Thursday, February 26, 2009

Bad women: Trafficking

This is the first post with the label "Bad Women". This is not about demonizing women, but to counter the common stereotypte that women are good, while men are bad. This stereotype is often the reason that when you read news articles about female genital mutilation it is often not mentioned that this is a crime done to women by women and of course men that get "circumcised" under the same conditions than women achieve no attention, but I am extravagating now. When we talk about trafficking the exact same things happen.

I recently posted an article on AM I am dublicating right now:

A new report by the UNO about human trafficking. And well surprise, surprise among the criminals we find a huge amount of women:

UNODC Report on Human Trafficking Exposes Modern Form of Slavery

A Global Report on Trafficking in Persons launched today by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) provides new information on a crime that shames us all.

Based on data gathered from 155 countries, it offers the first global assessment of the scope of human trafficking and what is being done to fight it. It includes: an overview of trafficking patterns; legal steps taken in response; and country-specific information on reported cases of trafficking in persons, victims, and prosecutions.

At the launch of the Report in New York, the Executive Director of UNODC, Antonio Maria Costa said that "many governments are still in denial. There is even neglect when it comes to either reporting on, or prosecuting cases of human trafficking". He pointed to the fact that while the number of convictions for human trafficking is increasing, two out of every five countries covered by the UNODC Report had not recorded a single conviction.

According to the Report, the most common form of human trafficking (79%) is sexual exploitation. The victims of sexual exploitation are predominantly women and girls. Surprisingly, in 30% of the countries which provided information on the gender of traffickers, women make up the largest proportion of traffickers. In some parts of the world, women trafficking women is the norm.

The second most common form of human trafficking is forced labour (18%), although this may be a misrepresentation because forced labour is less frequently detected and reported than trafficking for sexual exploitation.
Global Report on Trafficking in Persons

The Report is here

Now we see a huge chunk of the perpetrators seem to be women (leading criminals in 30% of the countries). People could come to the conclusion that 70% of the criminals are indeed men. I suspected sth differen, quoting me again:

For example, do you believe there is more human trafficking in Germany (21% women) or in Georgia (86% women)?

I suspect if you count the numbers of all people Trafficking and do a gendered statistic there will be more than 30% women.
Very smart Feck....Now there is proof for that:

Most traffickers are women - UN 25/02/2009 14:20 - (SA)

Pretoria - Up to 75% of all perpetrators of human trafficking are women, according to a study released in Pretoria on Wednesday.

Apart from being offenders themselves, over 70% of women were victims of trafficking, noted the Global Report on Trafficking in Persons, by the UN Office of Drugs and Crime (UNODC).

The study was conducted in 155 countries, between 2007 and 2008.

"Between 65% and 75% of offenders are women," said UNODC regional representative Jonathan Lucas.

More women convicted for trafficking

In countries that participated in the study, 30% more women than men were convicted for trafficking.

"Women play an important role, more than men and boys," said Lucas.


Main form of exploitation

Sexual exploitation was found to be the main form of exploitation in southern Africa and the rest of the world. This was closely followed by forced labour, said Kruger. - from here

Isn´t this incredible? Women trafficking women. There is more on this topic and let me recite the bits I already posted:

The second most common form of human trafficking is forced labour (18%), although this may be a misrepresentation because forced labour is less frequently detected and reported than trafficking for sexual exploitation

Sexual exploitation was found to be the main form of exploitation in southern Africa and the rest of the world. This was closely followed by forced labour
This is another point that often is forgotten when we talk about trafficking. Male victims are often overseen although a lot of men are forced to work as slaves or to be child soldiers.

The fight against human trafficking has for more than a decade tried to protect women and children, often forgetting that men, too, are victims of "new slavery".

Thailand remains one of the region's busiest human-trafficking centres.

The National Human Rights Commission has looked into the stories of some of these forgotten victims - male migrant workers not recognised as casualties of the trade.

The commission reports that between July 17 and July 19 of 2003, six fishing trawlers with about 100 crew sailed from Tha Chalom in Samut Sakhon province to fish Indonesian territorial waters. Most of the crew were migrant workers and four were younger than 16. None were allowed home leave for three years. The trawlers returned to Thailand in July last year.

Thirty-eight never returned, dying on the job. Two were buried on one of Indonesia's myriad islands and the rest unceremoniously dumped at sea. One more crewmember died shortly upon his return.

Others returned home seriously ill - emaciated, emotionally disturbed and unable to see, hear or walk properly.

A Samut Sakhon Hospital medical report diagnosed the men with serious vitamin deficiencies. They had suffered months without proper food or water, eating only fish.

None have been paid. Yet, they are not considered by law to be victims of human trafficking.

When they demanded compensation their "employers" claimed the men were unknown and said crew employment was the responsibility of trawler skippers. The boat owners refuse to pay until the men can prove they were aboard.

Complicating the issue is the registration of the men under Thai names. They are all Burmese, Mon and Karen migrant workers.

They discovered the labour law in this country does not cover fishermen working outside Thai territory for more than a year.

But, a new memorandum of understanding on Common Guidelines for Concerned Agencies Engaged in Human Trafficking and the Prevention and Suppression of Human Trafficking Bill are rays of hope. Men are covered by both documents.

The memorandum was signed last week and broadens the scope of a similar 2003 document. That included "children and women" only in its target groups.

Concerned agencies in 17 northern provinces signed it and it has now expanded to cover men.

The memorandum will bring Thailand and its Social Development and Human Security Ministry up to world standards of protection.

Thailand is regarded as a "country of origin, transit and destination" for trafficking victims.

