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Old 06-23-2006, 06:21 AM   #1
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Porn: Good For America!

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The number of rapes per capita in the United States has plunged by more than 85 percent since the 1970s, and reported rape fell last year even while other violent offenses increased, according to federal crime data.

This seemingly stunning reduction in sexual violence has been so consistent over the past two decades that some experts say they have started to believe it is accurate, even if they cannot fully explain why it is occurring.
Hmm. What's different since 1970? Lots of things, of course, though bared midriffs and short-shorts are back. But probably the most relevant difference is porn. In 1970, some people argued that porn caused rape. Since 1970, though, porn has exploded. In 1970 you had to work pretty hard to find porn. Now you have to work nearly as hard to avoid it.

But rape has gone down 85%. So much for the notion that pornography causes rape — or, at least, if it did have much effect in that direction, it would be hard to explain how rape rates could have declined so dramatically while porn expanded so explosively.

So while I won't go so far as to argue that porn actually prevents rape, it seems clear that the claims of some people — including a commission headed by former Attorney General Ed Meese back in the 1980s — that pornography promotes rape are, at best, overstated. I suspect, though, that anti-pornography crusaders are unlikely to heed this lesson.
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Causation or correlation good news is good news.
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Old 06-23-2006, 07:38 AM   #2
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Old 06-23-2006, 08:20 AM   #3
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Rape has gone down 85%? How can they know this when only a fraction of rapes are even reported. I don't care if people want more porn, but I'm skeptical that "rape rates...have declined so dramatically."
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Old 06-23-2006, 08:31 AM   #4
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Has the incidence of reporting increased in the last 30 years?
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Old 06-23-2006, 08:36 AM   #5
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How do you confidentally draw a connection between a decrease in reports and actual rapes, A_W? Be careful how you answer. You are about to piss off a lot of people with this one.
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Old 06-23-2006, 08:51 AM   #6
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I prefaced with causation versus correlation as far as the rise of the porn industry, a direct causation would be a pure assumption.

Trends over the last 30 years have moved furthur towards treating the women as the victim of rape and not the instigator. I wouldn't think that we have been seeing a lower incidence in reporting rape given the social trends, there is always going to be unreported rape but for these statistics to be pointing that way then we would have to have a trend of lower reporting over the last 30 years.
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Old 06-23-2006, 09:04 AM   #7
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not blaming women for rape is a 'social trend'? are you fucking kidding me?

an estimated 95% of rapes go unreported. i won't even get into the dismal percentage of allegations that actually result in convictions.

when i hear that rape crisis centres and women's shelters are saying that the overall incidences of rape are declining, maybe then i'll be inclined to breathe a sigh of relief.
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Old 06-23-2006, 09:06 AM   #8
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not blaming women for rape is a 'social trend'? are you fucking kidding me?
Uh, ditto
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Old 06-23-2006, 09:06 AM   #9
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Originally posted by A_Wanderer

Trends over the last 30 years have moved furthur towards treating the women as the victim of rape and not the instigator.
Really? I hadn't noticed.

One out of three college aged women will experience some kind of sexual assault. I was just reading another college's paper and in one article, the Dean estimated 50 rapes in one year, but a survey reported 109, and the college counsellors estimated that even that number was low, based on the women that come to them.

Doesn't sound like we're on the up and up to me.

I don't believe that more (sexually violent) porn reduces rape, directly or indirectly. I just took a psych course that argued the opposite - cathartic behavior encourages more of the behavior. Many rapist, especially serial ones, are acting out fantasies that they've become obsessed with. How is encouraging this fantasy going to help? On the other hand, the vast majority of rapes are not by serial rapists, but at colleges, parties, things like this. 90% of the rape victims know their attackers. It's about opportunity, and often alcohol and drugs are involved. How is using more porn going to help? They think guys will say "oh, I'm so high and she's so trashed, so she won't even care.....oh wait, I watched that porn video earlier so I don't need to rape her."?!?!?
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Old 06-23-2006, 09:20 AM   #10
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So the data sets are fucked - which I am completely open to. Obviously incidence of reporting and what constitutes sexual assualt has changed over time, but if we are taking the 1970's and the 2000's what would cause such a decrease in the per capital incidence? I would think it would be either a drop in reporting or a drop in rapes - has reporting changed in those decades?

Serial rapists acting out fantasies - I can accept that, but I don't think that the media (albeit pornographic) is the cause of those fantasies, the fucked up are the fucked up and they will do evil things regardless.

