Monday, September 27, 2004

Free Battered Women

Over the weekend I attended a spousal abuse seminar and I have to tell you that it was hard to sit through it because it was so intense. And I have to say that I am constantly shocked at how evil humanity can be towards one another. Thank God Jesus came to save us from ourselves!

However, as I became educated this weekend, I want to educate you by giving you some resources you can use to help these women who are in prison for killing their abusers.

Convicted Survivors is a groundbreaking book on what happens to women who have been abused. Here is an excerpt from the back cover.

"When a woman survives a deadly assault by her male abuser by using lethal self-defense, she often faces a punitive criminal justice system-one that largely failed to respond to her earlier calls for help. In this book, Elizabeth Dermody Leonard examines the lives and experiences of more than forty women in California who are serving lengthy prison sentences for killing their male abusers. She contrasts them against other women prisoners in the state and finds substantial differences. Leonard's in-depth interviews reveal that the women are slow to identify themselves as battered women and continue to minimize the violence done to them, make numerous and varied attempts to end abusive relationships, and are systematically failed by the systems they look to for help. While in jail, these women receive liberal dosages of psychotropic drugs, damaging their ability to aid in their self-defense. Moreover, trials and plea bargains feature little or no evidence of the severe intimate abuse inflicted upon them. Despite a clear lack of criminal or violent histories, the majority of women found guilty of the death of abusive men receive first- or second-degree murder convictions and serve long, harsh sentences. Leonard concludes the book with a discussion of policy implications and recommendations arising from this research. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition. "

I also heard the testimony of one of the woman named Cheryl Sellers. See her picture and read her story here. Cheryl Sellers Testimony

And please get involved. There are at least 10 things listed on this website that you can do to help these women. Maybe this is why Jesus told us to go into the prisons...something to think about.

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