The government announced in 2004 that combating the trade was a priority. It provided national mechanisms, Bt500 million in funding and operational centres to fight trafficking.

But, as its name suggests, the 1997 Prevention and Suppression of Women and Children Trafficking Act does not help men.

Trafficking goes beyond the sex industry and child labour and many cases involve men, Sub-Committee on Coordination for Combating Trafficking in Children and Women chairperson Saisuree Chutikul said.


Raman was forced to work as a brick-maker to pay off a debt incurred years before by his grandfather. For years, he was paid three rupees (two cents) for a bag of bricks. If he didn't work hard enough and long enough, he was beaten with a stick.

Michael, 15, was kidnapped to serve as a combatant in the Ugandan Lord's Resistance Army. During that that time, he was forced to kill another boy, and on another occasion was forced to watch as a boy was hacked to death.

Over the last 10 years, globalization has triggered an unprecedented demand for unskilled and low-skilled laborers. Employers from countries with booming economies in Europe, Asia, and the Near East scour the globe in search of willing bodies to work in construction, manufacturing, agriculture, and domestic work.

Because working conditions are often grim, employers often tap the most vulnerable segments of the population. In some cases, women and girls are caught up in prostitution rings.

In its worst form, a desperate parent sells a child into modern-day slavery. Like young Nayla of Azerbeijan, ransomed by her mother to traffickers, who was then shipped to Dubai to work as a club prostitute. No one knows the extent to which human trafficking exists around the world, but many believe able-bodied males represent the most vulnerable group. A recent United Nations report, Trafficking in Persons: Global Patterns, noted, "it is men especially who might be expected to be trafficked for forced labor purposes."

A report issued last month by the U.S. State Department notes that in several parts of the world, boys are forced into pick-pocketing gangs. In West African countries, men posing as Moslem scholars lure young boys away from their parents with the promise of teaching them the Koran. Once removed from the custody of their parents, the boys are turned into common street beggers. In the Middle East, 2,000 young boys from Bangladesh have been taken away from their families to become camel jockeys in the Persian Gulf states. These boys are highly sought-after because they are the lightest possible riders for races. And when civil conflicts flare up in Africa and Latin America, boys as young as 12 years old find themselves pressed into military combat.

There are those who would have us believe that the misfortunes of women are somehow more compelling, and therefore they are more deserving of human rights protections.
That became apparent in 2000 when the United Nations passed its Protocol to Prevent, Suppress, and Punish Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children. What about men?

That bias is also found in the legislation of many countries. According to the Trafficking in Persons report, "In many countries, the laws relevant to human trafficking are restricted in their application solely to women. . . In addition, many service providers limit their support and protection only to female and child victims. Thus, exploitation through forced labor is often quite unlikely to come to the attention of those dealing with victims."
Once human trafficking is defined as a crime that only affects women, statistics become meaningless. U.S. authorities have stated that up to two million women and children are trafficked each year across international borders.

But a 2002 report from the Washington, DC-based Migration Policy Institute exposed the flaw behind that claim: These "numbers are widely regarded as very conservative because they do not including trafficking within countries, nor do they take into account the trafficking of men." Gender bias persists to this day.

Recently Janice Shaw Crouse wrote an article for National Review titled "No Tolerance for Human Trafficking." Despite its high-minded invocation of the human rights issue, Crouse's article does not devote a single word to the male victims of human trafficking.

Crouse's crusade is to curb prostitution, a human vice that is demeaning to women and men alike. But in the process, she tries to smear the entire military establishment: "It's a given that prostitution coexists with military bases and installations. Where there are military forces, you'll find brothels."

Mrs. Crouse makes no mention of the laborers with calloused hands and broken hearts whose passports are removed by their employers and told to work ever harder. No comment about the men who are ordered to never report the abuses being perpetrated against them. Nothing of the millions of Ramans and Michaels around the world who are forced into lives of destitution and involuntary servitude.

It is high irony that some segments of a movement that purports to advance human rights would deem half the world's population as less worthy of attention and concern. That stance, morally repugnant and intellectually indefensible, undermines the very notion of human rights for all. - from here
Other sources show us that there is indeed a lot of forced work:
A new report, from organisation for migration research IOM, exposing that within trafficking
75 % is about slavery work in other areas than the sex industry.


EASTERN EUROPE – Research Shows Significant Figures on Human Trafficking

An IOM research carried out partly to devise estimates on the numbers of trafficked people in five Eastern European countries claims that an estimated 225,000 people have fallen victims to the crime.

The IOM research, carried out in Belarus, Bulgaria, Moldova, Romania and Ukraine through surveys among the general public in cooperation with the GfK, a leading research group for Eastern Europe, is an attempt to tackle one of the most difficult issues around human trafficking – how to gauge the extent of the crime. Figures on human trafficking within Europe are widely cited as an estimated 200,000 out of a global estimate of at least one million people.

However, the mean estimate of just over 225,000 people in these five countries alone was reached after asking respondents questions that included whether they knew anyone in their immediate family who had ever been trafficked for various forms of exploitation using a methodology validated by the University of Nebraska in the USA.

Ukraine, the country with the largest population out of the five, had the largest number of estimated victims – about 117,000 people. It, along with Moldova and Belarus also had the highest rates of trafficking prevalence. Estimated trafficking figures for the remaining countries are: Moldova (57,000), Romania (28,000), Belarus (14,000) and Bulgaria (9,500).


The report highlighted the need for stronger protection of labour migration as research showed high levels of trafficking for labour exploitation in sectors such as agriculture, construction and domestic servitude, rather than for sexual exploitation. This would be especially needed in Bulgaria and Belarus where the growth potential for labour migration were the highest of any of the five countries. - from here
This is a pattern that is common. Male victims as well as female perpetrator are overseen and violence or crimes against women are apparently more important than crimes against men. So much for equality...

