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Violence Toward Men: Fact or Fiction?
posted by Scott on Wednesday April 25, @01:31PM
from the domestic-violence dept.
Domestic Violence Dr. Murray Straus e-mailed me about this report from the American Medical Association about violence against men. He wrote, "despite the title, [this report] presents a quite reasonable statement on male domestic violence victims. Since the AMA is such an authoritative source, you might want to look at it and quote from it, perhaps especially the recommendations at the end."

Source: The American Medical Assocation

Title: Violence Toward Men: Fact or Fiction?

Author: The American Medical Association

Date: Unknown (1994?)

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domestic violence (Score:1)
by Tom Campbell (campbelt@NOSPAMusa.net) on Wednesday April 25, @03:26PM EST (#1)
(User #21 Info)
As I read this interesting report I recalled the fact that although women attempt to kill themselves more often than do men, it is men who have the higher suicide rate. I suppose the same type thing could explain some of the differences here. As with suicide, female on male violence may be more gesture than male on female violence; when a woman hits it is to show frustration or anger, while when a man hits it is to injure.

Nevertheless, it seems self defeating for society to ignore the problem of female on male violence in favor of attending to the prevention of male on female violence. Domestic violence is not a simple problem with a side that is right and a side that is wrong. Although men who injure their wives may inflict physical pain that is obvious, they may themselves be the victims of psychological and emotional assaults that are less apparent, and to which they react in a typical male fashion, by striking out. Perhaps domestic violence prevention should include programs for men on how not to hurt physically, and programs for women on how not to hurt emotionally.
Re:domestic violence (Score:2)
by Marc Angelucci on Wednesday April 25, @07:21PM EST (#2)
(User #61 Info)
On the suicide issue, I would not trust that commonly-cited "fact" about attempted suicide, because men are probably less likely to report a failed suicide than women are (just as with domestic violence). Failed suicides cannot be accurately measured unless we take this into account. Another blinding factor for male suicides is that the method of choice for female suicide in surveys was overdose - highly detectable - but for males it was driving drunk and crashing their car - rarely detected as a suicide or failed suicide. It is very likely that the rate of both completed and uncompleted suicides is much higher for males than we think.

As for the domestic violence, the injury rate is deceptive as well. The studies they refer to ask whether the person "needed" to go or "did" go to a doctor. Males are less likely than females to see a doctor for the exact same injury (even though they have lower pain tolerance than women). So that is misleading to begin with. And even if it were true, that makes little difference to the children who watch the violence and are psychologically damaged. It is hypocritical of them to waste so much time tooth-combing who is "injured" more when, if the issue were about women in general, they would instead to saying NO AMOUNT OF VIOLENCE IS ACCEPTABLE.

There are studies not cited in this AMA research that show a very different story about injury and about self defense as well. It appears they did not read the analysis written by Dr. David Fontes, "Violent Touch," which can be found at http://www.safe4all.org/resources.html. This analysis not only addresses the severity of harm argument but also the misleading self defense argument, which the AMA seems to have bought without doing adequate research. There are at least two major surveys that asked specifically about context and self defense and reveal that about 90% of women who were violent did not strike in self defense, AND that men and women batter partners for very much the same reasons, having the same percentage breakdown for each motive in the studies. The most common motive was not self defense but to 'get through to them." One of these two studies even says men strike in self defense more often than women in relationships (10% for women, 15% for men). The AMA should do a little more research before buying the self defense argument the way they did.
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