Back in early April, I posted something about violence against women “Revealing Truths”. I talked primarily about a girl in my area who had recently been attacked by a stranger while walking home. She was dragged into the bushes and sexually assaulted. See, my mom and dad always taught me to be aware of my surroundings. They told me to have my keys ready, lock the doors when I get in the car etc. But even doing all things correctly can’t protect you.
I am reminded of former student, Dru Sjodin who was abducted in broad daylight in my hometown—in a parking lot of a shopping mall ! Dru knew many of the important things to be aware of—she had worked on raising our University’s awareness on women’s issue by participating in the clothesline project. Yet even she became a victim of abduction, assault and murder. It’s so sad.
In the post I also addressed the widespread problems of stalking, domestic violence and problems that plague the worldwide community of women-- genital mutilation, dowry death, bride burning, and sex trafficking.
However, I have had one poster who has been asking me rather relentlessly to address the fact that men, more than women, are victims of violent crime in the United States. I have been searching tirelessly for sites that are accountable, “dot-gov's” if you will, and have asked this man to be patient. He has been a little too giddy at “proving me wrong” so I think I better clarify my position.
First of all, in my post, I never said that men were exempt from violent crime.
Stats from 2003 show that 16,503 people were murdered in the United States, 78% were men, 22% were women. However, in my extended research I found that “Males were most often slain by males (88 percent in single victim/single offender situations). This same data shows, however, that 9 out of 10 female victims were murdered by males.”
More 2003 stats: 21% of murder victims were killed by their spouse or intimate partner. 79% of those victims were women.
Now, it doesn’t mean that the rate of male homicide is not serious or a sad reflection of our violent society. But the information I found pointed to gang violence, drug violence, or robbery not to abuse because of gender or intimate partner relations—this is the violence women suffer.
This does not mean I hate men. I have heard on many different occasions that men who rape often accumulate several victims. So the men who are doing this victimization are not necessarily a representation of the male population. Of course, not all men beat their wives. I would never claim that.
Pointing out crime against women and its seriousness does not mean I ignore that men are also victims. Men also seek treatment for sexual assault, molestation, and domestic violence. (In 2001, 9 percent of victims of rape/sexual assault were male!) These men need just as much advocay as women.
The commenter who originally challenged me said, "men are the real second class citizens." I would disagree. Women are victimized by the very people who are supposed to care for them-- boyfriends, husbands, AND they also must fear the men next to them in parking lots. Men do not live in this fear, whereas women are constantly aware of their vulnerability. If a woman attends a college party and drinks too much, blacks out and then is assaulted... She is accused of being “irresponsible” or “asking for it.” Yet, men who are robbed and assaulted aren’t accused of “asking for it” when walking alone with money.
The commenter also ignored how much racial and religious minorities, not to mention gays and lesbians are disproportionately targets of crime.
Of reported hate crimes, 50 percent were motivated by race, 18 percent by religion, 17 percent by sexual orientation, 14 percent by ethnicity, and 0.4 percent by disability. In 2003, almost half of all murder victims (48%) were African-American.
Funny, you didn’t point that out. But you did attempt to discredit my concern for violence against women.For more info: http://www.ncvc.org/ncvc/Main.aspx
Again I will point to the problems facing women world wide. See my post about the danger women in El Salvador face
And also pay attention to what is happening in women’s health worldwide! Women in Sierra Leone and Afghanistan suffer death in childbirth at a rate of one woman in six! (See my post on motherhood)
Or what’s going on in Iran according to this site:
Iran's police force is gearing up to crack down on women who show too much of their bodies in public, reported the Herald Sun, an Australian newspaper, on April 20.
"In our campaign, we will confront women showing their bare legs in short pants," said Tehran's police chief, Morteza Talai. "We are also going to combat women wearing skimpy head-scarves, short and form-fitting coats, and the ones walking pets in parks and streets," he added. Women who do not wear the veil can face prison sentences of up to two months. Since the election of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, conservatives in Tehran's city council have pressured the police to get tough. Every woman in Iran, regardless of nationality or religion, must obey the dress code and cover her shape and hair outside the home. Fifty patrol cars will cruise Tehran enforcing the rules this summer.”
These crimes against women need to be addressed, and a feminist blog about ending violence is the perfect place for it. I never claimed that only women were victims. I stand for raising awareness about the serious problems that plague women. In trying so desperately to "prove me wrong" you completely missed the point.