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  • moriati

    Another thought provoking days reading. Am reading SFP with my 7 year old daughter and it’s prompting some very interesting discussions around the breakfast table.

  • Sabriel

    17% of the comments on this page are going to be from people who want to quibble about statistics.

    • Ryan

      I don’t know where you’re getting your data or what their agenda is, but the real figure is 27%.

      • Sark

        Dont you mean “mentioning gendered statistics of any kind in online media makes commenting threads 8 times more likely to degenerate into abghsiaHFHEPFEHFKSD”?

        • If you think that’s bad, try reading the transgender support group over on Facebook. Tjose guys really have it bad compared to cis-gendered people of either gender.

      • John Starr

        Literally the first result google has for that statistic comes from http://www.dvipiowa.org/myths-facts-about-domestic-violence/
        But yeah, quibbling.

        • Ryan

          I don’t see anything about 17% of comments there.

        • Pat

          Searched and found the same thing.

        • “Leaving a battering partner may be the most dangerous time in that relationship. Women are 70 times more likely to be killed in the two weeks after leaving than at any other time during the relationship.” … damn.

          Need to double-check, verify that that statistic is accurate … can’t seem to find corroboration from any independent sources …

      • Sabriel

        That study was conducted on undergraduate psychology students, who were recently shown to be 547x more quarrelsome than the average commenter.

        They also used an outdated and frankly sloppy definition of the word “quibble.”

        • I thought quibbles were those things on Star Trek that looked like hairballs…

    • lizzy

      Ha ha ha! that made my day.

    • Kevin B.

      Seriously, if there’s one person coming in here going: “Well actually that’s a lie. It’s really only 50 times as likely. Stop making it look worse than it is!” I’m going to reach through the screen and slap them.

      • Accuracy in statistics is important. Problem being, I can’t seem to find an independent source for the statistic, aside from the Domestic Violence Intervention Program page. Skepticism leads to more solid foundations when information is proven to be true.

      • Markus

        If I took every statistic that was quoted at me at face value, I’d believe Obamacare was designed to use Net Neutrality to tax wounded veterans till they died of AIDS.

        • Kevin B.


          All this does is remind me of those people who go around claiming that Holocaust is a conspiracy and that “only” 50k or something Jews were killed by the Nazis instead of about 2/3 of all the Jews living in Nazi-occupied territory. Even if it *were* true, then how is that supposed to make everything alright? In that case fifthy thousand Jews were still murdered, and even if the most optimistic statistics for violence against women are true it’s still a gross number.

          All you do coming in making “points” like that when these topics are being discussed is derail the actual discussion at hand and run interference for rape culture.

          • Elena Pereira

            It doesn’t make everything alright, but it also doesn’t sit well with me to be told something inaccurate. Also, if the statistics can’t be supported then they’re more likely to be attacked by skeptics, which undermines the entire point of using statistics to prove our point. Yes, there will ALWAYS be people who will go “but, there’s a problem with this statistic because….”, but there are also those who could potentially be supporters who will feel they’re misled if they find out the statistics don’t have studies backing them. Even if the actual statistics are still horrible, feeling they were being misled once will make them skeptical.

          • Damien S.

            Speaking as Jew, I think it matters a whole lot whether 1/3 of my people were killed, or 1/300th. The smaller number “doesn’t make it all better”, that’s your own words. But it does make it a smaller problem.

            As for the statistic, “risk increased x times” is a not terribly useful number by itself in any context. Absolute risk is what matters.

            Annual homicide rate for US women was 2 in 100,000 in 2013. If leaving an abuser doubled it, that’d be 4 in 100,000, *which is still very small*, and not a great reason IMO for not leaving. For comparison, leaving an abuser would be less dangerous than having a car-dependent lifestyle (guessing around 10 in 100,000). OTOH, if leaving meant 70x increase, that’d be 140 in 100,000… which is actually still pretty small, one in 700. Of course, the homicide rate for “women who are being abused” is probably higher than the average, but we’d then need to know if the putative increase is relative to the population average or to the abused average.

