This article contains commentary which reflects the author's opinion
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Contrary to years of alarming reports by the media focused only on domestic violence by men, women actually commit more domestic violence incidents than men. But the UN ran a global campaign this winter titled, “Orange the World: End Violence Against Women Now!” The description of the drive made frequent references to “violence against women and girls,” but did not include any mention of “violence against men and boys.”
Multiple studies of domestic violence have found that slightly more men than women report being a victim of domestic violence within the past year, 19.8% to 18.8%. Last year, the Coalition to End Domestic Violence issued a report entitled “Thirty-Years of Domestic Violence Half-Truths, Falsehoods and Lies,” which revealed massive amounts of bias in this area.
All Roads Lead to Joe
Much of the perception that domestic violence is mainly perpetuated by men against women developed in the 1990s, when then-Sen. Joe Biden drafted the “Violence Against Women Act.” Despite all the taxpayer money thrown at the program, there is little or no evidence that VAWA-funded programs have succeeded in reducing rates of domestic violence.
And according to commentator Christina Villegas, protecting persons from partner abuse “has never been the primary intention of VAWA.” Instead, the domestic violence campaign has been a “political movement that seeks to change social norms and redistribute resources, power, and control to women, with the long-term aim of a genderless, socialist society.”
Another stereotype that persists also began in the 1990s: “More women are victims of domestic violence on Super Bowl Sunday than on any other day of the year.” Even the left-wing Snopes fact-checking site labeled that false. Snopes explained, “The claim that Super Bowl Sunday is ‘the biggest day of the year for violence against women’ is a case study of how easily an idea congruous with what people want to believe can be implanted in the public consciousness and anointed as ‘fact’ even when there is little or no supporting evidence behind it.”
Longtime leading feminist Gloria Steinem once declared, “The most dangerous situation for a woman is … a husband or lover in the isolation of their home.” This is false. According to the Centers for Disease Control, the leading causes of injury deaths for women are falls, followed by poisonings, and then traffic accidents.
Leftist Legal System
The left-wing dominated legal system is responsible for much of the misinformation. The website of the DOJ Office of Violence Against Women was found to contain massive misinformation. It was so bad that all of the inaccurate fact sheets were removed by 2021.
However, some false data remains on another DOJ website, the Office for Victims of Crime, in a document entitled “Facts About Domestic Violence.” Based on on findings from the National Crime Victimization Survey, it incorrectly relates the same inaccurately compiled, tired old statistics.
The International Association of Chiefs of Police mostly ignores the fact that domestic violence is perpetrated against men too. The National District Attorneys Association is almost as bad. National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges issued a pamphlet entitled “Bringing the Greenbook to Life: A Resource Guide for Communities,” which contains the words “battered mothers” and “battered women” 27 times, but not a single instance of “battered fathers” or “battered men.”
The American Bar Association issued a two-page flyer, “10 Myths about Custody and Domestic Violence and How to Counter Them.” The Coalition to End Domestic Violence found, “Overall, the great majority of assertions and conclusions in the CODV flyer were found to be unsupported, misleading, or wrong.” Not surprisingly, the ABA took the paper down; but not before it was posted on the Leadership Council on Child Abuse and Interpersonal Violence website.
Perhaps the reason this myth is perpetuated is because of the outdated perception that women are helpless to defend themselves from men. Times have changed. Women can call 911, own guns, learn martial arts to defend themselves, and use the deterrent threat of shaming on social media and through the regular media. Of course, there are exceptions to all of that wherein a woman may be unable to utilize any of those — but there are also situations where a man may be unable to defend himself from a woman, such as situations where she is stronger or has a weapon and he doesn’t.
Bias Against Men
The bias is a problem because it promotes harmful stereotypes of men. Instead of being the protectors of women, they are viewed as abusers and predators. It makes women unnecessarily scared to have relationships with men, and puts men on eggshells dating women. It also makes men less likely to contact law enforcement for help with domestic violence — which then perpetuates the myth that they aren’t victims — a vicious cycle. The numbers of men who contact services for help are drastically smaller than women — as much as 99 to 1 – in areas such as legal assistance, sexual assault services, and transitional living services.
Contrary to a popular stereotype, black men are more likely than black women to be victims of domestic violence. Mandatory domestic violence arrest policies likely result in disproportionate arrest rates among black men.
Women are also more likely than men to be involved in abuse of their children. They commit 53% of child abuse incidents, and mothers are responsible for 71% of child homicides committed by a parent.
Unfortunately, researchers who attempt to refute the misleading claims are targeted by activists. The late Professor Suzanne Steinmetz published a book showing that men and women commit domestic violence at approximately equal rates. For this, a letter writing campaign was launched to deny her promotion and tenure at the University of Delaware, and her daughter’s wedding received a bomb threat.
Finally, during the COVID-19 epidemic there were wild claims that being stuck at home has increased domestic violence. But four different studies found this was not true.
What Can We Do?
What is it going to take to stop this hurtful stereotype from being perpetuated? People daring to speak up and say “enough,” especially leaders and men who have been hurt.