The PJ Tatler

What the Stats Really Say About Racially Motivated Cop Killings

Larry Elder at Real Clear Politics breathes essential statistical insight into the ongoing fight over whether or not white cops have a predilection for shooting black men:

In 2012, according to the CDC, 140 blacks were killed by police. That same year 386 whites were killed by police. Over the 13-year period from 1999 to 2011, the CDC reports that 2,151 whites were killed by cops — and 1,130 blacks were killed by cops.

Police shootings, nationwide, are down dramatically from what they were 20 or 30 years ago. The CDC reported that in 1968, shootings by law enforcement — called “legal intervention” by the CDC — was the cause of death for 8.6 out of every million blacks. For whites the rate was was .9 deaths per million.

By 2011, law enforcement shootings caused 2.74 deaths for every million blacks, and 1.28 deaths for every million whites. While the death-by-cop rate for whites has held pretty steady over these last 45 years, hovering just above or below the one-in-a-million level, the rate for blacks has fallen. In 1981, black deaths by cop stood at four in a million, but since 2000 has remained just above or below two in a million.

So what’s driving this notion that there is now an “epidemic” of white cops shooting blacks when in the last several decades the numbers of blacks killed by cops are down nearly 75 percent?

As Elder points out, there was no mention of race or racial motivation in the cases of Tamir Rice, Eric Garner, or Michael Brown. When questioned about the Trayvon Martin/George Zimmerman verdict, “several jurors later said that during jury deliberations ‘race never came up.'” Elder asserts

This white-cop-out-to-get-black-civilian narrative advances the interest of many. The media loves what Tom Wolfe called the “Great White Defendant” — a bad white guy everybody can agree to dislike. For the Democrats, it furthers their assertion that race remains a major problem in America, that Republicans/tea partiers/black conservatives are out to get them, and you must vote for us. For “activists” like the Revs. Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson, and local wannabes, it gives them continued relevance.

In reality, the facts provide a startling lack of evidence in support of the theory of racial motivation. At the same time, they do provide solid evidence that both the media and so-called community activists like the Revs. Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson need to promulgate the myth of ghetto culture in order to maintain power over an audience and presumed authority over an entire segment of the American population.

Ghetto culture is:

Characterized by escapism and materialism, this culture calls irresponsibility freedom, glorifies crime, violence, and hypersexuality, defies all authority, and acts as a coping mechanism for those who feel rejected by mainstream society and economy.

Ghetto culture’s attitude towards women leads to sexual objectification, abuse and violent behavior. It encourages young black men to cultivate a defiant attitude towards law enforcement that leads to the kind of confrontational behavior exhibited by young men like Michael Brown (of course, the illegal drugs he’d taken — another earmark of ghetto culture — only fueled the rage). Ultimately ghetto culture fuels the hatred behind the myth that black lives don’t matter. And the chaos ensues.

In an insightful column at the Forward, J.J. Goldberg argues for a Democrat Party that focuses on the economy in order to improve race relations in America, noting:

The old New Deal coalition put economy first. Minority rights were brought along behind, slowly but steadily. Post-1968 liberalism put minority and “identity” rights out front, along with a broadly bohemian cultural ethic. Workers’ rights were an afterthought at best.

It’s an interesting observation, especially in light of the fact that post-1968 liberalism relies heavily on ghetto culture to promote stereotypes, promulgate myths, and pass legislation that, as Goldberg notes, has no real impact on improving African American status in society. Perhaps it’s time to ditch the segregationist “Black Lives Matter” hashtag and get to the crux of the issue with “End Ghetto Culture Now.”


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