            OTOH, if the homicide rate for abused women were 1 in 10, then doubling that would be a huge increase in risk, and a 70x increase would be mathematically impossible.

          • John

            The thing is, you’re just looking at the numbers, not the actual lives impacted. Furthermore, I think you’re under-emphasizing the scale of what “x in 100,000” as measurement really means. IE, there are 156 and a half million women in the US right now. That’s 3,129 women killed annually in the US (that’s a bit less than the academic staff of Columbia University, to put the number in perspective) based on your numbers. You argue that for that 2 week period, that’d be 140 in 100,000, but that doesn’t really work since you didn’t convert an annual number to a weekly number. Also, that 140 in 100,000 is more than the annual rate for a heart attack. A woman is more likely to be killed by her husband in the 2 weeks after leaving him than by a heart attack (134).

            If women died annually at the rate that they died in the 2 weeks after leaving their abusive spouse*, then we would see 219,030 women die a year (a little more than if we simply wiped the entire population of Huntington Beach, CA off the face of the planet into the abyss of space on a yearly basis).

            Remember that these are daughters and mothers we’re talking about.

            *assuming this statistic is correct or at least in the ball-park

          • Damien S.

            I didn’t say anything about a 2 week period. If the baseline rate is 2/100,000, and leaving increases her risk of dying 70x for the entire year, that’s 140/100,000. E.g. out of 100,000 women who leave an abusive spouse in a year, we’d expect 140 to be killed by their abuser. If the alleged 70x increase is only for a two week period, then the increase is a lot less. And this applies only to the women-leaving-abuser population, so “if women died annually at this rate” is a meaningless hypothetical. Comparisons to Huntington Beach don’t mean much by themselves either: something like 2 million women die every year — mostly of old age and related diseases.

            Yes, 2 in 100,000 means about 3000 women killed. (3400, for more precise data.) Of course, at the risk of sounding like an MRA, 13,000 men are also killed every year, so that problem looks 4x bigger…

          • Markus

            Quick note: you’re using the abuse rate statistic incorrectly. An individual abuser can’t double the overall rate of female homicide victimization (which is that 2 in 100,000 statistic), you’d actually need to look at a raw weekly homicide mortality odds for an individual of a certain race, gender, and income before comparing it to both a currently in an abusive relationship person and a person who had just left a violent relationship. I can’t find numbers on any of those.

          • John

            Good point, and I agree, I went into my college’s research databases to find more info but there are so many articles on domestic violence I just got swamped.

          • Damien S.

            If the precise numbers don’t matter, then why not use the less controversial numbers? In fact, if the numbers don’t matter, why are you using numbers at all? Starts to look like “use junky big numbers to generate outrage, then use ‘even one is too many’ to deflect criticism about junky numbers”, which I’d view as intellectually dishonest.

            I grant that 50x vs. 70x would not be a huge difference, and might well be within the margin of error of such estimates. OTOH 1.75x vs. 70x *is* a huge difference.

      • Insanenoodlyguy

        I know this argument never really works, but since this is a work in fiction in a world that’s long since deviated from our own, can’t one accept that the statistics in this world might be different? A horrifying and deliberate analogy to our own, but one that we don’t need to find 3 certified sources to confirm numbers?

      • drachnon

        The problem is not “making it look worse that it is”. The problem is the damage you can cause when using false data.

        Let’s have a hypothetical situation in an fictional world:
        Accurate data shows that a woman is 70x more likely to get killed when leaving an abusive relationship. However to inflate the issue they make it seem like it’s 100x.

        Outraged and motivated the government sets up a campaign to raise awareness etc. and after a few years the people who set up the campaign question the effectiveness so they do a new study and find that women now are 75x more likely to get killed when leaving an abusive relationship.
        The people now are really happy to know that their campaign has dropped the numbers from 100x to 75x. Great isn’t it?
        Only in reality their campaign hadn’t increased the numbers from 70x to 75x.

