Everyday Victim Blaming

challenging institutional disbelief around domestic & sexual violence and abuse

Rape and domestic violence brushed aside with eight easy words

Police and media report that “crime falls“ in London while reports of
rape increase by 31% and domestic violence rises

Of course, lowered crime statistics are worth reporting. But what is very disconcerting is when rape has statistically increased by almost a third, domestic violence statistics are also rising, and not only is that not the headline, but this fact is not even considered worthy of mention in the news – such as in this BBC article. Then we have this other BBC
article, in which the staggering increase in reported rapes and increased domestic violence is confidently brushed aside by the police and journalists with eight easy words: “victims now feel more confident in reporting incidents.”

Excuse me, but how do we know that this is the case? We see reports about the UK standing out as a blatantly sexist country. We see reports about girls not even thinking of reporting sexual assault and harassment because it’s simply seen as normal. We see reports of police officers degrading a victim of domestic violence they were supposed to
help, calling her “slag” and “bitch”. We see reports of rape victims disbelieved, and blamed, and grilled in court, and of rapists getting away without punishment again and again, or getting a slap on the wrist at best  – and these are not isolated incidents that always cause big waves, they are everywhere and most are not in the public eye. I personally don’t see much reason to be more confident about reporting rape or domestic male violence in the UK than a few years ago – do the police or the BBC have any actual data that somehow shows ‘confidence levels’ in the female population? I can’t imagine it inspires women in the UK to feel very confident when they see the police and media celebrate a drop in crime while in fact crimes against women are on the rise and it’s simply
swept under the rug.

Even if we assume that a certain part of the 31% increase in reported rapes is indeed due to this ‘confidence’, a 20% or a 10% rise in the actual number of rapes would still show a very serious increase in male violence against women that should be investigated, reported on and combated. I don’t know by how much reports of domestic violence have increased, because this is apparently not newsworthy. The BBC writes, “Violence with injury is up on last year 852 more offences – an increase of 1.5%. This has been attributed to domestic violence offences rather than street violence.” With the decreased stats we are given for robberies, youth violence and offences involving weapons, I would assume that street violence has decreased quite a bit, which could mean that a larger portion of the cases of violence with injury is attributable to domestic violence than it
would seem. We don’t know, because nobody is telling us.

Observers of this entire situation would be forgiven for getting the impression that, in fact, nobody cares about victims of violence when they’re female. We are far from being a priority -- if crime stats are any indicator, mobile phones are considered more worthy of protection. When I look at the drop in robberies and burglaries and theft, while violent crimes and hate crimes have actually risen, it seems to me that this is a victory for those who are worried about their property, not those of us who are in physical danger just by existing in a world dominated by violent men who hate us.

While this means mostly women, it isn't only women. Take another look at the statistics the BBC gives us: racist and religious hate crime has increased by 3.1% and homophobic offences have increased by 5.6%. We don’t know how many of the victims of these hate crimes were female, but we can safely assume that the majority of perpetrators will have been male and certainly some of the victims female. It should also be noted that homophobia would not exist without misogyny and sexism and if homophobia is on the rise, then it also reflects misogyny rising. And here’s the thing: I can’t find any statistics about hate crimes against females. Why is that? Because they aren’t treating that as a thing that can be recorded ¬– while we live in a world so saturated with woman-hatred that we can’t walk down the street or make our way to work without being shouted at, insulted, intimidated, assaulted. This lack of attention that is given to the crimes men commit against women because they are women signals that this violent oppression we live in is just a normal state of existence for women. Not noteworthy. Business as usual.

Being raped, assaulted, abused or murdered isn't business as usual to the victims, though. These are violent, life-altering and life-destroying events and they affect a huge portion of the population. Women demand that sexual and hate crimes against us are recorded and reported on as the serious violations of our human rights that they are, not as some afterthought that is barely worthy of the hand movement that brushes it aside. Worse yet, we’re supposed to celebrate a decrease in crime when evidence points to women and other oppressed groups being victimized more and more. What this treatment from the Met and the media signals is that rape and other male violence against women and girls is not really seen as violence, not really taken seriously - and that's just more of the same old that allows rape to skyrocket while discouraging victims from reporting.

All this is very much in line with the way the media writes about the crimes of rape and sexual assault as "sex allegations" or "sex scandals" or "sex parties" or whatever else they can think of. Male violence against females is a terrifying pandemic, and the authorities trivialize and ignore these crimes against half of the human population they are meant to serve.

Enough!

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3 thoughts on “Rape and domestic violence brushed aside with eight easy words

  • Hecuba says:

    I too didn’t believe the hype being proclaimed by malestream media concerning supposed reduction in crime. Reason is because as author of this article explains the crimes being counted are those perpetrated against men and their property.

    Male violence against women and girls living in the UK has not decreased but the men who proclaim ‘crime is down’ are the ones determined to erase womens’ and girls’ lived experiences of living in a women hating culture wherein male hatred/male contempt for women continues not to be a crime!

    Promotion/condoning pandemic male hatred of females continues not to be a ‘hate crime’ because men are not the ones being subjected to pandemic male hatred/male contempt because their sex is male. Only if and when males are subjected to hatred such as because they are homosexual or non-white do men believe the issue is real and important.

    But pandemic male violence especially male sexual violence against women and girls is non-existent according to the BBC news report because men are not the ones overwhelmingly being subjected to male sexual harassment and/or male sexual violence.

  • […] Rape and domestic violence brushed aside with eight easy words […]

  • Janice Dunlop says:

    Excellent article. Thank you for your important voice. I am enraged anew, every day by men’s violence against women.