Feb. 12, 01:00 EDT
Nothing can justify Ralph Hadley's murderous rageMarilyn Churley
Letter to the Editor of the Toronto Star
Re Talking can prevent domestic violence, Letter, Feb. 11.I cannot adequately express how sickened and saddened I was to read David Hatton's characterization of Gillian Hadley. Contrary to Hatton's letter, there are no excuses behind which her husband should be allowed to hide. Hatton states that Hadley's husband, "caught her in bed with another man." He tells us that Hadley is "anything but a poor innocent woman."Nothing excuses or forgives this unconscionable act and nothing will change in our attitudes about violence against women until we all realize this. Every time journalists and letter writers refer to Ralph Hadley catching his wife in bed with another man they do three things.
The jury for the Hadley inquest repeated many of the same messages of the 1998 jury for Arlene May's inquest by proposing a broad range of recommendations aimed at creating system-wide change for a systemic problem. Such change requires us to tackle the root causes of violence against women. This starts by naming the myths and stereotypes that allow such violence to continue. To that end, it's important to remember that Gillian Hadley was the victim in this murder — not the villain.Marilyn Churley
- They reduce Gillian Hadley, a loving mother of two children who was desperately trying to flee a violent relationship, to a cheat who provoked her husband into violence against her and finally her murder.
- They distort the facts by failing to explain that the Hadleys were separated when Ralph Hadley barged into Gillian's home.
- They perpetuate the myth that men only abuse their partners when provoked in the extreme — which is tantamount to saying, "She asked for it." Please. Gillian Hadley was behaving as a human being is entitled to; she was living her life as she saw fit. Her estranged husband was behaving as a man who had lost control over a human being he clearly considered his private property.
NDP Women's Issues Critic
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