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18 September 2012

Trust and family

Who do we trust the most? Our family? Our friends? What if the law has made it possible for your loved ones to criminalize you for having a bad day? Imagine that.

The issue of over criminalization has been spoken about time and again but the issue gets even more pressing when we consider our present family system. Now the men and women who choose to spend their lives together come armed with a hundreds of legislations and statues which are supposed to “protect their interest” but in a way are just disrupting traditional family life as we know it.

It is true we need some statutes to protect both parties but this was taken a little too literally in 2010 when the French proposed a law on Psychological violence. This legislation allowed for wives to claim that they had been hurt psychologically by their husbands. The law would now have the power to interfere in squabbles between husbands and wives. In one of the cases it was seen that a woman smashed a rather heavy ashtray on her husband’s head for no fault of his causing severe bleeding and swelling and then fearing his retaliation she called for help and her husband was taken into custody for psychological violence.

Family is the basic unit of societal life which lays the foundation to our civilization as we know it. The institution of marriage being a sacrosanct has lost it sanctity if the spouses are allowed to pull the legal guns on each other for matters as trivial as what the colour of the upholstery in the living room should be. The price of which may range from an initial warning to being fitted with an electronic device with an alarm or even jail time.

The view of the government in this regard was that psychological violence is linked to physical violence and it would be a chain reaction if the former were condemned the later would automatically reduce. Psychiatrists have cautioned against such a law fearing it would easily be misused.

The whole scenario is like the boy who called wolf, when there is real trouble it would go unattended to. And moreover it is impossible to determine what actually happened because in a couple’s squabble it is merely one person’s word against the other. Family implies that the people have a sense of trust and faith in each other but living in a home where the votaries of law could be summoned for the slightest disturbance seems rather extreme.

Source: BBC News