Something You Should Know…

Special thanks to Sarchasm

17.6 % of women in the United States have survived a completed or attempted rape. Of these, 21.6% were younger than age 12 when they were first raped, and 32.4% were between the ages of 12 and 17. 64% of women who reported being raped, physically assaulted, and/or stalked since age 18 were victimized by a current or former husband, cohabiting partner, boyfriend, or date.

Only about half of domestic violence incidents are reported to police.

African-American women are more likely than others to report their victimization to police.

The FBI estimates that only 37% of all rapes are reported to the police. U.S. Justice Department statistics are even lower, with only 26% of all rapes or attempted rapes being reported to law enforcement officials.

The National College Women Sexual Victimization Study estimated that between 1 in 4 and 1 in 5 college women experience completed or attempted rape during their college years. Men perpetrate the majority of violent acts against women.

Every 90 seconds, somewhere in America, someone is sexually assaulted.

According to the 2000 National Crime Victimization Survey, 62% of rape and sexual assault victims knew the perpetrator. Sexual violence is associated with a host of short- and long-term problems, including physical injury and illness, psychological symptoms, economic costs, and death.

About half of all rape victims are in the lowest third of income distribution; half are in the upper two-thirds.

Domestic violence occurs in approximately 25-33% of same-sex relationships.

Boys who witness their fathers’ violence are 10 times more likely to engage in spouse abuse in later adulthood than boys from non-violent homes.

An estimated 50,000 women and children are trafficked into the United States annually for sexual exploitation or forced labor.

Somewhere in America a woman is battered, usually by her intimate partner, every 15 seconds.

A University of Pennsylvania research study found that domestic violence is the leading cause of injury to low-income, inner-city Philadelphia women between the ages of 15 to 44 – more common than automobile accidents, mugging and rapes combined.

At least 60 million girls who would otherwise be expected to be alive are “missing” from various populations, mostly in Asia, as a result of sex-selective abortions, infanticide or neglect.

Globally, at least one in three women and girls had been beaten or sexually abused in her lifetime.

In a recent survey by the Kenyan Women Rights Awareness Program, 70% of the men and women interviewed said they knew neighbors who beat their wives. Nearly 60% said women were to blame for the beatings. Just 51% said the men should be punished. 4 million women and girls are trafficked annually. An estimated one million children, mostly girls, enter the sex trade each year.

In Bangladesh, 47 % of adult women report physical assault by a male partner (UNFPA)

In a study of 475 people in prostitution from five countries (South Africa, Thailand, Turkey, USA, and Zambia): 62% reported having been raped in prostitution. 73% reported having experienced physical assault in prostitution. 92% stated that they wanted to escape prostitution immediately.

So-called “honour killings” take thelives of thousands of young women every year, mainly in North Africa, Western Asia and parts of South Asia. In 1999, more than 1000 women in Pakistan were victims of honour crimes.

More than 90 million African women and girls are victims of female circumcision or other forms of genital mutilation. (Heise: 1994)

In Uganda HIV infection is 6 times higher among young girls than boys with the difference in rates beginning as early as 9 years old and reaching a peak for the age-12-19 years old. This is due to old men seeking young girls for sexual exploitation with the belief that they are free from HIV.

In Canada, 62% of women murdered in 1987 died at hands of an intimate male partner.

In Zimbabwe, domestic violence accounts for more than 60% of murder cases that go through the high court in Harare.

A study in Zaria, Nigeria found that 16 percent of hospital patients treated for sexually transmitted infections were under 5.


21 Responses to “Something You Should Know…”

  1. 1 Saur♥Kraut
    February 13, 2006 at 2:32 pm

    Let me add, however, that sometimes these statistics are skewed by well-meaning ‘estimates’.

    This doesn’t diminish the horror of rape, though. And many women don’t report rape either because they can’t take the trauma and publicity of a trial, or because they are afraid of their attackers.

    Until the court system does more than slap a rapist on the hand, there will be little that can be done.

  2. 2 BarbaraFromCalifornia
    February 13, 2006 at 2:54 pm

    I appreciate you posting these statistics.

    To be fair, I have seen men being victims of d.v. as well,in my line of work, although such cases are not reported as frequently.

  3. 3 United We Lay
    February 13, 2006 at 6:46 pm

    All statistics are skewed, still, numbers are overwhelming. Men are abused as well, and we diefinitely shouldn’t forget that. It’s just that we are physically weaker, still do not have the same rights as men in a lot of places, and have been subjugated for so long.

  4. 4 Jessica
    February 13, 2006 at 11:44 pm

    I have too many friends (a male included) who have been victims of rape. So now what? Aside from doing my best to overprotect my daughter, what can I do?

  5. 5 Laura
    February 14, 2006 at 12:42 am

    Oh sure, statistics can always be massaged the way you want them. And yes, men are victims of domestic violence as well. It happens in all kinds of homes, and should not be tolerated in any form.

