Friday, August 2, 2013

Ding Dong Lilith is Dead

Firstly this was not going to happen till next week but sitting here as much as I wanted to rest and ease some pain I couldn't without getting this out. I will say I have rounded the figures to the nearest whole for the blog.

The Lilith report is dead, I mean well and truly dead. I suddenly am thinking of the wizard of Oz here and how wrong is that. So much of my time has been devoted to fighting that Woozle or Zombie Statistic (whichever you prefer) that it going out without even a whimper is a bit sad really.

I have been looking at the Object website and have found some interesting issues with the page (I have screenshotted it as a momento). Eden report (which was based on Lilith) has been removed. Bindel's report well nothing would change that woman's mind and we know how objective she is. Mindy Bradley Link is dead still. Maddy Coy's report is not found either. Holsopple is a PDF from a right wing christian group on american prostitution so damn sure I can't see any link to the UKs SEVs. Sheila Jefferys book I haven't read but considering she makes a living from teaching gender politics would suggest it is biased. Sherry Lee Short is interesting as she was in the area at the same time as the Holsopple report was being written so we can guess where all her information came from.

Then the Lilith report is listed... except the link is dead, it takes you to a 404 page on EAVES. So I did a search for Lilith on EAVES and there is no trace of it. There are other reports that come up first but of Lilith neither hide nor hair. I will come back to Lilith in a bit but to the last 4 "resources" Rapheal and Shapiro are about Prostitiution. Scottish Report is Bindel's work re-written to push Bindel's agenda but is not wholly bad. Rebecca Stark is about American Strip Clubs which is a whole different ball game compared to the UK. And the last report is from Florida. Said it before these have no relevance to the UK in 2013 and it shows the desperation of Object to keep these as their resources about SEVs.

So earlier this year I asked the Met Police to provide rape and sexual assault figures for Camden and also for Wandsworth. I only used the figures for women as including men would have made Wandsworth look worse. The reason that I selected Wandsworth is that it had striptease up till 1996 when the last venue ceased having entertainment. So I have taken the figures from 1996 up to 2008 for both boroughs as this would reflect the period where striptease ended in Wandsworth so we can call it a clear borough and we also have an impact from losing striptease. If we looked at the change in Wandsworth from from 1996 to 1997 we see an increase without adjusting for population of 39% in sexaul crimes. As the Lilith report was produced without adjustment for population I can also use the same concept to show that there was a 12% drop from 1996 to 2008 in Camden but in Wandsworth there was an 83% increase. Obviously 12% drop doesn't really show that much of a change but 83% even considering it is not adjusted for population is a freaking big number.

Now I will not claim causal effect but when you consider the positive impact of Newquay in the reduction of rape at the same time as a club opened you do really now question just where these beliefs that clubs are associated with and on what are they based. I am sure that if researchers dig deep enough through enough clubs they will find one that proves their point in they wanted but all in all sorry Lilith is Failed with a truly capital F.

But more importantly the figures change each year for both boroughs sometimes up and sometimes down, certainly as per Lilith there were bad years and I am guessing the Lilith report was fixed in the years that would make the biggest headline. However taking 1996 as our start point for both councils we have Camden with 1.19 sex crimes towards women per 1,000 and in Wandsworth it was 0.69 per 1,000. Jumping to 2008 Camden was 0.85 per 1,000 and Wandsworth 1.17 per 1,000. It is also worth noting that Camden has seen a population growth of 22% compared to Wandsworth's 9%. Also the population per sq km is greater in Camden which would have an effect in pushing people to share space.

Yes, in there was bad years for both boroughs and if I had of really wanted to make things look better for the Camden clubs I would have included the sex crimes against men as well. As much as I could manipulate the figures to show what I wanted it is easier to make this as open as possible with a start and end point. The start selected itself due to what happened in Wandsworth and the end was because that was the last year I got figures from the police. Looking at the bad years they also seem to coincide with big population upsurges in Camden so not sure if that would affect the increase in crime. I will not pretend every year is a downturn because that would be either lying or manipulating the figures and I have always wanted to keep the stuff I do here as honest as possible so no one can point a finger and cry liar.

So as much as anyone might want to raise Lilith as an argument it is dead. It is an ex statistic it has ceased to be. And no amount of pretending it is laying asleep in the bottom of the cage will bring it back to life.

TonyN (

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