Again causation versus correlation, very important when presented with information be it articles like this or global warming stories.
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Old 06-23-2006, 09:25 AM   #11
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Originally posted by A_Wanderer
So the data sets are fucked - which I am completely open to. Obviously incidence of reporting and what constitutes sexual assualt has changed over time, but if we are taking the 1970's and the 2000's what would cause such a decrease in the per capital incidence? I would think it would be either a drop in reporting or a drop in rapes - has reporting changed in those decades?

Yeah, the data has been, is, and always will be fucked. So how can we compare "per capita" incidence? What does that mean? If somewhere between 50-90% of rapes are never reported, what is the point?


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Serial rapists acting out fantasies - I can accept that, but I don't think that the media (albeit pornographic) is the cause of those fantasies, the fucked up are the fucked up and they will do evil things regardless.
Exactly. People who are going to rape other people are horrible people regardless of how much porn they watch. What does porn have to do with anything?

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Again causation versus correlation, very important when presented with information be it articles like this or global warming stories.
I have no clue what you're implying here. What does rape have to do with proving global warming?
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Old 06-23-2006, 09:26 AM   #12
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I have no clue what you're implying here. What does rape have to do with proving global warming?
It has to do with statistics and the way that they are used.
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Old 06-23-2006, 09:28 AM   #13
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It has to do with statistics and the way that they are used.
So...how can we prove a point when we have no valid statistics? I understand the difference between correlation and causation, but in this case, I don't really care because we've got data that's worthless.
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Old 06-23-2006, 09:38 AM   #14
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Originally posted by dandy
not blaming women for rape is a 'social trend'? are you fucking kidding me?

an estimated 95% of rapes go unreported. i won't even get into the dismal percentage of allegations that actually result in convictions.

when i hear that rape crisis centres and women's shelters are saying that the overall incidences of rape are declining, maybe then i'll be inclined to breathe a sigh of relief.
The WaPo story had different figures for that percentage
Quote:
In 1979, according to a Justice Department estimate based on a wide-ranging public survey, there were 2.8 rapes for every 1,000 people. In 2004, the same survey found that the rate had decreased to 0.4 per thousand.

Many criminologists and victims' advocates say that these numbers could be a statistical mirage, because rape is still underreported and poorly understood. But others say they have been convinced that there is real improvement and that a devastating crime has been receding from American life.

"Overall, there has clearly been a decline over the last 10 to 20 years," said Kim Gandy, president of the National Organization for Women. "It's very liberating for women, in terms of now being able to be more free and more safe."

By all accounts, rape is still one of the most underreported crimes. Several decades after the establishment of rape crisis hotlines, greater sensitivity toward rape victims by police and prosecutors, adoption of policies by news organizations to not identify victims and limitations on how much a victim's sexual history can be placed in evidence during trial, the Justice Department estimates that 61 percent of rapes and sexual assaults are still not reported. But that is down from 69 percent in 1996, and experts say the trend remains downward.

Not everyone is convinced that things are getting that much better. Many who work with rape victims say they do not believe there has been a widespread decline in the number of attacks. Instead -- despite the years of attempted outreach to rape victims -- they say the crime may be as hidden now as ever.

"If there's been a change, it's been a very small change," said Dean Kilpatrick, director of the National Crime Victims Research and Treatment Center in Charleston, S.C. He said that recent high-profile rape cases such as those involving Duke University lacrosse players and basketball star Kobe Bryant may have persuaded rape victims to stay silent because of public scrutiny of the accusers' private lives and sexual history.

Some experts say that the dispute over numbers has made rape an especially difficult crime to study or try to fix.

"When the conversation gets bogged down around, 'How prevalent is this problem?' you can't even get to the next steps, of 'Now, what are we going to do about it?' " said Jennifer Pollitt Hill, executive director of the Maryland Coalition Against Sexual Assault, an Arnold-based umbrella group for victims' assistance groups statewide.

Now, though, some experts are saying they have been won over by decades of data showing the same encouraging thing: Rape in America is receding, and rapidly.
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Old 06-23-2006, 09:43 AM   #15
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"Justice Department estimates that 61 percent of rapes and sexual assaults are still not reported. But that is down from 69 percent in 1996, and experts say the trend remains downward."

1) Notice the use of the word "estimates"

2) How does the Justice Department have any accurate way to estimate how many rapes are reported if rapes aren't reported?

"some experts are saying they have been won over by decades of data showing the same encouraging thing: Rape in America is receding, and rapidly."

Who are these "experts"? IMO the only people that are really "experts" on the occurace vs. reporting of rape are women ages 16-25 and their counsellors/shrinks. I don't care what that story says.
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