Russell Moore has a blog post on domestic abuse in country music. He refers to the Dixie Chick’s song “Goodbye Earl” and Martina McBride’s “Independence Day” among others. He says:
As I think about it, I don’t really think these songs are about calling women to murder the men who abuse them. I don’t think that’s the case with film representations along similar lines, such as The Burning Bed. It seems to me that the murder is a stand-in metaphor for the utter helplessness victims of domestic violence feel. After all, a woman who cannot see how, economically, she can walk away from an abusive relationship can feel as though she is trapped in a life sentence with no way out.
It is easy to shake our collective heads and wonder why a woman will submit herself to beating after domestic beating. It is difficult to be able to place ourselves in her situation and gain perspective on how difficult it is for her to escape it. You can read the whole blog post here.