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A Titanic mistake? New research sinks the “women and children first” myth.

Another manifestation of Sink Misandry

The Titanic sank 100 years ago today, and Men’s Rights Activists are still pissed off about it.

They’re not really pissed off that it sank. They’re pissed off that the men on board were more likely to go down with the ship than the women. You know, that whole “women and children first” thing.

Some MRAs were so pissed off about this that they were planning to march on Washington on this very day in an attempt, as they put it, to “Sink Misandry.”

You don’t know how much I would have loved to see this, a dozen angry dudes marching in circles on the National Mall carrying signs protesting the sinking of the Titanic and demanding that in all future sinkings of the Titanic that women and men be equally likely to drown in the cold waters of the North Atlantic. For that would be justice at last!

But, alas, due to unspecified logistical problems this march was cancelled some months back, and so misandry remains unsunk.

Or does it?

For you see, it turns out that the whole “women and children first” thing was not really a thing. Oh, on The Titanic it was. But women unfortunate enough to be passengers on sinking ships that weren’t the Titanic (or the HMS Birkenhead, which sunk off the coast of South Africa in 1852) weren’t able to push ahead to the front of the line. That, at least, is the conclusion of a new Swedish study (link is to a pdf of it).

As Discovery News explains:

The chivalrous code “women and children first” appears to have sunk with the Titanic 100 years ago.

Long believed to be the golden standard of conduct in a shipwreck, the noble edict is in fact “a myth that has been nourished by the Titanic disaster,” economist Mikael Elinder of Uppsala University, Sweden, told Discovery News.

Elinder and colleague Oscar Erixson analyzed a database of 18 peace-time shipwrecks over the period 1852–2011 in a new study into survival advantages at sea disasters.

Looking at the fate of over 15,000 people of more than 30 nationalities, the researchers found that more women and children die than men in maritime disasters, while captains and crew have a greater chance of survival than any passengers.

Being a woman was an advantage on only two ships: on the Birkenhead in 1852 and on the Titanic in 1912.

The notion of “women and children first” may have captured the popular imagination, but it’s never been an official policy for ship evacuations. It wouldn’t be fair, nor would it be an efficient way to get as many people as possible to safety.

Nor was “women and children” strictly enforced even on the Titanic. True, my great-grandfather, the mystery writer Jacques Futrelle, was one of those who went down with the ship, while his wife and my great-grandmother, writer Lily May Futrelle made it off safely (in the last lifeboat). But there were many men who survived, and many women who died.

If you want to get mad about the sinking of the Titanic all those years ago, get mad at the White Star Line for not bothering to equip the ship with lifeboats enough for everyone on it. Blame the captain, for ordering the ship to continue plowing ahead on a dark, foggy night into an area of the Atlantic where numerous icebergs had just been sighted by a number of other ships. Blame the crew for botching the evacuation – for the strange lack of urgency after the ship hit the iceberg, for the lifeboats leaving the sinking ship with half as many passengers as they could fit.

Much like the iceberg that sank the Titanic, Elinder and Erixson’s research has poked a giant hole in the “women and children first” myth. Of course, MRAs aren’t interested in historical accuracy. They’re looking for excuses to demonize women and feminists. So I imagine we’ll be hearing about the Titanic from them for years to come.

Here’s another tragic sinking, of yet another ship without a sufficient number of lifeboats:

EDIT: I added a couple of relevant links and fixed a somewhat egregious typo.

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hellkell
hellkell
9 years ago

PASTA!, so what’s the MRM doing to help these men in crisis?

I’m waiting…

Yeah, that’s about what I thought.

Fuck off.

ozymandias42
9 years ago

Is today, like, Ableism About Depression Day and no one told me?

Look, asshole, as someone who did one of those “feigned” suicides, let me assure you that when you want to die you want to die. If I had had access to a gun, I would not be alive today. Shall I describe the fantasies I had about being gone and life being over and nothing hurting anymore? Or the fact that sometimes even now the ONLY thing keeping me alive is that other people would be sad if I died and I don’t want to hurt them?

