Don’t ask me why, but I was trying to look up a cissexist jerk’s comments on trans* folks in anti-DV shelters that I was sure had been in a pharyngula discussion. While looking those up, I ran across an old comment of mine about how feminism reduced women’s killings of men.
It’s been said in a number of contexts, of course. I’m far from the first to observe that increasing access to shelters and other anti-DV resources has saved the lives of men. (In fact it seems to have saved more men’s lives than women’s lives.) But still, I think outside of certain feminist circles, it’s a fact that gets too little attention. So after running across this old bit of analysis, I thought I’d subject you all to it anew. Here’s the text (although there’s also follow-up comments and more discussion in the original thread that you can read if you follow the link above):
24. Post-feminism, women kill fewer men.
From the USDOJ publication:
Cooper, Alexia, and Erica L. Smith. Homicide Trends in the United States, 1980-2008. ￼￼￼￼￼￼(Annual Rates for 2009 and 2010.). Washington DC: US DOJ, 2011. Office of Justice Programs, Bureau of Justice Statistics. Web. 9 Feb. 2015. .
The murders of men/males by intimate partners as a percentage of all murders of men/males:*
The report concluded that this constituted a trend, which can be seen in graphical data included in the report. The report did not conclude that 2008 was an aberrational year. But perhaps women have been killing more men and yet men have been killing EVEN MORE men, giving wives and girlfriends a bigger death toll yet less market share? Let’s test that hypothesis.
Supplementary to the earlier report is the census bureau report on homicide trends (that itself relies on FBI/DOJ numbers, so they are using the same underlying dataset).*
How many men were murdered in 1980 and 2008?
Is this trend or aberration? Well, the census report doesn’t make conclusions like that, but over the course of 2 decades we fell from the 1980 high to a low of just over 11,700 in 1999. After that, the numbers never go lower than 11,700 or higher than 13,433. The mean over those years is 12,629 and the median is 12,664. Even rounding to the hundreds place, there is no repeat year and thus no valid mode.
But as 12,731 is very close to both mean and mode, it’s pretty typical for that last decade or so.
So how many murders is that?
10.4%*17803 = 1851 or 1852. Or thereabouts, within the limits of the 3 significant digits given in the 10.4% figure.
4.9%*12,731 = about 624.
As a percentage of murders, the murder of men by wives or girlfriends is down about 52.88%.
However, as a total number of murders, the murder of men by wives or girlfriends is down about 66.6%
But wait, there’s more!
According to this document, the population of men in the US in 1980 was 110,053,000. In 2008 it is not broken out by gender, but the total is 304,375,000 and in 2009 the total (which was 307,007,000) was broken out to specify 151,449,000 men. Even if the 2,632,000 person increase from 2008 to 2009 was all men, it would still leave 148,883,000 men in the US in 2008.
Dividing 110,053,000 by 1851 (being generous), we get 1 intimate partner murder of a man for every 59,456 men in 1980.
Dividing 148,883,000 by 624, we get 1 intimate partner murder of a man for every 238,595 men in 2008.
59,456/238,595 = 24.919%.
Yep, that’s right, post feminism the murder rate of men by their intimate partners has fallen 75%. You men now have only 1/4th the chance of being murdered by your intimate partners that you would have had in 1980.
Now use your very, very nicest tone of voice when you say, “Thank you,” boys.
*Note that the FBI/DOJ data upon which both these reports were based excluded deaths attributable to the 9/11 terror attacks, including those persons on the hijacked planes as well as those persons killed in/near the towers and the pentagon. However, since we are examining intimate partner violence, those murders would not have been relevant to our investigations anyway.
Pierce R. Butler says
In fact it seems to have saved more men’s lives than women’s lives.
Data on femicide needed to support this counter-intuitive assertion.
Last sentence seems to need a “not”. [Nice catch. Last sentence updated – cd]
Marcus Ranum says
Post-feminism, women kill fewer men.
/me Then blames feminism for the rise of the alt-right. You should have been culling them harder!
How steady was the rate before then? I’m not saying your conclusion is wrong, but I’ve never felt comfortable reaching specific social conclusions from what appears to be only two temporal data points (unless I’ve misunderstood), not least because I know that that is exactly where push-back will begin were I to use this argument myself.