FixedIt: he’s not just on trial for spitting

The Fraser Coast Chronicle reported that a 38 year old man was charged with two counts of contravening a domestic violence order. He had a bail hearing in Maryborough Magistrates Court this week.

In the first incident the man allegedly spat in his partner’s face and took items from her purse.

In the second incident police say he was drunk, abusive and allegedly threatened to stab the woman in the face with a knife.

He was on a suspended sentence when the alleged offences occurred and the magistrate agreed he was a risk of reoffending. He was denied bail.

Headlines are supposed to be a short summary of the article. This headline diminished the charges against the offender by giving is a short summary of the least offensive details about the alleged crimes and completely ignored the point of the court proceedings, which was to determine whether the accused should be given bail.

There’s a reason I focus so strongly on headlines. Most people don’t consume news by reading a print newspaper from cover to cover. We see headlines on social media or news home pages and around 80 percent of the headlines we see, we never click through to read the article.

We’re not necessarily thinking very much about the headlines we don’t click on, but we see them. And without being consciously aware that it’s happening they are still describing something to us. When they fit our subconscious bias, when they minimise men’s violence against women or when they perpetuate myths about violence, they reinforce them in our minds, but we don’t really notice that it’s happening.

The things we don’t notice are far more dangerous than the things we do notice.

Headlines matter and this is why FixedIt exists.

FixedIt is an ongoing project to push back against the media’s constant erasure of violent men and blaming of innocent victims. If you would like to help fund it – even $5 a month makes a big difference – please consider becoming a Patron

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