The cost of masculine crime

"Men are, by a huge margin, the sex responsible for violent, sexual and other serious crime. The economic cost of this ‘masculine excess’ in delinquency is staggering - to say nothing of its emotional toll. Why is the social shaping of masculinity not an urgent policy issue?"

Don't give me the old bromide that testosterone did it! That is an excuse! A denial of self-responsibility! A claim that protects violent men from being held accountable. Both men and women suffer because of these brutes! 


"Of the one-third of a million people in England and Wales found guilty of an indictable offence in the 12 months ending June 2012, 85% were men. The more violent the crime, the more men predominate. From a unique table deep in the quarterly Ministry of Justice Criminal Justice Statistics Bulletin for England and Wales we learn that males were 88% of those found guilty of violence against the person, and more than 98% of those committing sexual offences."

Just as the women of Turkey, dressed from head to toe in heavy gabardine in 100 degree F weather, to conceal their bodies because men couldn't control their impulses to rape, so, men of many countries continue to think they are entitled to use and abuse women. Doesn't that sound sophomoric to you? How can anyone claim they can't control their natural urges? If men were subject to such impulses, doesn't that imply those who can't exist as less human than the gentler ones? More like beasts than Homo sapiens. 

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I agree, it isn't testosterone, in spite of the claim. It has to do with belief. The belief that men are superior to women, that women must submit and obey fathers, husbands and sons, that men have authority to beat their wives if women do not comply. 

This barbaric custom comes down in only some families. For those of us who are scions of that heritage have to fight to have a voice, to have control over our bodies, to participate as equals to the men in our families. 

I am so very glad your husband, his father and brothers are not violent. They have a different belief system than men of my cultural inheritance. 

You and I know testosterone is not the cause of violence. How to influence women so that they do not believe they have to submit; and how to influence men that they are not in control of women and how to treat women as equals. 

A couple of things. It's definitely beliefs and culture, probably mildly exacerbated by testosterone. But without the culture and beliefs, it'd just be a bunch of guys that are way too into board games.

Second, if your testosterone is so high that you attack other men and rape women in a manner that is completely beyond your control, evolution has made a mistake and the rest of us have a responsibility to remove you from the gene pool. Sorry.

That said, are you ready to take responsibility now, or do we have to clip or kill you?

Dan D, how I longed for someone, anyone, to knock abusing men out. I did knock my father out when he came at me with his fist drawn back to strike me. It was a fluke, but when he came back to consciousness, I was standing over him and told him if he ever hit me, I would sue him for everything he had. I was 36 at the time. I'm a slow learner! 

My father would hit me, and I fantasized about coming back when I was big and strong and beating HIM up.  But he died first. 

Masculinity, the effects of testosterone, can involve the potential for aggression and violence, more than actual violence.

This may be a highly honorable thing, if the aggression is used in the right way. 

I've never been a violent person and I hate seeing senseless violent acts perpetrated on others.  I'm gay, so some people may infer that I'm passive and nonviolent as a result of having gay/effeminate qualities, but I call bullshit on that.  In my immediate and extended family where most of the male brothers, cousins, uncles, nephews, etc. are heterosexual, none, and I mean NONE, are violent persons.  Violence toward others is obviously a trait that is learned within specific environments, and my family and relatives have never been part of any culture that encourages or condones violence. 

I also think the company of friends you keep says a lot about yourself personally.  I don't have violent friends, male or female.  I certainly wouldn't want to be acquainted in any manner with people prone to fits of violence.  That's just not my scene. 

I wish I could say that the attitudes and beliefs of some families have changed, but the reality is, there continues to be brutes married to passive women. If both men and women declared violence is no way to resolve conflicts, I think we would see rapid change. 

Your gentle nature, Carl, and sweet temperament speaks well of your character. The fact that you are the only gay member of your family also says something about your family. You seem not to be scarred by shame or guilt. I may be wrong in my assessment, but for whatever reason, you have qualities that every father and mother should have. 

Carl, I agree with your attitudes.  I've also never been violent, and none of my brothers have been violent.  A large factor is probably our father.  He was not violent, in fact, he was the kindest man I've known.

Is it useful to identify crime along gender lines? Is there an action which is a crime for woman but is not a crime for a man?

On another note, it seemed to me that the linked article presupposes that the issue known as masculine crime should be solved on a government level. Would it not be more effective to fight this on an interpersonal level? 

