Campus Rape Expert Can't Answer Basic Questions About His Sources

The problem with David Lisak's serial predator theory of campus sexual assault.


credit: lanier67 / Foter / CC BY-NC-ND

David Lisak's serial predator theory of campus rape has made him a celebrity. Once a virtually unknown associate professor at the University of Massachusetts-Boston, his work is now cited by White House officials and reporters for major newspapers.

His influence is evident in the recent documentary The Hunting Ground, and the producers continue to promote his work along with their film. In Jon Krakauer's new book, Missoula, about sexual assault at the University of Montana, Lisak's name appears more than 100 times.

Much of the urgency around the topic of sexual assault on college campuses traces back to Lisak's repeated claim that campus offenders are violent sociopaths who use "sophisticated strategies to groom" their targets and "terrify and coerce their victims into submission." Lisak asserts that 90 percent of campus rapes are committed by serial offenders who average six rapes each. He has said that "every report should be viewed and treated as an opportunity to identify a serial rapist."

Yet for all the attention paid to David Lisak, the problematic paper on which his fame rests has been left largely unscrutinized. And as it turns out, the paper relies on survey data not collected by Lisak, with no direct connection to campus sexual assault.

"Repeat Rape and Multiple Offending Among Undetected Rapists" was published in 2002 in the journal Violence and Victims. Lisak has recently encouraged the impression that he conducted the research himself.

He did not. The paper was based on pooled data from four studies conducted by others on his campus between 1991 and 1998. I spoke with Lisak in March of this year. When I asked about those studies, he first said he was unable to remember their topics, then that they "may have been about child abuse history or relationships with parents." I asked whether they were about campus sexual assault; he conceded they were not.

Asked who the investigators of those previous studies were, he again said he was unable to recall but, when prompted, acknowledged his co-author, Paul Miller, as the lead investigator of two of them, conducted while Miller was a master's and then doctoral student at the University of Massachusetts-Boston. I asked if the others were also Lisak's doctoral students during that time. "Yes, probably," he said.

It is not unheard of for a researcher to repurpose data from other studies. It was, however, unusual to hear a researcher so vague about his subject matter and authorship.

The survey instrument used to collect the data on sexual assault was the Abuse Perpetration Inventory. This is a long, detailed, and graphic instrument created by Lisak. There are seven pages of items that ask about childhood experiences of a sexually and physically violent nature. There are only five questions that ask respondents about sexual violence they, as adults, may have committed on other adults.

There were 1,882 subjects in the pooled data, men ranging in age from 18 to 71. Assuming they reflected the demographics of the university, most would have been part-time students, many of whom would also be holding down jobs away from campus. All would have been commuters.

Among these men, 120 had engaged in actions that meet the legal definition of rape or attempted rape, based on responses to an anonymous survey they completed. (Subsequently, Lisak refers to them all as rapists, although he does not indicate how many he'd classified as rapists and how many as attempted rapists.) Of those 120 men, 76 met Lisak's definition of multiple offenders.

Lisak told me that he subsequently interviewed most of them. That was a surprising claim, given the conditions of the survey and the fact that he was looking at the data produced long after his students had completed those dissertations; nor were there plausible circumstances under which a faculty member supervising a dissertation would interact directly with subjects. When I asked how he was able to speak with men participating in an anonymous survey for research he was not conducting, he ended the phone call.

(Lisak did not respond directly to Reason's repeated requests for follow-up interviews, nor did his co-author, Paul Miller. Reason's Robby Soave spoke with Jim Hopper, the author of one of the four surveys on which Lisak's 2002 study was based. Read that story: "How an Influential Campus Rape Study Skewed the Debate.")

Two points bear emphasis:

  • The basis of Lisak's 13-year old paper was not his own research but data collected as part of one student's master's thesis and three dissertations, none of which were about campus sexual assault.
  • The most widely quoted figures—that 90 percent of campus rapes are committed by serial offenders and that they average six rapes each—were calculated on a total of 76 non-traditional students who were not living on a college campus, and whose offenses may or may not have happened on or near a college campus, may or may not have been perpetrated on other students, and may have happened at any time in the survey respondents' adult lives.