There is no such thing as a “feigned” suicide. The vast majority of suicides are not for attention.

Fuck off.

hellkell
hellkell
9 years ago

It must be Ozy. I’m sure this asshole wouldn’t care that my grandfather killed himself because he wasn’t a an able-bodied young man, the only kind Pasta gives a shit about.

And he had resources, but came from an era where he would have been ashamed to use them, all that macho John Wayne shit. That stigma is something feminism’s trying to erase, Pasta, you disingenous dickwad.

pecunium
pecunium
9 years ago

BASTA: … but when when only some women are guilty of something, then it does matter that it’s only some women, right?

Nope. Depends on the context. If the actions of some women can be shown to be a present threat to another group of people, and not dealing with that threat poses a persistent threat, then the systems in place need to reflect that.

It’s a nice strawman, but it’s neither what I believe, nor what I said.

Bullshit. What I rejected was not the experience of UNWFP members who were there, because their testimonies were not in the news piece quoted. The editor who assembled that piece from newswires hasn’t interviewed the workers, but only re-re-re-re-requoted a claim that can only be traced to the UN vyerkhushka*, put forth as a post-hoc explanation for instituting the women-only policy. If you can put me in touch with an actual worker who can prove having been there, and that person will testify that indeed men were on a large scale pushing women out of the queue, then I might start rethinking the issue.

To borrow a phrase, Bullshit. You didn’t mention the attenuation of reportage until just now.

But, since I’m kind enough to kick the ball through the new goalposts:

After the first emergency phase, WFP’s intervention increased. The agency started distributing two-week rice rations and introduced a coupon system for people living in affected areas so they could receive the rations. Thanks to this intervention, over 4 million Haitians received food aid. Also, to ensure women’s safety, who most often carry food for the family, distributions took place in the morning, in broad daylight, and at less than two hours walk from their residence.

Which is from UN REPORT HAITI 2010

Which seems to give the lie to a pair of claims. That men were systematically denied food, and that there were no UN agents reports to be found which detailed safety concerns for women who were collecting food.

Until then I consider those “reports” blatant slanderous lies fabricated by feminist operatives in the UN structures.

I shall now use the Patented BASTA! method of refutation. Since you have not provided any direct testimony from these, purported “feminist agents in the UN structures” I shall discount any reference to the things they may, or may not have done.

On a more serious note, you have alleged a positive thing; two actually, one that there are “feminist operative agents” in the UN, and two that they have been fabricating stories to make it seem that, “men are evil and woman are morally superior”. On it’s face this is laughable (and another example of the “gender-driven political agenda” you have), but feel free to cite actual evidence of such agents.

As I said before, go ahead and try to support your thesis, but if you don’t show your work, it’s nothing more than ветернья пуцтословие.

That’s some complex social dynamic you paint here in support of the embarrassingly simplistic solution amounting to declaring that women are worthy, and men are unworthy of assistance.

You’re right, in that I have a social dynamic, but that strawman you keep trying to construct is confusing you. When one group of people is causing a persistent harm to another, it behooves a civilised society to mitigate it.

The rest of that paragraph is essentialist claptrap, which is being used, by you, as apologia for so mitigating.

As I said before, to insist on allowing one group of people to impose lethal harms on another is evil. You are choosing to justify that evil.

Something to think about.

*One wonders what you were tryng to say with the use of верхушка which is odd, in the first place, as it means; in modern russian, “top brass/management”, it’s not been used in a truly perjorative sense in years, even then it was a moderately limited group of people, i.e. convicts in Communist prisons who had been in positions of Party leadership… but then ended up convicted of crimes against the state. This happens to be a term which was out of prisons in Poland.

One might think you were trying a more subtle continuation of the previous prejudice against the UN, by implying a need for political correctness (in the original sense of the word), which would then allow you to discount direct testimony from them.

But that would be cynical.

pecunium
pecunium
9 years ago

BASTA: What separate lines? Lines for women and lines for men? That would be more than OK with me. In fact that’s precisely what I considered proposing as a tertium to the false binary of everyone for themselves vs. women first. But that’s not what news reports about the policy say.

