Boxer Billy Joe Saunders posts a video teaching men to hit women. He said he wanted to create a video for men and husbands:
“All of a sudden she’s coming at you, spitting a bit of venom in your face, ready to say something, you may have left the dishes out, I don’t know what you’ve done but you’ve upset her.
“As she comes in, she’s coming at you and you’ve lost it, just keep it safe with the hands. So as she comes in, she’s just about to say something, all of a sudden you explode and hit her on the chin.
“At this time she may flash and see white and think, ‘What’s happened?’, she’s in a state of a horror.
“She doesn’t know what’s going on and all of a sudden you dip down on that knee and you finish her off. That should do the trick.”
My Two Cents:
Repugnant and deplorable. What message does this send out to boys and men watching it? And to women and girls? What about the survivors who watched, who have been the punchbags for men, some of whom contacted me? And those who are currently being abused, beaten and controlled, trapped at home during lock down?
Stand in their shoes and watch it.
Yet, Saunders posted this video actively encouraging and teaching men to be violent to women during self-isolation, at a time when reports of domestic violence have increased by 40-50%. in some areas.
When challenged, Saunders subsequently posted an ‘apology non-apology’ on his Twitter page stating that he ‘doesn’t condone domestic violence’ and that he has a daughter.
Having a daughter makes it somehow worse and is certainly not proof of not condoning domestic violence. The video paints a different picture. It was chilling.
Saunders’s behaviour is unacceptable. He has triggered many survivors and countless victims. And I have to say, I was convinced that he meant every word and every punch.
Men on his timeline rushed to his defence, saying it was a ‘joke’ and that people were ‘snowflakes’ for being upset and angry about it. Anther responded by tweeting once you’ve knocked her out and she was on the floor, ‘tea-bag her.’
There’s nothing funny about a woman being murdered every four days in the UK in exactly this way.
When crises happen – be it war, an epidemic, a pandemic – gender based violence escalates. It’s at times like these, the true extent and scale of domestic abuse is revealed.
People are shocked – and yet specialist frontline services are depleted and delivering a response on a shoestring – as they have always done, as violence against women is not a priority. I mean it’s only women being murdered, right?
In China, domestic violence reports tripled in February alone.
Wake up – these men did not become abusers over night.
This level of violence, abuse misogyny and male entitlement is unacceptable.
Domestic violence is never ok.
Saunders has brought his sport into disrepute and has undoubtedly violated his contract in making this video as well as social media regulations posting it. It’s also an offence under common law to incite others to commit an act of violence.
Please be an activist and upstander and write to the British Boxing Board and the World Boxing Organisation and request urgent action be taken against Billy Joe Saunders:
Report Saunders to Facebook and Twitter. Report him to your MP.
Domestic abuse is no joke. These attitudes have to stop. It’s time to criminalise misogyny. Women deserve better.