        Anyone with a basic scientific background should understand/already know this.

    • Margot

      Really that depends on your measure, though – at least 50% of those quibbles will be by the same person. Should we count all of these separately, or lump them together? THIS IS IMPORTANT, PEOPLE!!

      • Sabriel

        According to the abstract, comments by the same individual were lumped together for the purposes of data gathering, but the researchers admitted that they could not control for people who comment on the same article under more than one user name. More research needed.

    • Tripper

      Since the Holocaust has been mentioned, I would like to invoke Godwin’s Law.


  • Ryan

    That statistic doesn’t need the welding mask to be profound.

    • Clay Campbell Esq

      But it helps.

  • Alexander

    That’s pretty horrific really.

  • lizzy

    I find it interestong that she “rattles off statistics” to create control. Control over what, exactly?

    • False sense of control over what seems to be a horrific fact of life. Only problem, I can’t seem to figure out where that statistic originally came from. I found it on the Domestic Violence Intervention Program page, but they don’t list data sources. Google was no help either for tracking down independent verification.

  • Guilherme Carvalho

    Hang on, is that actual data from our (real) world? If so, I did not know it and it is quite the important thing to have in mind.

    • Keith

      Yes it is. Here’s a link that was shared above. Follow it.

      • Searching a while, I found that page too, but only that page. The problem, I can’t find the source they used ~ will remain skeptical until independent verification is provided.

    • Rose Johnson

      Sadly it wouldn’t surprise me if it’s true. A lot of abusers would rather see their ‘possession’ destroyed than go elsewhere.

    • Sabriel

      I don’t know the exact numbers, but in practical application, that is real. I used to volunteer at a crisis hotline and that was one of the first things we were taught. When people called the hotline about getting help leaving an abusive relationship, it was important to do things very carefully. 🙁

  • llennhoff

    70 times more likely to be murdered than what? Than the average person is to be murdered? Or than the average person in an ongoing relationship is to be murdered by their partner?

    • Keith

      Than at any other time in the abusive relationship. It’s an important thing to remember when someone says “why doesn’t she just leave?” The answer is “because that is the most dangerous thing she can do.”

      • Classtoise

        Right. As terrible as it sounds, just up and leaving is one of the worst ideas, because it takes control away from a control-freak who will hurt you to keep you under their thumb.

        If you or someone you love is in an abusive relationship, get HELP.

    • Loren

      It is only applicable to persons murdered by a domestic partner. The murder is 70 times more likely to happen in the few weeks after leaving than any other time in the relationship.

      • Anthony Jackson

        Note, however, that 70x the risk per week, for 2 weeks, still means that it’s more dangerous to stay for 140+ weeks than to break up.

        • Classtoise

          The best option is always to seek help. It’s less like a bandaid, more like an arrow. “Fast” is not “painless”, and can cause MORE pain.

          • What does “help” mean? Call the police?

      • Can’t find an independent corroborating source for that statistic aside from the Domestic Violence Intervention Program page … little help?

      • Markus

        That’s assuming no intervention on the part of an institution or domestic violence center, right?

  • llennhoff
  • Gus

    Maybe someone’s mentioned this already in an earlier comic’s comments, but is it just possible that maybe she pushed Moonshadow into what she’s doing and now she’s pushing Alison in that direction as well?

    • gray-haired grad

      Ooh, good theory. Do you think she knows Harrison Wells?

    • Keith

      The last panel on page 90 did look pretty supervillain-esque

    • Classtoise

      It definitely seems like it. Moonshadow has to have some government-level backup for alibis that clearly place someone of her power set at this locations.

      My guess is the good doctor pushed Moonshadow into “doing something”. Although I dunno if it’s such a good idea to try and manipulate Alison.