In March, when I pointed to the differences between the men in Lisak's paper and the student population on which his popular campus presentations focus, Lisak responded: "Are you asking if there are comprehensive studies about sexual offenders on traditional college campuses? No, there aren't." Yet this is exactly how Lisak's work has been treated.

Even the serial nature of the assaults reported in Lisak's paper is speculation, since he did not distinguish between multiple offenses committed against multiple victims and multiple offenses committed against one victim. In fact, when asked about the high number of assaults by individuals who allegedly remained "undetected" by law enforcement, Lisak stated that "a number of these cases were domestic violence," i.e., ongoing abuse in intimate partnerships, including marriages.

This is an important revelation. Even a single rape is abhorrent. Even one woman, victimized multiple times, endures trauma. But campus training and government policy, citing Lisak, are being built around presumptions of serial, predatory behavior from most campus rapists, a fact not established in the data and potentially contradicted by Lisak's own characterization of the men included in his paper.

The high rate of other forms of violence reported by the men in Lisak's paper further suggests they are an atypical group. Of the 120 subjects Lisak classified as rapists, 46 further admitted to battery of an adult, 13 to physical abuse of a child, 21 to sexual abuse of a child, and 70—more than half the group—to other forms of criminal violence. By itself, the nearly 20 percent who had sexually abused a child should signal that this is not a group from whom it is reasonable to generalize findings to a college campus.

Yet in spite of the peripheral relationship between his research and college campuses, Lisak has called for draconian action against students accused of sexual assault: "These men," he has said of "undetected rapists" and "serial sexual predators…cannot be reached or educated. They must be identified and removed from our communities." His justification appears to rest on three assertions.

The first is that these men are "undetected" and thus able to continue a relentless pursuit of new victims.

That none of the men in his paper had been charged with sexual assault has never been established. In fact, as he stated in his paper, in order to "avoid evoking defensive reactions in participants," the survey specifically did not ask that question. Rather, "overwhelming evidence" of the hidden nature of subjects' criminal activity is offered via separate studies which found incarcerated serial rapists committed more assaults than they'd been charged with by police. That is, Lisak uses confessions of convicted rapists as evidence for his assumption that the men in his paper had never been charged or prosecuted.

The second assertion is that these men prey on vulnerable women in a campus environment where "alcohol is the basic weapon of choice."

There is, in fact, no foundation for the connection between Lisak's paper and higher education. This point cannot be emphasized enough: Nothing about the studies from which he repurposed data depended on survey respondents being students, or acts they reported taking place while in college. Nothing in the research protocol indicates prospective respondents were even asked whether they were students when they agreed to complete very personal surveys in exchange for $3. There is not a single statement in the paper about assaults taking place on or near a campus; there is not a single reference to the campus environment.

Instead, Lisak's research questions were more general. Prompted by studies of incarcerated rapists, he and his co-author wondered if "a substantial number of undetected rapists rape more than once" and if they were likely to have committed other kinds of violence as well. That he was speaking of the wider community, and not college campuses, is made particularly clear by the language he used when speculating about how such assaults remain under the radar:

Given the number of interpersonal crimes being committed by these men, how is it that they are escaping the criminal justice system? …These rapists create "cases" that victims are least likely to report, and that prosecutors are less likely to prosecute.

"These men," "criminal justice system," and "prosecutors" have now been seamlessly replaced by "college students," "college campuses," and "university officials" when David Lisak discusses his work, his 2002 paper now presented as though it has obvious applicability to the campus environment. Even his own disclaimer in the paper—"because of the non-random nature of the sampling procedures, the reported data cannot be interpreted as estimates of the prevalence of sexual and other acts of violence"—has given way to explicit assignment of the serial perpetrator role to male college students and the setting to the college campus.

The third assertion undergirding Lisak's recommended policy is his claim that this is a monstrous subset of college men likely to include batterers, child abusers, and perpetrators of all manner of violence.

However, the kinds of violence perpetrated by the men in Lisak's paper, far from providing evidence of additional hidden criminal activity among college men, demonstrate instead that his findings are not appropriately generalized to the college campus. To do so is to accept not only that serial predators are stalking fellow students but that, for example, nearly a fifth of them have sexually abused children as well.