WAIT!!!!! Stop the presses! BASTA believes the press when it says men are being “opressed”, but he refuses to believe the press when it says that the reason for that, “opression” is that the men were acting badly.

We have a winner in the Hypocrisy Sweepstakes.

The picture that emerges from everything I’ve read on the issue is that UNWFP just refused to give any food to men at all, anywhere in Haiti, and there were only lines for women, period.

You could do what I did… google for UN reports on Haiti. They seem pretty easy to find, and in really simple format (a PDF of what appears to be a powerpoint presentation. The language is pretty straightforward. I didn’t see too much in the way of jargon (though from 16 years of military briefings, esp. the Battle Update Briefings, I may not be the best judge of jargon-density).

Otherwise the police wouldn’t pull him out of the line as he neared the front, would they? What other reason could they possibly have?

He’d caused a disturbance?

He’d been in the line before?

He was wanted for some other crime?

Maybe he was faint, from an excess of heat, and a lack of water and they were getting him medical aid.

Tell me (from that still photo) what preceded the event, what followed it, and what their motivations were.

Go ahead…. As we say, “show your work.”

I looked at all 12 images. In image 1, there are men in the line.

Image 2 shows a lot of men in the line. What is happening isn’t clear,but I don’t see them “being pulled out of line”, and I don’t see any reason to think it’s the front, the back, or the middle.

Image 4 shows a woman being crushed un the middle of five people two of whom are male, and three of whom are indistinct.

Images 9 and 10 show men getting food.

Image 11 shows another woman being crushed by a crowd with men in it.

So one photo, out of 12, says a man was pulled out of line. From that you adduce that all men are being denied food; even when the other evidence in your example contradicts you.

Dishonest much?

Intentionally disingenous?

I think the answers are yes.

Sarah
Sarah
9 years ago

About the whole suicide thing, I’d just like to say how I’ve heard the statistics explained. Mens successful suicide rate is higher because men are more likely to attempt suicide in more violent ways, which have a higher rate of success than say, overdosing on pills.

Also, it’s unbelievably insulting to those who are suicidally depressed to assert that such a large number of people are simply feigning suicide to get attention. This is why there is such a stigma surrounding depression, a stigma that can and will only lead to higher suicide rates since it discourages people from obtaining help.

cloudiah
9 years ago

I kinda don’t think our Pasta! friend has a problem with insulting or hurting other people, as long as their women, no matter how cruel or unfair his actions are. Some people suck as human beings, and Pasta! is one of those people.

Magpie
9 years ago

What’s wrong about trying to get attention anyway? How can you get help if no one knows you are suffering?

Holly Pervocracy
9 years ago

What’s wrong about trying to get attention anyway? How can you get help if no one knows you are suffering?

For serious.

Obviously it’s not the best way, but a failed suicide attempt can end up being a turning point in someone’s life. For a lot of people it’s the first time they get professional help or the first time their friends/families realize they’re serious about being depressed.

The whole “kill yourself for real or you’re an attention-seeking whiner” attitude is deadly.

I know it sounds weird to be advocating for people to attempt suicide in less-lethal ways, but shit, it’s better than more-lethal ways.

Magpie
9 years ago

It often seems to be teenage girls who get “you’re only doing it for attention”, and we all know how seriously people usually take teenage girls! ie assume anything a teenage girl says or does is worthless 🙁

(Haven’t got the words! Hope you can work out what I meant?)

Amused
9 years ago

About the whole suicide thing, I’d just like to say how I’ve heard the statistics explained. Mens successful suicide rate is higher because men are more likely to attempt suicide in more violent ways, which have a higher rate of success than say, overdosing on pills.

Years ago, I read some testimonies of suicide survivors about how they chose the method, and a curious picture emerged. Both genders were concerned with reliability, ease of execution, danger to others, and the legality of obtaining the means of committing suicide. But in addition to all of these, women were also particularly concerned about how messy the resulting suicide scene would look to whoever found it. There are two reasons for this, I think. One, women are under particular pressure to look their best, so even contemplating suicide, women typically experience a compulsion to do whatever it takes to leave behind a tidy-looking corpse. Two, in the home, women are primarily responsible for cleaning — hence the instinctive concern for whoever will clean the place afterwards.

