Allan Ivarsson Author... of Books

The Honest Courage of Penelope Trunk

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The Honest Courage of Penelope Trunk


“What did Viking Raids teach us?”

Penelope Trunk on her website appears to be very open and truthful about her feelings, experiences, observations and beliefs. I have no reason yet to distrust what she says, I sense her thoughts are genuine, and that her exposition on her experiences to me, is very courageous, when tabled in a highly critical world that too often shoots opinions from the hip, void of emotional intelligence and too often is riddled with bad thinking lack of logic. Trunk has written many things, but the below for this ‘Domestic Violence’ investigation/treatise, specifically caught my attention being home to her own childhood experiences. We can all learn from each other, if we are brave enough to face reality and stand strong true to our understanding, be it right or wrong. Of course, when we discover that we are wrong or even slightly off track, we must have the dynamic courage to change and adjust our thinking to guide ourselves in the right learning direction. I have had to change many times during my life as education and good and bad experience upgraded my understanding. I have no regrets except that I did not have an educated mentor in my young adult years, when I needed one at 18 years, and when I reached out to Psychology to be my mentor they failed to help me, all these Psychologists, only wanted money and if a person like I, could not afford such a fee when young, they were ignored and rejected. I quickly learned that Psychology was just a money-making business, not much different to New Age fortune tellers. As it turned out, reading widely with open mind over the years Philosophy, Belief Systems, History and Science in its full extensions proved to be my best mentors. Psychology did nothing for me, they failed miserably, including their book writers that all had different opinions about the real and the unreal. I never had the privilege of meeting a good Psychologist that made pragmatic common sense, everyone I encountered was too wrapped up in their own vanity and greed. And they didn’t care about the person, if there was no money in the deal. I knew friends and others who got University Degrees, but they did nothing successful with their life. I have no University Degree and achieved a more dynamic adventurous life of higher understanding than degree qualified people. Learning about life, requires variety experience, being a specialist experienced in only one field may reveal that a person is clever, but they will never be smarter until they can step outside the square with open mind and learn ‘Philosophical Intelligence’.

Trunks personal essay dated January 1st, 2012, titled “Zero Tolerance for Domestic Violence is Wrong” (xix) caught my eye, because the headline idea opposes all the global movement thinking that ‘Zero Tolerance for Domestic Violence’ must be enforced. Penelope Trunks headline statement does not open up to directly explain the why she thinks ‘Zero Tolerance for Domestic Violence is Wrong’ rather her brief essay reflects her own bad experiences and the why she refuses to leave her Farmer husband.

Her motive became partly understandable when Trunk wrote… “For some reason, people feel it is honorable to rip a woman to shreds if she is living with domestic violence.” Penelope tables some examples of negative, even nasty comments, made to her by men and women for standing by her partner even though he has hit her. Her comments reveal something of why she believes that “Zero Tolerance for Domestic Violence is Wrong”. I mean think about it, if Pro-Prosecution, Pro-Mandatory Arrest was forced upon her husband against Penelope’s wishes, wholesale damage would be done to their marriage, and it may become even more difficult to save the marriage and repair the errors. Somewhere in every marriage there is a personal decision deciding point, where each person in a relationship must travel full circle and decide, “do I want to save this marriage or not? Do I really care about leaving or do I really don’t want to stay?” This is a hard, individual decision to make and no outsider, including a Psychologist or Police, can wisely advise a person on what they should or should not do. For the intensity of the conflict and the question of whether the relationship can correct its mistakes and focus truly travelling in the same direction, united as one, is on the table, for individual decision. Police have no right to make such an interfering decision, without approval of the spouse seeking help. And even then, reasonable grounds must be respectfully available, lest injustice raises its ugly head. It is too easy to be a smart arse and criticise a spouse’s decision, when they have no experience about the living relationship of the couple living together, be they married or de facto.

