STOP VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN
Please write your congress person in Washington D. C. in both the Senate and the House and demand that they pass the Violence Against Women Act as it is written. All women must be protected in this country. Violence against women is not a negotiable issue. The Indian woman living on reservations in Michigan, Oklahoma, Wisconsin or Alaska should be given the same protection as a woman living in Ohio and Mississippi. We should not make a distinction in the woman that we protect under our Constitution. The women brought to our shores for the sex trade or marriage should also be given equal protection under our laws. No woman should be excluded from our protection including illegal aliens. The right to life liberty and the pursuit of happiness is a protection that more than 200 million men and women fought for, were maimed for, and died for in this country and abroad. Women helped to fight a virulent evil in Europe in the 1940’s now we must galvanize ourselves to fight this same evilness in this country.
Please take the time out of your busy schedule to attend to this matter. I realize this is an imposing issue and some of you may think your voice does not count. You do count. It does not matter if you are a worker at McDonald’s or an engineer at Ford Motor Company, you are important and violence against women is an issue that is both important to you and to me. Women must deal with this issue because violence against women is the defining issue of our times. Our sons and daughter shall ask history, “Why did the women not act in 2012, when their rights were being violated by Congress?” There is no other issue more important than violence against women. What is more important than life? If you want to be respected then you must exercise your power as a citizen and direct Congress to do as you wish. There is nothing more important than the safety and welfare of our female citizens. Each time a woman is murdered in this country at least 27 people are affected by this murder, and often the murdered woman leaves behind at least one child. This child will grow up living a miserable life because of the murder of his or her mother. Yes, the child will grow up go to college, get a job, and marry but a murdered mother is never forgotten. One flashback or thought can bring these children to tears no matter their age. There is a growing population of children of murdered women. Do not sit at home and think you are powerless. You must overcome your lack of self esteem and strike back. Congress is not an indomitable foe. One concerted action by the women of this country and we can take Congress. There is not an entity in this country that women cannot overwhelm.
You are not powerless just because you are a woman and cannot match a man in physical strength. You have mental power and determination that you can direct into a force that no one can withstand. Be willful and tenacious and write Congress directing them to pass the Violence Against Women Act as it is written with no negotiation. All women must be included in the protection under this act. Women do not have time for the posturing in Congress. We are trying to move on with our lives so that we can leave behind strong and healthy children who will remember us with pride.
Go to your husbands, sons, uncles, fathers, grandfathers and male cousins and tell them to write Congress on your behalf to insure the protection of you and every female member in your family. Men too are victims of violence against women. As you read the series of “Do This In Remembrance of Me” you will see more and more men are being affected by violence against women. The letter to your congressman can be short and sweet: It should read, “My name is _______. I live in your state and I am a registered voter. I am writing to request that you pass the Violence Against Women Act as it is written. If you do not pass this act right away as it is written, the next time you run for reelection the women in this state shall remove you from office and I shall run for your seat instead.”
Violence Against Women Act
The Violence Against Women Act of 1994 (VAWA) is a United States federal law (Title IV, sec. 40001-40703 of the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994, H.R. 3355) signed as Pub.L. 103-322 by President Bill Clinton on September 13, 1994. The Act provided $1.6 billion toward investigation and prosecution of violent crimes against women, imposed automatic and mandatory restitution on those convicted, and allowed civil redress in cases prosecutors chose to leave unprosecuted. The Act also established the Office on Violence Against Women within the Department of Justice.
VAWA was drafted by the office of Senator Joseph Biden (D–DE), with support from a broad coalition of advocacy groups. The Act passed through Congress with bipartisan support in 1994, clearing the House by a vote of 235–195 and the Senate by a vote of 61–38, although the following year House Republicans attempted to cut the Act’s funding. In the 2000 Supreme Court case United States v. Morrison, a sharply divided Court struck down the VAWA provision allowing women the right to sue their attackers in federal court. By a 5–4 majority, the Court’s conservative wing overturned the provision as an intrusion on states’ rights.
VAWA was reauthorized by Congress in 2000, and again in December 2005. The Act’s 2012 renewal was fiercely opposed by conservative Republicans, who objected to extending the Act’s protections to same-sex couples and to provisions allowing battered illegal immigrants to claim temporary visas
What The Violence Against Women Act Means To You
The Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) was the first major law to help government agencies and victim advocates work together to fight domestic violence, sexual assault, and other types of violence against women. The law made it a crime for a man to presue a woman across state lines. The law also saw to it that protective orders or restraining orders were recognized by all state courts. It created new punishments for certain crimes and started programs to prevent violence and help victims. Over the years, the law has been expanded to provide more programs and services. The act provides some $660 million in funding over five years for programs ranging from protecting victims of domestic violence and community violence prevention to legal aid for survivors of violence. Historically a light political lift, VAWA breezed through Congress in its two prior reauthorizations. In 2012 Republicans in both the house and senate rejected new provisions in the bill.
The House and Senate versions of VAWA have several key differences:
- The Senate adds language that explicitly mentions gay and transgender Americans for protection, while the House version is gender neutral. Republicans contend that their measure allows all Americans to receive protection because it does not specify who qualifies for various programs. Democrats, however, say that local law enforcement could use the lack of specificity to discriminate against gay or transgender people.
- The House bill does not include a Senate provision that would allow Native American women to take American citizens who abuse them to court within the tribal legal system. Republicans say that the Senate measure is unconstitutional and replace it with a proposal that allows Native American women to apply for protection orders from local US courts. Democrats contend that without the Senate’s proposals, Native American women abused on an Indian reservation are often left without legal recourse.
- The House bill does not allow for a path to citizenship for illegal women who have been abused and agree to cooperate with the police investigation of the crime. Moreover, it holds the cap on temporary visas offered to women cooperating in legal investigations to 10,000, below the Senate’s increased 15,000 level. Republicans say the citizenship provision is akin to amnesty for illegal immigrants. Democrats, on the other hand, say that women fearing deportation may never come forward to take abusers off the street under the House bill.
The lives of your children your sister and every other female member of your family depend on the laws that are written and observed in this country. No woman or man should allow any government offical to negotiate with the lives of its citizens. It is imporant is important that the current Violence Against Women Act be reaffiremed as it was written. You should write and tell your congress person so. Act now and show your support of the women in this nation.
June 5, 2012 the equal pay for equal work (Pay Check Fairness Act) bill failed in the U.S. Senate at vote of 52 to 47. Republican leaders will let no bill pass that will help women or the economy.