REV. LEONA STUCKY
Reverend Stucky is a UU Santa Fe affilliate minister and author of The Fog of Faith: Surviving My Impotent God. She’s been a psychotherapist for more than 35 years, a Diplomate in AAPC, and a UU community minister. She can be contacted at LeonaStucky.com.
Swarming with young people, the streets took on colors of anger and despair, with sounds and signs clamoring for an end to the Vietnam war, and an end to the draft. Young men and women demanded a change to the law that armed young men and trapped them into terror that would haunt many of them for the rest of their lives.
As a baby boomer, these scenes added meaning to my college days. Non-violence was one of my ideals. Appalled that our country would trap young men into violent and terrorizing adventures, I pounded the streets with my activist friends, never once wondering why no one was pounding the streets for me.
With my child in tow, I tried to escape the violence and terror that trapped me. The kind where you have already been beaten many times, where the killer knows your name, your family, your location, your children, your vulnerabilities, your desires, your habits and schedules.
Ashamed to be trapped, I didn’t talk to college kids about it. I figured I was somehow at fault. Anyone whose husband would kill them, was considered a part of the problem. I didn’t understand then that my brushes with injury and death would haunt me for the rest of my life. Nor did I have a clue that thousands upon thousands of women and children lived in fear and that too many would be killed by their abuser. There were no safe houses and few voices decrying the violence against women - the unnoticed and little published war on women, at home under our own noses. Women were left to cope with formidable odds without assistance, while they were accused and shamed.
During our last two wars, Afghanistan and Iraq, almost twice as many US women died from intimate partner violence as US troops died in these wars. I’ve written a memoir about my years of terror, The Fog of Faith: Surviving My Impotent God. Though the book is riveting, it will not stop others from facing similar tragedies. So, I’ve taken the next step by joining a small, not for profit film company, Healing Voices – Personal Stories, that educates people about domestic violence using their own award-winning short documentaries.
Stopping this unnoticed and unheralded killing of women is a job for all of us. Healing Voices – Personal Stories has an action plan. We can change the fate of women and children who are trapped. Your voice and your boots on the ground are necessary.
A National Day of Action Against Domestic Violence
Today we are forming teams all around the country to plan a local event for the National Day of Action Against Domestic Violence, scheduled for October 5, 2019. Communities are asked to use their own creative ideas to organize an event about domestic violence that brings together local talent and community organizations.
Often theater groups, art commissions, local actors’ guilds, story tellers, women’s studies classes, peace groups, social justice groups, religious groups, and local women’s shelter programs, journalists, businesses, and many other groups and individuals will join this effort. When you form a team, you are the decision makers for the event. We urge you to go to https://dvdayofaction.org. You can sign up as people interested in forming a team, and we will assist you.
As part of the event we are asking for a staged “Die In” as a visual demonstration of the shocking number of women’s deaths due to domestic violence in the United States. All women participants, who are able, will gently fall to the ground and assume a posture reflecting death. Other participants, including men, can make a protective circle around them. Silence will then be observed for two minutes. The whole event, especially the “Die In”, should be filmed, possibly by film students, people with cell phones, and maybe by film professionals.
These films will be collected by Healing Voices – Personal Stories, and this film company will then seek out wide channels of distribution for the documentary to make a long-lasting point that we must stop the unseen war of intimate partner violence. The films that we have already made for domestic violence education and awareness can be viewed and used, free of charge, at www.hv-ps.org.
Committee for Day of Action Against Domestic Violence