Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Rape: the only crime proven to be rampant by showing that it isn't

Here is an article typical of pieces that regularly appear in college newspapers. It was written by Jason Nguyen and Sophie Arts, and its underlying premise is that all rape reports are made by actual rape victims. The only reason very few of these rape claims result in adjudications of guilt is that pesky problem of lack of evidence. There is not even a passing consideration given to the possibility that the lack of evidence could sometimes indicate that no rape occurred--that the person reporting it was mistaken or lying.

Rape is the only crime on the books that is proven to be rampant by showing that few people report it, and that fewer still can prove it. If that makes no sense to you, then you are understanding the problem.

The people who parrot the mantras that rape is rampant and that false rape claims are a myth chalk up anyone who doesn't buy into them as either grossly misinformed or a misogynist. Professors whose careers and livelihoods depend on the purported campus rape epidemic conduct supposedly unbiased studies (typically done by getting only the accuser's side of the story, and then characterizing the results to find "rape" even when the respondents didn't think rape occurred). These studies often conclude that only a small percentage of claims are false. The persons who conduct the studies disingenuously suggest, without saying it, that the remainder of all claims must have been actual rapes when, in fact, only an equally small percentage of rape claims can be proven to be actual rapes. What they don't tell you--because it doesn't fit the preferred narrative--is that most rape claims fall into a vast, gray, middle area where no one--aside from the participants--can say exactly what happened. That's the nature of a typical rape claim. For these dishonest researchers, the default rule is that if it can't be proven to be false, it must have been an actual rape, whether or not it really was.
The politicized survey that the Department of Education cited to justify its April 4 "Dear Colleague" letter, and that claimed one-in-five college women are sexually abused, is fatally flawed because, among other things, it relied on self-selecting respondents. The people who parrot the rampant rape mantras don't discuss that.

Beyond that, the one-in-five canard is belied by the sexual grievance industry's own figures on underreporting. A writer named Chad Hermann irrefutably demonstrated this by applying a 90 percent underreporting figure (significantly higher than even RAINN's percentage) to the numbers of sexual assaults actually reported at various colleges. Even using their own underreporting number (on the high end), Mr. Hermann showed that one-in-five college women are not raped; the real number is not even in that universe.

Let us back up a second. We are always somewhat afraid to point out these lies because we know that some people disingenuously insist it means we trivialize rape.

We are more afraid not to point out these lies, because the truth should not be hidden away to service a political agenda, and, more importantly, because the lies are used to justify more and more draconian rape "reforms" that have never been proven to reduce underreporting but that enhance the risk of punishing the innocent for crimes they didn't commit. Our concern on this blog is not for rapists but for innocent people.

An example of how lies have been used to advance a politicized agenda is that the two percent canard (that only two percent of all rape claims are false) found its way in Congressional Record to support the passage of VAWA. Specifically, the Report by the Committee on the Judiciary in connection with the Violence Against Women Act. Senate Report 102-197 (102 S. Rpt. 197), Pub. L. 102-197 n. 48 (Oct. 29, 1991) stated the following: "Estimates indicate that only 2 percent of all rape reports prove to be false, a rate comparable to the false report rate for other crimes."

The two percent canard, which is as offensive as it is dishonest, was debunked long ago. See, e.g., E. Greer, The Truth Behind Legal Dominance Feminism's 'Two Percent False Rape Claim' Figure, 33 Loyola of Los Angeles Law Review 947 (2000), a scholarly law review article that painstakingly traced the two percent canard to its baseless origin. Despite the irrefutable evidence that the two percent claim is a lie, the sexual grievance industry continues to repeat it as if it were gospel.

We shouldn't need to pretend rape is as rampant as the Black Death in order to insist that it be taken seriously.  Nor should we tolerate the lie that false rape claims are a myth because that lie has led to reforms that enhance the risk to innocent men and the cavalier treatment of false rape claim victims.