cpf_banner_small.gif (2059 bytes)
The
Fatherhood

Coalition

MC_Hammers_big.gif (5167 bytes)

... Domestic Violence Lies and the Lying Liars Who Tell Them

Part 4  Domestic violence distortions conceal culture of male hatred

Mark Charalambous, Nov. 1, 2004

Published:
Domestic violence distortions conceal culture of male hatred Mens News Daily Nov. 11, 2004
Domestic violence distortions conceal culture of male hatred Massachusetts News Nov. 12, 2004

 

Part 1   Domestic violence lies and the lying liars who tell them, Nov. 9, 2003

Part 2   Harvard researcher hides study data behind university lawyers, June 28, 2004

Part 3   The lying liars, Feb. 16, 2004


October is Domestic Violence Month, and once again the PR campaign has ramped up to convince women that the only thing more dangerous than being on a date is being home with their husbands. 

Radio stations are currently broadcasting a public service announcement from SAFE, a national battered women’s organization, reminding us that “domestic violence is the leading cause of injury for women in the United States.”

Once again the truth squad has to answer the bell with the real facts. Far from being the leading cause of injury to women, domestic violence accounts for somewhat less than 2 percent of all women’s injuries. Data on injury rates of women is freely available from the CDC’s National Electronic Injury Surveillance System (NEISS) which tracks a representative sample of hospitals nationwide.

A 1997 Dept. of Justice report, “Violence-Related Injuries Treated in Hospital Emergency Departments” based on 1994 NEISS data, reports that 1.4 million people were treated “for injuries from confirmed or suspected interpersonal violence.” It states in the first paragraph: “These patients represented about 1.5% of all visits to hospital EDs and 3.6% of the injury-related ED visits in 1994.”


NEISS data from 2000, also on the internet, shows women’s injuries from all types of violence amounts to 4.9 percent of the total. The leading cause of injury is falling down (28%), followed by vehicle accidents (18.1%).

NEISS data from 2000, also on the internet, shows women’s injuries from all types of violence amounts to 4.9 percent of the total. The leading cause of injury is falling down (28%), followed by vehicle accidents (18.1%).

The claim that domestic violence is the leading cause of injury is exaggerated by an order of magnitude, that is, by a factor of at least 10.

What cause is served by exaggerating the true incidences of domestic violence against women? Is the truth not horrendous enough – that perhaps 2 percent of all injuries to women are due to assaults from people they know?

And this “error”—if that’s all it is—has a flip side. Just as the Red Sox never-before-in-history-of-baseball comeback from a 0-3 game deficit in the ALCS assures their place in the history of baseball, it simultaneously condemns the Yankees as the greatest chokers in the history of the game. Implicit in this domestic violence lie is a devastating indictment of men. Each of these grossly exaggerated number of women’s domestic violence injuries must be mated with a male batterer.

Though this may be one of the more flagrant examples of statistic abuse by the domestic violence community, it is not some aberration. The domestic violence experts use every trick in the statistical book to cook up their alarming “facts.”

Let’s call this “error” what it is: thinly disguised hate speech against men.

While Congress dances around legislation that will criminalize speech critical of the accepted victim classes, it is funding hate speech campaigns against men.  The Violence Against Women Act, besides being facially discriminatory if not unconstitutional, is funded to the tune of billions of dollars. 

Think about it. If someone inflated claims of black-on-white violence by over 1,000 percent, do you think they would qualify for government funds to spread this “information” as a public service announcement?


The real cause of domestic violence, according to these “experts,” is that violence against women is inherent in the construct of masculinity. Men resort to violence when they lose the control over women that the “patriarchy” bestows upon them, otherwise identified in these circles as “using male privilege.”


Several years ago I attended a seminar by Denise Gosellin, a criminologist who had just authored a book on domestic violence, “Heavy Hands.” In response to a question of mine she related how she had been told that the government would not fund any study that includes male victims of female domestic violence.

Organizations like SAFE produce domestic violence “fact sheets” that usually include a list of debunked “myths” such as: “Substance abuse is a cause of domestic violence.” Those who actually work as first responders in the community know that substance abuse is indeed a major cause of domestic violence. But since this subverts the overall message of male demonization that is the true objective, it is presented as a “myth.”

The real cause of domestic violence, according to these “experts,” is that violence against women is inherent in the construct of masculinity. Men resort to violence when they lose the control over women that the “patriarchy” bestows upon them, otherwise identified in these circles as “using male privilege.”

The more one digs into this movement, the more it resembles a religion rather than a campaign for social reform and justice. It is a belief system steeped in feminist anti-male ideology, based on feelings and fear rather than sound scientific research. At the heart of the domestic violence industry is a culture of male hatred.

Ever since male-bashing became the national sport decades ago, there is no shortage of studies to quote in support of the campaign to demonize men. But the public would be shocked if they knew just how academic standards have been corrupted in the social sciences where students who eventually produce these studies are indoctrinated.

