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Today’s number: 54 percent

Thursday, Aug 21, 2014

* Steve Chapman

In 1995, the FBI reports, 9,074 blacks were arrested for homicide. In 2012, the number was 4,203 — a decline of 54 percent.[…]

…USA Today reports: “Nearly two times a week in the United States, a white police officer killed a black person during a seven-year period ending in 2012, according to the most recent accounts of justifiable homicide reported to the FBI.”

There’s another, bigger problem with the preoccupation with “black-on-black crime.” The term suggests race is the only important factor. Most crimes are committed by males, but we don’t refer to “male-on-male crime.” Whites in the South are substantially more prone to homicide than those in New England, but no one laments “Southerner-on-Southerner crime.” Why does crime involving people of African descent deserve its own special category?

The phrase stems from a desire to excuse whites from any role in changing the conditions that breed delinquency in poor black areas. It carries the message that blacks are to blame for the crime that afflicts them — and that only they can eliminate it. Whites are spared any responsibility in the cause or the cure.

Excluding them from complicity is harder to do when the killer is white and the killed is black, as in the shooting in Ferguson. Raising “black-on-black crime” right now is not a sincere attempt to improve the lot of African-Americans. It’s a way to change the subject and a way to blame them.

- Posted by Rich Miller        


30 Comments
  1. - TROOPER - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 12:43 pm:

    Very well said Rich. Thank You


  2. - Ahoy! - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 12:59 pm:

    Good post. Enough said.


  3. - Apocalypse Now - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 1:02 pm:

    We have been here before, too many times. But why? What is so special, so symbolic, about the death of Michael Brown? In the month before the Brown case exploded on the nation’s front pages, 40 people were murdered in Chicago, a large majority of them black. This led to no demonstrations or riots, no news coverage outside Chicago, no appearances by Sharpton and Jackson. So what made the death of Michael Brown so newsworthy?

    Two factors: first, Brown was killed by a white man; second, the white man was a police officer. But here we come to a fork in the road. Was this particular death noteworthy because it was typical of so many others, or because it was so rare? Evidently the latter. Last time I checked the numbers, there were several about 15 times as many instances where blacks murdered whites as where whites murdered blacks. Why do we never have riots over the murder of a white person by a black man? Such events happen, relatively speaking, all the time


  4. - Formerly Known As... - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 1:04 pm:

    A well written piece by Chapman.

    The two factors at play here are Poverty and the Police.

    Yes, there have been instances of unarmed white, asian, etc. people shot by black police officers, just as there are much higher numbers of black-on-black crime than other racial groups.

    But leaning on examples of either situation as an excuse to pretend everything is fine or defend the status quo is unfair and untrue at best.


  5. - Formerly Known As... - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 1:18 pm:

    Though there are clearly some in both the media and the streets who are exploiting the situation on the basis of emotion and selfishness.

    Such selective rioting and looting allegedly driven by people from “out of town” only accelerates our bleeding, whereas events like the National Moment of Silence help stop the bleeding and prevent future wounds.


  6. - Abe the Babe - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 1:20 pm:

    @Apoc now:

    Did you even read the article? Or did you simply come in guns blazing, mad at the notion that another race should be focused on what you perceive is the problem?

    If you had read the article you might have realized that the AA community tries to highlight black on black crime to little avail. I guess after so many shootings the media becomes bored with constant vigils, protests, or efforts to change it.

    The difference here is that the crime in question involves a public’s delegation of authority to someone in power.

    A police officer is supposed to uphold the public’s trust to promote law and order. When it is alleged that an officer might have drastically violated this trust and his agency refuses to release basic information about this allegation, then the public (whether white, black, green, or brown) has a right question the authority that is placed in their hands.

    If you cant see the difference between this and gang or street violence then I cant help you.


  7. - John A Logan - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 1:20 pm:

    A police officer was attacked. The attacker was shot and killed. End of story. The rest of this fever pitched babbling has been a waste of time, including Mr. Chapman’s column.


  8. - Just Observing - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 1:25 pm:

    === Why do we never have riots over the murder of a white person by a black man? ===

    1. You act as if there are riots all the time over a whiter person kiling a black person. Riots, in general, are pretty rare.

