Archive for January 20th, 2009

Sphere: Related Content

January 20th, 2009 No comments

Among the new features we’ve added recently to our web site is a link to Sphere’s related content for each of our blog posts. The link appears at the bottom of each post and looks like this:

Sphere: Related Content

We’ve set that link up for you to see how it would work if you were to click on it from our recent posting More CPSIA News and Blogs. Give it a click to try it out! You can grab the window that appears by the title bar and move it around the browser to make it or something underneath it easier to read.

We hope you’ll find Sphere related content searches a handy way to find more news articles and blog posts related to the information we post on our site.


Domestic Violence – Are You Being Abused?

January 20th, 2009 No comments

(Click here for more coverage of domestic violence.)

What is domestic violence? Many people think of it as purely physical in which one person beats up another. Many people think that only men commit domestic violence and women are always the victims.

Neither of these perceptions is accurate. Domestic violence involves more than just physical abuse. It includes verbal and emotional abuse which may have no physical component. Studies show that women commit domestic violence at rates similar to men. Further, they do this not only against men, but even in lesbian relationships in which no men are involved.

Our view is that all domestic violence is bad, no matter who commits it. Domestic violence will continue to be a problem especially if violent behaviors are written off because they are not physical or because women are committing them. Much of the literature and popular beliefs about domestic violence contribute to victimization of children, men, and even women by abusive women due to inaccurate biases that falsely classify women as not possibly being perpetrators of domestic violence. (See Women commit more than 70% of single-partner DV for a Harvard Medical School study which amply shows this.) Further, as modern research shows that partner violence tends to beget partner violence, the women abusing their partners makes it far more likely they will be co-abused in return.

When reading about domestic violence, you must realize that much of the literature and research in this field was done with the assumption that men are abusers and women are victims. Recent research has shown that this is not accurate, that anybody can be a victim and anybody an abuser. Some writings in the domestic violence field are gender-neutral and use well-designed studies to make their conclusions. For whatever reasons, some do not. Some claim it is because of sexist bias, others because of feminist propaganda. Whatever the reason, after you strip away the gender bias from the sources that haven’t caught up to the inaccuracy of the male abuser / female victim model popularized by early work in domestic violence in the 1970s despite much evidence to the contrary, there is still value to what these sources have to say.

For example, Professor Straus of the University of New Hampshire was one of the early researchers in domestic violence in the 1970s. He researched battered women and assumed that men were the abusers. However, over his 35 years of research, he has come to realize that abusers can be of either gender and that his earlier viewpoints were gender-biased. (See Female Violence Against Males.)

The bottom line is that all domestic violence is bad, regardless of who commits it.

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