      Best case scenario, would-be rapists are terrified of touching someone because they might get thrown into the sun.
      Worst case scenario, she’s treated like a supervillain and Doc just gave a (nearly) literally unstoppable powerhouse a complex about murdering people who deserve it because “the justice system won’t stop them”, and they’re evacuating the planet.

    • Lostman

      I don’t want to mark the good doctor as ‘evil’… yet. But we haven’t hit the strangest that comes with a world of superheroes (aliens, cults, alien breeding cults, conspiracy’s, drugs that give you superpowers,etc). I wouldn’t find it mind blowing if that Doctor has a few dark secrets, How much do we know anyone?

  • CanuckAmuck

    One’s own fear/anxiety/anger, I suspect. It’s taking something nebulous, something you can’t handle, and being able to get a grip on it. If the enemy has a face, you can better deal with it.

    If any of that makes sense. That’s just how I’m understanding it.

    • Exactly. I do the same thing about bicycle wrecks. It gives me a tiny modicun of control over myself about the situation. But I’m not going to recite the statistics here, I have posted about it at length in my blog.

  • Liz

    For some people, knowing their enemy makes them feel less like its victim. You see it a lot with people fighting disease especially – when someone gets rare disease X, often they learn everything there is to know about it in order to feel less like it’s some great horrible thing that’s killing them and more like something that can be beaten. Not surprised a doctor would take that approach to societal issues.

  • WaywardScooterGirl

    Perhaps she herself is in an abusive relationship. As a scientist/doctor, she might be in “data gathering” mode prior to extricating herself.

    • Damien S.

      Or she might just be interested in the topic and have a good memory for facts and numbers. To me she’s normal.

  • Pol Subanajouy

    At least she got a nice hair cut out if all of this? :

  • Tripper

    It seems the doctor is walking a very thin line between being analytical and condoning Moonshadow’s actions. Her comment that she was surprised it hadn’t already happened shows that she has thought about what would happen when one of the biodynamics decides to be judge, jury, and executioner. I think that her joke about the earthships being ready in 2016 shows that they’ve planned for it to happen.

  • Michael Corley

    I like her hair cut a lot. I like those statistics not at all 🙁

  • motorfirebox

    Alison’s just nonplussed because she once dealt with a guy who could literally take all the air out of a room, and it was way easier than this conversation.

  • Oren Leifer

    Given that Alison has been studying Nietzsche, (“the Abyss gazes back at you”) and given the doc’s role as Alison’s doctor, therapist, and apparently hairdresser, then I think it’s fair to say that she’s been changed by her interactions with Alison over the years. She’s clearly a sympathetic, caring person, and that coupled with her close knowledge of biodynamics (people and field of study), it makes sense that she would partially condone Moonshadow’s actions. Honestly, between this and past interactions, I would say the doctor and Patrick are the characters I find most interesting in this story (and if they ever meet, socially might implode, albeit in a helpful manner). Alison is a great protagonist, but I find Patrick and the Doc even more interesting because we don’t know all of their stories.

  • Those are some horrible statistics, but I can’t seem to find an independent source to corroborate aside from the Domestic Violence Intervention Program page …

    PS, bad haircut, too tomboyish ~ oh well, at least it’s only temporary …

  • Classtoise

    Plot twist: Alison opens up a battered women’s shelter where she will accompany women so they can leave safely.

    “You take ONE STEP out that door and I’ll…Oh shit is that Mega Girl? I’ll uh…cry and feel lost without you bye sorry *sobbing behind door*”

    • Rens

      Not as funny as you probably hoped it’d be, I’m afraid — “I’m sorry, I don’t know what to do, I’m lost without you, please, I need you back, I promise I’ll try to do better” is pretty much in the standard playbook for abusive spouses to make their victims come back willingly. And for a while, things will even /be/ better. Long enough for the victim to let her guard down again, long enough for the hooks to settle back in place… And then the cycle begins again.

  • TheGonzoMD .

    Because the DVIP would be lying… based on what?

    • Damien S.

