As Joseph already pointed out, the Ohio Republican Party and it’s Chairman Kevin DeWine have been completely hypocritical and have indeed lost all credibility when it comes to misconduct by the party’s officeholders.  The news that State Senator Kris Jordan (R-Powell) will not be charged in the domestic event that occurred at his residence adds fuel to this fire.  The Jordan story has been popular here in part because a good political scandal is always a traffic magnet, but also because our readers are so passionate on this particular issue.  I’ve had some email contact with one and she has agreed to do a guest post on her unique insight into the Jordan situation.  I think it’s worthwhile to consider her view and the implications of what happened that night at the Jordan residence.  It can be hard for a victim to speak out on the matter and I thank Bonnie for her courageousness in posting this.  – Eric

Guest post by Bonnie Bertelson

I have been following the Kris Jordan domestic violence scandal from the first I learned about it from a Plunderbund exclusive report. As the story has unfolded, my thoughts and concerns have largely been on Melissa Jordan’s plight. She is a victim, caught in a cycle of violence from which, it is difficult to break free. I know. I’ve been there.

Many years ago, I was a victim of domestic violence. I managed to break free of the cycle, but not unscathed. Physical, emotional and psychological damage was done and the scars remain. That is why I am compelled to shine light on the dark cycle of domestic violence against women. From my experience, I have come to know that the cycle of domestic violence follows a typical pattern. The pattern consists of five stages, and it doesn’t matter when it happens, or who is involved – the pattern repeats itself. The stages are; the build-up or tensions stage, the abuse stage, the apology stage (motivated by the abuser’s feelings of “guilt” and fear of reprisal), the rationalization stage, and the honeymoon stage. At each stage, the abuser is in full control of himself and is always working to control and isolate his victim. And, with each repeated cycle, an increase in the level of violence is likely to occur. Here’s a brief description of the stages:

BUILD-UP – This stage may last a week, months, or years and typically involves an increase in verbal and minor physical abuse.

ABUSE – Hitting, slapping, kicking, choking, shoving, use of objects or weapons, verbal abuse and threats, sexual abuse.

APOLOGY – The abuser may deny violence; say he was drunk, say he’s sorry.

RATIONALIZATION – The abuser makes excuses and blames the victim for his behavior.

HONEYMOON – The abuser is affectionate and attentive towards the victim; may promise he will never hurt her again.

Now, using information published on the Jordan incident, the stages of domestic violence are easily recognizable (at least they are from my perspective) in their situation:

BUILD-UP – In her 911 call, Melissa says, “…he’s had some drinks, he was pushing me around, throwing stuff.”

ABUSE – Melissa: “This is the first time I ever called you.  He’s done this a lot.  I can’t put up with it anymore.”  “…he was pushing me around, throwing stuff.”

APOLOGY – The Jordans issue a “joint” statement. (I have serious doubts that Melissa was a willing participant in its composition and/or its distribution.)

RATIONALIZATION – Taking no blame or responsibility upon himself, Kris Jordan tells the 911 responding officer, “She got a little upset. Girls do that.”

HONEYMOON – The Jordans took a vacation, leaving on a Wednesday, right after the domestic violence incident occurred.

When I read the transcripts (and listened to the audio recording) of Melissa’s 911 call, place on the night of July 11th, I cried. The tears I cried were a result of having been abused in the past, because, I immediately recognized the fear, confusion, isolation and desperation of one that is a victim of domestic violence. Even the “joint” statement, issued shortly after the incident, is evidence that Melissa Jordan lives in the shadow of an abusive, controlling, misogynist. Her responses and reactions, or lack thereof, throughout this whole ordeal, are consistent with one who has been abused for a long time. She was/is terrified and her abuser should not be allowed to continue in his position of public office, as an Ohio State Senator.

Why has there been no public outcry for Senator Jordan’s resignation? Why have the hypocritical, “family values” Republicans of Ohio’s legislature not demanded it?

  • Thank you for sharing your insights, even though it is obviously painful.  Even if Melissa Jordan does not feel she can escape the abuse after this incident, perhaps another reader may find the courage to break the cycle of abuse.  Thank you again for sharing.

