Baltimore Ravens RB Ray Rice, and the incident involving his wife Janay in an Atlantic City Casino elevator earlier this year. It was widely reported that Janay initiated the altercation. Janay even asked NFL commissioner Roger Goodell to be lenient in his punishment of Rice.
Rice’s situation and subsequent suspension sparked a topic on “First Take,” where Stephen A. Smith stated that women should not do anything to “provoke” a man. Poorly worded, some took this statement as Smith blaming the victim and lashed out against him. Ultimately, Smith had to apologize, but someone agrees with Smith’s point and took to the airwaves to defend his POV.
On a recent episode of ABC’s “The View,” Whoopi Goldberg echoed Stephen A’s thoughts.
Smith said late last week that women should not do anything to “provoke” men into striking them. Goldberg agreed with this point and stated, “If you hit somebody, you cannot be sure you are not going to get hit back!”
Jenny McCarthy and guest co-host Sunny Hostin pushed back against Goldberg’s argument, telling Goldberg she’s blaming the victim. Goldberg insisted she wasn’t, saying no one should hit anyone, period. However:
“If you make the choice as a woman who’s four foot three and you decide to hit a guy who’s six feet tall and you’re the last thing he wants to deal with that day and he hits you back, you cannot be surprised!”
I agreed with both Whoopi and Stephen A’s point. This is not excusing a man hitting a woman, that’s not ok. But let’s stop acting as if people always do the right thing and react accordingly. What’s wrong with spreading the message that women too should keep their hands to themselves and walk away if they feel that upset.