Suicide by firearm undoubtedly leaves a messy scene and a hideous-looking corpse. So does jumping off a height or hanging oneself. That leaves poisons — and many, many people mistakenly believe that poisoning oneself leaves the body intact and looking serene. (In fact, both plant and pharmaceutical poisons are extremely unreliable AND poison suicides are messy. Poisoning causes vomiting, diarrhea and, usually, horrendous convulsions.)

LBT
LBT
9 years ago

RE: Basta

Yes, yes, and if men attempted suicide more often than women, you’d argue it was because they were suffering more. Seriously, dude, your double standards are overwhelming.

Especially since that statistic isn’t always true. How about that suicide epidemic among young men and boys in Micronesia? http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/0277953683903726 Were they just doing it “for the attention?” Or does them choosing hanging somehow make it more “legit”?

ozymandias42
9 years ago

I know some women who chose their method based on messiness, yeah.

Also, attention is a basic human psychological need. If you lack attention SO MUCH that you’re willing to attempt suicide to get some, that doesn’t mean you’re better off than the person who honestly wants to die, you know?

Self-injury is the worst in terms of “attention-seeking whiner” though. Never mind that, not only is needing attention not bad, but most self-injurers are ashamed of their self-injury and make efforts (as much as they are able, which may not be much) to cover it up…

ozymandias42
9 years ago

Also Basta is ignoring the most interesting stat. Men and women are roughly equally likely to attempt suicide, but women are far more likely to be diagnosed with depression. Either men’s depression is more likely to result in a suicide attempt, men are less likely to be diagnosed, both, or men are mysteriously waking up and, in perfectly sound minds, deciding it is a good idea to off themselves.

pecunium
pecunium
9 years ago

But ozy… that just shows how oppressed men are! They can be so harrased and marginalised and villified that they move from being well-adjusted to so depressed and self-loathing that they kill themselves in time so short that no one can see any signs.

Athur Miller had it all wrong.

LBT
LBT
9 years ago

RE: Ozy

I know I’ve always explicitly chosen my methods of self-harm as the kinds that aren’t visible, because I don’t want to bother anybody or make them think I was trying to get attention. Bonus points if they’re things that society rewards.

or men are mysteriously waking up and, in perfectly sound minds, deciding it is a good idea to off themselves.

Unfortunately, I think that’s kinda the state I’m in right now.

RE: Pecunium

…the Arthur Miller I’m thinking of must be a very, VERY different Arthur Miller than the one you reference. (The one I know is from the B-movie ‘Eegah!’)

Shadow
Shadow
9 years ago

@Rogan

I guarantee you Basta knows shit all about suicide rates outside of the US, and barely understands the stats even then. Otherwise he’ll be telling us about how well Egyptians have it, considering their almost non-existent suicide rates. Although, with Micronesia, since there are such a ridiculously high number of successful suicides, clearly they were “actually miserable” in the World According to the Bastard.

starskita
starskita
9 years ago

Arg, the whole “evidence by successful suicide attempt” is so frustrating.
There’s so many reasons why one might want to remove oneself.

It’s just doubly hard when you catch yourself, finally realize it’s a bad idea and ask for help, and then everybody says you don’t need the help because you asked for it. You’re not unhappy because you told someone you are unhappy. You’re only unhappy if nobody knows about it. Talk about a vicious spiral.

Like everyone else says, that just makes it more likely you’ll succeed the next time.

LBT, let me just be one more person to say that it is not a good idea to off yourself. Or anybody else for that matter.