A standard introductory sociology textbook used in many colleges and universities, “Essentials of Sociology” by James Henslin, actually steers students away from doing research on women who abuse men.  The first chapter includes a section on the correct methodology for doing research. It uses spouse abuse as an example:

“Let’s use spouse abuse as our topic. The next step is to narrow the topic. Spouse abuse is too broad; we need to focus on a specific area. For example, you may want to know why men are more likely to be the abusers.”


The more one digs into this movement, the more it resembles a religion rather than a campaign for social reform and justice. It is a belief system steeped in feminist anti-male ideology, based on feelings and fear rather than sound scientific research. At the heart of the domestic violence industry is a culture of male hatred.

Ironically this falls on the same pages as a boxed feature that warns against trusting common sense and conventional wisdom when approaching research. It lists ten true/false statements and then reveals on the next page that all are false, contrary to common sense. But the author contradicts his own instructions in his spouse abuse research example:

“You must review the literature to find out what is already known about the problem. You don’t want to waste your time rediscovering what is already known.”

According to Dr. Heslin, the assumption that men are far more likely to abuse their female partners than vice-versa is a commonsense notion that needn’t be questioned – furthermore, it would be a waste of time to do new research to confirm a result that “is already known.”

When social science serves the cause of ideology, this is just the kind of nonsense we can expect.

The corruption of the behavioral sciences in feminist-driven areas of study such as domestic violence and “gender” studies is uniformly appalling. Students across the educational landscape are not being educated as much as indoctrinated into a distorted feminist worldview. Perhaps schools should consider placing their behavioral science departments into some kind of academic receivership under trusteeship of their mathematics departments.

It’s instructive to reflect on the fallout of Steve Basile’s attempt to do research on domestic violence.

In 1997, when Basile undertook to analyze in a scientific and comprehensive manner the issuing of domestic abuse protection restraining orders (aka 209A’s), the reaction of the domestic violence “experts” in the community was to pass a law restricting access to the data Basile used. In contrast to most domestic violence studies, Basile’s research was scientifically sound. He didn’t self-select a sample to predetermine the results as is typically done with advocacy research, but examined all domestic abuse prevention orders issued by Gardner District Court for one year, 1997. The first phase of the study was published in the Journal of Family Violence earlier this year; the second phase of the study, which focuses on court response, is pending publication.

During the data gathering phase the domestic violence community (specifically Jane Doe, Inc.) got wind of his research and in record time legislation was passed amending the Public Records Law, Massachusetts’s version of the Freedom of Information Act. Attorney General Tom Reilly, state senator Therese Murray and then-Senator Cheryl Jacques submitted and lobbied for legislation restricting access to 209A documents. So much for legislative gridlock – if you’re on the “right” side of the issue; in this case the side of ensuring that actual data on domestic violence never fall into the hands of anyone who doesn’t follow the party line.

More recently Basile attempted to gain access to the data behind a junk-science study, “Child Custody Determinations in Cases Involving Intimate Partner Violence: A Human Rights Analysis,” authored by Dr. Jay Silverman, an assistant professor in the Department of Society, Human Development, and Health at Harvard University.

The data for Silverman’s study is based on a 2002 Wellesley College study: ‘Battered Mothers Speak Out’. It purported to show that battered women are being abused by the state's family courts by awarding custody of their children to their “batterer” husbands, thus endangering the children of these parents.

In typical junk-science fashion, the research made absolutely no attempt at objectivity. To achieve the desired results the researchers engineered an appropriate population sample and solicited “expert” testimony from the plethora of feminist, anti-male practitioners employed in family law and domestic relations. Inclusion in the population required that a participant be 1) female, and 2) angry at the outcome of her case. Once a candidate was found, so-called “snowball sampling” was used to find other potential participants. That is, a disgruntled female litigant recommended other disgruntled mothers to the researchers.

Basile’s request for the data was met with a series of rebuffs after he approached in turn the Harvard School of Health, Silverman himself, and finally Harvard President Lawrence Summers.  His efforts were eventually squelched when he received a terse, threatening letter from Diane E. Lopez, of the Office of the General Counsel for Harvard.   

The media is also complicit in promoting these vicious stereotypes. They never employ journalistic standards when reporting on these studies, fail to report on contrary research, and generally display an unquenchable thirst for any “news” that confirms the reprehensible behavior of men toward women.

Consider the following

There’s a word that is appropriate to describe such a confluence of interests promoting lies as truth: Conspiracy. And if the issue were anything but the politically loaded third rail subject of domestic violence, that’s how it would be recognized, and maybe eventually, exposed.

# # #

The author is a Leominster, MA resident. He is the Spokesman for CPF/The Fatherhood Coalition and an instructor in the Massachusetts state college system.


cpf_home.gif (3511 bytes)