Monday, February 23, 2009

Men vs Women - Strength

This was found by AM´s Otis the Sweaty and was just too good, to not blog about it (Kudos to you Otis). It is so out of this world and sureal, I am wondering if the gals at feministing really were taking the subject seriously. That is why I gave it the "bizarre" label.

I´ll start with what most humans know. Men are on average stronger than women. This has something to do with testosterone, but I´ll let Wikipedia do the talking.
Testosterone effects can be classified as virilizing and anabolic, although the distinction is somewhat artificial, as many of the effects can be considered both.
  • Anabolic effects include growth of muscle mass and strength, increased bone density and strength, and stimulation of linear growth and bone maturation. - from Wiki
  • On average, men have a greater capacity for cardiovascular endurance. This is due to the enlargement of the lungs of boys during puberty, characterized by a more prominent chest.
  • On average, men are stronger than women. This is due to a greater capacity for muscular hypertrophy as a result of men's higher levels of testosterone. - from Wiki
Not if anyone with common sense needs evidence. We just have to think about Olympia and we know why sexes are separated in competitions. So that women are able to win medals, too (this is true for most sports).

Speaking of Olympia, comparing the weight lifting records really makes this obvious.

The strongest woman in the highest weight class can barely beat the strongest man in the second-lowest weight class. The rest of the female world record holders can´t compete. The difference between the highest total weigth is almost 150 kilos.

Testosterone is used for doping purposes as well:

Testosterone may be administered to an athlete in order to improve performance, and is considered to be a form of doping in most sports. There are several application methods for testosterone, including intramuscular injections, transdermal gels and patches, and implantable pellets.

Anabolic steroids (including testosterone) have also been taken to enhance muscle development, strength, or endurance. They do so directly by increasing the muscles' protein synthesis. As a result, muscle fibers become larger and repair faster than the average person's. - from Wiki

And if you cut off the supply of testosterone, your muscle mass will decrease. That is why the IOC is accepting transsexuals

Transsexuals were cleared Monday to compete in the Olympics for the first time.


Some members had been concerned whether male-to-female transsexuals would have physical advantages competing against women.

Men have higher levels of testosterone and greater muscle-to-fat ratio and heart and lung capacity. However, doctors say, testosterone levels and muscle mass drop after hormone therapy and sex-change surgery.


"In some sports, the physical superiority of men over women is very significant." - from here

and why castration leads to a decrease in muscle mass. This is the explanation on something we all know. Men are stronger...

Now we enter the surreal world of feministing:

All from here:

In truth, this assertion of women being as strong as men is correct. There are many statistics that will show women to often be physically weaker than men, but I have yet to hear of any significant portion of society to even consider any reason for that statistic other than that women having a biological disadvantage. That is not the reason for those statistics. Anyone who cares to think about the process of evolution can immediately see that a biological disadvantage is evolutionarily impossible. Every biologist knows that, in nature, most of any given individual creature's competition for food, shelter, etc. comes from members of its own species. Men and women, in nature, without technology or civilization, eat the same food, live in the same type of shelters, and are in competition for everything that might be in limited supply. As little as ten thousand years ago, there was no such thing as law, culture, or civilization. Every individual cared for themselves, first and foremost, just as it is with nearly all other animals. If one person were stronger than another, the weaker would starve to death as soon as there is any shortage of food, or be killed as soon as they irritate the stronger person. If one group of people were stronger than another, such as men being stronger than women, then the weaker group would be wiped out, except for any individuals that were strong enough to fight off members of the stronger group. Their children would then all be that strong. The fact that women survived in that time period is proof that they have the same physical abilities. within a single species, evolution forces equality.
Translation: But it does not make sense that women are weaker so women are not. Brilliant logic, that is called sexual dimorphism. Another shot:
In all the history of feminism, I am unaware of any unbiased experiment being done to actually determine whether women are weaker or not. The scientific community has as many sexists as any other, and male scientists benefit from patriarchy as much as any other males. This is not to say that there is anything wrong with male scientists in general, but I would be shocked if there weren't those among them working to make women look weak using biased or altogether fake science just as has been done with racism, and other aspects of sexism. There was a time when it had been "scientifically proven" by all German scientists that German people were superior to all others. Most of us find that rediculous. Some day the idea that women are weaker will be just as rediculous to us as that.
Male scientist lie. Yeah that is it. It goes on:

Men, on average, are stronger than women simply because men on average are larger than women. They simply tend to be taller and women have more body fat (its healthier for us to have more body fat... its for all that childbearing stuff). It is these factors that make men seem stronger, the fact that they are bigger and therefore just have more pound for pound muscle and that women have different levels and spreads of body fat to deal with.
Tall equals strong? So basketball players would make great weightlifters? It is all because we tell women that they are weaker:

I many cases girls are trained from birth by their parents to think that women are weaker. [...] If a person truly believes that they are physically weak, they will limit the amount of strength they will be able to acquire and use. Girls are also often less supported in sports and other muscle building activities, giving them little incentive to be strong. As if that weren't enough, men are pushed by society to do all heavy lifting and other muscle building activities for women around them, meaning that women don't ever have an opportunity to build real muscle. If men were subjected to that same oppression, i firmly believe that they would be no stronger that the average woman.
Brilliant. It is opression after all. But this one finally takes the cake:
Furhtermore, even with thier slightly smaller size, a woman who can put the sexist teachings out of her mind can become as strong as any man.
Any man? All because of sexism? Yeah that must be true....

