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Screenshot 2016-05-27 15.56.17

From the NYT:

Chicago’s Murder Problem

There was a time when it looked as if Chicago would follow New York and Los Angeles into a kind of sustained peace. Then progress stalled in 2004, and the city has been through some harrowing years leading up to another alarming spike in homicides this year.

Already embroiled in a crisis over race and police conduct, Chicago now faces a 62 percent increase in homicides. Through mid-May, 216 people have been killed. Shootings also are up 60 percent.

A big factor is that the nice white liberal Democrats of New York defeated five consecutive Democratic candidates for Mayor from 1993 through 2009, instead electing crime-fighters Rudy Giuliani and Michael Bloomberg. You can see Bloomberg’s stop-and-frisk program in the graph below of “Change in Weapons Cases Since 2001.” While there is a lot that the Democratic politicians of Chicago can get away with, what with being Democrats and all, they can’t get away with that.

Screenshot 2016-05-27 15.58.09

Guns Are a Key Difference

People who know both cities say there are some significant differences in policing, especially around the issue of guns.

The homicide rate in Chicago is just a little higher than in New York when guns aren’t involved. But when it comes to shootings, both fatal and not, Chicago stands out, suggesting a level of armed interaction that isn’t happening in New York.

Chicago has a reputation for strict gun laws, and gun rights advocates often point to it as proof that gun regulation doesn’t reduce violence….

And Chicago is more lenient about illegal handguns than New York, prescribing a one-year minimum for possession versus three and a half years in New York. An attempt to match the New York law in 2013 was rejected by the Illinois legislature out of concern for skyrocketing incarceration rates for young black men.

New York also hired a lot more police officers in response to the crime of the 1990s, and, during its stop-and-frisk era of the 2000s, steeply increased gun enforcement.

Bloomberg’s stop-and-frisk is effective gun control: the cops stop young black and Latino men because they don’t like the looks of them, pat them down, and if they are carrying a gun for which they don’t have a permit, off to prison they go. Of course, it’s also a massive violation of civil rights and it’s hard to imagine any less privileged city than New York (or possibly Washington DC) getting away with it for so many years. But more important white people live in NYC than wherever you happen to live, you loser, so the anti-discrimination rules don’t apply to the NYPD to the same extent as they do to your police department.

Chicago’s Police Department, overwhelmed, can respond only to the most serious problems, leaving citizens to feel responsible for their own security, he said.

“Everyone has to establish deterrence on a retail basis,” he said. “People carry guns in public because other people are carrying guns. It’s literally an arms race, a vicious cycle. There are lots of indications that New York City, by taking guns more seriously and hiring more officers, has gotten a lot of guns off the streets, creating a virtuous cycle.”

Another aspect is that stop-and-frisk drives young minority males out of town, first to prison then to less privileged cities where the cops can’t trample on civil rights to the extent they could for 12 years in New York City.

In Chicago, gang disputes are clearly a big part of homicides, said John Hagedorn, a professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago who studies Chicago gangs. “But these are not the same kind of disputes as before – they’re more localized disputes.”

Many of Chicago’s gangs have fractured, leading to more violence, said Arthur Lurigio, a criminology professor at Loyola University Chicago. While Latino gangs have remained more hierarchical, black gangs have splintered into small, disparate factions, whose disputes are less over territory and profits, and more over personal insults or shames, often fueled by social media, he said.

The late Gakirah Barnes

… In addition to making threats, individuals at times post their location on social media to prove to rivals that they’re tough, he said.

In one well-known instance, Gakirah Barnes, a Chicago gang member who was rumored to have killed or shot up to 20 rival gang members, referenced an address she frequented on Twitter.

Gakirah was a teenage girl.

In the tweet, provided by Dr. Patton, Ms. Barnes says “Lz,” which has multiple meanings in Chicago gang cultures, including living life, at address number 6347. Later that day, she was shot and killed near the address.

… “The shootings today are more spontaneous over day-to-day humiliations of youthful African-Americans,” he said.

In other words, legalizing drugs wouldn’t do much to stop Chicago blacks from shooting each other so much. They’ve largely been squeezed out of serious drug businesses, such as by the Mexican cartels, so they’re just shooting each other over low-level knuckleheadedness.

