It Turns Out Jovan Belcher and Kasandra Perkins Weren’t Fighting Over Paternity

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About Liam Day

Liam Day has been a youth worker, teacher, campaign manager, political pundit, communications director, and professional basketball player. His poems have appeared at Slow Trains Apt, and Wilderness House Literary Review. His op-eds and essays have appeared in Annalemma Stymie, the Boston Globe and Boston Herald. He lives in Boston, where he works as a public health professional. He is the Sports Editor at The Good Men Project. You can follow him on Twitter at @LiamDay7.


  1. My comment was pretty clearly labeled speculation, and contained additional speculation concerning head injuries as potentially being another cause. And yes, Nicole Daley’s article was anti-domestic violence agit-prop as shown by its exclusive use of “he” as the pronoun for the abuser. But then conventional anti-dv organizations, with their reliance on the rad-fem theory of patriarchy and the Duluth Power and Control wheel that basically asserts that all DV is based on patriarchal power and control have hardly been of any use to male survivors of domestic abuse, nor have they shown any results reducing the incidence of such crimes. They also are rather useless when it comes to dealing with reciprocal violence in domestic abuse relationships and those that involve violence between two men or two women.

    If you want to try to prevent these things from happening in the future you have to do better than sentences like this:
    “1) I don’t know the whole story. You don’t need to know the whole story. Hitting, cursing out a partner, etc. is not an appropriate way to treat that partner or deal with a relationship conflict. If you are uncomfortable calling out the abuse, spend the conversation focusing on encouraging healthy ways to deal with conflict.”

    Without understanding if there might be underlying causes such as drinking, mental illness, suspicion (which of course could be paranoid or warranted) you are left with the following rather useless options, esp for minor stuff such as shoving,shouting,slapping,pushing , punching/hitting an inanimate object or grabbing:
    A. Threaten violence yourself either via yourself or using the police as proxy. Of course calling the cops when it’s not clearly a life-threatening situation has potentially life changing circumstances as the Mirkarimi case in San Francisco illustrates.
    B. Scold the abuser ineffectively: “You were wrong, wrong, WRONG! to shout at your significant other. I don’t care if she/he wrecked your car and ran over your family dog first! Shame, shame, SHAME on you! Do you want to be a domestic abuser? How dare YOU mention YOUR hurt feelings! This community CANNOT TOLERATE abusers shouting at their significant others! So stop making excuses about being “upset” and raising your voice and apologize right now!”
    C. Assume that every abuser is the Perfect Template of the Duluth Wheel. Might as well just say that all abusers are male , then, and all have nefarious motives.

    Yeah, somehow I don’t think A, B, or C here is going to do much to reduce domestic violence, esp that of the extreme kind. Indeed, involving restraining orders and the cops (and maybe a small amount of jail and prison rape) at the slightest amount of conflict and basically blaming only one side (without even asking WHY or any kind of investigation) would seem to increase conflict, not decrease it.
    .2) Their relationship is their relationship; it’s private.
    What’s the counterpoint here – that every relationship is the property or responsibility of the community?
    If I think my neighbors in danger then I act. Otherwise, I stay out of it.
    4) My own relationship isn’t perfect:
    No, but if you are not willing to assert that every time you’ve raised your voice at a partner (or he/she at you) it requires the immediate intervention of the criminal justice system or a bunch of your friends to get together to stage “an intervention”, I don’t see why you should automatically assume different for your neighbors.
    5) He was just drunk, he didn’t mean it:
    Despite the ridiculous gendered language here -which I’ll overlook- I think we can all agree that drunkeness (acquired via free-will of course) is not an excuse for criminality. That being said, the level of drunkeness matters, because generally the more extreme the less likely one is to be able to accurately gauge the reality of the world one inhabits, and hallucinations are possible. Thus it’s unlikely the drunk was merely getting drunk in order to lower his/her inhibitions towards hitting their partner. Indeed, I find this funny: Many purported anti-rape crusaders will have a hissy fit if you tell them
    that many women and some men get drunk in order to purposely lower their inhibitions to have freely consented sex. You know the “all drunk sex is rape!” people. But change the situation to domestic violence, and make the gender mostly or entirely “male” and suddenly all drunks are just plotting for violence and control. Sometimes a drunk is just a drunk, and solving THAT issue, solves the domestic violence issue as well. Who woulda thought?!

    Here’s the final paragraph of that article:
    “There are so many “reasons” to not speak out, but imagine where Kasi and Jovan would be now if enough people had said something to him about engaging in a healthy relationship, or called out his need to control her along the way.”

    Note the assumptions built in as to his reasons for doing what he did? Assumptions based on no evidence of course? If questioning and trying to find the why as to the reason or reasons an abuser or killer acts the way they do is “victim blaming” then that term has no meaning.

  2. Imagine where Jovan & Kasi would be if they weren’t too lazy, dumb or megalomaniacal to use birth control…
    Fading images in each other’s rear view mirrors….

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