In spite of all these issues, sweeping changes are being made. The Department of Education's 2011 Dear Colleague Letter on campus sexual violence outlined actions colleges must take when an accusation of assault is made. Among its provisions, it confers an obligation addressing recurrence. As Christina Hoff Sommers wrote in an article this past January, "The Dear Colleague letter tacitly assumes the truth of Lisak's predator theory. So it rules discretion out of order and mandates strict legal procedures and harsh punishments."

Organizations such as Security on Campus have popped up to help students file complaints based on the Clery Act's "timely warning" provision (by which colleges must alert all members of the campus community if there are immediate threats to their safety), citing Lisak's paper as evidence that any accusation of sexual assault carries with it an ongoing danger to other students.

When I asked him to comment on these cases, Lisak labeled it "sloppy thinking" and said that he "can't be held accountable for what campuses do." Emily Yoffe, in a well-researched article last December, provided multiple examples of campus disciplinary decisions fueled by Lisak's specious conclusions. Given his influence, it is especially troubling to hear Lisak's callous dismissal of responsibility for how his paper and presentations are used.

Asked to comment on his influence with the Department of Education, particularly the Dear Colleague letter, he repeated that he is not accountable to them. "Show me," he said, "show me where it states 'Dr. Lisak says…'"

Yet when he organized last year's Summit on Sexual Assault, he included Catherine Lhamon of the Department of Education as a keynote speaker and applauded the Dear Colleague letter in his own address, saying "we need to thank the Department of Education for firing a shot across the bow of higher education." He continues to advise colleges on enacting policies to meet their Title IX obligations with respect to campus assault.

To be clear: No one has suggested that rape is a uniquely one-off crime. There are serial rapists just as there are serial murderers and career psychopaths. There are also people who commit a criminal act one time under a particular set of circumstances. To attach the presumption of multiple undetected offenses based on research limited in both scope and subject pool is unwarranted. To suggest that college women are in such mortal danger from sociopathic predators disguised as fellow students that due process is a luxury campuses can ill afford is unconscionable.

Did David Lisak find a group of repeat offenders on which to base his 2002 paper? He did, or at least the students who conducted the original research did: 76 men with violent histories who happened to be on or near a college campus enrolling non-traditional, part-time students. They reported behavior with no reference to their status as students, no reference to other students as victims, and no reference to a campus as the scene of the crime.

In an opinion piece in the Boston Globe this past February, Harvey Silverglate called the campus rape panic the most recent "of the many runaway social epidemics in our nation's history that have ruined innocent lives and corrupted justice." This time, the panic is traceable to a particularly flawed study that has become a star vehicle for one man and cast the more nuanced conclusions of other research into the shadows.

It is long past time to remove the spotlight. Campuses are training staff and implementing new policy to meet the federal mandate that they have a system for handling complaints related to sexual violence with little guidance from the Department of Education. They are relying on Lisak and other questionable research to find their way.

The higher education community might be best served by doing what it is uniquely positioned to do: Read the original paper. Critically consider whether every accusation represents such dire danger to a campus community that the only prudent policy is to preemptively assume a pattern of offense. Act accordingly, and in the best interests of all students.

Linda M. LeFauve (lilefauve@davidson.edu) is Associate Vice President for Planning and Institutional Research at Davidson College.

(For more on this story, please see Robby Soave's piece, "How an Influential Campus Rape Study Skewed the Debate.")

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  1. I don’t believe the campus rape crisis. But, I have known women that were date raped. In each case it was from a guy in her circle who pretended to be just buddies who awkwardly insinuated himself into her life at a certain moment and overwhelmed her. In each case she ultimately said ‘yes’, but not until she had said ‘no’ over and over. He wore her down. She finally gave in. A couple of them fought him off but he eventually wore them down too.

    I was involved in a meditation group in my 20s, 40 years ago, and a number of these happened to women in that group from a male in the group. I encouraged the women to go to the police, but they said ‘no, I ended up doing it just to get him out of my house’, and they also didn’t want the group to be tarnished because of this one guy.

    This one guy date raped probably six women I know personally. Now I would go to the police myself, and/or pull the guy aside and threaten him with legal action, possibly I would beat him up now, but I was 20 and didn’t know how to handle it.