Of course, nobody wants to live around people like Gakirah Barnes who can afford not to. So, the places where the Garkirah Barneses live are “segregated,” which gives the NYT something to blame the proliferation of Gakirah Barneses upon besides Garkirah Barnes and her parents, cousins, and friends. It’s the fault of “segregation:”

Crime Persists in Chicago’s Most Segregated Neighborhoods

Whether exacerbated by gangs or guns, though, Chicago’s killings are happening on familiar turf: Its poor, extremely segregated neighborhoods on the South and West Sides. And many say that is Chicago’s real violence issue.

“Where do gangs come from? They tend to take root in the very same neighborhoods that drive these other problems,” said Robert J. Sampson, a professor at Harvard and the author of “Great American City: Chicago and the Enduring Neighborhood Effect.” “You can’t divorce the gang problem from the problem of deep concentrations of poverty.”

“What predicts violent crime rates is concentrated poverty and neighborhood disadvantage, and what determines concentrated poverty is high levels of black segregation combined with high levels of black poverty,” said Douglas S. Massey, a sociology professor at Princeton University.

In Chicago, homicide rates correspond with segregation. While many areas have few or no killings, the South and West Sides are on par with the world’s most dangerous countries, like Brazil and Venezuela, and have been for many years.

Screenshot 2016-05-27 17.13.24

Well, the Austin neighborhood on the West Side (next door to still nearly crime-free Oak Park, IL) was segregated up until Martin Luther King came to Chicago and demanded open housing. Oddly, enough, Austin was basically crime free when it was all white. (So “segregation” is a euphemism for a neighborhood being filled with the dregs of the black race so that nobody else except blacks will live next to them. In contrast, there are completely black neighborhoods in Chicago, like Avalon Park, that are pretty much 100% black but have much lower homicide rates because they are middle class blacks.)

My in-laws, being nice liberal public school teachers and classical musicians, joined a liberal organization devoted to making integration work by promising not to sell out. Three years later, their children had been subjected to three felonies and the value of their two flat had fallen in half. They sold out.

So I guess it’s all their fault that Austin is the way it is.

Anyway, I think there are a few things going on that aren’t being mentioned in the article. First, I don’t think the crack wars of the early 1990s were ever that bad in Chicago, so they didn’t purge Chicago to the same extent of its most violent thugs, as tended to happen in NYC and LA. Also, rent didn’t go up as much in Chicago as in the two larger cities, so the black population has only recently started to fall. Another thing that’s going in NYC that’s kind of subtle is that more middle class West Indian and African blacks are replacing downscale American blacks to a greater extent than in Chicago. Also, there’s some evidence that the number of American black males in NYC is way down due to imprisonment and moving out to avoid stop-and-frisk, but that’s kind of tough to tell because it could be just black men dropping off the grid.

• Category: Race/Ethnicity • Tags: Black Crime, Race/Crime 
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With the Los Angeles suburb of Compton back in the news due to the hit biopic “Straight Outta Compton” about the 1980s gangsta rap group N.W.A., it’s worth noting that Compton has a pretty interesting real estate history. In the 1950s and 1960s, Compton represented the black version of what Kevin Starr and Benjamin Schwarz call “the California Dream” of pleasant lower middle class life for the masses.

With Ta-Nehisi Coates popularizing the genre of real estate histories, lets look at a less tendentious academic work covering Compton, the U. of California Press book, L.A. City Limits: African American Los Angeles from the Great Depression to the Present by historian Josh Sides, director of the Center for Southern California Studies at Cal State Northridge in the San Fernando Valley.

“Ganton” in Grand Theft Auto

One of Los Angeles’ older independent suburbs, conveniently located a little over halfway from downtown L.A. to the L.A. / Long Beach Harbor, Compton started out pretty much all-white until the courts banned restrictive covenants in 1948.

Compton offered its predominantly blue-collar residents affordable suburban homes in the heart of a thriving industrial area. … During the 1940s, Compton eagerly annexed almost fifteen hundred acres, hoping that added resident and industrial growth would contribute to the city’s already substantial tax base.

Compton was nice enough that two future Presidents lived in Compton in 1949-50: George H.W. Bush and George W. Bush.

