This post is the first in an educational series addressing violence against women; in that a lot of people feel uncomfortable with this topic, I thought I’d be straight up just in case you wanted to go elsewhere. But before you leave, consider this single fact: Women in America are second class citizens. (In other countries, they are far less.) I state this as a fact based on the overwhelming documented evidence that American women are not afforded equal protection under the U.S. Constitution; they are denied this equal protection by the Executive Branch, the Legislature Branch, and the Judicial Branch.
One blatant, indisputable case in point is our government’s refusal to acknowledge women’s rights under the the 14th Amendment. The opening section clearly states that no State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States. Yet the number of bills passed legislating women’s rights to proper health care, and in many cases life saving medical procedures stand at a ridiculous, incomprehensible number. The consequences of these laws is criminal.
There are many other instances and examples, and it is these unconstitutional violations of human and civil rights perpetrated against women that I will be addressing beginning with this post.
Still with me? Good, because what I’m offering you, through this series, is comprehensive information on public record (none of this is made up). My only goals and objectives are to provide you insight into an issue that is not only deeply impacting our society, but devastating many innocent lives.
If for no other reason, read these short posts for your own personal edification. If you’re a mother, consider sharing with your daughter and son. If you are a daughter, consider sharing with your parents and siblings. In other words, if you think these posts are worth sharing, then please feel free to do so! Share it with your Friends, Circles, your Tweeple. You never know, maybe this information could be helpful and enlightening to someone connected to you. Here’s why. One in every three women, no matter the age, will be abused, battered, raped, violated in some way in their life.
If that fact upsets you, scares you, well, consider another fact: 90 plus percent of women, and we’ll bring this down to the United States, 90 plus percent of American women don’t feel safe in our sophisticated 21st Century, high tech society. And, I’m not speaking only of lower class at risk women living in ghettos, drug environments/conditions, I’m speaking of women from every socioeconomic level, including law enforcement officers, lawyers, doctors, judges, educators, nurses, corporate executives, you name the class, it is represented.
Young women, middle school, high school, college age, are at higher risk.
Here are some statistics published by the U.S. Department of Justice: Females ages 16-24 are more vulnerable to intimate partner violence than any other age group – at a rate almost triple the national average; approximately 1 in 5 female high school students report being physically and/or sexually abused by a dating partner; among female victims of intimate partner violence, a current or former boyfriend or girlfriend victimized 94% of victimes between the ages of 16-19.
Globally, the numbers only get worse, with one in every three women being raped, sexually assaulted, sodomized, battered by a husband, boyfriend, a friend of the family, or a date in their lifetime.
Unfortunately, some women will experience the abuse throughout their lifetime; and I say that only because many women will simply not be able to escape the abuser, and he will eventually murder her.
Not very many of the abusers/murderers will be prosecuted due to factors that will be explained in upcoming posts.
So, what of the cost and who’s paying for it? If you are a tax payer, you are.
Some reports place the total annual price tag for violence against women at over five billion dollars per year just to heal the wounds caused by violence against women. Over four billion of that number is just for medical costs. And, that is just accounting for the women who seek medical help.
Many, many women either choose not to seek medical help, while many others are not permitted, by the abuser, to seek medical help. I mentioned some women are not able to escape their abuser(s), and that’s simply because they are literally held captive in some manner.
This well documented, researched fact is one that most Americans simply don’t want to acknowledge, or simply don’t want to be concerned with. That is, of course, not until it affects them personally.
For within our cities, and we’re talking within virtually every major city in the country, and a great number of lesser cities and even rural communities, there exist a totally unseen, out of sight, out of mind female population living in total, true bondage in every sense of the word.
The exact number of these enslaved women, ranging from pre-teens up, is unknown. Some put the U.S. numbers at tens of thousands, but that is probably a conservative estimation. Globally, the numbers go as high as the millions.
But again, these women don’t factor into the cost issue; they are not treated for the brutality they endure. When they succumb to their rape and torture, they are simply discarded in some manner.
So back to the cost, because that five billion price tag is only the cost of medical, psychological counseling, et cetera, et cetera. There is a lot more money lost due to violence against women.
You see, women miss an estimated eight million work days every year because they are battered so badly they physically, medically can not show up.
Eight million work days of missed work, in case you were wondering, equates roughly to some two billion dollars worth of lost pay. And, two billion dollars of lost pay translates to just about thirty-two thousand full-time jobs.
Now, I don’t care if you’re in middle school student struggling with Algebra, a high school student sitting in a pre-Calc course, or a first year finance student at prestigious college or university, those numbers, in today’s nose-diving economy, cannot be ignored.
Even a self-proclaimed economic genius vying for the Presidency of the United States has to acknowledge the issue is significant. Yet, not one politician, not one candidate for any office, at any level will raise this issue in any conversation, interview, debate.