    2. There is a big difference between a private citizen killing someone and the government killing someone. When a private citizen kills someone, what are you going to protest? That they are a bad person and you want them to shape up? Too late, nothing you can do, nothing to change. When the government, like the police, kill someone, there is higher liklihood of a coverup, and there are concrete steps the government might be able to take to prevent an unnecessary killing in the future. Police shootings, within reason, are sanctioned by the government. It is that sanctioning that needs constant vigilance by the citizenry to ensure it is not abused.


  9. - Empty Suit - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 1:30 pm:

    As Joe Friday use to say “The facts ma’am just the facts”


  10. - Federalist - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 1:43 pm:

    And the race card continues- selectively.

    According to FBI Uniform Crime Reports for 2011: 448 Whites were killed by Blacks; 193 Blacks killed by Whites.

    Never mentioned by the MSM.

    I would not be surprised to see a number of people on this blog being quite upset that I have mentioned this data.

    What does the data I presented have to do with the Ferguson situation- nothing.

    And yes, the Ferguson situation has nothing to do with Black on Black murder.

    But all kinds of dots are trying to be connected by those with varying agendas with this case rather relevant or not.

    I still have no clue as to what truly happened. Probably very complex and will never be fully, truthfully determined.


  11. - Skeptic - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 1:53 pm:

    “A police officer was attacked. The attacker was shot and killed. End of story.” That’s the end of one side of the story. The other side says the *unarmed* vicitm surrendering but was shot six times (including the top of the head) anyway. What followed was a heavy-handed militaristic response.


  12. - dupage dan - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 2:05 pm:

    Chapman is on the editorial board of the newspaper that has been breathtakingly leading with stories of all the folks who are shooting each other in Chicago knowing full well that that number has been steadily decreasing, according to a member of their own editorial board. Well, that clears that up.


  13. - John Boch - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 2:38 pm:

    Chapman wrote, “The phrase stems from a desire to excuse whites from any role in changing the conditions that breed delinquency in poor black areas.” and “It’s a way to change the subject and a way to blame them.”

    Poor Steve Chapman: He doesn’t see blacks as adults on a common level, responsible for their own success (or failure), but instead he makes excuses for them as though they are intellectually-, ethically- and/or morally-challenged children.

    By his writings, he seems to consider their actions understandable.

    Chapman goes on to suggest we are bullies and how we’re victimizing blacks by even talking about this huge problem among those fatherless families who have been entrapped by generational welfare

    Sorry, Mr. Chapman. That’s the soft bigotry of low expectations.

    That is what is repugnant.

    But it’s not anything new from the political correctness police.

    John


  14. - Precinct Captain - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 2:49 pm:

    ==- Federalist - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 1:43 pm:==

    LOL, peddle your racist idiocy elsewhere.

    http://www.timwise.org/2013/08/race-crime-and-statistical-malpractice-how-the-right-manipulates-white-fear-with-bogus-data/


  15. - phocion - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 2:57 pm:

    Can’t agree with Chapman. At all. The reason black-on-black homicide is discussed is because white-on-black homicide is heavily reported and often sensationalized. Sadly, black victims are largely nameless and faceless if their killer is also black. A depressing fact is that during the 503 days between the Trayvon Martin shooting and the Zimmerman verdict, 10,865 blacks were killed by other blacks. Can anyone name one? To me what is really racist is not giving a damn about these victims merely because of the race of their killers.


  16. - Wumpus - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 3:32 pm:

    Black on black crime is too high in proportion to any other crime. But people kill people they know or who live by them.

    If people don’t get that a police officer killing a civillian is different, no need to argue. That being said, the theory that everyone initially ran with was that Brown was surrendering. We now get alternate theories that he charged/attacked the officer, etc, I don’t know which is true, but maybe one of the 7 autopsies will help reveal.


  17. - jerry 101 - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 4:01 pm:

    This post from gawker is really eye opening

    http://gawker.com/what-black-parents-tell-their-sons-about-the-police-1624412625


  18. - Norseman - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 4:03 pm:

    Cherry picking statistics to prove one’s preconceived ideas has been and will continue to be a human failing. I found the book, “Lies, Damned Lies, and Statistics: The Manipulation of Public Opinion in America, by Michael Wheeler (W.W. Norton & Co. 1976; Dell paperback 1978)” to be an interesting treatise on the subject. I’m sure others are equally informative.