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Cluster of Cells

Abortion again with an interesting pro-choice opinion:

WASHINGTON, September 11, 2008 ( - In an article focusing on newly appointed vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin, prominent feminist Camille Paglia admits that, much like Gov. Palin, she also believes abortion involves the murder of an innocent life - but unlike Palin, Paglia says she is a "firm supporter" of abortion.

Paglia's piece, which appears on, is the latest indication that "utilitarian" philosophies that no longer recognize the "right to life" as being the most foundational human right are gaining ground in some liberal circles. Under these philosophies even murder can be advocated as long as it protects what is deemed to be an even more important "right" - in Paglia's case the sacrosanct "right to abortion."


"Let's take the issue of abortion rights, of which I am a firm supporter. As an atheist and libertarian, I believe that government must stay completely out of the sphere of personal choice. Every individual has an absolute right to control his or her body," said Paglia, voicing the commonest argument put forward by feminist supporters of abortion.

Unlike her fellow pro-abortion colleagues, however, Paglia continued on to - as she termed it - "face the ethical consequences" of embracing abortion. "I have always frankly admitted that abortion is murder, the extermination of the powerless by the powerful," she said.


The author criticizes those on the social left who parrot the scientifically untenable position that the fetus is just a "lump of tissue", saying that those who do so are simply afraid to face the consequences of their pro-abortion position.

"Liberals for the most part have shrunk from facing the ethical consequences of their embrace of abortion, which results in the annihilation of concrete individuals and not just clumps of insensate tissue," explained Paglia.


Paglia also criticized some on the social left for their logical inconsistency in condoning the killing of the innocent, but not of the guilty. "I have never understood the standard Democratic combo of support for abortion and yet opposition to the death penalty. Surely it is the guilty rather than the innocent who deserve execution?" she said. - from here

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Divorce makes women poorer and men wealthier - Add on

This is a follow up on this post.

I found the following on Glenn Sacks blog where Dr. Ned Holstein made some other points I missed before. Read it all here. In short (and partly copy and pasted):

- In a divorce it is not all about money. How can you put a value on the de facto loss of children suffered by most divorcing husbands?

- The study is old. It was published in 1997 based on data from 1991-1994. At that time, according to the study authors, few divorced husbands made payments to their ex-wives.

- It assumed that non-custodial parents have no child-related expenses of their own, whereas such expenses are actually quite substantial (housing is the main cost of raising children — almost 40% — and it costs as much to house a child for 6 days per month as it does to house the child for 24 days per month).

- Poorer men dropped out of follow-up, leaving the post-divorce sample of men weighted towards those who were wealthier and thus made it look as if almost all men do well financially after divorce.

- Housing was not part of that study as most of the time the husband has to take an apartment while the wife still lives in the house.


It is very clear who does better after divorce — and it is not the husbands. It is also clear who does worse — the children, who in study after study express sorrow that they do not have more time with their fathers.

But there is more Sacks also mentions an older incarnation of the same myth a study by feminist Lenore Weitzman published in her book "The Divorce Revolution":

Weitzman concluded that women's standard of living after divorce dropped by three quarters while men's rose over 40%. The media trumpeted her research--some have called it one of the most widely reported studies in media history--and it led to sharp increases in child support guidelines. However, years later Weitzman was forced to admit that her findings were vastly overstated, due to a huge mathematical error.
The next part about a researcher with the oposite findings is interesting as well:
Sanford Braver, Ph.D., one of the nation's leading experts on the economics of divorce, helped uncover and expose the Weitzman hoax. His research demonstrates that when all relevant factors are taken into account, including the numerous tax advantages custodial parents enjoy, the "men gain/women lose" idea is badly in error. In fact, his new research indicates that the opposite outcome may be more common. To learn more about Braver's research, read a transcript of an interview with him on ABC's 20/20 here.
I read that inteverview and here are the interesting parts:

Braver [...] conducted a study of 400 divorces in one part of Arizona, the biggest federally-funded study ever done on divorced dads. What he found was very different from conventional wisdom. [...] Our results show that men and women come out almost exactly equally.
It goes on...

Another widespread belief is that most divorced fathers selfishly refuse to pay their child support. [...] The census gave us this tape to illustrate how they get their information. Every couple of years the census sends workers out to people’s homes to ask, is child support being paid? [...] Amazingly, the government bases all its data on child support on questions asked of just one of the parents. They’re asking the parent who has custody. [...] And 90 percent of the time that’s the mother. [...] Everything we knew about non-custodial fathers, it turns out we knew from custodial mothers. [...] When Braver in his study asked both parents, he found much higher levels of child support paid, on average a 70 percent compliance rate.
And more

Another myth is that many divorced dads never bother to see their children. The media calls them runaway dads. But Braver says the overwhelming majority of recently divorced dads do see their kids or try to. And when they don’t, he says, there’s often a good reason. [...] We found that a surprising number of fathers were impeded in their efforts. The mother just simply said, ‘No, you can’t see your kid.’ [...] Family court Judge Herbert Glickman says the system is not biased against dads. But the law is clear in just about every state that the obligation to pay child support is unrelated to the right to have visitation with the children. [...] So from census data that’s questionable, from an influential book that was just wrong, we have the image of the terrible dad, which reinforces a system that Braver says drives fathers away. We are depriving children of a second parent. We’re hurting the people who deserve the most help: the children.
Interesting interesting. And so much shorter than my article. Ah well I think finally we can forget about that myth.