    I think the phenomenon is real and worth looking at. Having said that, I’ve been in a situation with a woman who wouldn’t take no for an answer and refused to leave my house and I ended up having sex just to get her out of my house. Two women over my lifetime did what could arguably be considered date rape.

    I’m not saying this is anything like the guy in a bush with a knife, but I suspect it is a serious problem.

    1. …by the way…I’m assuming he has raped more women than that.

      If 1% of guys do this, and each rapes 10 women, then the number of women date raped is actually quite high.

      1. – “…by the way…I’m assuming he has raped more women than that.”

        And you’re assuming that…why? Given your description, none of the women in question were actually “raped”.

        – “If 1% of guys do this, and each rapes 10 women, then the number of women date raped is actually quite high.”

        And if your grandmother hand wheels she’d be a wagon.

      2. Credibility shot at “if 1% of guys do this.”

      3. Ludicrous assumptions. That would be 1,200,000 active rapists in the US committing 12,000,000 rapes. That’s when the FBI reports 80,000 rapes each year.

    2. I know at least one women who caved in to a pestering man. Not to trivialize rape, but an awful lot of social interactions involve pestering people to get what we want: raises, buying a car or something from a yard sale, recommendations on LinkedIn, where to go on vacation, what to get fro Christmas.

      The solution is to teach kids how to say No as early as possible.

      I have a strong suspicion that the soft police state we live in is responsible for much of the spineless attitude people have. Tell a cop you don’t want to quit smoking in your own car, get threatened with tasing and arrested for disrespecting authority. Society would be a lot better off without cops having immunity, but it isn’t limited to them by any means. CPS threatening parents with separation from their kids, the threat of civil asset forfeiture, the list goes on and on, and people learn to just suck it up and meekly go along.

      How can that cowering attitude not extend to non-governmental relations?

      1. The solution is to teach kids how to say No as early as possible.

        This. Those who have daughters need to teach their daughters to be strong and assertive. Clearly state what they do and do not want to do and stick to their guns. If a dude won’t accept no for an answer, don’t give in. If a guy is refusing to leave their house unless they “agree” to have sex, teach them to tell tell the asshole to GTFO or you’ll call the cops and report them for trespassing. If they cross the line into physical violence, hopefully you’ve taught your daughters how to defend themselves and they beat the fuck out of the SOB. But it starts with teaching girls to be confident and assertive.

        1. And let them ARM themselves. I have no personal experience in this regard, but I expect a bullet wound does a lot to extinguish lust.

          1. It’s just a flesh wound!

            1. I’m given to understand that flesh wounds are an aphrodisiac for Warty…

            2. Ya know. That is exactly what it looked like to me.

          2. My sister tells a story about how when she was a first-year resident, one of the doctors who was responsible for teaching residents came up behind her and draped his arms around her a little too familiarly, Joe Biden-style. She immediately elbowed him in the solar plexus – hard. They had a perfectly cordial professional relationship afterward, and they never talked about the incident. And he never touched her again.

      2. Pestering is now rape?

        1. I know right. What the hell…

          1. Exactly, “she said yes” for whatever reason minus physical coercion = no rape.

        2. Sleeping blowjobs and drunken sex are now rape, I’d say they’ve pretty much already destroyed its meaning

    3. Therefore we should suspend due process.

    4. So I watched the movie Tootsie again last week. Very dated, but still good movie. Anyway there is one scene where Dustin Hoffman has to fight off a would-be rapist. He (in drag) tells him no, quite forcibly, but then later she lets him up to his room for a cup of coffee, where he tried to rape him.

      Hoffman’s problem is that he let the attacker pester him into letting him up. As he explained later, “he was outside my window singing!” As if singing were worse than rape.

      Ladies, just say no. If you say “no” a second time, maybe he didn’t get the message. But if he’s still pestering you after the third “no”, he’s a creep and you should be crossing him off your friends list forever. For God’s sake don’t invite him up for a cup of coffee!

      1. I guess I’m odd. I find the apparently obligatory at-least-once-a-decade straight guy in drag comedies far more tiresome than entertaining. Some of them (MRS. DOUBTFIRE) are downright creepy.

        1. “Some of them (MRS. DOUBTFIRE) are downright creepy.”
          That was because the lefty twit Williams never learned to play a part that wasn’t Mork. He wasn’t real bright; ask is former wives.

