Wednesday, February 6, 2019

More Reported Rapes in New York City

The New York Police Department says it’s encouraging. What, pray tell, do they find encouraging in a spike in the number of reported city rapes?

That’s right, more women are coming forth to report being raped. For that, the NYPD believes, credit goes to the #MeToo movement for raising awareness about rape and for encouraging women to come forth.

The New York Post has the story:

With the number of reported city rapes soaring in early 2019, the NYPD on Tuesday announced that its sex-crimes unit will start tracking incidents in CompStat-style meetings to better tailor their efforts.

“For the first time since the inception of CompStat, we are starting CompStat meetings solely dedicated to the Special Victims Division,” said NYPD Chief of Crime Control Strategies Lori Pollock. “The improvements … [are] to bring Special Victims up to speed with the rest of the department’s data analytics.”

The five boroughs saw 150 rape reports in January 2019, a troubling 27.1-percent hike from the 118 attacks tallied in the first month of 2018, department stats show.

For nearly a year, the NYPD has pointed to the so-called “Weinstein effect” and #MeToo movement when asked about the climbing rape numbers, saying they are at least partly due to an increased willingness by victims to come forward.

“The increase in reports this year is actually encouraging,” said Pollock.

Lori Pollock finds this encouraging. But, in the next to last paragraph, note the phrasing: “at least partly due to an increased willingness by victims to come forward.” What could that possible mean? One thing it could mean is that there might be another reason why more women are reporting rapes. That would be: because there are more rapes being committed. In truth, we cannot preclude the possibility. In either case, it seems clear that the #MeToo movement has not tamped down the number of felonious rapes. And we do not even have figures for groping, harassment and leering looks.

The moral of the story is this: raising consciousness about rape and sexual harassment might also produce exactly what it is intended to stop. Filling the media with images of women being abused, harassed and raped… tends to cause people to see women in a sexual light. Full throated feminist attacks on men, as toxic predators and chauvinist pigs, produces resentment. It brings out men's worst, not their best.

We would much prefer to see fewer rapes, not more rapes. Lori Pollock says she is encouraged. Count us discouraged.

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