Monday, February 9, 2009

At least 90 percent of domestic violence victims are women - PART 2 - Victims

Back again. Fighting the "At least 90 percent of domestic violence victims are women" myth means deconstructing stereotypes. Last week I talked about violent women, this weeks topic is male victims. While virtually unseen male vicitms of DV have a lot of similarities (not confident enough to leave, think it is their fault, are ashamed) with female victims and some important differences. I will show you some anecdotal evidence and talk about it in detail.


Men in England and Wales aged between 20 and 25 are more likely to be victims of domestic violence than women in the same age group. Campaigners claim not enough is being done by the police, social services and the government to tackle the problem. Read one victim's story.

Mark from Buckinghamshire, not his real name, was a victim of abuse for nearly a decade.


"I've been stabbed with scissors in my thumb and my wrist. I've had a marble chopping board smashed over my head which needed 12 stitches," he said.
"She would put cigarettes out on me. She'd send the kids into the back garden to play and then she'd corner me in the front room and just attack me.

"She'd be scratching my face, kicking, punching, spitting in my face. That was a regular thing." Mark says the physical abuse wasn't that hard to deal with, but the psychological manipulation was the worst part because he had no control over it.

"Some nights maybe she'd go out and go missing, turn her phone off, and then come back and say she'd been with another man. All that was going on."

Mark has been asked lots of times why he didn't walk away from the relationship but says it's not that easy to get out of an abusive relationship.

"You know that you've got to leave but you have to go through a whole process to get to the point where you've actually got the strength to walk out that door. "Also when there are children involved, how difficult is it to walk out of the house with your kids there? It's impossible."


He says leaving his kids was the hardest part of the process and why he waited so long to leave his abusive partner.

"I'd packed a little rucksack secretly the night before. I'd phoned a friend the day before and said to him, 'Could he wait at the bottom of the road in his van?'

"She often used to lock the doors and the windows of the house so I couldn't get out. She was worried about me leaving.

"She eventually fell asleep and I grabbed my rucksack and ran down the road with my heart pounding, jumped into my friend's van.

"We drove along the seafront at half two in the morning. I threw my keys and my phone in the sea. That was my way of saying to myself, 'OK. I'm starting a new life'.

"To be honest I wish I'd done it years before. But I stuck at it for the sake of the kids."

"I don't think I'll ever recover. I know I won't recover from what I went through. I've just learnt now how to live with it.

"But I'll carry the scars for the rest of my life."- from here

Before I start, the release of the study mentioned above lead the bbc to have a "have your say" feature on their site. It is online since Monday (09.02.09) and in this few days arround 150 people (most of them come from abused males, telling their stories) have added their comments. Read it here.

Now back to Mark. What we can see here is one of the main difference between male and female DV victims. Women often do not leave their abusive partner because they are financial dependent on their partners, men on the other hand often do not leave because they fear loosing their children. The situation is worse if we talk about an unmarried couple, as the husband has absolutely no right to see his children (but of course every obligation to pay for them). And while it is right, that women lack the physical strength of men we see that they can still inflict damage as female batteres are more likely to use weapons.

Kevin Kinsella

When her anger turned to a rage she could neither understand nor control, Linda Kinsella became physically violent and had an easy target in her husband, Kevin, whom she could control by tipping over his wheelchair.

She says she's embarrassed by her past behaviour, which locked Kevin into her private hell for four years, but can no longer stand back and watch society shape itself into a belief system in which only men abuse their partners.

"If women are able to do all the good things that men can do in professions like medicine and law and in all other fields, then why is it that we, as a society, deny that women can do the bad too? It is my fondest hope that someday there will be true equality in our society and that domestic violence will be seen not as a gender issue but as a societal one that will end when we work together to stop it."


"I love this guy," she says, gently slapping his chest. "I think back over those four years and I wonder why he's still here. Well, I know why. He couldn't get away. Tipping his wheelchair was like taking a hammer to another man's knees."


She believes the current war against violence against women is distorted and dangerous.

"I remember thinking when I was in a rage that I had full control. In the back of my mind there was always the thought of the telephone. All I had to do was dial those three digits (911) and claim I was the one abused, and I would win. If it was in my mind, I'm sure it's in others' too."

One night I did it. I had hurt Kevin physically and he had had enough and he wanted out. When he tried to get to the door I tipped his chair. Then I made the call. It was pure anger. I'll show you who's in charge. While I waited I calmed down and realized what I had done. I didn't want to lose him. I want this marriage to work. That's why we got married the way we did."

When police arrived they told Kevin he was under arrest. I told them to look at the evidence. I was the one who committed assault. They said they were sorry, but it was policy. The man goes to jail. By pointing out how difficult that was going to be for a man in a wheelchair, they decided to leave him at home. But it stuck with me. An officer told him he was under arrest because of a policy and it had nothing to do with evidence. That's just plain wrong."


That night of the 911 call was the turning point.

"Every time it happened, that I lost control, I swore that would be the last time. I knew it wasn't Kevin I was angry at, but he took the brunt of it. The abuse was verbal and physical. I said terrible things, ugly things. But after that night I knew I needed outside help and I went looking for it."

She couldn't find any. Now she had a whole belief system to be angry at.

"I went to a therapist who listened to my confession about my physical abuse of my husband, and she responded with an observation: she said he must be doing things to deserve that kind of treatment. I went looking for women's groups that might offer some kind of self-help for anger problems. If there are any I still can't find them."

Eventually she found help through a therapist who ignored Kevin and helped her find the source of the anger.