          1. And yet ….

            Moscow on the Hudson
            The World According to Garp

            It’s like I can’t stand Chevy Chase movies, but I love the original Vacation.

    5. Going out on a limb here, but, unless he threatened to harm them or gave them some sort of intoxicant, I’m missing the part where those were rape stories.

      1. Exactly! Since when does persistence change a successful seduction into rape?

        1. We need to distinguish between being a persistent creep and being a rapist.

          The former should be kicked briskly in the fork. The latter sould be kicked AND imprisoned.

          1. Yep. Douchebag and rapist aren’t synonymous.

          2. Well, if he’s white and Christian he clearly must be a rapist, right?

    6. Sounds like a bunch of bullshit and I think you are lying. I’m calling you a liar.

    7. ‘no, I ended up doing it just to get him out of my house’ – date rape? Trivializing the definition a trifle, don’t you think?

      1. Also, not to get too crude, but why would you screw someone to get rid of them? I wonder about the effectiveness of this method.

    8. In each case she ultimately said ‘yes’,

      You seem to be unclear on the definition of “rape”.


      1. I would say it was more like they were going to give the creep anything they asked for to get him out of her life.

        1. Which does nothing but perpetuate the series. Such a women is in effect raping herself and helping along in any future rapes this guy wants to undertake. There are very few guys like this that I’ve run into that would persist in harrassing a woman who took a very firm stance of repugnance and was clearly willing to back it up if need be.

          1. “Which does nothing but perpetuate the series”
            If you agree and then latter say, ‘well, I wish I hadn’t’, I got a hint:
            Fuck you with a baseball bat if you call that rape.

        2. Wait, women will have sex to get you to go away? I’ve been going about this all wrong…

    9. – “But, I have known women that were date raped.”

      Please define for us the difference between “rape” and “date rape”.

      1. Well, as whoopi would point out, it’s not ‘rape’ rape.

    10. One would think that if a person was serially raping women in a community that his next would be victim would stop and think, “Oh, maybe I shouldn’t let the village rapist invite himself over for tea this evening when all the men are out making hay….” A fair part of this derives from some stupidity in which each woman adds imaginary evidence to her assessment of the guy (probably calling it by some wishy-washy newage lingo like, “giving him the benefit of the doubt,” or, “I know there’s two sides to every story,” and so forth), giving it equal weight to the real evidence, and so assessing him as unthreatening when no rational unfemale person would ever do so. I’ve seen this happen even in cases where the man had been previously convicted of rape and when previous cases were outrageous, violent, unquestionably hard-core rape. Still the next victim convinces herself, in absence of any evidence of such, that it didn’t really happen and he’s just a nice guy in the wrong place or something. Another fair part is that women in this culture have succumbed to fetishised helplessness. The now, with the technologies readily available, there’s no reason every woman shouldn’t be able to defend herself vigorously against anyone who gets tough with her, the more so if she’s got some foreknowledge that a particular guy likes to get pushy. If women stood up and took care of themselves, this shenanigans would be cut way back in frequency.

      1. This doesn’t apply to just women, it’s just guys look at these differently. My step father was a horrifying man, but he was just so charming to everyone, male and female that they just couldn’t accept that this “everyman” could be so cruel. Men bought into it, too. It’s just that it seems the things men buy into are somewhat different. However, one look at us kids should have been pretty obvious what was going on. Like a blindness. “I didn’t see it, so it didn’t happen”.

        Of course, then again you could be right. I’m pretty sure they removed my woman card the day I was born for deviant behavior.

        As far self defense, I just don’t get women today. All this equality and women can take care of themselves, but don’t ever suggest they learn defense or learn to watch for themselves to minimize their risk. It’s victim blaming. Men should just not rape…because we all know that leads to a complete eradication of criminal behavior. That’s why murders haven’t stopped, no one’s come right out and said “murderers shouldn’t murder”. (I’m not even getting into how saying ‘men shouldn’t rape’ is wrong)

    11. ” In each case she ultimately said ‘yes’, but not until she had said ‘no’ over and over. He wore her down. She finally gave in. ”

      Yes, because every time a person is asked yes or no question and says, “no,” there is a substantive erosion of will. All you got to do to nullify someone’s free agency and render him into your mindless slave is ask him a ton of yes or no questions in series, questions such as he’ll naturally say, “no,” to, and so after a certain number he will cease to have free will and become your slave. Svengali was such a dope for fooling around with animal magnetism and what not. He should have just demanded of Trilby, “Are you a tree frog?”, twenty times every day. One or two days, she’d been his forever.

