Going Batty: The making of a champion of the domestic violence industry

I have absolutely nothing personal against Rosie Batty, and in fact as a parent myself I have a great deal of sympathy for anyone who has lost a child under such horrific circumstances. Her tragic loss has provided her with a unique and potentially valuable insight, but it does not qualify her to direct public policy on dealing with domestic violence in the community. She is but one person affected by a scourge that has affected thousands of Australians.

This is a complex topic and we need to hear about, and be open to, the experiences and opinions of many others. We should also ensure that we consider different theoretical/ideological perspectives and not, as is done now, exclude serious consideration of all but one approach (feminism/Duluth Model).

Rosie has transformed herself and/or allowed herself to be transformed, into a veritable battering ram for the domestic violence industry. Feminist advocates and their allies in the media and political sphere have, like so many roman centurions, arranged themselves around her and are pressing her forward. Broader political events here in Australia have added further momentum as politicians look about for suitable populist issues with which to score cheap points and/or divert attention from other matters. This is patently obvious in Prime Minister Malcom Turnbull’s adoption of DV as one of his personal cause celebre.

This focussing of attention could have been a great thing in terms of getting decisive action on the issue of family violence and related issues like child abuse and elder abuse. But it won’t be. It won’t be because the whole episode is being choreographed by the archly-feminist domestic violence industry.

As a result all we will get is more of the same old failed and shockingly biased resourcing decisions and ‘initiatives’:

  • The continued turning-the-other-way when it comes to supporting male victims of DV and their children
  • The continued turning-the-other-way in relation the incidence of violent behaviour by women
  • The continued insistence that both the problem and its solution rests entirely in the hands of men
  • The continued emphasis on the discredited ‘Duluth model‘ of theorising domestic violence
  • The continued pouring of millions of dollars of public funds towards feminist consultants and advocacy groups
  • The creation of yet more consultative groups and the convening of more inquiries/royal commissions.

None of which have been proven to have any significant effect on reducing actual rates of perpetration and/or re-offending

And thus now we are witnessing a competition amongst state and federal politicians as to who cares the most about domestic violence, with ‘care’ manifesting itself through hideously costly inquiries and hand-outs to advocacy groups.

Here is a timeline of events:

Father who killed son, Luke Batty, at cricket ground had history of mental illness, says boy’s anguished mother (14 February 2014)

Luke Batty’s grieving mother speaks out on family violence (19 February 2014)

“The mother of Luke Batty says Australians need to have a greater understanding of family violence. Rosie Batty has also urged men to address the problem, in a long and emotional interview less than a week after her 11-year-old son was killed by his father at a Victorian cricket ground.”

Rosie Batty blasts Studio 10 host Joe Hildebrand on morning TV (2 April 2014)

Rosie Batty storms out of her murdered son’s inquest, almost in tears (23 October 2014)

It’s a disgrace some want Rosie to share the blame (23 October 2014)

Rosie Batty appointed ‘Australian of the Year’ (25 January 2015)

Rosie Batty’s speech after becoming 2015 Australian of the Year (25 January 2015)

Federal Opposition Leader Bill Shorten seized the opportunity of Rosie’s appointment to climb higher upon the feminist bandwagon by calling for a federal Royal Commission on domestic violence. Someone should remind him that a federal inquiry is already underway and is due to report in March 2015.

Predictably the media then went to the Government to ask them whether they would support a national Royal Commission. Thank goodness that the Government stood its ground against this misguided proposal – at least thus far – although they did make other concessions.

Domestic violence funding in NSW: Rosie Batty as Australian of the Year raises profile of state ‘epidemic’ (26 January 2015)

Rosie Batty, Australian of the Year, will save lives of family violence victims, former police commissioner Ken Lay says (26 January 2015)

Ken Lay is one of the most well-recognised ‘white knights‘ on behalf of the Australian feminist movement, known for his frequent use of the incorrect statement that the “overwhelming majority” of domestic violence was perpetrated by men upon women.

Rosie Batty: I’d like to see a government campaign to stop domestic violence (27 January 2015)

Rosie Batty and Ken Lay appointed to new domestic violence advisory panel (28 January 2015)

I posted a quite cordial comment in response to this article but gee whiz, look what happened:

This comment was removed by a moderator because it didn’t abide by our community standards. Replies may also be deleted. For more detail see our FAQs.