Penelope Trunk stated in challenge to quick judgemental comment thinking… “It’s much harder to see the issue from the person’s perspective who has the issue. The high-and-mightiness that emanates from the public discussion of domestic violence is breathtaking. Everyone is an expert. Everyone knows what’s right. But really, how do they know?” (xix)

Flashing back to her childhood Penelope Trunk wrote…

“I’ll tell you what my mom used to do leading up to my dad hitting her: One night they were wallpapering. They had been wallpapering the living room after work for a week. My mom got mad at my dad and threw red paint all over the wallpaper. Ruined all their work. He didn’t respond. He was stunned. Then she knocked over the table with the wallpaper and the glue. It ruined the newly varnished floors. He held her arms, so she couldn’t do anything else. He held tighter and tighter. She kicked him to get loose. She left no mark. He hit her in the face.” [open hand slap] (xix)

“If she blogged about it, and showed the hand print on her face, [red paint] she might get 500 commenters telling her it’s not her fault. Should she leave with me and my brother because our dad is violent, and we should not live with him? Or should she work on her own behaviour to see if she can single-handedly stop the violence?” (xix)

I think the most grown-up, good parenting thing for her to do would be to understand her own behaviour and stop it so that me and my brother could grow up in a home with both our parents. She didn’t do that, of course. She had little insight into her own behavior and she and my dad ended up taking most of their anger out on me.” (xix)

“My mom had good choices she could have made because, in fact, part of the domestic violence was her fault.” (xix)

“It’s not your fault” completely limits a woman’s choices, because you are saying that she is powerless to control the situation. And if you tell every woman “it’s not your fault” then they can’t improve. How do women get better at not creating a violent household?” (xix)

“Probably by changing their behavior. [Founded upon change in thinking and understanding] This doesn’t mean “always tiptoe around your spouse and become a mouse”. But it can mean a wide range of positive changes.” (xix)

“We are all growing personally. It’s not your fault is almost always a path to no growth.” (xix)

“Personal responsibility. Why don’t we go there, first, before we go to “it’s not your fault.” (xix)

“The truth is that if we take responsibility for the problems in our lives, we can solve the problem. If we blame other people, we are always running.” (xix)

End of Penelope Trunks important case study extract.

A.I. comments…What did we learn from this truthful experience and consequent philosophical thoughts by Penelope Trunks? Well we all will see different thoughts, right or wrong and based upon our belief system we will all respond in different ways. But the truth is that only a person involved in a bad experience understands their reality, or do they? Whose reality do we understand when we are caught up in an emotional or survival struggle? Sure, enough we feel pain, stress and frustration, desperately wanting out of this dramatic unwanted experience. Both perpetrator and victim want out for probably different reasons. But whether that need to leave feeling is temporary or permanent, is another thing again. Do we really understand ourselves when caught in a conflict? Or are we simply emotionally reacting without any sense of true pragmatic logic, because we don’t have time to be truly logical, when we are just reacting and that is exactly what emotionally flying off the handle does, it does not think wisely, it just reacts. This review is not a about Psychological thinking, it is a about Philosophical thinking, because the truth ‘Philosophy of thought’ our ‘Belief System’ or lack thereof, is the reason for our thinking and behaviour. Our thoughts, actions and decisions are not about Psychology, it is about our Philosophy, good or bad, right or wrong, true or false, just or unjust.

How would a Pro-Prosecution Pro-Mandatory Arrest handle the above case story incident? There is a high risk of an unreasonable arrest being enforced against the father (the first victim of abuse) whilst the second victim of counter abuse walks free to agree or not to agree to prosecute. Even if the wife rejects the police objective to arrest the husband under a Pro-Prosecution process the husband will be dragged down to the police station, and the humiliation he feels will rise in anger and if there was any potential for relationship healing between husband and wife, it may well and truly be blown away. On the other hand, there are cases where arrest might save a spouse member the genuine true victim of more physical abuse and possibly in extreme situations save a life or lives. Clearly, the onus of decision in domestic violence belongs to the sex partners involved, as to whether they wish to prosecute their partner or not, such a decision does not and should never belong to the police.