    There are also many forms of gender violence. Rape is the most egregious in terms of physical and emotional damage, but emotional abuse and physical abuse are far to prevelent.

    Jessica: If you want to help, I’m sure there’s a victims advocates group in your area, or a women’s shelter if you have time to donate. Most shelters will accept clothing, food, housewares, and of course, money. Talk to people about the issue. Part of the reason it’s tolerated is because it’s often pushed under the rug as “inappropriate” conversation.

    Thanks United for posting this.

  6. 6 daveawayfromhome
    February 14, 2006 at 2:00 am

    Shit. Now I’m feeling gender guilt (and even more gender disgust). I’m also feeling like I need to get my daughters into some sort of martial arts classes ASAP, because I dont want them included in these numbers.

  7. 7 Saur♥Kraut
    February 14, 2006 at 1:57 pm

    Happy L-Day, Polanco!

  8. 8 Notsocranky Yankee
    February 14, 2006 at 7:23 pm

    What about the current teenage attitude towards sex? Have you heard of “friends with benefits”? I’m sure this exists many places, but I learned the term in Atlanta. Teenagers don’t think sex is a big deal. What message does that send to boys when they are already struggling to deal with their raging hormones? Young girls don’t seem to have much self-respect either. It seems to blur the line even further when considering the issue of consent.

  9. 9 Kathleen
    February 15, 2006 at 12:22 am

    Notsocranky has some good food for thought. This issue is deeper than we think at first glance.

  10. 10 United We Lay
    February 15, 2006 at 7:12 pm

    You can join women’s organizations as well at amnesty international to help improve the situation overall. Write letters to local, state, and government officials demanding harsher sentences for those who rape. You can be a proponent of women’s rights in your workplace.

    Girls should ALWAYS be able to defend themselves, and should know to stay out of certian situations, like badly lit parking lots. Be careful getting into a car that has a van on either side. Don’t EVER walk alone, even iin broad daylight. Most abdutions and rapes happen at twilight or dawn.

    Attitudes about sex aside, the argument that “she wanted it” should NEVER be used. No means no. Any man who doesn’t understand that should have his balls chopped of. (not literally) Self respect has NOTHING to do with rape. Do we ask a victim of attempted murder if he wanted it? Crime happens because of lack of self respect and respect on the part of the ATTACKER, not the victim, and it’s attitudes like yours, Kathleen and Notsocranky, that allow rapes to continue to happen without harsh punishments.

  11. 11 Kathleen
    February 15, 2006 at 9:36 pm

    I can only say that I hope you have a male child so you can gain some much needed perspective.

  12. 12 AQ
    February 16, 2006 at 1:34 am

    Funny you should say that, Kathleen. I agree with your earlier comments, but my perspective has changed as I raise 2 boys (and 2 girls). My teenage boy is routinely and overtly propositioned online by his female classmates and has even received semi-nude self-taken snapshots from at least one of them.

    My mantra is – only the girls have “choices” once you have sex. You, as a boy, only have the “choice” to have sex or not (and “protect yourself”. The girls have the choice to abort/adopt out/make you pay for the next 18+ years. The girl has the choice to say she didn’t consent, to claim she said “no” just before penetration, and to drag you to court to “prove” otherwise.

    The girls in our local high schools are sexual predators – I’ve seen their blogs.

  13. 13 Kathleen
    February 16, 2006 at 4:43 am

    Always Questioning: Solutions to serious problems are never easy, in fact, impossible if we don’t make an honest effort to see the issue without prejudice. Notsocranky made some very important (correct) observations regarding this problem and they should not be dismissed just because they do not fall within the PC (politically correct)framework on the subject. I am as concerned (perhaps more) as anyone about this problem as it effects women here and world-wide. Likewise, I am very worried about the perilous situations our sons and grandsons may find themselves in based on mixed signals and the accepted promiscuity of juveniles. We, as women, have a duty to voice our concerns and seek lasting solutions no matter whose tree we shake. IMHO

  14. 14 Daniel Hoffmann-Gill
    February 16, 2006 at 11:01 am

    UWL: Everyday I read your blog and everyday I approach it with some sense of trepedation.

    Not because of your content but by a selection of people whose sole purpose it is to rail against whatever you say with the conflict usually turning spiteful and personal when all you’ve done is present your thoughts.

    I find it interesting that I can tell when we’ve ‘won’ a debate or the issue will not be contested by the low number of comments and I can also tell when the conflict is in full swing by the volume of nasty comments.

    I don’t know how you tolerate anon persons stopping by to vent their spleens at you, or the fact that you may say the most basic truth (the thread on Mrs King has really shocked me) and the voice of the right still barks out its orders.

    Well done for tolerating the voices of dissent on your blog and allowing space for their (sometimes) nasty views. I’m not sure I could do it.

    And now we have more pictures of torture…

  15. 15 AQ
    February 16, 2006 at 11:44 am

    Please don’t misunderstand my comments to Kathleen as a dismissal of the real and serious problems and agony faced by women that you mentioned in your original post, UWL. I certainly did not mean it that way at all.