LBT
LBT
9 years ago

RE: starskita

Yeah, and I’m sure eventually I’ll remember why. I don’t plan on doing anything, but I guess it does kinda suck having it in my head.

pecunium
pecunium
9 years ago

LBT: I was referring to the Arthur Miller who wrote, “Death of a Salesman”. The one who married Marylin Monroe, and is probably best known, today, for, “The Crucible”

LBT
LBT
9 years ago

Ahhh. Yeah, TOTALLY different Arthur Miller. (And I was misremembering the name ANYWAY.)

Kyrie
Kyrie
9 years ago

Yeah, and I’m sure eventually I’ll remember why.

I know the feeling, and hope you remember soon. I found that when I do, if I make a mental note of the “I’m glad I’m alive, it’s worth it even with the pain I had” happy moment, it can help later.

Bastien
Bastien
9 years ago

The levels of sarcasm are extremely elevated, there’s sure a lot of disdain for the MRMs. I suppose most here are feminist [?].
I’m sort of in the middle of all this gender issue, by that I mean, I’m not really sure what to think about either side. I only perceive that the current state of affairs is probably not the most benfecial.

BTW, «Basta» is a spanish word; it means «Enough». «trademarked by us revolutionary socialists», that made me chuckle & reminded me of el Che.

Kyrie
Kyrie
9 years ago

Bastien, yes many here are feminists. While you’re thinking, I’d like to give you a sense of perspective: the MRM is a laughing stock. A disgusting one. It’s not just feminists, almost everybody* who ever heard about them understand that they are to be mocked. And pitied a bit, because they want so bad to be activists, they just don’t get how it works.
Don’t make the mistake of believing these are two equal sides, the reality is that if you want to divide the issue in two, MRM on one side and feminism on the other, you will have to draw the line at “people who think women are more or less human”.

*the exceptions being the whites supremacists, though the relationship isn’t so stable because they don’t find the MRM quite enough racists. Also too many MRAs want a nice foreign wife.

LBT
LBT
9 years ago

RE: Kyrie

Yeah, it’s this creepyass thing where I simultaneously hold the opinions that I am a good worthy human being who is beloved by many who don’t want me in pain, and that I’m also a useless sack of shit who doesn’t deserve the resources needed to keep me alive.

The cognitive dissonance ALONE makes me nuts.

Tahia
Tahia
9 years ago

You know what has kept me from comitting suicide so far? The fear that people would go through my stuff and thus find out how fucked up I really am. Alive I at least can pretend to be just somewhat “different”; dead it’s hunting-season.

What I mean to say is, before I die, there needs to not be any alcohol in my flat, nor any books that aren’t up to scrutiny, and I need to be “properly thin”. I need to be the “perfect victim”, otherwise people will be disappointed and laugh at me. Which shouldn’t matter, as I’d be dead, but there it is.

It’s just, there is noone who loves me enough, that they would be too upset with my death for me to do it. It just makes me scared of dying accidentally. Because I haven’t yet sorted that shit out.

Polliwog
Polliwog
9 years ago

You know what has kept me from comitting suicide so far? The fear that people would go through my stuff and thus find out how fucked up I really am. Alive I at least can pretend to be just somewhat “different”; dead it’s hunting-season.

What I mean to say is, before I die, there needs to not be any alcohol in my flat, nor any books that aren’t up to scrutiny, and I need to be “properly thin”. I need to be the “perfect victim”, otherwise people will be disappointed and laugh at me. Which shouldn’t matter, as I’d be dead, but there it is.

As someone who has, quite seriously, had the thought, “I can’t kill myself today – I have a pimple on my nose,” I understand this all too well. Depressive brains do the weirdest shit to you.

BASTA!
BASTA!
9 years ago

So basically what you are saying Pasta is that if a woman tries to commit suicide, fails, she is only doing it for attention and not because her life has become so soul crushingly without hope that the only option she feels she has is to kill herself because nothing else will stop the pain.

I am not saying that this is always the case, only that there are lots of cases when “doing it for attention” works for a woman, but wouldn’t work for a man in a comparably bad situation.