George W. Bush, Compton, CA 1949

This tax base allowed the city to develop a strong public educational system …

As late as 1948, fewer than fifty African Americans lived in among Compton’s forty-five thousand residents. … Yet during the 1950s, Compton underwent the most profound racial change of any city in Southern California. Responding to the great demand for African American housing outside the ghetto, a new group of tract home developers and real estate brokers found a niche in the unrestricted housing market. … This undeveloped property became a fertile area for the growth of the city’s black population. Davenport builders, a large developer, quickly built unrestricted tract homes on the western edge of Compton. … This was one of the few places in Los Angeles County where blacks could buy new tract housing. … “For once, the Negro did not move into slums; for once he came into good housing.” Indeed, the 1960 census revealed that 93 percent of blacks in Compton lived in homes built since 1940, with more than half residing in homes built since 1950. Compton’s houses were also large: almost 75 percent of black households in Compton had four to five rooms.

Keep in mind that “large” by postwar L.A. County standards is not large by 21st Century national standards. A sizable fraction of the housing in L.A. County was built during the egalitarian decades after Pearl Harbor when the emphasis was on quickly and cheaply providing single family homes for the huge growth in population that got into high gear during the War. These days it’s easy to think that back then they should have known how much the land would eventually be worth and thus build on a more sumptuous scale, as some pre-1929 stock market crash communities like Pasadena and Hancock Park were laid out with ample amenities.

But the emphasis after the extreme overcrowding in SoCal during WWII was on building fast and cheap. This was most vividly conveyed to me by a 1946 Robert A. Heinlein non-sci-fi short story about local Southern California politics called “A Bathroom of Her Own.” In it, an experienced political staffer (i.e., RAH) teams up with a talented female political novice (presumably, the 3rd Mrs. Heinlein) to get her elected on a platform of getting houses built fast for the returning troops. Her motivation is that she’s been bunking with her relatives throughout the War, and now after a half-decade, she wants a bathroom of her own, and thinks others should have some privacy and space too.

My parents bought their first house in 1946, a duplex in Sun Valley near Lockheed. My impression is that they didn’t make any money on their investment when they sold it five years later because the supply of housing was so much larger by 1951 than it had been 1946.

Compton was not part of the Watts’ riot of 1965. Sides continues:

… Despite the persistence of racism in Compton, African Americans truly benefited from their suburban relocation. Indeed, the much vaunted suburban dream of peace comfort came true for the thousands of blue-collar African-Americans who moved ot Compton during the 1950s. When white novelist and journalist Richard Elman visited Compton in the 1960s, he was amazed by this new black suburbia:

… Here, it seems, a man has a chance to find decent housing and educate his children. Here it is possible ot enjoy the great lower middle class dream of private life without feeling as if one were in a private hell.

Furthermore, Elman observed, Compton’s superior racially integrated schools created a much better crop of blacks students that could be found in the ghettos of Watts or South Central: “Compton has become a city which sends its Negro high-school graduates to state colleges, to Berkeley and UCLA, and some even can afford to go as far away as Fisk.” Locally, black families increasingly sent their children to Compton Community College, considered at the time to be one of the state’s best community colleges.

As in West Adams, African Americans in Compton perceived themselves(and were perceived by others) as middle class. Elman noticed that in Compton, “people never tire of telling you: “We’re different here than in Watts.’” And they certainly were. … While unemployment passed 30 percent in Watts, it stood at 8.7 percent in Compton. Compared to Watts, a mcuh higher proportion of men and women in Compton worked as full-time factory operatives. …

For Compton’s residents, the city was far from the ghetto. …

In contrast to the physical deterioration of Watts, Compton’s proud black homeowners had meticulously groomed gardens and, for the most part, well-maintained housing.

• Category: Race/Ethnicity • Tags: Blacks, Compton, Race/Crime 
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I was walking down Ventura Blvd. a few days ago, when I saw a wiry Latino man lying in the driveway leading to the big parking garage. I went over and told him to get up, somebody was going to to make a quick turn into the driveway and crush his skull like a ripe melon, and that wasn’t fair to the poor driver. He opened his mouth and a big cloud of marijuana smoke came out. He sat up, then rolled over and went back to sleep with his head in the driveway.

So I got out my phone and called 911. I stood there blocking the driveway for about 3 minutes until a fire department ambulance pulled up to deal with him and then I went on my way.

That got me thinking about the Kitty Genovese story.

