Domestic violence has played a big part in the society in both ancient and modern world. Male patriarch of the family was given the right to use force against women and children under their control. This was done with a desire to maintain social order extending to defined relations within the family. A good example includes where the Roman civil law which handed the legal guardianship of a wife solely to her husband, this, in turn, gave him the ability to beat his wife who with legal effect became his daughter. In an individualistic view, domestic violence is considered to be a tendency towards violence and not a monolithic behavior. Unlike in a societal view where domestic violence was viewed as a way of living, individualistically, it is seen as a behavior committed by out of control persons with sociopath behaviors and is resistant to change.
Sociologically, women and children were viewed as properties to be owned by husbands as a key dominator of social status. Class or hereditary determined personal achievements and what a person could attain or one was just a commoner. Each group had a clear definition of property rights and behavioral expectations. This means, husbands were legally responsible for their wives action, but it became hard for women to relinquish their husbands properties even if they were inherited from their own families. Individualistically, batterers do not only perform violence against a class of victims. A study done by the National Family Violence Survey showed that a large portion (67%) of batterers were violent against their wives, where (23%) were violent against nonfamily members and only (10%) were violent against both wives and nonfamily members (Buzawa, Buzawa & Stark, 2017, p.83). The study also showed that more than half of the batterers who participated had previously been arrested for violence against victims. Further reports also revealed that 80% of those were reported to be violent with nonfamily members had previously been arrested for problems with the justice system.
Society focuses on domestic violence from the perspective of history, religious beliefs and societal involvement. Historically, wife battering was viewed as normal and varies from society to society. Religiously, the act of wife battery varies from religion to religion while the authority of a man over a woman is viewed as an offer of respect. On individual level on domestic violence, there are types of violent activities that are carried against victims. They include; batterers who solely commit violence against family members, those who commit violence against nonfamily members and those who commit violence against both family and nonfamily members. The group that acts violently against family members act severely violent against dependents and partners, actions that may be triggered by substance abuse or stress and are historically recognized to have antisocial behavior (Buzawa, Buzawa & Stark, 2017, p. 85). The other group only engages violent behavior from the inside rather than the outside world. Their behavior is triggered by paranoia, jealousy and their desire to control their partners in fear of losing them. The final group of violent persons is violent to the world as a whole. This group typically exhibits criminal activities as juveniles and sporadic explosive acts of rage against a variety of targets.
Society has trivialized domestic violence by making comics out of it in both historical and modern times. More often, women were perceived to condone trivial violence by taunting the male until gave her a beating she tactically desired. The reality of serious domestic violence was simply never addressed. Research is still not fully developed on the possible elimination of domestic violence. Severe stress from either child abuse or witnesses of domestic violence causes structural changes in the brain which may cause fear and anxiety which is reportedly at exceptionally high levels in violent offenders (Buzawa, Buzawa & Stark, 2017, p.56). If childhood neurological-behavioral connections are valid, then there will be an extremely hard time in the society to eliminate domestic violence.
The Most Significant Factors That Predict When the Police Are More Likely to Make Domestic Violence Arrests
Use of excessive violence against women and children can result in arrests made against domestic violence offenders. Even though excessive use of police force has been reported against domestic violence offenders in some countries or societies, the arrests should be made when the offenders go to extreme levels of batterers (Buzawa, Buzawa & Stark, 2017, p.58). Police are watchdogs when it comes to domestic violence and hence should perform these ceased with utmost discretion. This should be done to protect the privacy the victims as well as possible witnesses to these cases.
Police should also determine any actions from the victims that could have triggered negative emotions that led to battering. When making arrests, the past is not much unraveled but instead the future danger to the victims. They also try to substantiate claims on whether they can successfully be prosecuted in court. Typically, officers are guided by the general legal frame when arresting batterers. Stereotypic information is also used when making arrests such as mental illness, battered women, race, social status and gender in the decision-making process for efficiency.
There are several legal criteria used in making arrests against domestic violence offenders such as physical injuries, property damage, the presence of weapons, witnesses and even arguing in front of the police. Research shows that officers are likely to arrest both parties. This is done when both parties claim self-defense. Officers do not consistently make arrests while using legal criteria but instead expand their focus to include their situational and disputants characteristics.
Buzawa, E.S., Buzawa, C.G., & Stark, E. (2017). Responding to Domestic Violence: The Integration of Criminal Justice & Human Services (5th Ed.). Sage.
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