      Sometimes people make up numbers, or misinterpret them, or pass on someone’s else made up or misinterpreted number. Maybe the 70x is genuine, maybe it started life as “70% more” and got mis-remembered, maybe it was made up.

      There’s a recurrent claim that “100,000 prostitutes are flown in for the Super Bowl/World Cup”; I don’t know its origins but it’s completely ridiculous if you think it through. There’s another one, “300,000 child prostitutes in the US” which started out as “300,000 children *at risk* of prostitution” which itself used a fairly generous definition of ‘at risk’. There’s an anti-trafficking activist from Cambodia who’s been found to have been spouting lots of fabrications. Why? Fundraising comes to mind: make people concerned about a problem, get them to donate, skim off the proceeds.

      I have no opinion on the abuse statistic. I do find “Leaving can be dangerous. The most dangerous time for a woman who is
      being abused is when she tries to leave. (United States Department of
      Justice, National Crime Victim Survey, 1995)” which provides a source of sorts but no numbers.

      Oh, wait: ‘Research indicates that the most dangerous time for a battered
      woman is after she ends the relationship. In the United States,
      research indicates that women who leave their batterers are at a
      75% greater risk of being killed by their batterers than those who
      stay. From Julian Center, Women
      in the US; Casa de Esperanza, Myths
      and Facts. It is very important for a battered woman to make
      her own decision to leave a relationship because she is in the best
      position to assess the potential danger.’

      From http://www1.umn.edu/humanrts/svaw/domestic/explore/6support.htm though their citation link is itself 404.

      But then http://www.houseofruthdothan.org/why.htm “75% of women who are killed as the result of a violent relationship are killed while trying to leave.” Same round number, but a very different statistic. Now I’m really suspicious of these numbers; this really sounds like a game of outrage telephone, where something gets passed down a long chain of hearsay, mutating along the way. I readily believe that leaving is a most dangerous time, but actual numbers? Meh.

    • Based on that they don’t quote their source. I’m a skeptic, I always seek to verify information, whenever possible ~ multiple independent sources corroborating data lend credibility.

    • Markus

      It’s not that they’re lying, it’s that there’s no actual study to verify it there. We have no way of knowing where this source came from before the DVIP, and they’re not a research center so it has to have come from somewhere before them.

    • debfa

      Based on having reached a conclusion in advance, for one. As someone who has worked with both male and female victims of abuse – sexual, physical, emotional, you name it – I can confirm that many male victims do not report because these are cast as things that happen to women and girls. DVIP are drawing a conclusion from incomplete data, and then trying to rationalize it because “well most violent crimes are caused by men, so there CAN’T be a high incidence of domestic violence that’s being unreported!” Never mind that, again, that is the rate of REPORTED violent crimes, not the actual rate of violent crimes. One of the soft sexisms of our society is that when a woman is violent it “doesn’t count.” Because our dainty little fists could never do any real damage of course! So this empowers female-bodied abusers while discouraging male-bodied victims of any kind of abuse, because “real men” aren’t victims.

      I can’t tell you how high the rate of domestic violence against males is, but I can tell you that the official reported rate of domestic violence and the rate of rape against boys and men is much higher than what’s reported. I can also tell you that casting things as male vs. female is from the get-go a bad approach; not only does it create a stupid and pointless conflict, it also ignores people who do not fit neatly into the gender binary. So I think that anyone like DVIP should be treated as suspect, because they are going about things the wrong way and are being defensive about it instead of basing their approach on a genuine desire to minimize suffering. They are now invested in a narrative and will do everything they can to force the data to fit that frame.

