Analyzing the Relationship Between Gender and Victimization

Violent Victimization

2015 2016 2017 2018 2019
Male 41.7% 48.6% 48.1% 46.3% 49.0%
12 to 14 4.6% 3.9% 5.7% 6.5% 4.7%
15 to 17 3.0% 3.9% 3.6% 1.7% 3.9%
18 to 20 2.1% 2.5% 4.0% 2.2% 4.1%
21 to 24 5.0% 6.0% 4.6% 3.6% 4.1%
25 to 34 8.3% 9.7% 10.3% 8.9% 10.9%
35 to 49 9.8% 12.6% 8.6% 11.3% 9.3%
50 to 64 7.5% 7.5% 8.4% 9.3% 8.9%
65 or older 1.3% 2.5% 2.9% 2.7% 3.2%
Female 58.3% 51.4% 51.9% 53.7% 51.0%
12 to 14 5.7% 2.2% 2.6% 2.1% 2.5%
15 to 17 2.2% 1.7% 3.0% 2.9% 4.0%
18 to 20 3.1% 2.4% 4.7% 6.0% 4.9%
21 to 24 5.1% 5.9% 5.1% 4.9% 5.9%
25 to 34 10.8% 13.8% 10.4% 13.5% 8.6%
35 to 49 17.6% 12.9% 13.3% 13.0% 11.3%
50 to 64 10.4% 10.2% 10.0% 8.7% 11.5%
65 or older 3.5% 2.3% 2.8% 2.5% 2.2%

Personal Theft/Larceny

2015 2016 2017 2018 2019
Male 42.4% 43.1% 49.0% 45.4% 49.5%
12 to 14 2.9% 1.2%
15 to 17 2.2% 1.5% 7.1%
18 to 20 9.8% 7.4% 4.3%
21 to 24 5.9% 4.9% 11.4% 14.7%
25 to 34 12.4% 8.0% 14.5% 8.7% 3.6%
35 to 49 15.2% 5.3% 9.7% 5.1% 2.6%
50 to 64 3.6% 5.3% 8.4% 6.6% 15.0%
65 or older 5.3% 7.6% 8.9% 4.9% 5.3%
Female 57.6% 56.9% 51.0% 54.6% 50.5%
12 to 14 2.9%
15 to 17 3.5%
18 to 20 8.1% 3.7% 9.4%
21 to 24 1.1% 4.0% 9.0% 3.4% 3.7%
25 to 34 15.0% 11.5% 8.1% 9.1% 16.2%
35 to 49 17.5% 6.1% 10.0% 9.1% 13.4%
50 to 64 7.9% 20.1% 8.7% 8.8% 9.7%
65 or older 16.1% 7.1% 11.5% 8.4% 7.6%

The strong correlation between gender and various types of victimization has been proven numerous times. The data provided by the Bureau of Justice Statistics allows for a more comprehensive understanding of the problem’s scale. Moreover, in some cases, what the numbers conceal means much more than what they show. I have chosen violent victimization and personal theft, as these types of victimization prove that women, in general, become victims more often (even according to the official data). Both tables indicate that women continue to be disproportionately affected by most types of criminal activities. Understanding why women, in many cases, do not report the crimes helps realize the state of the problem and find the means to assist women in their strive for security and justice.

Women generally do not perform criminal activities as often as men. What is more, they are clearly underrepresented in the criminal justice system. This sphere has long been considered to be extremely masculine, which undermines the quality of services it provides when dealing with both the victimization and offending procedures. Men tend to use the enormous body of evidence and researchers, which are solely based on the male perception of a crime and the triggers that stand behind it. The fact that women still encounter “glass ceiling” hinders the opportunity to change the approach and to provide a more comprehensive framework aimed at helping women overcome all the issues which follow victimization.

The data provided by the Bureau of Justice Statistics show that females suffer from assaults more often than men. Moreover, they generally tend to avoid any type of conflict that may result in a violent outcome. The same cannot be said about men who often encounter controversial situations that are solved via violent methods. The correlation with age clearly indicates that this assumption is valid (especially for young males). At the same time, it becomes vivid that the soaring numbers of victimizations of women older than 35 show that there is, arguably, a certain correlation between becoming completely independent (or starting a family) and violence. Mallicoat (2018) claims that the practice of victim blaming is an example of secondary victimization. Women generally tend to be assaulted by men they know well. Therefore, in many cases, females are not willing to see the judicial system being involved in the issue. Women are afraid that society might blame them for doing so. Thus, they tend to undermine the severity of the assaults and get traumatized by the inability to report.

Moreover, women are often targeted by criminals, as they have already developed a biased opinion of the women’s readiness to report. Numerous issues allow men to think that women will not take legal action under certain circumstances. The victim often lives in one neighborhood with the offender and even knows him. Moreover, domestic violence or illegal immigrant status also play a significant role, as they undermine the opportunities to report crimes.

There has been a significant shift in the approaches to help women overcome such painful experiences. People involved in the creation of the initiatives and programs aimed to assist female victims have extended the original boundaries of their research and now tend to include the impact that society has on victimization. It is of major importance to encourage women to stand up for their rights and report all the assaults, as it is instrumental in preventing further accidents and mitigating the crisis in a broader sense.

Work Cited

Mallicoat, Stacy L. Women, gender, and crime: Core concepts. SAGE Publications, 2018.

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