  • Anonymous

    Thank you Bonnie, your words ring true, unlike the “joint statement” from K & MJ.

    I live in Delaware Co., and Jordan is my state senator.  Long ago, I’ve made peace with the fact that Delaware will in all likelihood stay Republican.  But is this the best that the local Republican Party can do?  I would like to also hear a statement from the Delaware Republican Party about their past support of Kris Jordan as a candidate.   I would also like to hear from Kris’s mentor, Pat Tiberi.  And from Jon Peterson, the Delaware County Treasurer, who has stated before that he looks at Kris “like a son.”

  • I completely agree. It is terrible that the TGOP have turned themselves into the he-man woman haters club during most of my life. They are proud of it as well. It is also a shame that they have co-opted some women to be on their side also. 

    Real men don’t hit women, PERIOD.  He’s a monster dressed as a human being. 

  • Natasha

    There’s no outcry for Senator Jordan’s resignation because the Ohio GOP and his home county (Delaware GOP) fully support him.  The party-line is spinning toward the inevitable conclusion, in their politics first and foremost world, that Mrs. Jordan is the overly emotional liar who fabricated all of this in a fit of girly emotion. 

    Either Senator Jordan is a drunken, wife-beater who terrorizes his wife while armed with a deadly-weapon-gun. Or, Mrs. Jordan is a liar who lied to the 9-1-1 operators and the investigating officers at the scene on the night of the incident.  It’s a binary issue for the Ohio GOP – one or the other.

    By not calling for Senator Jordan’s ouster, Governor Kasich, Ohio GOP leaders (K. DeWine), the Republican elected officials (all of them), The Republican legislators (all of them), and the Republican women (throughout the state) effectively support Senator Jordan’s actions to the detriment of his wife’s well-being. 

    It’s OK with the Ohio Republicans to beat your lying wife even if she too is a Republican public official.  All they have to do is make sure that the public buys into their characterization of Mrs. Jordan as a dumb liar.  They’re working on that right now.

    They will save Senator Jordan because they need his twisted conservative Christian,  pro-life, pro-gun mentality to fulfill their agenda.  The gun nuts can’t have a gun nut legislator lose his rights to have guns.  (A special gun nut thanks to the prosecutor for not charging Senator Jordan) Senator Jordan’s religiosity and anti-woman politics is too valuable to the GOP to worry about Mrs. Jordan’s safety.

    Senator Jordan “owns” the Delaware GOP and no Delaware Republican will ever dare speak out against him.  That includes Kasich, Yost, Tiberi, Brenner, and all of the Delaware public officials (except for County Recorder Mrs. Jordan).  Mrs. Jordan now knows the futility of speaking out and crying for help from law enforcement and the legal system in Delaware County.  She’s going to suffer the consequences while her husband remains untouched.

    Wonder the world looks from under that Kasich – GOP bus, Mrs. Jordan, at least she’s still alive.

  • Let me clarify something here… Domestic Violence is intolerable, regardless of socioeconomic status, political party affiliation, religious or non-religious standing, liberal, conservative and/or any other label you might be tempted to apply.  

    BUT, the hypocrisy of the GOP Teathuglicans, combined with the fact that Kris Jordan’s violent behavior is being largely ignored by the media and glossed over by his GOP party leaders is reprehensible and unacceptable.Kris Jordan voted against H.B. 19, a domestic violence bill. Come on, Ohio, DEMAND HIS RESIGNATION!

  • As a resident of  Delaware county who went through a divorce in Delaware county and now has to live with the consequences of that whole screwed up mess, along with my children…  And as a person who had to deal with Delaware County’s excuse for Children’s Services on multiple occassions, from their refusal to investigate when they had professionals reporting that something was wrong (because the abuser would not invite them in, they said that they couldnot do anything…then they decided to talk to the children about it AFTER they had left them with the abuser who refused to allow them access to the home–what did they think the kids were going to say happened?!?!?!  Of course it went to “nothing happened”!) to their refusal to help a young mother whose husband even ADMITTED that he was abusing his baby!  Even as a person who had to deal with Children’s Services lack of ability to keep simple records of a child’s claim to have been sexualy abused by her father and their removal of that child from his home and sending her to a different county to grow up and then that father’s later abuse of other children and calls on Delaware County to produce their records about his case were met with, “We lost those records.”  Delaware county’s inability to maintain records of abusers and calls for help is something of a legend, actually.

