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Equal-Opportunity Abuse

Posted 6/19/2002

This is in response to Sandy Asirvatham's column "Never Enough" (Underwhelmed, June 5). Often, when we hear about domestic violence, it's about female and/or juvenile victims. I read in another local newspaper that the first battered men's shelter was opened in Philadelphia, about a year ago, I believe. Just as I've heard of women and children being mistreated, I've known men who have gone through it as well. Once I witnessed a woman in a car (I was in the car at the time) hitting her husband on the head with a baby's bottle. I know a man whose one-time girlfriend swung a baseball bat at him because she believed a rumor about him. The same man, for no good reason, was burned by his inebriated girlfriend with a cigarette lighter. There are multiple sides to the tale, and clearly the whole truth is not always told. To imply that only men are capable of battering is not only dangerous but also close-minded, and only hurts the issue.

Medina Krause
Baltimore

Sandy Asirvatham responds: You are absolutely right: Women are not the only potential victims of physical and emotional violence, and I ought to have made that point in my piece. In fact, in the course of my research I've learned that the fastest-growing population of new abusers are teenage girls (whose victims aren't intimate partners as often as they are parents, grandparents, or siblings). Statistically speaking, female victims predominate and are at an overwhelmingly higher risk than males of being killed by an intimate partner, and it's still important to focus on "wife battery" in particular because it is still viewed in certain cultures as a husband's prerogative. But none of this detracts from the essential point you make--that violence is an equal-opportunity employer--so thanks for making it.

All We Are Saying . . .
In the words of the infamous Rodney King, "Can't we all just get along." I make reference to the May 15 Nose, the May 22 letter in The Mail, and the many articles since in other newspapers about the Little Italy boccie court. A little bit of pleasure has mushroomed into a fiasco.

Live in peace and harmony. The world is in enough turmoil.

Rose Ferrandi
Baltimore

Correction: DJ Cyzum, one of the many spinners who played Starscape earlier this month, was misidentified in a photo caption in last week's Feedback.

Editor's note: First, we'd like to thank our parents for always believing in us . . . present and former City Paper staffers and contributors copped 17 awards, including 11 first places, in this year's Maryland Excellence in Journalism contest, sponsored by the state chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists.

In the division for weekly papers with circulation over 10,000, the awards go to: contributing writer Sandy Asirvatham, second place for column (Underwhelmed); contributor James Michael Brodie, first place for sports reporting ("Life and Basketball," March 28, 2001); arts editor Lee Gardner, second place for arts/entertainment ("Pigments of His Imagination," July 4, 2001); contributing photographer Michelle Gienow, first place for photography, general feature ("Miss Pat and Georgie," Oct. 17, 2001); contributing writer Wiley Hall III, first place for column (Urban Rhythms); online editor Tim Hill, first place for Web design; contributing writer Geoffrey Himes, first place for feature reporting ("Sweet Inspiration,"); contributing photographer Sam Holden, honorable mention for photography, general feature ("Leap of Faith," March 7, 2001); senior writer Brennen Jensen, second place for feature reporting ("Poop Dreams," Feb. 21, 2001); editor Andy Markowitz, first place for arts/entertainment ("True Stories," May 2, 2001); former books editor Eileen Murphy, first place for public-service reporting, ("A City on a Hill," May 16, June 20, Aug. 8, Oct. 10, and Nov. 7); former managing editor Tom Scocca, first place for business reporting ("Bal™ore," March 14, 2001), specialty reporting ("The Marsh of Progress," Aug. 29, 2001), and sports commentary (the late 8 Upper); news and politics writer Van Smith, second place for investigative reporting ("Hot Line," Sept. 12, 2001); and contributing photographer Jefferson Jackson Steele, first place for photography, general reporting ("The Milk Train Doesn't Stop Here Anymore," March 21, 2001, www.citypaper.com/2001-03-21/mobs. html) and second place for photography, general feature ("Sweet Inspiration").

Congratulations to all the winners, and thanks for your fine work.

An even more important editor's note: And what could be more important than the recognition of our journalistic peers? Comics! With this issue we welcome to our funny paper Lulu Eightball, the weekly scrawls and musings of CP contributing illustrator Emily Flake, and Ziggy With a Hat by the elusive Smell of Steve Inc., which will appear every other week. Enjoy.

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