      1. Not that I haven’t seen people seem to react in just this way, and claim to have been “wore down” by being arsked a question several times. It’s just that the mechanism whereby this should work is a mystery to me. What exactly gets wore out or lost when a person says, “No.”? My default answer to most questions is, “No,”, and I say it a heck of a lot more than, “Yes.” Yet I’ve never experienced any erosion of will, no matter how much I’ve said it. And if somebody makes the same request multiple times, I have no problem saying, “No,” an equal number of motherfucking times. Unless there’s some special situation in which that simple enunciation is a slight inconvenience to me, in which case I may simply stop responding, and follow that up with, “Piss off,” if the person tries to escalate to real harrassment. It seems to work pretty well. At any rate, this idea of getting wore down by being arsked a question seems really crasy, even crasier the idea of somebody getting wore down by someone demanding to fuck her to the point that saying, “No,” one more time is more painful than saying, “Yes,” and getting wrongfucked by the guy.

        1. It isn’t rape. It’s just that big mistake they made last night. Calling. It rape is just a defense mechanism to justify their own weakness and remove accountability. Something many women excel at.

        2. My default answer to most questions is, “No,”

          Who won the Seven Years’ War?

          How many rookies have rushed for 1,000 yards?

          Which countries have coastline on the Adriatic Sea?

          1. “No” isn’t the wrong answer to those, so it’s got that going for it.

          2. How many rookies have rushed for 1,000 yards?

            All of them. Only a few made it.

        3. Yes, one can always keep saying “no,” or stop responding at all, or eject the other from one’s life. But “the mechanism” involved in getting an eventual “yes” by repeating the same no-answered question again and again is really not all that mysterious. In fact, little kids are able to grasp that the existence of a sympathetic connection between themselves and the person they are imploring increases their chances of getting a “yes.” They don’t necessarily repeat themselves exactly each time. They may vary the amount of charm to sullenness or shrillness in subsequent iterations. They may wait for better moods and circumstances. Perhaps the adult attempt to extracting a “yes” knows the same things the little kid knows.

    12. Why do women do that? Let men pester them into sex? I wouldn’t call it rape, just spinelessness. I had a guy refuse to take no for an answer, but he’s was very susceptible to a knife to the throat. I never heard from him again. I actually think the knife scared him a lot less than the fact that he wasn’t sure when I grabbed it. I was fast on the draw.

      Just lay down the law. I said no, no means no and I’m willing to do ANYthing to enforce it, including terrorize you. Are you willing to do ANYthing to get in my pants? Because you won’t short of extreme violence. Most guys aren’t willing to get hurt for a piece of ass, not when it’s free all over. I just don’t understand why women aren’t taught early on to carry some sort of weapon. I carried no less than 3 knives on me everywhere I went, boot, and both back pockets and if I was at home it was over, because I had knives *everywhere*. I would pull that sucker in a heartbeat if I ever felt threatened and the only guys that had a problem with it were the ones who were trouble. An armed woman with a willingness to use it raises the stakes.

      1. I remember the time I went out with a girl and went back to her place to play some video games (whoo, gears of war!), and she had several hand guns; I approved. They would have been better hidden, but she did train with them at least.

        1. Johnny, is that you? LOL

          I always liked leaving a few visible. Now you know I’m armed, they are all well cared for so I’m invested in them and their use…and who knows how many more you don’t see. Even taking a piss I was never more than a foot away from a knife in my house.

          I think all women should train with guns and knives to a limited extent. Pick your poison and then train that one constantly. I can shoot and pretty well, but I prefer a blade.

          It also tends to fix the “anti-gun” sentiment people have with the big scary loud thing. A friend and I joined a couple of friends to a “woman’s shoot”, where they were familiarized with guns and shot them. Now they say “oh wow, that’s not scary at all. Guns are fun!” Changed their whole attitude towards guns.

