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Claims of Racial Bias in Police Killings Don’t Reflect Reality

Claims of Racial Bias in Police Killings Don’t Reflect Reality

“a fuller picture of the facts makes the race narrative harder to sustain”

In other words, the narrative that the left has been exploiting for years now is completely false.

Barry Latzer writes at City Journal:

When Cops Kill

Every year, American police kill about 1,000 civilians. George Floyd and other white cop/black civilian killings have made us apt to view these homicides through a racial prism, but a fuller picture of the facts makes the race narrative harder to sustain.

The New York Times recently reported on a study published in the medical journal Lancet showing that the federal government’s database of lethal confrontations with police woefully undercounts fatalities. This is not new news. It has long been known that the federal database misses many cases. What is different here is the study’s claim that there are more black homicides missed than white. The study then asserts that the undercount is due to a failure to acknowledge the police role in the death, which it attributes to errors in death certificates prepared by coroners or medical examiners. It adds, darkly, that coroners and medical examiners have incentives to prepare inaccurate reports because they often work for, or with, police departments.

But even with the data uncovered by the Lancet researchers, the results are not as racially skewed as claimed. From 1980 to 2018, the researchers found that 49 percent of the fatalities were of non-Hispanic whites, whereas 31 percent involved non-Hispanic blacks, and 17 percent were Hispanic. The federal government’s National Violent Death Reporting System (NVDRS), covering a shorter period (2003–2018) and an admittedly small sample of states, found roughly the same percentage of whites killed by police (48 percent), but a higher proportion of blacks (40 percent)—suggesting that the official data are not undercounting black deaths, and that whites are significantly more likely to be killed by police than blacks.

Still, the Lancet study claims “stark” racial inequities amounting to “systemic racism within the US police force.” This claim is based on the rate of police killings of each racial and ethnic group. The rate is calculated by dividing the number of homicide victims for each racial/ethnic group by the entire population of the group in the United States. Measured this way, the researchers found—and the Times emphasized—that “Black Americans were 3.5 times as likely to be killed by the police as white Americans were.”

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Comments

Tell me you don’t understand statistics without telling me you don’t understand statistics.

whites are significantly more likely to be killed by police than blacks.

Blacks make up 13% of the population of the US. If police homicides were evenly and randomly distributed, then only 13% of police homicides would be black. The fact that they’re 40-50% means that yes, blacks are much more likely to be killed by police than whites.

Now, the reason for that is that black men commit violent crimes at rates orders of magnitude higher than other demographics. That’s what you have to prove. Arguing with a point easily disproved by any high school math class makes you look incompetent or dishonest.

    henrybowman in reply to daniel_ream. | October 15, 2021 at 3:22 pm

    Well, whoa. It’s a little more complicated than that, given that the consequence of a violent crime is not always to be automatically shot by police, much less killed.

    I, for one, strongly believe that “black men commit violent crimes at rates orders of magnitude higher than other demographics.” The opposition claims they do not; rather, cops concentrate investigation and enforcement on crimes likely committed by blacks and ignore those likely committed by whites. For decades, this has been he said, she said — unproven and likely unprovable. But for what we “know” as a society from even more decades of experience with “bad neighborhoods” and “projects,” and tapes of looting and riots, the second argument never rises above the level of “reasonable doubt,” if that.

    Then there is the question of who gets shot during apprehension, and who just gets apprehended. Are black suspects more truculent with police than whites? Do they resist more? From observation, this seems to be the case, even given coverage by an MSM that would rather not report that. Even Chris Rock speaks the truth about this.

    I think those that quibble with the accepted (by the populace, not the self-serving woke as*les in government) interpretation of these statistics do so only pro forma, so as to avoid accepting responsibility. If I could prove that generally-recognized interpretation were correct, I would be a very rich man (or perhaps a very dead man).

      henrybowman in reply to henrybowman. | October 16, 2021 at 9:00 am

      “Are black suspects more truculent with police than whites? Do they resist more?”

      And on this note, I cannot help but refer people to this howler, posted just yesterday.

      Three enterprising dudes used “a stick” to carjack a guy outside a gym. Probably a bad choice of venue, as the MMA champ they targeted kicked all their asses. One grabbed the keys off the sidewalk and jumped in the car, only to be stymied by the standard transmission. They fled in their own car, easily identifiable. When cops tried to pull them over (and here we go) “Instead of stopping, the suspects initiated a pursuit and went north on Interstate 95, hitting a top speed of 98 miles per hour.” Went through the barrier and continued the wrong way in the opposing HOV lane. When that didn’t go well for them, they resorted to running. Were easily tracked down by police dogs (hey, isn’t that rayciss slave stuff?) and hauled in.

      Classic. If I were the booking officer, I would have handed them a standard dial phone to make their “one phone call,” and laughed while they tried to figure it out.

OK. 3000 blacks are murder in the US each year. 2700 by other blacks. Now toss in the 3x difference in the population, and we see that blacks are 27x more likely to be killed by another black than a white. But this is ignored because they haven’t figured out how to grift money from the blacks, yet.

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