    I just wanted to support Kathleen and Notsocrankys perspective. Seems to me, the laid back attitude toward sex in our high schools does nothing to help the problems you mentioned.

  16. 16 Cranky Yankee
    February 16, 2006 at 12:32 pm

    Rape is bad. People shouldn’t rape each other.

    Those who would criticize the effort to stop worldide rape are aiding and abettting the rapists. You are either with us or you are with the rapist. And if you are with the rapist Dick Cheney will shoot you in the face…with a shotgun.

    LTFU, everyone knows there is a small percentage of reported rapes that are nothing more than regret/shame accusations on the part of the victim…Anybody remember Kobe Bryant?

  17. 17 Notsocranky Yankee
    February 16, 2006 at 1:01 pm

    I never meant my comment to be taken as the “she asked for it” defense. I have an 11 yr old daughter who is just now getting interested in boys. I’m keeping the conversation light and friendly, hoping she will talk to ME when she has questions. I was merely mentioning that attitudes towards sex among teenagers has certainly changed since I was young. Sleeping with several boys was slutty when I was in school, now it is being “friendly”? That attitude shows lack of self respect.

    The “friends with benefits” concept sends a confusing message to boys. Always Questioning brought out some enlightening points for me. My 2 boys are still very young but I relaize I will have to look out for them also. I hope my 2 sons will always show respect to women and conversely, I hope they will not be assaulted or falsely accused of assault either. Kathleen summed it up nicely in her last comment.

    The statistics cited in the post are very shocking. Locally I hope the teenage attitudes will swing back a bit. Internationally, women are making very slow progress. I hope that improves as well.

  18. 18 United We Lay
    February 16, 2006 at 2:18 pm

    Why on earth do you think my attitude would change if I had a boy? I have a brother who I would beat to death if he ever hurt a woman and used the way she dressed as a reason for raping her. Boys are sexual predators, too. I’ve seen the blogs of the boys I teach Children having sex is NEVER okay. Neither is rape. By all means, do something about it, but don’t penalize women and girls. Tell your son not to have sex with someone who’s been drinking. Tell him to get written consent if necessary, since you’re right, it is easier for women to use rape as an excuse, but if we loosen restrictions, women will suffer. Teach reponsibility.

    I understand the persepective, and I agree that BOTH sexes have a laid back attitude toward sex, though in adulthood, I don’t think that’s a bad thing. I think we need to teach kids that it’s something to be done between consenting adults. We also need to make sure they know that they don’t have to be a part of it if they don’t want to. There is A LOT of pressure out there. If you don’t want your kids to be promicuous or be around people who are, be more vigilant. If your kid is looking at blogs or myspaces that have sexual content, limit their computer use. Check theirs and make sure it’s agreeable to your standards (I’m not suggesting you don’t already). Don’t let them watch R rated movies. Pay attention to the music they listen to. For god’s sake, DON’T let your little girls emulate Brittney Spears or others like her, not matter how popular it may be or how unpopular it may make them. Doing the right thing is rarely easy and parenting takes work. My kid shouldn’t have to suffer because other parents have dropped the ball.

    I agree. I have begun to approach it the same way. Here’s the thing: it’s important to me to yhear both sides of an argument, even if I know I will never agree witht he other side. It gives me things to think about, makes me look deeper into a subject, and helps me broaden my opinion. It also helps me strengthen my argument when I have to clarify my position over and over. Arguments are not won and lost, only made.

    Notso cranky,
    Thanks for the clarification.

  19. 19 Laura
    February 16, 2006 at 10:49 pm

    I didn’t read Notso Cranky’s comment as “she asked for it” but I do agree that a girl who buys into society’s message that she is nothing more than a plaything for a boy is more likely to be coerced into things she might not otherwise do. For fear of being ostracized as “frigid” or a “prude”.

    One of the common characteristics of domestic violence victims is low self esteem. It’s absolutely not their fault that they’re abused, but someone who thinks poorly of themselves is more likely to think it’s OK for someone else to beat on them.

    It’s also proven social phenomenon that girls’ self esteem plummets around puberty.

    It’s all connected.

  20. 20 daveawayfromhome
    February 18, 2006 at 6:32 am

    This unbelievable bit of absurdity just in from Italy:

    (ANSA) – Rome, February 17 – In a ruling that shocked the nation, Italy’s highest court on Friday said raping an under-age girl who has already had sex with others is less serious than raping one who hasn’t.

    Upholding an appeal from a man convicted of raping his 14-year-old stepdaughter, the Cassation Court said the girl’s past sexual experience amounted to “extenuating circumstances” for him.

    What the hell is wrong with the world???!!!

  21. 21 United We Lay
    February 18, 2006 at 3:01 pm

    Duh… Women aren’t respected or seen as equal.

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I am not perfect. I do my best to practice what I preach, but I am human. My mantra is, "DO NO HARM". I may not always succeed, but I will always try. My goal is to be a better person today than I was yesterday.

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