After a woman in his community was murdered in a domestic violence incident, KHON News Hawaii anchor Jai Cunningham decided to take a stand. Cunningham, who admits that he himself was a victim of domestic violence, wanted to make a visceral, tangible gesture that would get people to stop and think about domestic abuse. So he shaved his head on air. And he promised that any time another woman or child is killed by domestic violence, he will shave it again. Cunningham’s gesture is aimed at reminding viewers that domestic violence happens all the time, all around us.
Side note: it starts at 2:30, not 2.
Another side note: While you’re in Piano Row, check out EPSJ and Kappa Gamma Chi’s fundraiser for the Gray Haven Project: http://www.facebook.com/events/429992073732024/
To find out more about the Gray Haven Project, an organization that works to end human trafficking, check out their Facebook page (http://www.facebook.com/thegrayhaven) or their website (http://www.thegrayhaven.com)
I cannot vote because I am a survivor of domestic violence.
I have to keep my address confidential. You have to register with a residential address and voting records are PUBLIC.
If I were to register to vote, that would mean putting my address out there and putting my self in danger. My abusive and violent ex boyfriend could potentially find out where I live.
I was unable to enter an address protection program because they have very strict rules. You have to basically “plan” to enter the program but sometimes, companies like Comcast can screw you over and no matter how many times you tell them I CANNOT ACCEPT MAIL HERE PLEASE SEND IT TO MY PO BOX they do it anyways. As soon as something with your name on it is sent to your physical address, you cannot be a part of the address confidentiality program.
And that is why my abusive ex boyfriend can vote, but I cannot.
That is why I have to pay for a PO BOX. That is why I have to expend energy to go to said PO BOX for my mail, which as a person with multiple physical disabilities is more than just an inconvenience, but I do it anyways because I value my safety and my ex boyfriend is a serious threat.
Even with the protective orders in place… those are just pieces of paper. That doesn’t stop him from finding out where I live, coming to my apartment, and doing harm to me. Those papers just allows me to call the cops if he comes within 500 feet of me but my ex can make the decision to ignore it.
So I can’t wait for the election to be over. I hate these awkward conversations about voting… on a bad day I just say “yes” because I would be voting, but on days where I feel strong, I use it as a tool to educate others that voting is sometimes a privilege and my domestic violence survivor status is why I cannot vote. I feel that people need to know about this.
I don’t know when I’ll ever get my right back… my ex feels that I “tried to ruin his life” even though he made threats that if I ever called the police on him that he would “have me destroyed.” He does not take being arrested or being on probation seriously, so I know for certain that I really cannot take my chances.
And I don’t know when I’ll be able to again - if I am able to move next year (not that I want to since where I live is very convenient for me, but I may not be able to afford to) I have to “plan” to enter the program. But if something gets messed up, say Comcast doesn’t listen or the landlord or the electric company screws it up, that’s it! I either can’t enter the program or I’m kicked out and I can’t vote.
Because those of us who survive these types of relationships, even once we break free of it, we’re never completely free… I’m reminded of him every time I open my wallet and I see that pink no contact order I have to carry everywhere. I’m reminded of him when I have to go to the PO BOX. I’m reminded of him when I have the flash backs of being in that hell for two years…
And I’m reminded of him when I cannot vote, something so many Americans take for granted.
I would be voting for Obama this election. I am happy that I at least live in the beautiful blue state of Washington, but I still want to keep this state blue. And I would hope any right leaning readers should agree that this is not right… survivors of domestic violence who have to keep their address safe should not lose their right to vote, just because of their survivor status.
Our meeting tonight at 6 pm WILL NOT be in Piano Row L121. It’ll be in room 118 instead. So come to 118 and chat with us about next semester’s zine
ALSO we’re having a Buffy screening tomorrow in the same room from 2pm to 5pm. Here’s the link for more info: http://www.facebook.com/events/494519760569049/
Come and join!