      Personally I would rather people focus less on the statistics in the first place. If anything lots of numbers and raw data have a tendency to make people in opposition dig in their heels and refuse to change their minds. I think if we really want to combat violence and abuse we have to start testing school children for warning signs and setting up effective treatment plans before troubled youth grow up to be violent adults. Especially since many begin acting out before they finish high school! Plus more regular mental health screenings during school years would help so many other mental health crises we have now – we could drastically cut back on suicide, help transgender individuals begin the process sooner and safer, and cut back on debilitating drug addiction (I promise I’m not some old prude about that last one – I support drug decriminalization and think DARE was a stupid program). Most social ills of adulthood have their roots in childhood, and if we could just invest in some preventative treatment – something as simple as counseling and support groups – we could make a real difference.

  • TigerVi

    It seriously sounds like Doc here could have pushed Moonshadow onto her current path with all these “statistics”.

  • 3-I

    Your comments on her hairstyle and your repeated comments on how the source you found wasn’t sourcy enough kinda come together paint an unpleasant picture of you.

    • Most people have personal preferences for hair styles ~ I just think her previous styles were better, do try to read no more from that comment than is there.

      As for the source, it wasn’t a source at all ~ the page where the statistic is quoted doesn’t list where they got their data from. I would seek independent verification to lend corroboration and credibility to this rather shocking new information.

      PS, my turn to read what isn’t there … if you take such information on faith, you’ll fall into a pattern of gullibility, and will become susceptible to all manner of conspiracy theories and outright lies. Do try to be a bit more skeptical when you hear things that seem too far fetched to be believed, especially when your initial source is a work of fiction. Doesn’t feel too good, right? I’ll not be repeating such again either …

      • 3-I

        My comment didn’t contain any statement on whether I believed the statistics quoted or not. I just mentioned that you were posting the same comment in various threads about how you believed the data was inaccurate (which suggests that rather than a concern for accuracy, your comments were motivated by an agenda), and that in addition to putting a lot of effort into telling everyone that the data was unsourced, you were making a comment on someone’s hairstyle (which suggests that you felt the need to make a judgment on her adherence to your personal beauty standards while you were busy implying that the people putting forth these numbers were lying liars who lie).

        No more, no less.

        • I’m a skeptic, accuracy in popularized statistics is an agenda in and of itself. Meantime, another thread did help me find statistics on the subject ~ here, take a look … http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1447915

          PS, see frame 92 … personal opinion ~ after a toss, the hairstyle looked much better.

    • Damien S.

      I agree the criticism of the haircut (“just a trim”) feels inappropriate. This doesn’t invalidate the point about sourcing numbers back to an actual and valid study.

      (Of course, it’s perfectly possible that the doctor learned the first stat she saw, without paying attention to the sourcing. That can happen even within science or medicine, with one 50 year old paper of questionable methodology being taken as community gospel that everyone knows.)

      • Doctors are fallible people too, that reasoning is appealing, if not also probable.

      • 3-I

        I have no comment to make about the validity of the numbers cited. I just think making a criticism of her hair alongside posting the same “This data is unsourced” comment several times casts both comments in a negative light.

  • Markus

    According to this study by a subgroup of the National Institute of Health, having left an intimate partner increased the odds of homicide by an estimated 3.64 times.


    • Anthony Jackson

      However, those statistics are apparently (footnote table 2) for the year prior to the incident, so 70x over a 2 week period isn’t entirely barred (it’s an annual adjustment of +2.7, implying the remaining 50 weeks have about the same risk factor as during the relationship). That seems like a somewhat improbable curve, but not impossible. However, I’d have doubts about the reliability of any study using a two week granularity just because of problems with identifying when a relationship actually ends.

      • KatherineMW

        The statistic also seems like it’s looking at something slightly different than the NCBI study. The NCBI study gives the probability of homicide overall against women who have left their partners in the last year.

        Based on the way it was phrased in the comic, it sounds like the 70x statistic is the probability of a woman who was, specifically, in an abusive relationship being killed in the two weeks after she leaves the relationship. Which makes sense, because you would expect abusive partners to be far more likely to kill someone who left them than the average person would be.

    • Thank you. This link is most informative.