Incidentally, with this post, I intend to address the presidential candidates for the upcoming election why this issue is categorically ignored.
You see, while our illustrious politicians, male and female, even our sitting President and legislators will mock object at the human rights violations of other countries, while they will smile broadly as they take advantage of the photo opportunities with the Malalas of the world, they, themselves, are repress, subjugate, and deny human rights to American women and girls.
This is what we call hypocrites. But, how can that be? More importantly, why would that be?
The answers to both those questions are as incomprehensible as they are ridiculous and will be dealt with in depth in a forthcoming post.
For now, let’s look at yet another way violence against women is costly.
You see, speaking of incomprehensibility, when a woman is beaten, especially in her own home, by her significant other, alleged partner, an episode society dubs as domestic violence, it is she who typically has to flee for protection and treatment.
She has to grab what she can, swoop up the kids, if there are any and typically there are, and run.
Now you may be asking, where does a woman beaten and battered, black and blue, probably with no money, under the threat of being hunted down and killed, her children under that same threat run to?
She can’t run to family. She’ll only endanger them as well. She can’t run to friends; they typically have no desire to become involved, or more typically, simply don’t know how to help her. She can’t stay at a hospital; they are a for profit entity; they need to clear the bed for the next inbound battered woman.
No, the battered, beaten, hurting woman has limited choices as to where to run. Sadly, far to many of them simply remain on the streets. In a city such as San Diego, where it is reported that some 50% of homeless women are the result of domestic violence, this means more danger.
On the streets, women face more abuse and exploitation.
Many women, if she seeks proper medical care, and the reporting is completed correctly, she could end up in inadequate, underfunded, overcrowded shelters, typically run by overextended county social services. Operating a shelter can run up into the millions per year, therefore, most shelters are under funded, and under staffed. Considering many of these shelters find themselves twenty five percent over capacity, sometime the battered woman has to accept whatever is available.
In one twenty four hour period recorded, over fifty three thousand battered women were serviced. Over seven thousand were turned away due to lack of space.
Just so you understand the lunacy of this issue, the woman should not have to leave. The abuser has a place waiting for him. A place where he can cool off. A place where he will be welcomed and comforted, and coddled, fed and bedded in a warm spot for the night. It’s called the country jail.
In closing this post, I will simply reiterate the undeniable fact that violence against women is a costly pandemic issue that must be addressed immediately by politicians.
Why politicians? Because it’s the politicians who legislate women’s rights, restrict their health care, and deny them equal justice under our constitution.
Thank you for reading,and I hope you come back for the next post in this series in which I will explain why it is men believe they are superior to women.
Below please find some links utilized in producing this entry. For a complete list of sites address violence against women, please visit my Resource page at https://dhesbarpublications.wordpress.com/resources/.
- Abused and Battered Women Facts and Statistics, Fact #23 http://www.shimmymob.com/purpose/abuse_facts/
- The Economic Costs of Violence Against Women http://www.un.org/womenwatch/daw/vaw/expert%20brief%20costs.pdf
- Cost of Violence against Women largely underestimated http://eige.europa.eu/news-and-events/news/cost-violence-against-women-largely-underestimated
- The Cost of Violence against Women and their Children https://www.dss.gov.au/sites/default/files/documents/05_2012/vawc_economic_report.pdf
- Consequences and costs http://www.endvawnow.org/en/articles/301-consequences-and-costs-.html
- 2010 U.S. Census http://www.census.gov/prod/cen2010/briefs/c2010br-03.pdf
- Teen Dating Violence Facts http://www.clotheslineproject.org/teendatingviolencefacts.pdf
- Teen Violence Statistics http://www.teenviolencestatistics.com/content/date-rape.html
- Domestic violence: Nearly 100 Domestic Violence Victims Turned Away From Shelters In Day – tribunedigital http://articles.courant.com/2014-03-14/news/hc-domestic-violence-shelters-0315-20140314_1_violence-victims-shelters-18-domestic-violence-agencies
- Dominance and Domestic Abuse Among Mexican Americans: Gender Differences in the Etiology of Violence in Intimate Relationships, Yoko Sugihara1, and Judith Ann Warner. Journal of Family Violence, Vol. 17, No. 4, December 2002(C° 2002)
- Homeless women in the United States https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homeless_women_in_the_United_States
- Domestic Violence and Homelessness https://www.aclu.org/files/pdfs/womensrights/factsheet_homelessness_2008.pdf
- Domestic Violence and Homelessness: Statistics http://www.vawnet.org/Assoc_Files_VAWnet/NRCDV-Stats-DVHomelessness.pdf
- Domestic Violence. Wikipedia. Web.
- Estimating the Numbers http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/slaves/etc/stats.html
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE SHELTER FEASIBILITY STUDY http://www.fftc.org/Document.Doc?id=510