Its been a while since I have written anything on here, but I felt compelled to write something that I felt deserved its own place besides Facebook or twitter. I will just get into the meat of the issue immediately:
This afternoon I went to the grocery store. Or rather, I went to a store that sells groceries among other things. This store is featured on a popular website whereby everyday people take photos with their cell phones in order to ridicule and or belittle them publicly. There seems to be a lot of unsavory people going to this local business. I found out first hand just the flavor of unsavoriness.
I stopped for an iced coffee on the way and felt like enjoying the remaining 35% of it out in my parked vehicle with the windows down as it was a splendid 80 degrees and sunny out. As I was finishing the coffee, scrolling down the news feed in my Facebook on my iPhone, I heard the faint cries of a little two year old child. Then I heard the scary aggressive authoritative barking of an overweight man in his 40's threatening "I'm gonna give you something to cry about in a minute!". Now hearing this, immediately took me back to my childhood, the 1980's. I was the recipient of many spankings. Justice was swift and immediate.
So when I heard this phrase -exact in word-for-word as I had myself heard it as a young seven year old. I didn't pay it much mind. I could see the fat bastard of a dad (let's call him Chuck from here on) in my rear view mirror with a young toddler I assumed to be about two years old in his firm grip. The child's arm was being stretched into the air because the hulking massive 6' 3" father was too lazy to either pick up the kid or hunch down to hold his hand like a loving father should. No instead he had his fat, greasy man-hands wrapped around the poor kids forearm like he was holding a piece of luggage or something. It was only then, that I took notice. My car windows were down and the nature of my car, I was probably hidden from view from his perspective.
He was driving a black pickup truck that was parked next to me. And he had finally gotten the kid to the driver's side of the truck so he still hadn't seen me probably. I then hear him and creep my head around to witness him beating the living shit out of the kid. and the kid's screams amplified and resonated through probably the whole parking lot of the place. After this this fat bastard didn't stop. I almost felt like getting out of my car and telling this useless skinbag to pick on someone his own size. But I didn't. I let out an audible cough and a shake of my iced coffee cup with a bit of ice and a small amount of coffee in it. He immediately stopped. The guy's apparent wife was by this point hastily loading the groceries in the bed of the pickup, because she had made eye contact with me in my side mirror as she was loading the groceries on the truck's passenger side.
Her body language said it all. She was scared and cowering. Submissive and subservient. Chuck at this point buckles the kid in and gets in the truck and starts the engine while his apparent wife is still loading the groceries. He belches out a "Hurry the fuck up Renee!" and she replies "I'm trying honey." half of the groceries loaded she loads the rest with almost super human speed. Not two nanoseconds later Chuck throws the truck in reverse and starts backing out, leaving Renee to go and return the shopping cart to the corral in the parking lot, while Chuck was on the move to go pick her up. It was apparent this asshole wanted out and wanted out quick. Maybe because he finally realized I was in the car next to him with all the windows down, and witnessed his ass-hattery. Either way I felt helpless.
He obviously was one of those traditional obvious Christian southern men who think women should do everything. By not even helping with the unloading of the groceries, he probably expects her to do everything for him. I know I am making huge assumptions here and huge generalizations, but it was all in her body language.
A scary thought came over me as I was in the store getting my groceries. If this asshole acts like this in public, what the fuck is he doing in the privacy of his own home?! I really felt bad for that family. And worst of all, I felt Helpless. Helpless to do anything. He would have been long gone before any cops could come on scene and if the cops did come on the scene, they would have needed proof of wrongdoing, which -what I witnessed was a huge grey area. I could place an anonymous tip to DCS but then again, they need proof to take action. Its a lose-lose. Lose for the government agencies designed to protect victims of domestic abuse, and a lose for the victims themselves.
And this kind of stuff happens every single day. Worse things happen all the time.
I felt like complete and utter shit for the first few minutes of my shopping experience. And ultimately I felt helpless.