On 3 August, a report appeared on ABC News online with the heading, Universities accused of failing to reach benchmarks to support sexual assault victims, fuelling calls for government intervention. The piece was the work of Claudia Long. Claudia is a ‘journalist’ stationed in the ABC’s Parliament House bureau in Canberra. She is no doubt in a position to throw out a well researched report on the (alleged) incidence of sexual assault on the campuses of Australia’s university.
No, not really. All she is expected to do is to regurgitate the manic outpourings of feminist activists who vie with each other for their hatred of men.
Among the details of the unrelenting abuse by male students of female students was the (alleged) numbers of sexually assault – a staggering 275 assaults each week. It was an extraordinary number hardly reflecting the daily experience of most people – extraordinary to the point of fantasy.
Fortunately, the men of Australia have Bettina Arndt to examine and comment on the outpouring of hatred that comes from feminist activists and their many government-funded organizations. Among those bitter feminists is paediatric specialist turned politician Dr Monique Ryan. Ms Ryan makes a good medical specialist as a politician for she seems not to understand that the role of a member of parliament is to promote the good of all people and not use her favoured position to give unrestrained vent to her prejudices.
Responding to the likes of Dr Ryan and the outrageous 275 assaults a week, Bettina Arndt wrote the article below.
Inflating campus sexual assault statistics
– 275 campus sexual assaults a week is feminist disinformation.
30 AUG 2023
In recent weeks our proud Teal Independents have been busy showing their feminist credentials by supporting student activists seeking to force universities “to do more” about sexual assault on campus. “All of us women who have attended tertiary facilities in Australia know someone who has been raped while at university,” pronounced Dr Monique Ryan. Well, perhaps in your circles, Monique.
Wentworth’s Allegra Spender was on ABC radio jumping on board the ABC’s latest propaganda claim – that 275 people are sexually assaulted on our campuses each week.
Is that disinformation, or simply misinformation? This wild 275 headline figure has provided useful propaganda for media stories supporting Education Minister Jason Clare’s recent attack on the universities.
The ABC attributes the statistic to the 2021 National Student Safety Survey. Yet Universities Australia, who ran the survey, said the 275-a-week claim was not in their survey results. It appears to have been cooked up by End Rape on Campus (EROC) activists who extrapolated from the tiny 2.7% of the student population who bothered to answer the survey to the whole student population and included it in a submission to the Federal Government.
(Funnily enough, they got it wrong by using 1.3 million for the student population, when government statistics show 1.6 M is nearer the mark. Haha, those pesky activists could have claimed 339 rapes a week if they’d got their sums right!)
The manufactured statistic was derived from an extremely dubious statistical manoeuvre, specifically warned against by the Australian Human Rights Commission which ran the previous survey. The Commission stressed the respondents were “self-selected students who were motivated to respond” which means these responses “cannot be regarded as representative of the Australian university student population as a whole.”
It’s rather like counting up the number of different models of car in a smash repair shop and using this to warn drivers about comparative safety of vehicles.
Note that this calculation was based on the tiny 1.1% of students answering the survey who claimed to have been sexually assaulted in the previous year – using the broadest possible definition which included any sexual contact such as being kissed as well as any sexual activity involving drugs or alcohol. (About half of these assaults weren’t actually on campus but took place in private homes, clubs and other outside locations. So, they weren’t campus sexual assaults at all.