Sex crimes spin?
Original post made by skeptic on Oct 5, 2007
In this Weekly article (see link below), Stanford Deputy Chris Cohendet is quoted as saying:
"It's not an increase in assaults but an increase in reports of them."
How exactly is he able to make this determination?
Sounds to me like this is one of those undeterminable questions since how would you know what wasn't reported in the past in order to compare to what is being reported now?
Sounds like PR spin to me in order to keep Stanford campus community from being concerned and Stanford's low-crime reputation
from being sullied.
on Oct 5, 2007 at 8:00 pm
A lot of this comes down to the definition of what is a sex crime? When I was working in an office about 25 years ago I remember one incident which if it happened nowadays would be a completely different incident. I was standing in a filing area looking at a file I had open on the open drawer. This area was not frequented very often unless there was a filing clerk there. It so happened that one of my coworkers, male, crept up behind me and undid the zipper on my dress to see if I was wearing a bra or not. He thought it very funny, I did not, but I gave him a piece of my mind and that was the end of it. It did not affect the way I treated him, but he never did anything like that again. Now if that happened today the same incident would be called a crime, or sexual harrassment at the very least.
The thing is, what we construe as inappropriate has always been inappropriate, but it happened. Nowadays we can do something about it, in the past we couldn't. Sometimes, I am sure, it is hard to draw the line and decide what is appropriate and what isn't. The incident I described is most definitely not. However, sometimes I can see what someone may think of asjust teasing is taking things much too far in someone else's eyes. A pat on the shoulder may be fine for one person, but not for another. A hug, blowing a kiss or even a wolf whistle, can now be taken as an insult even if the original intention was supposed to be otherwise.
on Oct 5, 2007 at 8:20 pm
The TV news report I saw last night said:
- the increase was primarily (or entirely) in "acquaintance rape" situations
- someone (the YWCA?) had opened a rape counseling center on campus, which appeared to be generating more rape reporting
So I imagine that Stanford is trying to avoid the impression of rapists wandering their campus looking for women walking alone. At some level may be helpful, to the extent it distracts from the very real danger of date rape.
on Oct 5, 2007 at 9:44 pm
oh, c'mon...looks like the spin here is coming from "skeptic", and "Frankie". Stanford is, for all intents and purposes, a very safe campus. As applies to all campuses, "be careful", because bad things do happen.