    13. If the woman said yes without physical coercion, it wasn’t rape. I had a guy when I was younger who just kept asking and asking. I kept saying no. I never even considered sleeping with the guy to get rid of him. I probably would have tried saying something like “Get out.” My guess is it would have been a more effective method of getting rid of a guy than sleeping with him.

    14. I listened to Lisak’s “re-enactment” video, read some of his overviews and an infamous RooshV checks off most of the boxes. Lisak found a true, existing and stable phenomenon and its QUALITATIVE description is correct and useful to know – for campus officials and LE.

      But. It seems like ALL of his QUANTITATIVE descriptions are HORRIBLE, unfounded and completely ungeneralizable.

  2. Bad data begets bad policies. No wonder liberals like it so much. But if there are all those rapes out there (whether by sociopaths or anyone else), why are the big news stories about them always false? Does Lisak take into account false charges and their effects on the statistics?

  3. Which stats are debunked here? Is it just the 90% of campus rapes are committed by serial offenders statistic?

    1. There’s no evidence whatsoever here regarding campus rapes.

      1. “There’s no evidence whatsoever here regarding campus rapes.”


        “The basis of Lisak’s 13-year old paper was not his own research but data collected as part of one student’s master’s thesis and three dissertations, none of which were about campus sexual assault.”

        If Linda’s article is correct, you might just as well quote studies regarding people who don’t shave every morning.

  4. Seems like we are about to have a Bellesiles moment with regard to rapes on campus…

    1. Do you remember how long it took to get rid of Bellesiles?

  5. I don’t think you can base an entire “college rape crisis” on a 13 year old paper and 20 year old stats. The stat I keep hearing over and over is that 1 in 5 get raped in college. I don’t buy it. I think they are now trying to say that if a woman regretted having sex the next day, then that constitutes rape. Rape is a serious thing, you can’t just say someone who doesn’t call you raped you. I have seen this during my time in the military. Meanwhile, Bernie Sanders says that “women fantasize about being raped,” and no one in the media has said anything about it.

    1. And white women fantasise about getting raped by a nigger. But nobody likes to talk about that neither.

  6. You are all racists !!!!!11!!!

    1. Indeed. I totally have it in for Romulans,and Daleks too.

  7. Another good one Robbo, although I skipped some of it after my ADD kicked in on page 2.

  8. The importance of getting this right is hard to overstate.
    For the peace of mind of women on campus,
    For the sanity of men wanting to initiate consensual sex,
    For the ethical treatment of victims,
    For the rights of the wrongfully accused:

    There is NO room for people who lie about the data like this. Campus policy based on lies creates the worst and most unexpected jackboot environment that perverts justice for everyone.

  9. As far as I’m concerned, Lisak’s refusal to be forthcoming about the supposed interviews calls all of his data into question. If he’s willing to bullshit about interviews, I’d imagine he’d be perfectly willing to fudge a bit of data here and there on the questionnaire responses and/or torture the data so hard with statistics that it’d admit to being on the grassy knoll if it could.

    Without hard copies of the questionnaires and given his evasiveness, I’d have to call his theories and conclusions unverifiable horseshit.

    1. ….and no one who quotes his works will give a shit. The narrative is all that matters.

      1. Most activists just don’t know the difference between good and bad research and they just don’t know any better. They’re ignorant and, in many cases, stupid and easily manipulated by the malevolent psychopaths who push, as you correctly pointed out, the narrative before the truth.

        It’s unfortunate and a lot of people get thoroughly screwed by the consequences.

        1. – “Most activists just don’t know the difference between good and bad research and they just don’t know any better.”

          More importantly…and even worse….they just don’t care.

          1. ^^ Yup, they don’t give two shits about the data, and if you dare to question it you are just a rape denier and probably love rape and rape people every day !!!

          2. ^^ Yup, they don’t give two shits about the data, and if you dare to question it you are just a rape denier and probably love rape and rape people every day !!!

        2. No, it’s that they don’t care. If they cared, “1 in 5” could not possibly have gained the currency it has. Rape crisis feminists believe absolutely that the ends justify the means. Just ask them. They’ll tell you so themselves.

