Adult on Girl Violence

By Jean Mavrelis - 12.14.2009

A white woman I know asked, is the movie “Precious” about race or about poverty or about abuse? It’s about all three.  While abuse of women knows no race or class boundaries, abuse happens within a social and cultural context, and is exacerbated by social and cultural situations.

If you have an opportunity, google Laurie Schaffner’s working paper titled “So Called Girl-on-Girl Violence is Actually Adult-on-Girl Violence”.

Schaffner points out that poor girls of color are more likely to be vulnerable to predation by local idle older men…more likely to lack access to resources to heal from trauma early in life, and less likely to be protected by the law.

The Adult-on-Girl violence Schaffner alludes to is not from their mothers, but from society’s refusal to fund infrastructure: housing, jobs, schools (I would add healthcare), and the ruthlessness of a highly profitable prison system.

I’m dismayed by the backlash to what is called “Big Government Spending”.  Our constitution pledges to “promote the general welfare”.  Big business trickle down doesn’t help girls like Precious. Read more »