Sharculese
Sharculese
9 years ago

‘doing it for attention’ seems to be working pretty well for you right now, cowboy

cloudiah
9 years ago

PASTA! You’re back after 4 days just to keep proving that you’re an idiot? That’s persistence! In case you missed it, the sky gods have a message for you:
http://manboobz.com/2012/04/15/a-titanic-mistake-new-research-sinks-the-women-and-children-first-myth/comment-page-5/#comment-147113

Shadow
Shadow
9 years ago

I am not saying that this is always the case, only that there are lots of cases when “doing it for attention” works for a woman, but wouldn’t work for a man in a comparably bad situation.

Indeed? And I’m sure you cited a mountain of evidence that WordPress just happened to swallow. Fucking WordPress eh?!

Lady Zombie
Lady Zombie
9 years ago

Basta, I worked for 3 years on a psychiatric unit of a hospital. We would frequently get men who threatened suicide, but didn’t attempt suicide. Suicidal ideation is enough to get you an involuntary admission. One guy tried overdosing on caffeine pills and called the hotline. Would you call that “attention seeking?”

The “attention seeking” that you guys try to misrepresent as just some tactic that women use to receive sympathy is a load of shit. Suicidal ideation and suicidal gestures are a way to let people around them know that they’re in distress and need some fucking help.

Also, you have to take into account any Axis II diagnoses. In cases of, say, Borderline Personality Disorder, a suicidal gesture may be a tactic employed to manipulate someone but it’s a symptom of a much larger problem which is not just attention for the sake of it.

But to answer your question, when we got men who made suicidal gestures, we gave them the attention they needed, namely professional help and intervention. We did not discard them because they were men.

If you really want to help psychologically troubled men, why don’t you work on removing the social stigma that exists that presures men to not ask for help when they need it because manly men are tough and strong and don’t need anyone’s help. I can assure you, feminism is not responsible for that social stigma.

Pecunium
9 years ago

BASTA: HAven’t had enough yet?

One set of points

Which includes comments from the UN Report on Haiti which you found too hard to find for yourself

And Another set of points which includes an observation on your sense of double standards.

BASTA: What separate lines? Lines for women and lines for men? That would be more than OK with me. In fact that’s precisely what I considered proposing as a tertium to the false binary of everyone for themselves vs. women first. But that’s not what news reports about the policy say.

WAIT!!!!! Stop the presses! BASTA believes the press when it says men are being “opressed”, but he refuses to believe the press when it says that the reason for that, “opression” is that the men were acting badly.

We have a winner in the Hypocrisy Sweepstakes.

ballgame
9 years ago

Men and women are roughly equally likely to attempt suicide, but women are far more likely to be diagnosed with depression. Either men’s depression is more likely to result in a suicide attempt, men are less likely to be diagnosed, both, or men are mysteriously waking up and, in perfectly sound minds, deciding it is a good idea to off themselves.

ozy, I think you’re making a mathematical error by thinking that if men kill themselves 3x more often by suicide, and women attempt suicide (roughly) 3x more often, that means it evens out.

It doesn’t. What it means is, men are (roughly) 9x more likely to “succeed” at killing themselves (when they try) than women are when they attempt suicide. (“Success” being in air quotes in this case, given the dubious nature of the goal.) As noted, women are much more likely to try, though.

Pecunium
9 years ago

Ballgame: I think you are making a semantic error with the issues of ratio.

If there are 100 men who kill themselves, and 300 women who try… which is the group with the greater need for intervention?

I’d argue that the needs are the same. One could argue the needs of men are greater; and that the targeted message should be one that reduces the efficacy of the methods they use when they try, so that the rates of success begin to even out.

At which point the number of attempts by women would be far more likely to be seen as a greater problem.

The real question is what are the motivating factors which lead someone to make the attempt? I suspect those are different, and as such there is no simple means to address it. I would also guess that the rates of attempt vary by region, and by the nature of the community (i.e. the urban/suburban/ex-urban/rural communities all have different ratios, and further that the differences in those communities in the interior southwest is different from that of the coastal west, as from the Great Lakes as from the Mason-Dixon South as from New England,etc.).

