The Bolillo case: a punched and ignored woman

Hottest news in Colombia at the moment: national soccer trainer hits woman and loses his job. A female senator defends him, because the woman must have provoked him. Oh my, this senator is doing three steps back where the country is doing tiny steps forward, now and then. Physical abuses and murderings of women happen every day here. So please let this senator shut up at once! But back to the hitting itself. AND AN UPDATE

It seems to have been four punches. Witnesses told that to the media. Wrong of course, terrible, that a guy hits a woman, or that somebody hits someone, at all. For me the most painful thing is that we don’t know anything about the woman. The guy is Hernán Darío Gómez, nickname Bolillo, national soccer trainer in Colombia – he resigned because of what happened. The silly senator is Liliana Rendón. She prefers to stand by the machistas instead of fighting them. Seems she thinks there’s more to win like that. Dream on, lady.

Now back to the woman. We don’t know who she is. She’s silent and she probably doesn’t want anybody to know that all this happened to her. The meeting with the famous soccer guy must have been ‘illegal’. In other words, she probably is his old time lover or his one night stand. The media called it ‘party friend’. So a guy punches you and instead of screaming out your anger and indignation, you shut up. To not make things worse. To protect his reputation.

That’s what saddens me most of this whole matter. She may have provoked him by offending him, as witnesses seem to have said. They apparently both had drunk quite a lot. He may however not hit her, never. It’s wrong. But he did it. And now she has to keep silence.

Oh and another thing, the guy, realizing he did an unforgivable thing and trying to save his image, wrote a public letter. He apologized, to the country, to all the women, to his wife and to his mother. He didn’t mention her however, the anonymous woman whom he punched. She didn’t matter. Even if he didn’t want to mention her name, he could have said, he should have said: ‘I ask my dear friend, whom I hit, to forgive me. I swear I’ll never do it again and I swear I’ll never hit any woman again.’

I hope she, the punched woman, told him she never wants to see him again, I so hope that. I don’t even care if she goes to the police to denounce. She should just stay away from that guy, who hit her and humiliated her afterwards by ignoring her in public.

UPDATE: A neigbour in Barranquilla said something like the silly senator: if a guy hits you, you asked for it. I told her I don’t agree and that it’s never justified that a man hits a woman. Then she said something interesting: “My mother told me ‘If your husband hits you, then hit him back, because otherwise he will do it again’.” Indeed she was hit once by her husband. She took her shoe with high heel off and hit him hard on the leg. Then she took him to the hospital. He never hit her again.

My friend María Victoria Ramírez wrote a column about the Bolillo case for Pereira‘s daily La Tarde. Here it is: Una lechuza importa más que una mujer

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