    Apparently, abuse does not happen in Delaware County.  Even those, such as myself, who try to be advocates for the abused and help them to break free of abuse, are stuck with a system that is designed to protect the person with more money and if that happens to not be the abused person…well, that is just too bad.  This whole situation does not surprise me in the slightest.  The guest columnist is a good writer with strength and I appreciate this article, from one former victim to another-Hugs!

  • I just want to comment that Melissa Jordan is not a liar. (and I know you think that, Natasha.) Melissa Jordan is a victim – whether she can acknowledge it, or not.  It is not her fault.

    Victims of domestic violence are NOT to blame and, except in their abuser’s mind, do nothing to provoke the brutality. Furthermore, an abuser can become even more abusive, once their behavior is exposed and/or upon learning that the object of their violence – the victim – is taking steps to protect themselves or better their situation.

    I am truly concerned for Melissa’s safety and well-being. 

    Kris Jordan should not be allowed “privacy” regarding his abusive behavior towards his wife. He is a public officeholder and for him to be allowed to remain in public office is slap in the face to ALL victims of domestic violence. 

  • Natasha

    Bonnie B is correct – I do not believe that Mrs. Jordan lied about this incident. 

    The desire to portray her as a liar is necessary for the Republicans to salvage Senator Kris Jordan and his weird agenda that dovetails with the whole GOP agenda.   She’s lucky to still be alive and is by no means out of danger.

    It is becoming axiomatic (at least in Delaware County) that terrible people make the best Republicans and Senator Jordan is their “most influential” Republican. 

    Give ’em  a gun a few drinks and the anti-women attitude and trouble soon arrives.

  • The abusive bullies win again. Disgusting.

  • The abusive bullies win again. Disgusting.

  • The disgusting, abusive bullies win again. 🙁 

    BTW, Charlie, I clicked on the link you provided from the Dispatch, and got the following error: ”
    The page you were looking for was not found: /content/blogs/the-daily-briefing/2011/08/niehaus-not-speculating-on-sen.-jordans-future.html) Makes me wonder…

  • The disgusting, abusive bullies win again. 🙁 

    BTW, Charlie, I clicked on the link you provided from the Dispatch, and got the following error: ”
    The page you were looking for was not found: /content/blogs/the-daily-briefing/2011/08/niehaus-not-speculating-on-sen.-jordans-future.html) Makes me wonder…

  • Annekarina

    Wasn’t Kasich Tiberi’s mentor?

  • I appreciate your compliment at the end, especially meaningful, because it comes from “one former victim to another”.  Hugs back at you, Vickie.

  • herc

    Thank you for sharing your story. I fear the message this sends to girls and women in the state, that as long as you hold a position of power there aren’t consequences for your actions. Oh, and you can cry for help but no one will help you. Awesome message there. As the Dispatch article suggested, Tom Niehaus wants to support both Mr and Mrs Jordan personally. The best way he can do that is to condemn Mr. Jordan’s actions publicly, and at least send a message that his behavior is unacceptable.

  • Annekarina

    Perhaps the voters will have a message for Niehaus. 

  • Sarah

    Bonnie, thank you for that. I survived an abusive 1st marriage, but even now, 30 years later, the damage still tells. I recognize the same things you do in this, and I think that the current male dominated, and dominating-male, group of far right politicians show us in every action that this is what they think is ‘normal’ and ‘right’, not just at home, but in the governing of our nation. It is time to stop letting it go.

  • I agree, Sarah. It is time to stop letting it go. I sincerely hope my efforts to enlighten people – just a bit – on domestic violence and to put a spotlight on Kris Jordan, specifically, encourage people to demand his resignation and then, come  November 2011 and 2012, vote to break free of the abusive, corporate politicians that have taken over our democracy!

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