Imagine that, a pro-feminist news source (The Guardian) censoring a (polite and non-threatening) dissenting viewpoint. Seriously now, this happens so often that I really must get into the habit of creating screen-saves each time I post a comment. (And so I did – refer below)

Any response to family violence must include funding legal services (29 Jan 2015)flooding

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Rosie Batty – The Opposite Case (28 June 2015) Video

We must support Rosie Batty as she highlights domestic violence (6 February 2015)

Rosie Batty on why passion must lead to change on family violence (7 Feb 2015) In this article Rosie again makes no mention of the existence of male victims or female perpetrators. Rosie also suggests that the courts are biased towards the interests of the men’s rights movement and the rights of fathers.

‘Stop blaming the victim’: Rosie Batty to address MPs (2 March 2015) Rosie admits that the factors driving violent behaviour are “not readily understood“, whilst in the same paragraph asserting that it’s all about “gender inequality and “men’s sense of entitlement that a woman is their possession“. Except for violence committed by women, of course.

Rosie Batty calls for funds as poll finds family violence feared above terrorism (6 July 2015) and related reddit discussion thread

Rosie Batty should apologise for this insult to Tony Abbott (28 September 2015)

See also:

If only Rosie Batty Hadn’t made her trauma about power (31 July 2017)

Rosie Batty joins 7.30 to discuss the Summit on family violence (28 February 2017)

Mark Latham’s attack on Rosie Batty rejected by head of Rosie Batty Foundation (1 November 2016)

‘Women are being traumatised’: Rosie Batty call to end cross-examination by ‘abusers’  (25 October 2016) No mention, of course, of men traumatized via abuse and/or false accusations.

Rosie Batty partners with Lancome for domestic violence campaign (18 September 2016)

Anti-violence campaigner Rosie Batty shares son Luke’s struggle with male role models  (13 September 2016) Conveniently ignores the fact that girls are equally likely to grow to become abusers after exposure to violence/neglect perpetrated by mum and/or dad (or mum’s male partner).

Rosie Batty and Danny Blay Speak about MRA’s (15 June 2016)

Rosie Batty Says Men Who Have Never Hit Women Can Still Be Dangerous (15 June 2016) And women? Hmm, not so much it seems

Rosie Batty to lead family violence survivors council (23 March 2016)

Rosie Batty: Face to face with a domestic violence perpetrator (15 March 2016)

“The prospect of a feminist party in Australia intrigues Ms Batty. But she is not sure if she would make the giant step from activist to politician. “I would never discount it … who knows, all I do know is that I genuinely want to make a difference and so if I was comfortable and confident that I could make a significant difference through a political career, I think I would definitely consider that. I think it would be a real privilege to be given that opportunity.””

Saying goodbye to Rosie (25 January 2016)

Mark Latham slams Rosie Batty’s ‘feminist nonsense’ in podcast spray (22 January 2016) Some very interesting comments to be found amongst those in this reddit/r/Australia discussion thread

Outstanding response to Rosie Batty article (7 January 2016)

Liberal MP Graham Watt remained seated during Rosie Batty standing ovation (27 November 2015) See readers comments

Mark Latham argues we are putting women in danger (27 June 2015)

An open letter to Rosie Batty, by Mark Dent (15 March 2015)

Sanctified bigotry (10 February 2015)

Rosie Batty launches anti-domestic violence app for young women (15 February 2015) How easy it would have been to market this App as a tool for both young men and women, and what a sad indictment of feminism (& Ms. Batty) that this did not occur.

Is Rosie Batty Using Her Child’s Death For Her Own Fame And Fortune? (25 Jan 2015) Whilst many will consider this an unduly harsh and cynical assessment of the situation, I’ll let you be the judge as to the validity of the points raised within the context of the broader Australian DV debate.

For non-Australian readers: The meaning of the phrase “going batty

In exchanges within the reader’s comments section that follow various articles on the topic of DV, I have noted supporters of Ms Batty asserting that she is a champion for all victims of domestic violence. Her own Twitter profile makes it quite clear that is not the case.

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