Even today, in 2019, violent misogyny is far too widespread in the U.S., and these attitudes can lead to direct harm against women. Recently, Mississippi State Representative Douglas McLeod was arrested for domestic violence.
According to The Sun Herald, a Biloxi-based newspaper, police arrested McLeod on May 18th after receiving a call about a domestic disturbance. When they arrived, the Republican representative was intoxicated and had apparently punched his wife in the face. The paper notes that in a report filed with the George County Sheriff’s Department, deputies noticed blood on the floor and on McLeod’s wife’s face. The politician allegedly punched her because he felt she was undressing for sex too slowly.
McLeod’s wife reportedly told the police that her husband “just snapped” and that this is common when he drinks alcohol. McLeod is currently free on bail.
The Associated Press reports that state House Speaker Philip Gunn, also a Republican, has called for McLeod to resign in the wake of the arrest.
Other Mississippi politicians have echoed this call, including Lucien Smith, chairman of the Mississippi Republican Party.
“If the allegations against Rep. McLeod are true, he should resign immediately. Violence in any relationship is unacceptable, and I condemn this conduct in the strongest possible terms.” MSGOP Chairman @LucienSmith— Mississippi GOP (@MSGOP) May 21, 2019
According to CBS News, McLeod has been a state representative since 2012. Earlier this year, he co-sponsored a so-called “heartbeat” abortion bill, which would ban the procedure at about six weeks into a pregnancy. Before that, he voted on several different bills to restrict abortion. He also voted in favor of a bill that would have enabled individuals to file a “wrongful death” lawsuit on behalf of fetuses.
Domestic violence should not be tolerated—especially not from elected officials. We stand with McLeod’s wife and all survivors of domestic violence.