The Three E's:   Ethics, Empathy, Education.  Are these not the only things that really fight crime? If a person is a criminal, I ask: where is their mother? Their father? Their friends? Did no one care enough to stand upon principles, to ostracize or to shun them? We see that governments apathy is really the apathy of the people. The prevalence is because so much of the general populace is accepting of crime. And I know for a fact that the majority of criminals came from single parent households. In this I have to put an onus upon feminists like Obama and Clinton who claim that a single mother is acceptable, desirable even, despite the facts showing that the opposite is true.

Probably because I'm atheist one thing I like to pick on is the christian doctrine of forgiveness leading to families acting as enablers for violent or aberrant behavior. How horrible. 

Of course families act as enablers of violence in the home. All institutions enabled the crime of assault in families, thinking it was a private matter and of no concern to the populous. My efforts to get help from my family, resulted in such responses as, "A Denoo is strong enough to take it," or when I stated what happened to my grandmothers and mother and me, I was told, "I know it is rue, we just don't talk about it!" 

When I talked to my several ministers, one, Richard C. Halverson, told me when I was beaten, I lived in imitation of the crucified christ and of all women I was most blessed. I was to rejoice in my crucifixion. How sick is that? 

The common claim that "the majority of criminals came from single parent households" does not stand up to statical analysis. 

A large, national study conducted by the Bureau of Justice Statistics on inmates, which includes family background information, has been repeated since 1991. In their report on the 2004 survey, 55% of state and federal prisoners did not “live most of the time while growing up” with both parents. Assuming most of those 55% were living with their mothers, saying a “large majority” is a stretch. If only 55% of this population is from non-married-parents homes, that’s not a very strong case for an independent effect of family structure.

Yes, there is a majority of criminals who live in single moms head of households, however, if one adjusts for factors that the survey also shows single heads of households experienced high rates of poverty, homelessness, substance abuse, physical abuse, and family members’ incarceration.

The popular claim that marriage decline substantially caused the increase in crime in the 1980s and 1990s, does not explain why incarceration crime rates fell. Therefore, I do not agree with your claim "the majority of criminals came from single parent households".

Your statements seem to blame women for the breakup of families without paying heed to the causes of breakups. Family violence is virtually impossible to change if the family is intact. I know from personal experience working in boys ranches and in the state prison systems preparing men to be released back into the public. Incarcerated men tend to have fathers who battered women and children. They express the need to control women and have the authority of society and the church to have dominion over the household. This belief ruptures marriage and parenting relationships. 

When I worked in boys' ranches and in the prison system, my responsibility was to teach communication skills, problem solving, conflict resolution, anger management, and effective, mature, adult behaviors. Why is it that incarcerated men do not have these skills as a result of their home life? Fathers and mothers should be teaching their sons these skills. If the father is a brute and the mother is submissive, how can the manchild grow into a responsible adult? Some can; some cannot and I made my living by teaching adults how to be grown-up. 

Joan you are right on the money in saying that I "blame women for the breakup of families". 22% of divorces are because of domestic violence (which is 22% too high) [1]. The majority of divorces are no-fault divorces initiated by women [2]. Women almost always are awarded sole custody [3][6]. But it isn't just this - women are more likely to be violent against their children than men are (even when adjusting for other factors). And all this doesn't even factor that women and men have reduced desire for marriage, creating a de facto broken home from the start.

Joan through your work I'm sure you saw how education could help people to become less violent. You wrote "Why is it that incarcerated men do not have these skills as a result of their home life? Fathers and mothers should be teaching their sons these skills." I've been composing a blog on this topic and you cannot know how much I appreciate and applaud the work you did. I think it is some of the most important work that can be done to better our society.

I don't think it is very much of a stretch to see the link between parents agressing against children and men agressing against women. In both situations there is a power disparity. The difference is of course that adult women can escape, children almost never can. Historically, boys have tended to be more frequently spanked (by their mothers) than girls are [7]. Is it a wonder that in a freudian twist some of those boys become violent toward their future intimate partners?

A few final notes. The study you linked only indicates incarceration percentage not the criminality. The vast majority of crimes do not result in state or federal incarceration. That study also does not delineate between biological and non biological parents. Most of the inmates who reported a two parent household were actually raised at least in part by a step parent, thus being more at risk in many ways, not the least of which is physical and sexual abuse. I read this last year and haven't yet found again the follow up study on this so that I can link it. 

[1] (not the best source sorry. I found sources indicating that the percentage might be as high as 31%)







Thanks for the links Čenek, I will read them and get back to you. 

A quick note, it is true that abused wives tend to abuse their children. My father never hit me, my mother used a razor strap and my memory may be blurred, but if I remember correctly, my encounters with the strap probably coexisted with tension between mom and dad. 

I appreciate your information and am willing to reassess my opinion. 


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