      Risk factors aside from the domestic abuse itself include employment status, education level, drug use, access to firearms, cheating partners, controlling behaviors, and previous arrests for charges related to domestic violence.

  • MrSing

    The doctor is competent.
    Moonshadow murders “bad people”, who are all men that have had a history, suspicion or attempt at abuse of women. Note how she judges all these men the same, as deserving of dead. She makes no distinction in the severity of the crime. (Sure, that guy that led the drunk girl away from the party was probably a scum bag, but did he really deserve to have his throat slit?)
    She also only seems to focus on violence against women. Why is she not going after murderers or gangsters? She seemed to have no problem going after them in the past. Why does she think it’s okay to potentially kill an innocent bystander to make a gettaway?
    Alison’s gut tells her there is something more to this vigilante killing spree. And deep down she knows that it is Moonshadow.
    So, she asks the doctor about it. The doctor is evasive and even seems to condone the murders.
    When Alison asks her if she does, the good doctor vaguely denies it.
    And here is the genius part. While she is giving Alison a hair cut (shaping her in some way). The doctor starts to quote (very heavily debated) statistics about women getting immensly abused and biodynamics getting more power. Both topics that are to Alison, as a woman and biodynamic, very personal. This is a distraction to get away from talking about the murder itself and indirectly suggesting that it is something to be expected. Something that was coming a long time.
    Something that is payback that only now that women are superpowered can be given.
    Instead of talking about Moonshadow or the murders the doctor is shaping Alison’s ideas about the justice and inevitabilty of the murders. She plays on Alison’s feelings of justice by citing injustice and on her feeling of responsibility by citing that women now have the power to DO something against these injustices.
    And we all fell for it. Instead of talking about the uncomfortable issue of Moonshadow killing we talk about the more easy to agree with topic of women being abused.
    Now it seems that if you talk about Moonshadow being a monster you are saying that women shouldn’t fight back against abuse by the associations that the doc laid for us.
    Well played.
    The doctor has an agenda. And I suspect that Moonshadow is her agent. And she would really like to have Alison look the other way.

  • That one is a it cause and effect there. We left my father and got away because he went off the dep end and nearly killed my mother. It was the event that finally made her say, nope, and skedaddle. So i wonder if thats a revenge, if i can’t have you, no one can, mentality, or that when the abuse victim leaves they have more reason and are ALREADY in more danger than normal, or, more likely, a mix of the two.

  • Pseudo

    Quibbling that statistics are even that useful for describing squishy stuff like abusive personal relationships, but I’m not surprised by the 70x figure. Like falling into love, these crisis happen slowly, then all at once. If murder is going to happen, when else would it?

  • Arthur Frayn

    What no one so far is talking about is the strong possibility that Dr. Rosenblum is a survivor of rape or domestic violence and that’s colored her viewpoint on this issue and these events. She’s been looking and sounding numb about the violence, and despite denying it, sympathetic to the slasher.

    And her words on this page: “Sometimes I think it’s just another way of creating the illusion of control. I catch myself reciting them like mantras every so often.”

    Learning and reciting the stats is an anchor against the hopelessness and chaos she feels. I believe she or someone very close to her is a victim of serious abuse.

  • Zac Caslar

    Quick note on the average deaths per capita stats?
    Do comparisons. America’s far more dangerous then Norway, for example, but the per-capita jump doesn’t look that high.
    Neither does going from America to Afghanistan, but again 31 per 100,000 is huge even if “nobody I was know was killed this year” feels like your default setting.

  • S.I. Rosenbaum

    Man I hate it when the hair stylist is all chatty

  • Ganurath

    Those are tribbles, not quibbles.

  • Keith

    Skeptical because…? Because you want this not to be a problem? Because if it’s only 50 times or 10 times more likely you don’t have to do anything about it?

    • Skeptical with all new information that seems outlandish. I would seek to verify any such claims, usually by seeking independent sources for corroboration, before I accept them as true. For this particular link, they do not cite their data source, making it even more dubious. That said, I was recently linked this information ~ it is quite the eye opener … http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1447915

  • Keith

    What about three times more likely? Is it okay then?

