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Re: Abused Abuser Abused

Posted by Mark H. on June 18, 2002, at 20:27:11

In reply to Sexual harrassment/abuse/humour, posted by sid on May 21, 2002, at 18:38:04

How might dehumanizing the abuser, heaping the most vile imaginable labels upon him, even intimating the threat of violence towards him, be similar at a process level to what he has done to our friend Sid?

Can his inappropriate and damaging behavior be modified (or stopped) without anger and without creating additional harm (for him or anyone else, esepecially Sid)?

What is our motivation in reacting so angrily? Do we want to punish, hurt, harm and/or incarcerate those whose behaviors are personally repulsive to us? How is that different from how people with mental illness and mental retardation were treated until quite recently? Does it help to hurt those who hurt others?

I understand and share the almost instinctual thoughts and feelings of everyone who has posted, but I wonder if we aren't on awfully thin ice, both morally and psychologically, in thinking that way.

We have an obligation to protect people from violence and abuse when we can, to stop further harm from being done. But might it also be useful to look at how we react, and choose to react from compassion rather than scorn or hatred? Even if only to prevent further damage to ourselves?

With kind regards,

Mark H.




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