Men have no place to turn when a situation like ours happens. We have no resources to help men in these situations. Kevin had no place to go, either to live or to get help." - from here

Of course not every man is physicly stronger than his wife, the most shocking yet common thing is the reaction of the police. Although he was clearly the victim the police would still have arrested him. Worse, even the therapist couldn´t help Linda with her anger problem and keeps blaming the victim. This is reality for most battered men. There is no supporting network (not even for the female batterer) and even officials don´t recognize female batterers or male victims.

Jerry Miranda

Jerry Miranda is part of a largely hidden group in domestic violence - the male victim. "It's really embarrassing," he says. "I don't want people at work to know I have these kinds of problems."

"She would give everybody the impression she was this kindhearted down-to-earth person. Everybody would enjoy her parties," he recalls. "But then she would come home, the door would close, and her personality would change."

Hassania Miranda had a fierce temper fueled by drinking, he says. She would not only abuse Jerry, but their two sons Alex and Joe. "I have memories of my mother stabbing my brother, going after my brother with a knife," says Alex.

Jerry Miranda was afraid that if he left his wife he would lose custody of his sons. And, he says, his military status kept him taking his children and fleeing the relationship: "That's called desertion."

Jerry Miranda finally found the strength to sever ties with his wife. But on May 4, 1999, four months after he had filed for divorce, his wife broke into his house. He came home to find it ransacked. There were bullets all over the house. When police finally picked up Hassania Miranda, they found a fully loaded semi-automatic handgun in her pocket.

She was arrested and taken to jail but just six hours later she had posted bail and was out again. From jail she went to the Air Force Academy, where Jerry Miranda works, and attacked him with a knife.

"Then the knife comes down very hard, it gets me once in the back," he recalled. "And it kind of...luckily it hit the bone."


Hassania is currently considering a plea bargain. If she pleads guilty to lesser charges, she could serve as little as 120 days in jail.

Jerry Miranda is still constantly on guard - fearing another attack from his estranged wife. "When I leave the house, I take the gun with me," he says. "If I go in the yard I take the gun. If I go to the mall I take the gun."

He says he will never feel safe from Hassania Miranda: "It'll never be over, never. This will never be over." - from here

Another good example, highlighting weapon usage and the typical slap on the wrist by officials. 120 days for attempted murder? This is insane.

Dean Lai-how

So what's a guy to do?

Dean Lai-how did everything by the book when his ex-wife began harassing and haranguing him. It wasn't enough to stop her fatal attraction.

In January, Dean looked out the window of his apartment near Seattle. To his shock, his ex-wife was just standing in the parking lot, looking up.

In March, his ex-wife showed up at the Target department store in Lynnwood, where Dean worked. She approached with a plastic container of kerosene while smoking a cigarette. She told Dean she had "something he would cherish the rest of his life," according to prosecutors.

The next day the ex appeared at his apartment complex at 3 in the morning. When Dean arrived, she followed him to his unit and threw a lighted Christmas ornament filled with kerosene as he rushed to shut his door, police say. The ornament didn't ignite, but detectives later found kerosene on the door and walls.

There was the time the ex-wife allegedly told Dean she was so angry with him she felt like running him over with a car. On another occasion she falsely accused him of molesting her children. Letters accusing Dean of pedophilia mysteriously turned up in neighbors' mailboxes. Police do not believe the accusations were legitimate but do suspect Dean's ex-spouse had something to do with the letters.

Yet another time, prosecutors say, the ex-wife told Dean that she could easily buy a gun and use it.

Dean decided enough was enough. He applied for a protection order. A hearing was set for May 19 to decide whether to make permanent a temporary protection order that Dean had gotten in March. The day before the hearing, the 34-year-old was slain by his ex-wife, police say.


[W]omen can be violent. Their violence can be escalating, predatory and lethal.

That is the case with Dean, who represents the less visible face of domestic abuse.

Reading through police reports and court papers, it becomes apparent that Dean's ex-wife, Rebecca Lynn Lai-how, was ticking, waiting to detonate.

The couple separated three years ago. They divorced a year ago.

Ironically, the justice system came to appreciate Rebecca's potential for danger only after Dean was dead and Rebecca had turned herself in to police.

"The defendant's escalating violence in this case as well as her apparent mental health and substance abuse issues render her a poor candidate for pretrial release," writes Mary Barbosa, a senior deputy prosecutor for King County.

Rebecca, it turns out, was building to her crescendo in a case mirroring so many in our region in recent years in which men have killed wives or girlfriends.

But here is one big difference: Dean's killing for some reason failed to make front-page news or stir up the public outcry that predictably reverberates when men kill estranged female partners. Is it because the victim was a man?

Dean lived in mortal fear. The protection order he sought against his ex-wife was never served because Rebecca could not be located. Dean was waiting to move away after Rebecca was served with the order. "He felt that way his new address would not be in the (order) request and Rebecca would not know where he was living," court documents say.

In April, Rebecca got her hands on a Ruger .357 revolver. A sales receipt shows the gun was bought at a Portland-area gun shop. On May 18, around 10:30 in the morning, authorities got a 911 call from a Renton apartment.

Dean was on the line: Help me! I've been shot! By my ex-wife!

Dean had been walking a dog when a woman jogged up with something black in her right hand, according to one witness. A bang sounded. A neighbor heard Dean scream: "Ouch!" The neighbor saw the mystery woman chase Dean as he scrambled toward the stairs of his apartment and dashed inside.

Police and medics had to force open Dean's locked door. They found him dying on the floor of the dining room. Medics couldn't save him. The bullet had entered his right shoulder and ravaged his lungs, lodging in the aorta.

At the police station after the shooting, Rebecca said the gun and bullets were in the trunk of her blue Mitsubishi, parked right outside. She locked eyes with a detective. "No one was supposed to get hurt like this," said Rebecca, 41, who has been charged with first-degree murder.

