Can't just fake it
Violence reported by wives are more likely true
By Simin Haghighi
March 16, 2000
I would like to offer a few comments in response to the recent article
published in The Iranian, "She
changed overnight". Other readers have noted the many flaws in
this article; most are obvious and some subtler. For those of us who have
gone through violent experiences with a spouse it is perfectly clear that
there is more to the story than the writer is telling.
Though the law enforcers err on the side of caution with regards to
suspects of domestic violence, pressing charges, be it for a felony or
misdemeanor do not happen automatically and without solid grounds.
The district attorney scrutinizes the case before (s)he accepts or rejects
it for prosecution. In other words, it is not as simple to get a man to
hit you, run to the property manager, get the police there and off you
go with five suitcases of clothing and $40,000 in your pocket while the
man goes to jail.
As an Iranian woman who has first hand experience in a violent home
with an Iranian-American, I note that the system, though cautious, is very
careful of fraudulent reports. Generally there is a thorough investigation
as to the incident.
In case of mutual injuries, both people are taken in for questioning.
There are video cameras and tape recorders, endless questioning to catch
the lies should there be any. Even when injuries exist, they still need
to be explained and examined for authenticity relating back to the said
The statistics on domestic violence speaks for itself. Though men do
get attacked by women, the majority of the cases reported (bearing in mind
that many are not), are from women who have been assaulted; some respond
in self defense. An expert's examination of the injuries reveals the attacker
versus the defender.
Bear in mind that for a woman and particularly an Iranian woman, it
is the most embarrassing and shameful thing to admit to a relative, friend
or a stranger that she is being beaten up at home. It is not something
that she does willingly or willfully. There has to be just cause for her
to do that. Should the woman attempt to abuse this branch of the law to
her advantage, she will learn the hard way that the punishment is serious.
In other words, it is not that easy to get away with "faking"
a scene and calling the cops; the repercussions are dire. Therefore, it
stands to reason to deduce that, when a woman does report a case, there
is more than a 90% chance that she has grounds for doing so.
Not being familiar with Mr. Kasra's case or the other
writer from Atlanta, I will not comment on their individual experiences.
However Mr. Editor, if you wish to enlighten your readers of this aspect
of Iranian life in America, I urge you to use more discretion and publish
more credible reports.
I know there is some abuse of the Green Card acquisition. There was
recently an article in the papers addressing the issue of many men who
keep their wives hostage in the United States while the Green Card application
is still pending. In many instances bad language and physical force is
used to gain control over the woman with the threat that if she does not
comply to the man's wishes he would withhold the Green Card application.
Is it any wonder that after "two years" of taking the abuse
waiting for the "papers", Mr. Kasra's wife lashes out and appears
to "change overnight"?!