The death of three gendarmes in Puy-de-Dôme, during an intervention to save a woman from an attempted feminicide, was deeply moved. But why do men have to die for violence against women to generate so much interest?
Wednesday, December 23, 2020, France wakes up in shock: three gendarmes have just died while trying to arrest an armed man, following an alert for domestic violence. The emotion is legitimate: a few hours before Christmas, these men were shot dead in the exercise of their mission, a fourth is injured, families are in mourning … A collective trauma. But the wave of articles and comments online questions: must men die so that in France, violence against women is in everyone's mind?
When emotion masks the reality of feminicides
Each year, hundreds of women die killed by their spouses or ex-spouses, or driven to suicide by their psychological and / or physical violence. These violent men sometimes also murder their children. Thursday, December 17, 2020, just a week before the Puy-de-Dôme tragedy, the GIGN intervened in Domont, in Val-d'Oise, following the hostage-taking of a woman by her violent spouse. The man ended up murdering him, before turning the gun on him, thus avoiding any form of justice. This drama aroused less emotion than that of Puy-de-Dôme, but more than other feminicides not involving any man. Moreover, following the Domont affair, the media have been numerous to take up rhetoric invoking the "freaking out" of a man who was ultimately quite sympathetic.
France 3 thus relayed this portrait drawn up by one of his relatives, also an LREM deputy for the constituency: "I am very shocked by this tragedy, especially since I knew a jovial, sympathetic man, ready to help. Dominique G. told everyone that his separation from his wife was very complicated, because they co-managed their landscaping business in Domont. They wanted to part ways, but worked together. I never imagined it would end in such a drama. " "Crime of passion", "family drama" … it is the vocabulary of emotion that dominates. Add the one caused by the death of the incumbent gendarmes, and you end up losing sight of essential information: the crime of Puy-de-Dôme is a premeditated act, as is often the case with feminicides.
To read also: "Hostage-taking in the Val-d'Oise: this is a feminicide, not a" family drama "
Women, the first victims of patriarchal violence
Of course, we can be delighted that other press titles speak of violence against women more accurately, but also that the subject is at the center of public policies. At least in the speech … Because in terms of figures, the State is struggling to improve the situation. In 2019, there was indeed an increase in the number of women killed compared to 2018: 122 against 121. Domestic violence also exploded during the confinements of 2020, not to mention the associations deplore a lack of means to put women safe, and the multiplication of saturated green numbers.
How, in this context, not to realize that it is only when gendarmes, men, are killed that political personnel and celebrities crack up with brotherly tweets? Once again, the tribute is justified, but it is here its trigger point as well as the rhetoric employed that it is urgent to question.