    • You misunderstand the need for accuracy in statistics: risk factor determines scale of response, or more likely, if there is a response at all. Remember that not every societal problem can be addressed with full measure, or we’d run ourselves ragged in short order by the effort.

      Curious, why the double post?

  • Keith

    According to the US Bureau of Statistics, 3 women are murdered every day by a current or former partner. Does it matter if the formers outnumber the latters by 70:1? Does it matter if the Domestic Violence Intervention program mistook 70% for 70 times?

  • Keith

    Please amend the above source to “US Bureau of Justice Statistics”. And hey, good news, the 2010 statistic (the most recent available) is down from more than 4 women murdered each day in 2005.
    I’m going to go look at kittens for a while.

  • Sabriel

    A common misconception. That’s the trouble with quibbles.

    • Ryan

      If you say your quibbles in a high-pitched voice, it’s the treble with quibbles. Of course, in that case your quibbles would be bassless.

      • Sabriel

        It’s always the baseless quibbles that people repeat with high frequency.

        (p.s. It took me like five minutes to recover from that one. You need to go home and think about what you’ve done. You’re fired. Get outta here.)

  • Kensei Seraph – Terran Ghost

    So I found this comic yesterday and I have really enjoyed it.
    Thanks for sharing it.

  • John

    The original factoid is about the 2 week period in which a woman leaves an abusive relationship, fyi, not for the entire year. This is one of the ways that your premise is flawed.

    Of course the actual number is lower, but I’m arguing that you’re ignoring the scale of the increase.

    13,000 men in the US killed every year speaks to a different issue. Male to Male violence is in a different context than domestic violence (male partner violence occurs at the same rate as heterosexual partner violence, iirc).

    The premise that the quantity of male deaths via violence compared to female deaths via violence means that male deaths are more important is a red herring. If you want to have a conversation about male against male homicides, by all means, we can make that happen. But it has no relevance to the domestic violence discussion we’re having.

    I’m afraid I’m feeding the trolls however, so I will leave it here and bid this discussion adieu.

    • Damien S.

      “This is one of the ways that your premise is flawed.”

      Flawed in your favor. A risk increase for a whole year is 26 times worse than a risk increase that lasts only two weeks. It’s called making conservative estimates. If even a whole-year risk increase makes leaving a partner not all that dangerous in objective terms, that’s useful information. I’m not ignoring the scale of the increase, I’m *overestimating* it. At least as far as I can make sense of the dubiously sourced numbers.

  • I don’t think there’s anything wrong with wanting to investigate statistics further. After all, you can use statistics to prove anything you want, so it pays to be sceptical.
    Domestic violence is a definitely a huge problem though. Other than quibbling over statistics, there’s probably nothing I can do to contribute to the discussion, so I won’t.

  • Iarei

    99% of people leave their significant other after they’ve cut through one or more doors with a fire axe while yelling “Heeere’s Johnny!”.

    More seriously, that statistic’s super fucked up, but it could stand to be re-framed in a way that doesn’t make women in abusive relationships feel like they need to tolerate mild abuse for years because the second they try to leave that relationship they’re going to get murdered.

    I assume that statistic is based on a micromort/day basis? I’d re-frame it like:

    ” You can spend two and a half years being abused, or get free now. Your chance of being killed is the same in either case, but your chance of living is much better in the latter. ”

    It’s a delicate and very situational thing to address though, and there needs to be a better safety net for people leaving abusive relationships than sticking to public places and carrying bear mace.

  • PrincessMarvel976

    oh my god, I love this comic! It’s AWESOME!! I’m an aspiring artist; can the artist of this give me some pointers please? Thanks, and keep up the great work.

    • strongfemaleprotagonist

      hey, feel free to email me or shoot me a tumblr ask at mollyostertag.tumblr.com!