The following is a letter to Washington Post columnist Miriam Berger regarding recent columns about “Abuse Surging During the Pandemic”
Dear Ms. Berger,
I respectfully ask that you take the time to read this letter in its entirety and to thoughtfully consider what I say here.
As a lifelong reader of the Washington Post, I’ve long noticed that the Post has a clear gender bias. This bias is self-evident: the Post has a gender columnist who only champions the female perspective, and in 2018 it published a repulsive article, Why Can’t We Hate Men? Unbelievably, despite an overwhelmingly negative response from thousands of posted comments, at year-end the article was still selected as one of The Post’s favorite op-eds of 2018!
Your two articles join thousands of similar ones published or broadcast for more than 40 years by the Post and virtually all other media outlets, articles that have perpetuated an extremely biased, one-sided, and provably wrong perspective about domestic or gender-based violence where women are the victims and where men are only very rarely battered by their wives or intimate partners.
While there is near-universal sympathy for “Umm Zeid”, the battered Jordanian woman you describe in your first article, and other female victims of domestic violence, there’s one group of “missing persons” who receive almost no sympathy – men:
“Men have been shot, stabbed, beaten with objects, and been subjected to verbal assaults and humiliations. Nonetheless, I do not believe these are the ‘horrors’ of violence toward men. The real horror is the continued status of battered men as the ‘missing persons’ of the domestic violence problem.”
This observation was made by Richard J. Gelles in a 1999 article, The Missing Persons in Domestic Violence: Battered Men. Gelles, along with coresearchers Murray A. Straus and Suzanne K. Steinmetz, are widely recognized as some of the earliest and preeminent researchers in the field of domestic violence. Together they performed three landmark studies on the issue, the National Family Violence Surveys. Among other findings, these surveys concluded:
Women are at least as violent as men in intimate relationships.
Consider the case of “Mahesh”, a male victim of his wife, as described in Domestic violence against men in India:
Mahesh was beaten and tortured by his wife daily in front of his son. … But, there was nothing he could do. One day when Mahesh’s wife and son were not present at home, Mahesh hanged himself from the ceiling fan because he was done with the never-ending violence. i
(I’m most familiar with domestic violence against men in the Anglosphere, so in preparation to write this letter, I did a few quick Google searches. It only took me a very few minutes to find the link above and thousands of other studies or articles that confirm that men are battered by women, not only in Jordan, but throughout the world. You too could have Googled and found the following examples:
- A qualitative study to investigate male victims’ experiences of female-perpetrated domestic abuse in Jordan
- A Cross-Cultural Comparison of Marital Abuse
- Domestic Violence against Men: Balancing the Gender Issues in Nigeria)
Still don’t believe that women batter men?
Just ask Johnny Depp.
Or Carl Friedan, the husband of Betty Friedan, the “mother of modern feminism”, who in her memoir publicly accused Carl of beating her. In response Carl set up a website that contradicted his wife’s account, saying that Betty was “…the most violent person I have ever known” and that his own face was “scarred by deep gouges” inflicted by her.ii At least two books confirmed Mr. Friedan’s account.iii
But you can’t actually ask any of these last victims. They’re all dead, killed by wives, girlfriends, or monstrously selfish mothers.
Or, finally, you could sit back in the comfort of your living room and watch a few seasons of the Investigation Discovery channel’s Deadly Women TV series. It’ll send chills up your spine.
You see, Ms. Berger, the key to recognizing that women are equally violent is understanding that domestic violence is not a matter of gender, but of human will. Self-described feminist Patricia Pearson, in her 1998 book When She Was Bad – Violent Women and the Myth of Innocence, challenges the stereotype of men as the aggressors and women as merely innocent victims:
“The idea that domestic violence refers exclusively to wife abuse or to violence against women is so deeply ingrained in Western consciousness that it is impossible to grapple with [stories of male victims of DV] without first unraveling some potent conventional wisdom. … At the heart of the matter lies human will. Which partner – by dint of temperament, personality, life history – has the will to harm the other? By now it should be clear that such a will is not the exclusive province of men.”
But beyond battered men, Pearson’s book shatters the myth of innocent, non-violent women. It observed:
“Women commit the majority of child homicides in the United States, a greater share of physical child abuse, an equal rate of sibling violence and assaults on the elderly, about a quarter of child sexual abuse, an overwhelming share of the killings of newborns, and a fair preponderance of spousal assaults.”
(For more women who have spoken out about male victims of domestic violence, read the “Women’s Contribution to Domestic Violence” section in my online article about the hypocrisy of the #MeToo movement.)