Making it an issue of ratios is reductionist, and I think, whether intentional, or not, diversionary from the greater issues.

cloudiah
9 years ago

This thread will never, ever die. And I am doing my part to make sure of that! 🙂

An interesting article on the challenges of researching what treatments are most effective at preventing people from killing themselves is available here: http://www.nature.com/nm/journal/v18/n2/full/nm0212-190.html (I don’t think this is paywalled, but possibly I am getting access via a proxy server; my apologies if it is off limits.)

Most psychiatric drug trials today—the majority of which are industry sponsored—exclude anyone expressing thoughts of suicide. This is for ethical as well as practical reasons: physicians consider it taboo to give people on the brink of suicide an experimental drug, let alone a placebo, if other options are available, and many additional safety precautions are required to run trials in this vulnerable population. To complicate matters, few mental health experts are trained in how to conduct suicide research, and those who do are often afraid of lawsuits.

ballgame
9 years ago

Ballgame: I think you are making a semantic error with the issues of ratio.

If there are 100 men who kill themselves, and 300 women who try… which is the group with the greater need for intervention?

I’m not making any errors, semantic or otherwise, pecunium. I was merely correcting a factual misstatement that ozy made.

The question you raise is interesting, but it wasn’t the question I was trying to address with my comment.

Pecunium
9 years ago

You weren’t “merely correcting”. If you were doing that you should rather have said, “as a mathematical expression the relative rates are actually”, and left it there.

You went on to say imply the ratio made a substantive difference. That is a semantic difference. I don’t say it because I find semantics to be trivial. I say it because I think them decidedly important.

So, what is your actual point.. the one you were trying to raise with your elaboration on the, “factual misstatement” A statement which BTW, I take some issue with, as the facts of the matter are that men commit suidice at three time the rate of women attempt it. i.e. for every 300 women who attempt it, there are 100 men who succeed at it. A ratio of 3:1, completely correct.

It’s a question of directionality. If one cuts a price by 50 percent, one has to raise it by 100 percent to come back to the same price as before. If one adds the same “fifty percent” one removed to the base price, the price has only been raised by 33 percent; even though in all cases the absolute value of the change is the same.

Your formulation also fails to take into account the women who succeed (and leaves out the men), so the relative rates you mention are also not correct. Forgive me if, given your poor work in analysing the study in question I am less than sanguine about both your motives, and your numbers.

So I looked at it again, and as I look at it again, you have made a conflationary error, and counted the factors incorrectly.

Men are three times more likely to succeed at killing themselves. One can look at it either as women try three times as often, or men succeed three times as often. It’s a 1:3 ratio, or a 3:1 ratio.

You took it as if it were both. You multiplied that single, reciprocal ratio, as if it were two different things.

So yes, it’s more than a semantic error, and it’s a mathematical error, but the apparent error is on your side, not ozy’s.

ballgame
9 years ago

pecunium: You are wrong. The ratio of completed male suicides to completed female suicides in the U.S. is 4:1, according to the World Health Organization, and the statements about females attempting suicide three times as often as males are clearly comparing suicide attempts to suicide attempts. Please see my post at Feminist Critics for a more complete explanation.

Adi
Adi
9 years ago

Only here because of ballgame’s post. I’ll just repost the comment I made there over here in this cesspit of baboon bullies:

I take great issue with people equating suicide attempts with actual suicide. They are nothing like the same thing. Not only does it ignore fake suicide attempts, it also ignores unintentionally successful suicide attempts (a family member of mine died this way).

Another thing it ignores is how an unclear number of people use suicide threats and/or attempts to emotionally terrorize loved ones and get sympathy. This too, I have experienced first hand. It is one of the worst things you can do to someone who loves you. And pretending that such things never happen (ozymandias) is a slap in the face to those who have suffered from it not to mention completely unsympathetic to anyone who doesn’t wear the required type of victim label.

It also ignores those people who THINK they really want to kill themselves but are unaware that it is not what they want. Suicide is as emotionally charged as it gets. Reducing every suicide attempt to a definite “wanted to die” is simplifying things to the intellectual level of a 3 year old.

