Need help? Visit TheHotline.org or call the National Domestic Abuse Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE

Every 4 hours in this country a women is killed by her domestic partner. In the U.S.–during the 21st century. That astonishes me.

Recently a commercial has acquired airtime that I think inadvertently promotes violence. In the ad, every time someone sees the car that’s on sale, they punch the person (man, woman or child) in the arm. On one level, this seems harmless. On another level, it’s indicative of the violence in our society. Punching games encourage violence; punching is not a game or a marketing device, and it should be taken seriously. It may seem like a childish game but remember who played punching games in the schoolyard? Bullies. Research indicates that “bullying during childhood puts children at risk of criminal behaviour and domestic violence in adulthood.” (link, in case the link doesn’t translate to blog: http://www.abc.tcd.ie/school.html)  Games that bullies play should not be glorified for the sake of selling cars.

Cars or no cars sold, violence is pervasive beyond this commercial: from the video games we purchase to the wars we pay for in the Middle East. If we want to stand for peace, we need to do so in every facet of our lives, including our advertisements. When we read or hear a story in the news about the violence, it touches our hearts or alights us into action. But when we see it being made light of, do we shrug it off? If that’s the case, it makes for a sad commentary for our society. I highly recommend that anyone who thinks this “punching” commercial is “cool” or “great marketing” see this show. Interviewee: “Yeah, he hit me. That was a sign [of abuse to come].” The expert on show: “No, that’s not a sign. That’s the end of the relationship. Once he hits you once, it will only lead to more violence.” Powerful show. Share with all women in your life. I know I will.

If you feel you might be in a violent situation with your partner or know someone who is take this assessment or offer someone a safe place to take it, It could very well save their lives.

Need help? Visit TheHotline.org or call the National Domestic Abuse Hotline at 1-800-799-SAFE