EU Ambassador Weighs in on Domestic Violence in the Region
Head of the European Union Delegation, Ambassador Mikael Barfod, says domestic violence is a complex problem that needs to be understood in its entire social context. His comments came as he addressed the European Union-funded None in Three domestic violence prevention project, which was convened to disseminate information on the preliminary research findings.
“Violence against women is a crime with an impact far beyond the immediate moment of violence. Violence against women impacts us all, even those of us who have never personally experienced it. It impacts the families of these victims, it impacts our society, and it impacts our everyday lives. We all pay for these consequences.
“Domestic violence is not something that can be neatly compartmentalised into what happens in the private sphere. Domestic violence can affect a victim’s participation in the workforce, including their ability to find work and to attend or stay at work, as well as their performance and productivity while at work,” Ambassador Barfod said.
The EU diplomat, who is winding up his tenure in the region, said there is the mistaken view that domestic violence is only a workingclass problem, as he noted it permeated all facets of society, irrespective of education, environment and class.
Ambassador Barfod said while regional societies must tackle violent behaviour between adults, efforts must also be made to change the attitudes and values that children learn when they witness this behaviour, so that the cycle of violence can be arrested.
“We know that when you are in a broken family and your role model is a violent male, boys grow up believing that this is the way they are supposed to act. And girls think that it is acceptable for men to treat them this way. We hope that these debates will be picked up by civil society organisations and religious leaders, since there is the view that the church could play a major role in preventing domestic violence.
“Often boys are not raised to be men, but are raised not to be women. Boys are taught that girls and women are ‘less than’. It is important for men to stand up to not only stop men’s violence against women but to teach young men a broader definition of masculinity that includes being empathetic, loving and non-violent,” Ambassador Barfod told the gathering.
He said he hopes the None in Three sessions would further equip social service, health and other professionals to pick up the signs of violence and direct women towards help at an early stage.
The EU official also placed emphasis on the need for timely research in an effort to assist as it could improve our understanding of the nature and scope of the problem and its causes.
Ambassador Barfod described the Caribbean in general as being faced with the challenges of defining the boundaries of family and redefining domestic violence, as he noted that men must be included in these efforts.
“We need to also consider male victims of domestic violence, as there is very little support for them. We also need to consider the practice of over-punishing children since this is where the youth have their first experience of violence.”
He said he was excited about the None in Three project’s innovative methods for early and continuous education, using a medium that is likely to appeal to children and young people, since research indicates that 40% of girls aged 14 to 17 report knowing someone their age who has been hit or beaten by a boyfriend; and approximately one in five female high school students reports being physically or sexually abused by a dating partner.
As part of the None in Three project an immersive, role-playing computer game will be developed that can be used in schools as an educational tool to develop empathy and emotional intelligence and to reduce the negative attitudes developed in childhood which fuel violence in later relationships.
This article is about the divinity or deity of Jesus Christ/ God. From the very first page of Genesis 1:26 God said, “Let us make man in our own image, in the likeness of ourselves.” There is a mysterious reference to God in the plural, three times. Interesting! Although Jesus didn’t openly say, “I am God” the fact of his divinity or deity in scripture is clear. The fact that Jesus accepted worship and did not correct or rebuke the worshippers alone speaks volumes. (Matthew 2:11): “The sight of the star filled them with delight, and going into the house they saw the child with his mother Mary, and falling to their knees they did him homage.”
Luke 24:52: “Now as he blessed them, he withdrew from them and was carried up to heaven. They worshipped him and then went back to Jerusalem full of joy; and they were continually in the Temple praising God.”
John 9:38: “Jesus heard they had driven away the man whose sight he had restored and when he found him he said to him ‘Do you believe in the Son of Man?’ ‘Sir’ the man replied ‘tell me who he is so that I may believe in him.’ Jesus said: ‘You are looking at him; he is speaking to you.’ The man said: ‘Lord, I believe,’ and worshipped him.”
He also said that “I and the Father are one” (John 10:30). This statement enraged the Jews because they instantly realized that he was claiming to be God so they tried to stone him. The Jews went on to say in verse 33: “You, a mere man, claim to be God.” Jesus was clearly declaring the fact that he and the father are of the same nature and essence. Another clear example is in John 8:58. Here we read: “Jesus declared, ‘I tell you the truth … before Abraham was born, I am!’” God is called I AM. (When Moses had to face the people God said to tell the people that “I AM” sent you). The Jews who heard these words considered this blasphemy and according to the Mosaic Law they attempted to stone him (Leviticus 24:16).
After Jesus’ death Thomas doubted that Jesus was the Messiah. Jesus had appeared to the other disciples and they told Thomas all about it to no avail because Thomas continued to doubt. However a week later Jesus appeared to Thomas and Thomas called him God (John 20:19-28).
Now Thomas, one of the Twelve, was not with the disciples when Jesus came. So the other disciples told him: “We have seen the Lord!” But he said to them: “Unless I see the nail marks in his hands and put my finger where the nails were, and put my hand into his side, I will not believe.” A week later his disciples were in the house again, and Thomas was with them. Though the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood among them and said: “Peace be with you!” Then he said to Thomas: “Put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe.” Thomas said to him: “My Lord and my God!” We must realize that Jesus did not correct this statement.
You see the deity of Jesus can be found all throughout scripture: In John 1:14: we read: The Word was made flesh (took on human form), and dwelt among us. You see Mary was a virgin and became pregnant through the Holy Spirit. The father was not of this earth!
Here is another clear scripture declaring Jesus’ divinity as the everlasting father (Isaiah 9:6): “For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.”
John the Baptist boldly and humbly declared: “Behold, The Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world!” (John 1:29).
John 9:29: “At this they hurled abuse at the man who Jesus had just healed of his blindness. ‘You can be his disciple,’ they said, ‘we are disciples of Moses: we know that God spoke to Moses, but as for this man, we don’t know where he comes from.” Yet we read in Luke’s account of the transfiguration Luke 9:30: “Suddenly there were two men there talking to him; they were Moses and Elijah.”
Luke 8:38: The man from whom the devils had gone out asked to be allowed to stay with him, but he sent him away. “Go back home,” he said, “and report all that God has done for you.”