Feminist organisations concerned only for women, not men, trend * to be very biased against men and will only see the woman as the victim. This biased mentality is not acceptable, which is why all organisations focused on elimination of domestic violence must be committed to the delivery of truthful honourable justice and the elimination of false knowledge, which means they must defend the rights of men and women, gays and the disabled, and children from being abused and harassed by other men and women, and by other disabled people and by other children and paedophiles. Sincerity is not true, if justice process does not serve all. This is not about gender-based violence, it is about intolerance towards all human violent and abusive behaviour, period.

[I used the word * ‘trend’ deliberately for societal tendency in fashionable ideas, whether right or wrong, not ‘tend’… though tendency is also an influential part of societal trend.]

Penelope is right we must first turn the searchlight inwards and strive to understand our own philosophy belief system, we must explore our own backyard of thoughts and ask the question honestly, and answer truthfully to ourselves, is it our fault, how could we have handled this differently? Should we walk away, because it is not a healable situation, or should we stay together to help save the relationship (married or not)? And is it better for children to live in an unhappy family home or is it better they start again somewhere else with no guarantee that the alternative direction will be better? The answer to these questions genuinely is a variable, what is right choice in one situation, could be wrong in another reality experience. Alternate realities do exist as a constant on earth, not as a parallel universe like in science fiction, but rather as an important challenge in life choices, which needs good experiential philosophy knowledge to make the right choices, not that easy, even for the knowledgeable and experienced person. And this is a true emotional problem for the inexperienced and uneducated, caught out in such an emotional trauma. Psychology cannot help, only childhood education in ‘Philosophical Intelligence’ can help every individual make the right choices. How attentive a student is in class, may well decide whether they live a happy and reasonable successful life or an unhappy unsuccessful life.

Success is not about being wealthy, it is about finding inner peace and being happy in life, able to deal with choices using ‘Positive Mental Attitude’ be it a good choice or not.   Life decision making is full of risks. Sometimes we make good choices and other times we get it wrong, that is the hard reality of life. However, it is very important that we are all focused on a life of personal character improvement, for none of us are consistently that good and thus to improve our first step as a constant must be, to upgrade our philosophical belief system… the only way we can truly do that successfully, is by living with open mind striving to think outside the square, void of fixed dogma using pragmatic common sense and the power of wisdom, the way of ‘Philosophical Intelligence’.

The failing of fixed dogma religions and cults is that people build a comfort zone of false knowledge beliefs to shield them from getting hurt, but hard reality does not give any person any quarter and not even a religion can give a person inner peace, if they cannot comfortably communicate with all persons outside their particular belief system reality, hence when abuse and violence comes knocking whether it is inside the home or outside on the streets or elsewhere, their religion fails to give them true happiness and inner peace, because they are not prepared for hard reality. All they can do is tenaciously cling to their blind beliefs, pray and hope the misery being thrust upon them will go away, but it will not, because without ‘Philosophical Intelligence’ they are poorly prepared on how to deal with their reality.

A mutual admiration society in agreement does not mean that society is founded on complete truth, too often mutual admiration societies cheering each other on, are founded on collective false knowledge ideas and thus such people are very vulnerable.


After the barbaric Vikings attacked the one of the considered holiest sites, the Christian Monastery in Lindisfarne, a flat island, Northumberland Britain in January 793 A.D. it was often said by some Christian leaders that the Vikings were sent by God to punish the British people for doing wrong. Such is the false knowledge mythical thinking created by misguided Christian people that could not grasp the reality that the Vikings attacked Monasteries because of the wealth and treasures they possessed. Monks thereafter in many Monasteries felt vulnerable fearing attacks from the Vikings.


Pious Christians in the far past, often linked this raid to biblical prophesies, even today Christians do the same thing and invent interpretations to the bible to the expansion invasion of anti-freedom Islam. False knowledge interpretation is often created and clung to in mutual admiration belief system societies, void of common sense truthful analysis.

The vicious cruel slaughter attacks of the North-men gave no quarter. They killed many, carried off others in chains, probably to be sold as slaves, and drowned others in the sea. And stripped many naked before completion of terror treatment, which did include random rape. God Creator did not step in to protect the victims and never has over the centuries, and still does not protect anyone even in the 21st Century, as ‘Jihad Muslims’ in the West rape and kill innocent peaceful victims that do not harm anyone. Whether people are victims of barbaric attacks or natural disasters by the fury of nature, God Creator never steps in to protect people. We are on our own in this solar system on planet earth, and thus we must change the way we humans think to build a better-quality existence for all human and non-human society. This reality is pragmatic common-sense survival cosmic law.