    2. It’s social “science” and not subjected to a scientific examination.

    3. And that doesn’t even account for how valid the original data was (never mind its irrelevancy). Lisak’s grad students wouldn’t be the first grad students who made up whatever data they thought their thesis or dissertation advisor would find most agreeable.

  10. They must be identified and removed from our communitiesThey must be identified and removed from our communities

    You know who else identified and removed “undesireables” from our communities…

  11. game, set, & match to LeFauve

  12. I have had one encounter, way back when I was about 20, that may have been wrong. The girl said no, but was not resistant, at all! I took it as “No we shouldn’t!” My behavior was never aggressive when it came to females. It was directed at a loving encounter with a lot of making out. It was just before the “sexual revolution”, so a lot of girls stopped things before it got to the fondling stage! I have always worried about that girl’s feelings, afterward. Was it rape? I don’t know, to this day! I,also, during college, had a 17 year old girlfriend that I had naked, yet never had sex with her!? Even at 20, all those years ago, I worried about the legal consent laws! (I did not want a statutory rape charge!) So, I see these type of articles revealing. The problem, in some cases, is determining whether or not it is a real instance of rape. This bad science should never be allowed to propagate itself, out of emotional responses instead of accurate science.

    1. I think keeping a naked seventeen year old girl would more reprehensible than fucking a gal who says, “no,” when her mouth is saying “yes”.

  13. Nicely written.

    Prior to reading this, I had been inclined to accept Dr. Lisak’s conclusions. I’m now much more skeptical.

    1. If I was not so lazy, my refutation might have gotten there first. According to Lisak’s stats, at least one in 50 men on campus is a serial rapist, and at least 6% of all college men rape. It’s as absurd as “1 in 5.”

  14. Hey, it was all well intended. Facts don’t matter. The ends justify the means.

    Just ask any progressive. Ask Hillary Clinton!!

    1. WMDs, WMDs, WMDs…


  15. Lol, I wonder when we are going to get it? There is no evidence that will change the views of radical feminists/progressives/marxists/social justice warriors. They rejected reason and facts behind long ago. That was the entire point of post modernism and post structuralism. What matters to them is power. What matters to feminists is demonizing men in order to control their sexual agency. This isn’t about justice.

    And they’ve run amok, driving govt and many other institutions. In a sane world. that puke in the White House would have read and analyzed the debunking of all the rape stats that drove his Title IX madness. He might have used Google and typed in “debunking rape stats”. Or on the fictional “wage gap” he might have done the same. They don’t care. They just want to remake society in service to their infantile, Utopian ideology.

    And they are becoming the majority. What are we going to do people? Vote in a another election? Lol. Such people have proved they aren’t fit for a civil society or liberal democracy. Just sayin’…

    1. From what I see, it looks like the people you describe have managed to ensconce themselves in positions where they have an outsized influence on what gets attention and the resulting policies. I’d like to think most people would think this was insane if they knew what was going on but, for whatever reason, they’re apathetic. It may be a distinction with no meaningful difference, though, but I hope our society hasn’t progressed to the state you describe.

    2. This is why we will ultimately be required to exterminate progressivekind if we wish to survive.

      1. We’re gonna need a really big soccer stadium.

  16. “Campus Rape Expert Can’t Answer Basic Questions About His Sources”

    Let me guess: His information came from a warm, moist place.

  17. It is about finding a way to rationalize an imputation of collective guilt, and unjust policies on the basis of that imputation. Even if the data were good, the logic would be bad. http://bit.ly/1JtMBrX

  18. A voice of reason in a sea of insanity. This Lisak character is the worst sort of provocateur since he carries the pedigree of someone that should know how to conduct scientific research and report it correctly, yet chooses to do the opposite to the detriment of the student body on college campuses.

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  20. How irresponsible to shed doubt on this horrible danger. Does this author believe the threat of small-town satanic pedophile rings is overstated as well?!

  21. The chances of this getting play in the mainstream media are about the same as the chances of a boa swallowing a porcupine ass-first.

  22. 90 percent of campus rapes are committed by serial offenders who average six rapes each.

    It must be hell being a below average rapist. More training is required.

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  24. Repeatedly pestering a woman to have sex until she finally says “yes” to get you to leave her alone is NOT rape.

    It’s marriage.

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