Wisconsin Assemblyman Don Pridemore has signed onto fellow State Senator Glenn Grothman’s bill that blames unmarried parents as contributing to child abuse and neglect. However, Pridemore has taken the matter of abuse a step further by commenting on domestic abuse.
Is there a connection between domestic abuse of partners and child abuse? Sure there is, but that isn’t the line Pridemore is drawing. Like Grothman, Pridemore sees marriage as some type of cure-all to troubled relationships. In an interview with TMJ4 in Milwaukee, Pridemore explained that a spouse whaling on another spouse, and the spouse victimized by those beatings, just need to rekindle their love and all will be fine.
“If they can refind those reasons and get back to why they got married in the first place it might help,” said Pridemore.
It seemed that Grothman had a simplistic solution to child abuse by believing that marriage fixes troubled relationships. Pridemore’s views are worse than simplistic. They are dangerous for the victimized spouse.
Grothman and Pridemore’s views also point out to the circular and irrational argument that they are making. Grothman takes the argument that child abuse will decrease in a married relationship. Child abuse often goes hand in hand with other forms of domestic abuse. However, Pridemore admits that domestic abuse occurs in married relationships but the solution to that is to stay together.
Problems in a relationship? Well, then get married. Still problems in a relationship? Stay married. These guys are quite the problem solvers.
So much for the idea that marriage is the cure for troubled relationships. Both men miss the point that the quality of relationships is the problem. They also miss the point that the marriage solution that they back is not even a Band-aid. It may even worsen an abusive situation.
The “love your abuser” solution of Pridemore’s isn’t just ridiculous. It is asinine.
Update: Pridemore was incorrectly referred to as a State Senator when he is an Assemblyman.