Obama’s statement in Warsaw on the shootings in Baton Rouge and Falcon Heights refers to racial disparities while omitting any acknowledgement of the related behavioral disparities that account for them. The implication that they represent a racist criminal justice system at play is a lie of the bald-faced variety.
The dirty little secret of the assault on law enforcement in the name of racial disparities is the underlying behavioral disparities that account for them. The existence of the underlying behavioral disparities is a taboo enforced more stricly than the Victorian taboo against public discussion of sex.
This was the point of my my Power Line series Deep Secrets of Racial Profiling. Michelle Alexander’s execrable book The New Jim Crow is the bible of the left’s assault on the criminal justice system. I wrote about it in part 4 of the series.
To take just one example of the underlying behavioral disparities, this 2011 Department of Justice report report notes that blacks committed homicide at a rate 7.64 that of whites over the period 1980-2008 and that black on white homicides are approximately twice as frequent as white on black homicides. Michael Walsh’s January 2016 New York Post column “The myth of the cop-killer ‘epidemic'” takes up the issue in the context of police shootings of blacks.
The Manhattan Institute’s Heather Mac Donald represents the voice of truth in this fraught matter. City Journal has compiled Heather’s invaluable essays here. Her new book The War On Cops only constitutes her most recent contribution.
Rush Limbaugh invited Heather on his show yesterday to take up the issues in light of the events of the past few days. The transcript is posted here.
What is to be done? Heather offered a novel approach:
Rush, I would try something absolutely unique in this area which is truth. I think that when the Black Lives Matter movement has been allowed to thrive by a deliberate ignorance — cultivated ignorance — about the problem of black crime, that you cannot understand police activity without understanding patterns of crime. And the media have basically suppressed any knowledge about how bad things are in inner cities. So I would start by giving the data on black crime that explains why officers are in inner-city neighborhoods trying to save lives.
President Obama’s agitation against the police on racial grounds goes back to his first days in office. At Heat Street Stephen Miller recalls “5 times Obama hated on the police.” Obama’s statement makes six. Miller puts it this way: “Before the facts were determined in either St. Paul or Baton Rouge, President Obama was on television making broad statements about the practices of law enforcement nationwide. Not that allowing an official investigation to take its course has mattered much to him before.” Miller therefore provides “a short history of Obama’s habit of jumping to conclusions when it comes to the police.”
Yesterday Sean Hannity played an audio collection of Obama/Clinton attacks on the police and praise of Black Lives Matter. The murderer of Dallas officers turns out to have been one Micah X. Johnson; Johnson credited Black Lives Matter for its inspirational impact on him.
At his site Hannity’s staff introduces the audio with this explanation: “Over the past several years, President Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton have made a number of statements that could be seen as divisive, driving a wedge between members of the Black community and police.” This is “a compilation of many of those statements.”