Compare and contrast….
Posted on August 22, 2011
The Guardian’s Readers’ Editor Chris Elliott (no relation) has a piece up today where he attempts to ‘clarify’ the statistics on rape convictions – Open door: The fair use of facts on rape, which, from my reading of it, doesn’t really clarify anything.
Take this bit for instance about the 6.5% conviction rate figure :
“The reader said: “This is wrong on both counts. About 13% of reported rapes result in a conviction, not 6.5%, and you have in fact pointed out this mistake several times in your Corrections and clarifications column.”
Indeed that’s true says Elliott, the Guardian has corrected that figure in the past, but, he goes on to say:
“it is a little more complicated than that, as some work by my colleague Leslie Plommer nearly two years ago, which became a Guardian editorial guidance note, reveals: ” … the formulation that is correct, and should be our standard, is: ‘In England and Wales, about 13% of reported rapes end in a conviction.‘ We could elaborate: ‘That is, conviction on a range of charges from rape to lesser offences such as sexual assault and others.’ The body of evidence for the 13% is far from extensive, but … it is the finding of the most authoritative and up to date (2007) study commissioned by the Home Office on what the outcomes are for reported rapes … What about the 6.5% conviction rate we often cite: eg, Only 6.5% of reported rapes end in a conviction? Certainly we are free to use the 6.5% – but have to signal clearly that this represents a narrower body of convictions … those on the charge of rape itself.”
So basically what he’s saying is that the Guardian has in the past and will continue to ‘correct’ pieces that say that only 6.5% of reported rapes end in the rapist being convicted of rape, even though that statement is essentially true….
Moving on from all that muddle though, I doubt if anyone who reads this blog regularly will be surprised to learn that the very first comment on the thread that follows Elliott’s article focuses on how “A rape accusation will destroy lives, let alone conviction….” or that the rest of the comments pretty much flow on from that, with the predominantly male CiF commentariat leaping to the defence of men who are accused of rape and pinning all the blame for all the ills of the world on so-called ‘rape liars‘ and feminists.
Now contrast that great big steaming pile of rape apologist shite with this thread on Mumsnet – The (entirely unofficial) MN rape and sexual assault survey RESULTS. And if you can, have a read of the narrative responses to the (entirely unofficial) survey here – Narrative responses.
And then see if you can work out how to get every fucker who posts comments on t’Internet to the effect that ‘everyone knows women lie about rape and what about all those poor poor innocent men’ to read the Mumsnet piece.
Because trust me, I’ve tried, but the best I could come up with was tattooing the (entirely unofficial) MN survey onto the insides of the misogynists’ eyelids, and somehow I don’t think that’s entirely practicable. Well, not yet it’s not anyway.
The Rape Crisis National Freephone Helpline is open from 12-2.30pm & 7-9.30pm every day of the year: you can call them on 0808 802 9999
Wow, that MumsNet document has left me feeling so sad and sickened. Just the amount of ‘normal’ boys and men who think it is their right to take whatever they like from women and girls. I have a similar story to tell myself but as I didn’t see the survey I couldn’t participate. This deserves to be repeated for a much larger sample of women.
I guess this is what our society ends up like when boys are taught that their self-esteem and worth depend on being the boss of girls.
Any chance of sending this post or the Mumsnet thread to one of the CiF editors?
The Guardian should really address their “great big steaming pile of rape apologist shite” tendencies. I know it brings in “teh clicks”, but it’s entirely unacceptable.
But, but the mumsnet survey is not real research; it is annecdotal; it has not been peer reviewed; it is biased against innocent men; the respondents are all liars; need I go on? No because men do not want to know the truth which is we live in a rape culture; a culture wherein males have the right to commit sexual violence against women and girls because said violence is not violence but just ‘normal male sexual behaviour/right of male sexual access to female bodies.’ Meaning it is right for men to use force; ignore the woman’s right of ownership of her body and perhaps worst of all males believe they are the ones who are the ‘victims’ not the innumerable women and girls who have been subjected to male sexual violence.
Guardian is a tool of white left wing male supremacy and is opposed to the factual clear statement that ‘only 6.5% rapes committed by men result in male(s) being convicted.’ Or to put it another way as I do – nearly 95% of males who rape females are not charged or convicted.
Last time I checked Home Office statistics for sexual violences did not group ‘sexual offences’ under one umbrella term – instead the sexual offences were separated out according to whether or not the perpetrator(s) had been charged with rape. But male supremacist system of which Guardian is an avid follower, are past masters at twisting the truth and selling their lies back to women as truths.
One might as well make the spurious claim that manslaughter and murder are identical and hence statistically should be grouped together. Or that burglery and theft are identical and hence should be in the same group.
Question what is the Guardian afraid of? And who benefits by Guardian claiming sexual assaults include rape? No need to guess because answer is obvious – it benefits men and sends the false message that male-centric legal system is convicting vast swathes of males who commit sexual violence, including rape against women and girls. Truth is the opposite actually – few men are convicted of rape let alone sexual violence against women.
@ Jennifer: Whilst not disagreeing with any of your analysis I do want to challenge one of your conclusions which is that only men benefit from stopping use of the 6.5% statistic.
Over the past couple of years, I have had cause to speak to arounf 300 rape survivors and one of the key messages arising from this was that they hate the 6.5% statistic and wish that feminists would stop using it. It made them feel despair that anything could be done at one of the most traumatised points in their lives; it made them feel hopeless about reporting and they were angry when they found out that the 6.5% statistic didn’t tell the whole story.
That feedback has caused me to seriously question who benefits from us (feminists) insisting on its continued use.