Her words are what so many batterers tend to say. They say it after they harm the ones they love. - from here

One of the extreme cases that are luckily rare, but happen. And as long as female on male DV is not taken serious we are denying victims proper care and justice.

More from

Battered men

A Seattle therapist who convicted of assault and required to pay a $500 fine, perform 100 hours of community service and have absolutely no contact with the woman says:

I was dumbfounded from the very start of the incident," the man says. "I was getting struck by this woman while I was holding my daughter and I was the one who called the police.

In Kelso, a man had been out drinking and came home to fall asleep on the couch. His wife took an iron skillet and beat him. He was taken to the emergency room of the hospital and stitched up. He was taken there by police, but no charges were filed against his wife.
My wife—in one of her drunken rages—took our daughter’s baseball bat and used it to smash the locked door to my study, where I was trying desperately to meet a deadline. And since I’m over 6 feet tall and muscular, I wouldn’t get much sympathy posing as a “battered man!”: I had thought of calling the police that night. When I recalled this incident to my divorce lawyer some time later, his response was: “It’s a good thing you didn’t, because the police probably would have arrested you.”
We've tried to find help for him but all of the shelters just answer in silence. It's a shame how he was treated by the police and that there are no shelters or groups to help men, they need it every bit as much as women. It's time to stop offering help to someone just because they are a women. Abuse is abuse, it does matter how the abuser is or how the abused is.
I have been verbally and psychologically battered and abused, I've been threatened with bodily harm, I've been threatened to be shot right between the eyes, I've been kicked in the groin, I've had to watch while my ex sexually molested my daughter and not dare interfere for fear of retaliation. Then 1 day she called 911 so fast and had me arrested, my head was literally spinning with disbelief. When trying to tell the officer that I was provoked and that she was hurting my daughter and that I was protecting my daughter, he told me that I had better keep quiet, I'd charge you with a felony if I could, he said. .. So now what do i do?
Wife became very angry and she attacked me with a set of Porsche Keys - maybe three inches long. she stabbed me thirteen times. As I was trying to leave, she took our daughter and tried to throw her down the steps
Although she had been physically aggressive in the past, she turned downright violent toward me. It started by hitting me with the phone, throwing objects at me, kicking and clawing. She drew blood a number of times. Under advice from my attorney, I was warned that even taking a defensive position could be seen as an act of violence toward her. The ONLY physical action I took toward her was to restrain her from hitting or biting or kicking me. She was an expert at falling down and screaming -- "see kids, look at what your dad is doing to me."
Why did I take it? I had a daughter that was small that was also screamed at and hit,and scared by stories of the bugger man getting her.I finally had to leave or get killed.
My wife of almost 9 years was a woman of an incredibly short temper and possessed the ability to swing from mood to mood faster than you could shake a stick at. Over the years, she had thrown things at me, including knives, slapped me, punched me, and shoved me on numerous occasions. I had always felt a sympathy towards her because of the fact that she had no one in her life that truly seemed to care for her. I was going to be her protector.
I still don't understand why I stayed in that relationship as long as I did. I quess it was because she was such a great girl in every other way and I hoped she would change. I'm never going to go back into that kind of insanity again.
Funny, at the time I told myself I deserved it.
I was abused too many times and decided to end the relationship many times but I was unable to do so. Because she followed my each and every move and I was reluctant to file stalking charges against her because I did not want to hurt her feelings. The abuse intensified, she did not hesitate to hit me ... She also clawed me numerous time and even cut me with a knife. I was again failed to report the incidents to the authority. Many times she had threatened me that if I bring any charges against her, she would not hesitate to bring false charges against me - from
If you follow the link you will find a collection and even more cases. Again we have to take female battering serious, as serious as we take male battering. The victims are real, the injuries are real and the suffering is real. We have to keep gender out of it, every victim has the right to be recognized and to get help. This gender neutral helpline is a step in the right direction.

That´s it for now. In the next part I will talk about how our society accepts violence against men.

End of Part 2 -> Part 3

Friday, February 6, 2009

At least 90 percent of domestic violence victims are women - PART 1 - LDV

I am a bit frustrated with that post. I planned to do a huge article about domestic violence, but found myself going nowhere. Getting lost in the amount of information I collected. So, to have something to post I am hacking that article into more little pieces, making them easier to read and having more motivation to finish a subchapter, sadly giving up the idea on my DV-uber-post. Keep in mind that I save anything DV-study-like for the last post(s) so don´t think I am missing something here, be patient wait for the next chapter. Here it comes folks - Part 1:

"[A]t least 90 percent of domestic violence victims are women."
- Christina Bates, the social change community organizer for Sunrise of Pasco, a local domestic violence and sexual assault center in Dade City

The common opinion about domestic violence (DV). Beating husbands, battered wifes. Nurturing angels abused by brutes. The patriarchy brutalising helpless women. If you believe that is true, that 9 out of 10 DV vicitms are women, please also consider the following:

Lesbian DV

If almost all DV perpetrators are male, female-female relationship must be violence free. What do statistics tell us?

About 17-45% of lesbians report having been the victim of a least one act of physical violence perpetrated by a lesbian partner.

Sexual abuse by a woman partner has been reported by up to 50% of lesbians.

Psychological abuse has been reported as occurring at least one time by 24% to 90% of lesbians.

The research usually has been done with mostly white, middle-class lesbians who are sufficiently open about their sexual orientation to have met researchers seeking participants in the lesbian community. Subsequently, these findings may not apply to women who are less open, less educated, or of other ethnic backgrounds.


