We are taught, nay, we are indoctrinated that men have it better. Patriarchy, male privilege, money, power, wage gap, and whatnot. A ‘Male Victim’ is the ghost that’s hardly ever seen. We tend to see rooms with the brightest lights occupied by men. Nonetheless, what about those dark rooms? The ones with the gloomiest lights of all where people are suffering, where occupants are homeless, where people die young, where they do the filthiest jobs, where they don’t have any legal representation nor do the health care cares enough for them? Why is no one talking about them?
Maybe because those rooms are too dark to see? Or maybe because those victims are not as appealing to the media? Or maybe because what’s inside their pants is not glorious enough to woo the audience?
Well, whatever the case may be, we will talk about them. This is not an article to victimize men. Rather this is just an attempt to put forth some data no one cares to look at. The information that isn’t catered to you on your television.
Media coverage on men and male victims
There is an infinite number of issues when it comes to the current social structure. Racism talks about people of color and Feminism talks about women, LGBTQ+, obesity, and more. The media just cannot have enough of these topics. If a woman or a kid goes missing, if a dog gets stuck in a well, if a celebrity with his/her zero experience in policymaking comments on some complicated policy, if a transgender changed his/her gender, and if a Hollywood couple gets a divorce, media covers everything from head to toe.
In fact, there is a term called “The Missing White Girl Syndrome.” which proves the bias that almost everyone carries in favor of pretty-looking women.
On the contrary, if a man gets killed, if he is molested, or if he vanishes in thin air, it hardly gets reported. If at all it gets reported, as per Sommers (2017), and ‘TheTinMen’ a missing man receives three times lesser media coverage than that of a missing woman. This coverage reduces even three times more if the underlying male victim is black in color.
There is yet another study that proves that society wishes for chivalrous men but cares more about women.
Legal ignorance towards Male Victims
The bias against male victims doesn’t just end with the media. Irony hasn’t lost itself on male victims. A society that is supposed to be Patriarchal in nature doesn’t even recognize the suffering of male victims. In most countries, male rape survivors aren’t even recognized in the legal definition of rape. This means most of the studies that are published on gender assaults, molestation, and rape do not include any number that shows anything about men as a victim of such heinous crimes.
Now those male victims are not even considered victims there is no system in place to help or care for them.
One in three abuse survivors is a man yet Men have less than 1% of dedicated abuse refuge beds in England. (source – Independent, 2018 + ONS 2020).
If we talk about Britain only, a British man is three times more likely to be assaulted by a stranger on the street compared to a woman (ONS 2020).
As per a Gender-based violence study by the government of Canada, in Canada, an equal proportion of men and women are victims of violent crimes. While women are reported to have been subjected to sexual violence, men are more affected by physical violence.
No to Medical help for Male Victims
While the media and celebrities cannot talk enough about gender-related health issues they seem to have forgotten about men. Maybe that’s why the male gender is called ‘the forgotten gender. Preachers of women empowerment are practically exhausting themselves to avail sanitary pads to those who need them. They are rightly tiring themselves by making a fuss over menstrual cramps. Additionally, they are bulging over women’s health in the pandemic as well. Jotting down a list of people who were highlighted as ‘at risk group’ is a new flex. However, they conveniently overlooked nonmarketable data of male victims.
While they brightened the stage light on the Elderly, South Asian & Back communities, Women (especially pregnant and menstruating ones), Cancer patients, Overweight people they forgot to include Men in this group. Yes, Male COVID19 patients have almost three times the odds of requiring intensive care when compared to women. Not only that, but collectively men make up more than 61% of deaths due to the very same pandemic. This effectively means men are 56.41% more likely to die of covid than women.
Men die younger than women in every single country on earth and are more burdened by illness during life.Harvard Medical School(2019)
Now think, when did you hear about male dedicated aid, a law that favors men, some huge media coverage for male victims, or a health care system which does not prioritize others at the expense of men?