Go to your history books and study what is taught about the ‘Viking Age’ [over three hundred years, 8th to late 11th Century], compare understandings, for different scholars disagree on different thoughts, but in overview the violence of the ‘Viking Age’ was real like the violence of the ‘Nazi Regime’ and like the violence of ‘Islamic/Sharia Law’ doctrine teachings and its enforcement dictatorship. History may involve disagreements in detail thoughts, but the overview broadbrush truth about historical thinking and behaviour cannot be denied, because all of history thinking and behaviour is founded upon one reality and that reality is that all thinking and behaviour is the karma/result/consequence of our ‘Belief System’ our philosophy so-to-speak, be it good or bad, right or wrong, true or false, just or unjust.

Anglo-Saxon Chronicles recorded many entries about Viking raids.


The Christians often prayed seeking help and aid, the French reciting… “From the wrath of the Northmen, Oh Lord, deliver us”. And the British reciting… “From the fury of the Northmen, God deliver us.” Others used the words, “Oh Lord, protect us from the wrath of the Northmen” or “Protect us, Oh Lord, from the wrath of the Northmen.” Celtic monks in Ireland, prayed, “From the fury of the Northmen, Oh Lord, deliver us”. It has been suggested by Christians that the reason God did not protect people from the slaughter imposed by the Vikings was that God had other ideas and was focused on sacrificing people so that the Vikings would gradually convert to Christianity, which indeed, many North persons from Scandinavian lands did eventually convert to Christianity. But, this conversion process was not God’s will, but simply evolved as people, including the Vikings got sick of war and looked for a better way to live in peace and thus Christianity was their first choice, because it was Christian belief system that dominated many of the European lands north of Rome and Jerusalem. True believers in fixed dogma, invent false knowledge ideas to satisfy their own belief system convictions. In sections of Indian and Chinese history, before the invasion of violent Islam, Buddhism was often introduced to eradicate violence in a region, by evolution process, teaching society better ahimsa ways to live.

When the Vikings attacked, all Christian prayers did not save them, they were killed anyway, if they were not prepared to fight back using counter-violence. And that reality exists even today, for the truth is that all ‘Jihad Muslims’ living true to Qur’an and Hadith teachings, true to example of their deemed infallible prophet Muhammad, do think/believe that all non-Muslims in the West during the early 21st Century are weaklings and deserve no respect. Just like the Northmen had no respect for passive Monks and other Christians during the time of their ruthless raid attacks against Christians.

Thus, the following philosophical wisdom planted inside a science fiction story delivers us a valid message. And just as Penelope Trump correctly challenged traditional thinking, it becomes accurately clear that whilst “Zero Tolerance for Domestic Violence” must be enforced, in much the same way “Zero Tolerance of all Totalitarian Forms”, must be enforced to protect and preserve the human rights to live free in speech and choice, it is clear that ‘Pro-Prosecution and Pro-Mandatory Arrest’ is like all forms of totalitarianism, a dangerous precedent, capable of expanding into the creation of high level fields of injustice. The evolution of a dictatorship ‘Police State’ is no more acceptable than the Viking Raids, or the German Nazi invasion, or the Japanese Imperial Invasion or the Islamic invasion. The consequences are the same… unjust persecution and destruction of justice and freedom.

We often Fear what we do not understand. Our Best Defence is Knowledge”. (xx)

 (xx) Source: Star Trek Voyager 1996 Episode: ‘Innocence’, Star Date: 49578.2

In a book further down the track the subject title will no longer be…

Violence Against Women…

 It will be…

 Violence Against Men, Women & Children…

 Which includes a special focus on the elimination of Child Brides and Paedophilia.

 To be continued…

Allan Peter Ivarsson © 2016

Domestic Violence 001

Domestic Violence 002


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