Burke, Leslie K., & Follingstad, Diane R. (1999). Violence in lesbian and gay relationships: theory, prevalence, and correlational factors. Clinical Psychology Review, 19 (5), 487-512.

Lie, Gwat-Yong, & Gentlewarrier, Sabrina. (1991). Intimate violence in lesbian relationships: Discussion of survey findings and practice implications. Journal of Social Service Research, 15 (1/2), 41-59.

Lie, Gwat-Yong, Schilit, Rebecca, Bush, Judy, Montagne, Marilyn, & Reyes, Lynn. Lesbians in currently aggressive relationships: How frequently do they report aggressive past relationships? Violence and Victims, 6, (2), 121-135.

Scherzer, Teresa. (1998). Domestic violence in lesbian relationships: Findings of the lesbian relationships research project. Journal of Lesbian Studies, 2 (1), 29-47.

Waldner-Haugrud, Lisa K., & Vaden Gratch, Linda. (1997). Sexual coercion in gay/lesbian relationships: Descriptives and gender differences. Violence and Victims, 12 (1), 87-98.

Waldner-Haugrud, Lisa K., Vaden Gratch, Linda, & Magruder, Brian. (1997). Victimization and perpetration rates of violence in gay and lesbian relationships: Gender issues explored. Violence and Victims, 12 (2), 173-184.

West, Carolyn M. (1998). Leaving a second closet: Outing partner violence in same-sex couples. In Jana L. Jasinski & Linda M. Williams (Eds.), Partner violence: A comprehensive review of 20 years of research (pp. 163-183). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.

This is strange. Although the stereotype tells us women must be less violent and less agressive, lesbian relationships are far from being without violence. The reality seems to be quite different.

Professor Lori B. Gishick, a professor of sociology and women's studies at Warren Wilson College in North Carolina, has worked for about 10 years in battered women's organizations and has run a support group specifically for abused lesbians. The "myth that women are not violent," is persistent and contributes to a denial of woman-to-woman sexual violence, not only among the general population but also among lesbians, says Girhick. " We want to believe that our relationships are safe, that we have equality, and that we have ideal communities. But it's not true." The estimated incidence of domestic abuse in gay and lesbian relationships is one out of three. Girshick says a large number of her respondents, as children and adults, had also been sexually abused , and that the memories of these previous traumas often complicated their reaction to being assaulted by women.

According to Grishick, many of these women read books about woman-to-woman sexual violence; they went into therapy; they volunteered at rape crisis centers. For people who are part of a small lesbian community, the social implications of speaking out against their abuser can be terrifying. Girshick reports that some women did become ostracized when they told others. " I've heard stories of individuals who say ' My friends turned against me and protected her.'" There are only a handful of groups for women battered by other women in the country. Source: R. Morgan Griffin, " Breaking the Silence: Sociologist Studies Woman-to-Woman Sexual Violence,"; May 10, 2000.

Another study of 113 lesbians reported that 41% said they had been abused in one or more relationships. Source: Ristock, J., "And Justice for All?...The Social Context of Legal Responses to Abuse in Lesbian relationships," (1994) 7 Canadian Journal of Women and the Law 420.

Even the myth that the batterer in lesbian relationships is the butch (in "femme" and "butch" relationships) has been debunked. No matter what "role", the likeliness to be a batterer or to be battered was the same. So what does that mean? Agression and violence has nothing to do with sex or sexual orientation. A study on aggression:

Behavior Caused by Situation, Not Sex


In fact, women have the same capacity for aggression and violence as men. If this sounds "wrong," that's because women's aggression it is not often public. Women often feel compelled to mask their aggressive behavior, especially when they know they are being watched.

Two major meta-analyses of over 206 published research studies found that men were somewhat more aggressive. However, the sex differences were not large and were inconsistent across the studies. Overall, sex differences in aggression depend on a host of factors: the situation, the perceived conse

quences of the aggression and the extent to which the aggression is public versus private.

What happens, however, when these cultural prohibitions are "turned off?" Especially, what happens to females when they think nobody's watching?

One particularly well-designed study of over 200 college students produced very strong and significant findings. The study, which was conducted by two Princeton psychologists, sheds some light on this question. In it, college students--male and female--were asked to play a computer game with an unknown partner in which the object was to bomb the "enemy" and to be bombed in return.

Which sex was more bloodthirsty? The answer depended less on gender than on whether the players were being watched. When the investigators could identify the players, women dropped significantly fewer bombs than the men.

But when the women thought they were anonymous, they bombed their opponents back to the Stone Age, in military lingo. They were significantly more aggressive than were the male students. However, when they were asked after the experiment to say how aggressive they had been, the women claimed to have been far less aggressive than the men, even though the opposite was the case. Scrutiny was a much better predictor of aggression than was gender.

Men and women are individuals and we can't make blanket statements about either sex.


It's only when we realize that men and women have the same capacities that we can look reality in the face. Women don't civilize men, nor do they humanize the military. To see women as always personifying the better angels of our nature is to wear blinders. Women are human beings, subject to our baser--as well as our better--instincts.

Dr. Rosalind Chait Barnett of Brandeis and Caryl Rivers of Boston University are the authors of "Same Difference: How Gender Myths Are Hurting Our relationships, Our Children and Our Jobs" (Basic Books). - From here

This is a good quote "men and women have the same capacities" and the above shows us that there are violent women as well. Back to our topic how can women hurt men? Don´t they lack the physical strength? More about male victims of DV in Part 2. If you are interested in more information about sexual violence among lesbians, you might want to check out this documentation:

End of Part 1 -> Part 2