The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

A Reason to Riot, or a Pretext?

Posted on | June 5, 2020 | Comments Off on A Reason to Riot, or a Pretext?

 

Heather Mac Donald explains the relevant facts:

In 2019 police officers fatally shot 1,004 people, most of whom were armed or otherwise dangerous. African-Americans were about a quarter of those killed by cops last year (235), a ratio that has remained stable since 2015. That share of black victims is less than what the black crime rate would predict, since police shootings are a function of how often officers encounter armed and violent suspects. In 2018, the latest year for which such data have been published, African-Americans made up 53% of known homicide offenders in the U.S. and commit about 60% of robberies, though they are 13% of the population.
The police fatally shot nine unarmed blacks and 19 unarmed whites in 2019, according to a Washington Post database, down from 38 and 32, respectively, in 2015. The Post defines “unarmed” broadly to include such cases as a suspect in Newark, N.J., who had a loaded handgun in his car during a police chase. In 2018 there were 7,407 black homicide victims. Assuming a comparable number of victims last year, those nine unarmed black victims of police shootings represent 0.1% of all African-Americans killed in 2019. By contrast, a police officer is 18½ times more likely to be killed by a black male than an unarmed black male is to be killed by a police officer.

Are we clear about this? Is it not apparent that, however much we deplore racism or police brutality in general, the specific facts of the George Floyd case are anomalous, and not typical? A statistically rare event has been falsely portrayed as representing a larger truth about “systemic racism,” when in reality the evidence contradicts that representation. People claiming to speak on behalf of “the black community” have been paid to promote this false belief, and the media have irresponsibly helped propagate a dangerous mythology. We have seen this before:

James Scurlock was a criminal. David Dorn was a cop. The two men never met, but the cause of their deaths — Scurlock in Omaha, Nebraska, and Dorn in St. Louis, Missouri — was related. Both were killed this past week as a result of the dangerous storm of violence that most media outlets describe euphemistically as “protests” or “unrest.”
Americans are being told by intellectuals, politicians, and TV pundits that this deadly chaos is about “systemic racism,” to quote Joe Biden, but what we are actually witnessing is the return of a dangerous belief system that Manhattan Institute scholar Fred Siegel called “the riot ideology.” People are being killed, businesses are being looted, and the fundamental basis of a free society is being jeopardized because this irresponsible mentality has been promoted as a solution to racial inequality, when in fact it is a major cause of the problem. The deaths of James Scurlock and David Dorn illustrate the damage done by the riot ideology. . . .

Read the rest of my column at The American Spectator.


 

 

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