It’s bad enough that feminists have, to a remarkable degree and with the assistance of a gullible media – including the Washington Post – foisted on the public an unfair, one-sided depiction of the problem of domestic violence. But for decades feminists have compounded this portrayal with disinformation campaigns during major events or natural disasters to continually flog their prejudiced version of domestic violence, thus causing unjustified alarm among women – and generating more gender-biased laws and more funding for female-only domestic violence shelters.
Both of your articles follow this vile practice.
An early example was the 1993 “Super Bowl Hoax”, described by Christina Hoff Sommers in her book Who Stole Feminism? How Women Have Betrayed Women. Feminists falsely claimed that Super Bowl Sunday was “the biggest day of the year for violence against women” with increases in violence as high as 40 percent. Sommers demolished this myth, clearly confronting each fake claim and demonstrating how feminists lie and distort the truth to further perpetuate their false, unbalanced depiction of domestic violence. iv
More recently, in 2019 an Australian feminist named Sherele Moody used that country’s bushfire crisis to spread a particularly loathsome lie, claiming that male firefighters – who, by the way, were risking their lives to put out these fires – often return home and beat their female partners:
“After a cataclysmic event like this, domestic violence peaks. Women become extremely unsafe, when generally the men return home from the fires and subject them to domestic violence …. But what happens after some heroes go home? What happens when domestic violence perpetrators finish their work on the frontline of a major crisis? They abuse the women in their lives – harder than they ever have.” v
Moody justified these claims by saying they were “backed by research”, but the researcher who performed the referenced study said that it never made any specific findings about firefighters. Fortunately, in this case, the public recognized and spoke out loudly about this smear against these brave firefighters: a Google search shows that this feminist received a torrent of online condemnation.
Stories like yours about pandemic-related increases in domestic violence may contain more truth than the Super Bowl or violent firefighter hoaxes, but are all still examples of these disinformation campaigns because they exploit a horrible worldwide pandemic to further spread a one-sided lie, breathlessly spreading the alarm about how “women are at increased risk”, but completely failing to recognize an obvious and provable fact:
Men who are stuck at home with their violent female partners must also be equally victimized.
For you to compose articles like these provides clear evidence that you write with prejudiced and preconceived notions about domestic and gender-based violence, notions that with just a few minutes of online research – just Google “domestic violence men” – would reveal your perspective to be, at best, a one-sided version of the truth, at worst, an epic lie.
In closing, let me include a quote from a book by journalist Sue Ellen Browder, Subverted: How I Helped the Sexual Revolution Hijack the Women’s Movement. Browder is a former writer for Cosmopolitan magazine who tells how she “… told lie upon lie to sell the casual-sex lifestyle to millions of single, working women”. I feel it is applicable to both you and the thousands of others in the media who blindly push such a one-sided view of domestic violence:
“Unfortunately, the free press is only as free as the minds of those journalists, editors, and writers who work in the field. I had already become that strange paradox of mankind that’s especially commonplace among journalists: I had become both the deceiver and the deceived.”
Ms. Berger, with all due respect, when it comes to writing about domestic and gender-based violence, you and your fellow journalists have abused the free press and have become both deceivers and deceived.
I can only hope that you’ve read this far. If so, I thank you. I pray that I’ve opened your mind to the dark turn that feminism took a long time ago.
If I have, please help me to convince reporters, columnists, and management at the Post that they need to reconsider their entire coverage of gender-related issues – most importantly about domestic violence – to eliminate their hateful, feminist-inspired, anti-male gender bias.
i This report also included the following statistics: “In a study of 1000 married men among the various age groups from 21-49 years of age in the rural villages of Haryana, 52.4% of males experience gender-based violence in India. 51.5% of males have experienced some sort of torture or violence at the hands of their wives or their intimate partners in their lifetime. 10.5% of males have experienced gender-based violence at the hands of their wives or intimate partners in the last 12 months.”
ii In fairness, it must be noted that the Post published an editorial Abuse Reports That Smack of Unfairness that exposed the media’s unfair treatment of Carl Friedan. While Betty’s accusation was widely reported, “… with a couple of exceptions, reporters made little attempt to reach Carl Friedan, who says the allegations are flatly untrue”.
iii Betty Friedan: Her Life and The Sisterhood, The Inside Story of the Women’s Movement and the Leaders Who Made It Happen (“Those two deserved each other was a comment I heard more than once.”)
iv Again, in fairness, the Post’s Ken Ringle was one of the few journalists to bother to check the sources behind the stories. He wrote an article, Debunking the ‘Day of Dread’ for Women, detailing his findings.