SANTA CRUZ — Monday marked the conclusion of Domestic Violence Awareness Month, and the District Attorney’s Office reports that emergency calls related to domestic violence dipped slightly this October compared to last.These folks are always claiming that things are getting worse. But Harvard professor Steven Pinker plugs his new book on violence and writes:
But the drop from 546 to 528 calls is slight, and some who work to combat the problem point to a trend of more violent abuse.
Laura Segura, director of Women’s Crisis Support-Defensa de Mujeres, said she believes domestic violence has increased in severity due to the recession, and she said shelters nationwide have reported increases.
“There may be a slight decrease from last year, but when you look at previous years, the numbers are still higher and the violence more severe,” she said. “We’re attributing that to the stresses in the family from unemployment and from families doubling up in homes, which creates more stress. Over the past year, our shelter has rarely had beds available.”
The women's rights movement has seen an 80 percent reduction in rape since the early '70s when it was put on the agenda as a feminist issue. There has also been a two-thirds decline in domestic violence, spousal abuse, or wife beating, and a 50 percent decline in husband beating. In the most extreme form of domestic violence, namely uxoricide and matricide, there's been a decline both in the number of wives that are murdered by their husband's and the number of husbands that have been murdered by their wives.So who do you believe? A big-shot Jewish Harvard psychology professor or some feminist activists? Yeah, it is a tough call, but I think that I am going to go with the psychologist this time.