The human body is frighteningly fragile and easy to kill. In fact, just doing nothing will kill you within a few minutes. The fact that men are more “successful” at it is not some insignificant detail. It is in itself a very strong sign that suicide is a disturbingly male phenomenon.

This discussion is a horrible demonstration of how unsympathetic and uncaring these ideological fascists can become when they’re confronted with facts that contradict their political agenda.
Shame on you!

I’m not returning to this threat so anyone who has something to say to me, should do so on ballgame’s post.

Myoo
Myoo
9 years ago

@Adi

In fact, just doing nothing will kill you within a few minutes.

Um, what? I’m pretty sure you don’t die if you do nothing for a few minutes, a few days maybe, but not a few minutes. Unless you’re including breathing in the things you are not doing, but you don’t have to constantly remind yourself to breathe, it just happens, it takes more effort to stop breathing than to continue doing it, plus, you’re more likely to pass out before you die.

Also, yes, people sometimes use their suicide attempts to try and manipulate other people, someone can be both suicidal AND an asshole, I don’t think anyone here is denying that, but if someone is attempting suicide in the first place, then that’s indicative of a serious problem.

Now, there can be people who threaten to commit suicide and use that to manipulate others, but there’s a difference between threatening to do something and actually attempting it.

Also, what on earth does this mean:

It also ignores those people who THINK they really want to kill themselves but are unaware that it is not what they want. Suicide is as emotionally charged as it gets. Reducing every suicide attempt to a definite “wanted to die” is simplifying things to the intellectual level of a 3 year old.

If people think they really want to kill themselves, then they really want to kill themselves. Their reasoning for doing it may be wrong, but in that moment, I’m pretty sure they want to die. I don’t understand what you mean here.

Pecunium
9 years ago

Ok, so you admit that it’s not 9:1.

Which changes nothing of the rest of what was said.

Pecunium
9 years ago

And no. I am not going to go slog through your post there. If you want to make the claims here, you get to support them here.

cloudiah
9 years ago

Adi’s idea of starting a conversation: “You’re a cesspool of baboon bullies! Don’t try to respond; I’m running away!” (I love this thread.)

Pecunium
9 years ago

Cloudiah: It looks more as if it’s Ballgame’s idea.

1: Make a false accusation of mathematical error.
2: Get called on it.
3: Go make your own blog post
4: Come back here and explain that his brilliant takedown is too good to share here, so we should either go to his place or just accept that he’s right.
5: Adi reads it, and comes here to, “tell us how it is.”

princessbonbon
9 years ago

I take great issue with people equating suicide attempts with actual suicide. They are nothing like the same thing. Not only does it ignore fake suicide attempts, it also ignores unintentionally successful suicide attempts (a family member of mine died this way).

Yes they are. If a person wants to die, they want to die and if they fail in their attempt it is not a “oops! I was just kidding” it is “I suck at even doing this.”

And what is an “unintentionally successful suicide attempt?” If someone is saying “I want to kill myself” and DOES that is not unintentional, that is intentional.

ithiliana
9 years ago

I don’t buy the “I shall come to a blog I have never commented on before to make a grand accusation of the horribleness of the blog because of a post made by someone I apparently like well enough to follow and defend BUT I shall never come back to see what you reply to my post so don’t even bother,” even with the “come to this other blog.”

I ain’t going to the other blog, and I’m not going to respond directly to somebody who pulls this sort of preliminary flounce–but I just wanta say–I bet they’ll be back to see what response their post gets even if they can somehow restrain themselves form posting.

HAH!

cloudiah
9 years ago

I bet they’ll be back to see what response their post gets even if they can somehow restrain themselves form posting.

It’s a standard variation on not sticking the flounce. 🙂

Dracula
Dracula
9 years ago

Not only does it ignore fake suicide attempts, it also ignores unintentionally successful suicide attempts (a family member of mine died this way).

I gotta say, this really doesn’t sit well with me. It comes across as so fixated on writing off suicide attempts as “fake” that they’re actually dismissing a successful one as fake somehow.

Seems like a shitty thing to say about a family member.