    Chapman makes some interesting points, but then leaps to a class condemnation based upon his own beliefs. Our society will be much better when we look to work together on problems rather than blame each other for them.


  19. - Ghost - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 4:05 pm:

    Just imagine if we didnt refer to either the kid or the cop by their race; instead imagine a world where we looked at their character, not the color of their skin…..


  20. - wordslinger - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 4:05 pm:

    John Logan, sometimes you’re stone-cold crazy.

    John Boch, how’s your “lost” guns and ammo business going? Still paying off big, I’m sure.

    http://www.gunssavelife.com/?page_id=68


  21. - wordslinger - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 4:17 pm:

    – Terribly unlucky, John has tragically lost most of his guns and ammo in a series of boating accidents.–

    Seriously, John Boch, you put it out there for the world to see: how does a law-abiding citizen like yourself keep “losing” guns and ammo?

    Are you stupid? Are you irresponsible with your weapons? Have you reported all these “losses?”

    Or, are you one of the scumbags arming gang-banger felons for money?

    I’m sure you have a reasonable explanation for your “losses.” Let’s hear it.

    http://www.gunssavelife.com/?page_id=68


  22. - Federalist - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 4:27 pm:

    @PrecinctCaptain,

    Your source does nothing to refute my data. It just ties to spin the data in a way that is absolutely laughable.

    Knew I had you when you called me racist. That is truly the last refuge of a scoundrel.
    And LOL is so trite. but I do not expect any better.


  23. - Fight Fair - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 4:47 pm:

    It would have been honest of Apocalypse Now to mention that his/her paragraphs (1:02 p.m.) were lifted from Powerline’s John Hinderaker:
    http://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2014/08/thoughts-on-the-ritual-now-taking-place-in-ferguson-missouri.php


  24. - FormerParatrooper - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 4:57 pm:

    Ghost. Imagine indeed. MLK’s dream will never be realized by any of us as long as race is our identifier and not our actions and character.


  25. - Phenomynous - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 5:17 pm:

    We need a state program to help perpetuate the fear of cops in our African-American communities. I have found that it helps the discourse between authorities and citizens. Why aren’t we funding programs like this?


  26. - Precinct Captain - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 6:03 pm:

    ==Black on black crime is too high in proportion to any other crime. ==

    Is it, or are you just a racist?

    http://researchnews.osu.edu/archive/badcomm.htm

    ==Your source does nothing to refute my data. It just ties to spin the data in a way that is absolutely laughable.==

    Try re-reading it since you clearly didn’t. You are peddling racial prejudice under the guise of unbiased statistics. Your racial prejudice is what makes you a racist and a scoundrel.


  27. - San Fernando Curt - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 6:03 pm:

    Evidently, black people are poor in everything, including any sense of responsibility. How much better to demand white people solve their problems for them.


  28. - Sunshine - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 8:52 pm:

    Programs that trap people in poverty need to be changed to encourage folks to step up to earned rewards. It’s tough to do when you’ve been standing in line most of your life.

    Breaking the chain of poverty won’t be easy and changing the system will be difficult. It starts with good parenting, education, and good health. People and communities working together; a great concept but as we’ve seen, not so easy to do.

    Perhaps Jackson and Sharpton can grasp that concept?


  29. - illlinifan - Thursday, Aug 21, 14 @ 9:49 pm:

    Unfortunately we are not living in a color neutral world. Missouri is an open carry state, so the demonstrators in Ferguson all had the right to carry weapons as they marched. How would we have seen that in a predominately black town vs. how we viewed all the people who went to the Bundy ranch. I am confident many of this would view these differently. It is this difference that also affects many of our views of black youth, crime etc.


  30. - Yellow Dog Democrat - Friday, Aug 22, 14 @ 6:46 am:

    Chapman is right, which is why he is attracting such vitriolic response from the “why don’t we have a White Caucus” crowd.

    Twice a week a police officer shoots a black person, and you think the media is sensationalizing it?

    Blacks and Latinos are much more likely to have their cars searched in Illinois, even though the results show they are much less likely to have drugs or other contraband, and anyone thinks that is okay? It is not okay, but sadly law enforcement continues to defend it.


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