When I was growing up in the 1960s and 1970s, one of the most famous Moral Lessons of Our Time was the 1964 murder of Kitty Genovese. It came up all the time in editorials, sermons, graduation speeches, and other forms of upbraiding uplift: All Americans were guilty of apathy, of not wanting to get involved.

The one thing the murder of Kitty Genovese didn’t have much to do with in the respectable discourse of the time was crime. Or if it did, it was proof that Society’s Apathy was preventing us from dealing with the Root Causes of Crime, such as poverty.

The official lesson that respectable, law-abiding citizens were to blame for the woman’s murder was driven home by the famous first sentence of the New York Times article about

“For more than half an hour thirty-eight respectable, law-abiding citizens in Queens watched a killer stalk and stab a woman in three separate attacks in Kew Gardens.”

That turns out to have been quite exaggerated, although still true to some extent.

There really often is a “bystander effect” in which individual witnesses assume that somebody else will get around to calling the cops.

For example, I can recall a fireman coming to visit St. Francis de Sales in the late 1960s to talk about Fire Safety. He told us about a lumberyard that a thousand people watched burn to the ground over two hours but nobody called the fire department because everyone assumed somebody else in the big crowd had.

I took that lesson to heart.

But the fireman’s story about the lumberyard was memorable because it was kind of funny, while the Kitty Genovese parable was usually presented in a morally bullying Sixties fashion about What’s Wrong With Society. That’s why Kitty Genovese is in all the Social Psychology textbooks — not to remind you to call 911 if you hear something suspicious, but because it’s part of the narrative of American Society’s Guilt.

But the more I think about the Kitty Genovese story, the more I think it reflects the kind of distractionary tactics we’ve should have become familiar with since then. The story was pushed hard by NYT editor A.M. Rosenthal, who was kind of a genius and kind of not quite right in the head. (Nicholas Lemann’s article in The New Yorker about Rosenthal’s role in framing the story describes his writing as “wildly emotional,” which I too noticed back in the day.)

There really were big, frightening changes going on in American society in 1964, and the Kitty Genovese case was reflective of them, but they weren’t ones that we were supposed to talk about. So we all ended up talking obediently about Apathy.

Looking back, Kitty Genovese’s murder seems reflective of two big 1960s changes, just not the ones we were supposed to notice:

1960s image of mugger (a great Baloo cartoon)

First, I had never heard until very recently that the murderer, Winston Moseley, was black. A historic black crime wave was washing over New York City in 1964, but the race of the confessed killer wasn’t mentioned in the famous NYT article. In fact, I don’t recall the killer’s race ever being mentioned in the 1960s/1970s. As a child, I just assumed he looked like all the muggers in cartoons then. I can see now that mentioning that the killer was black would have been distracting from the political lessons White America was supposed to be drawing at the climax of the Civil Rights era.

As feminist Susan Brownmiller pointed out in the 1970s, sex crimes tended to have political connotations. The big increase in black-on-white sex crimes in New York City, Brownmiller suggested, wasn’t unrelated to the black liberation and black power ideology. (Brownmiller called out the Left’s celebration of books by Franz Fanon and boastful rapist Eldridge Cleaver as indicative.) But that’s complicated and distasteful, so let talk about Apathy.

As D. K. points out in the comments, the New York Times article and Rosenthal’s subsequent book didn’t mention that the murder started out as an attempted rape. I would guess that there were multiple reasons for this, but likely there’s nothing more sensitive for liberals than black men raping white women, since it seems to be a side effect of black liberation (e.g., Reconstruction, the 1960s, and South Africa in the Mandela Era).

Second, Moseley was a serial killer avant la lettre, a sex maniac who confessed to murdering two other women for thrills. He wasn’t just some complete loser: he had a white collar job, a wife, two kids, a mortgage, and a 3 digit IQ. He was just evil. The jury gave him the death penalty, but an appeals court let him off with life, at which point he escaped from prison and kidnapped and raped another woman before being recaptured. Moseley’s still in prison and every two years tries out a new theory on the parole board about why, if you stop and think, he’s the real victim.

But, as Bill James’ recent book, Popular Crime, noted, the concept of “serial killer” didn’t really exist yet, so there wasn’t a conceptual nook for Moseley. Moreover, although there had been what we’d think of as serial killers in the past, they appear, if James can be trusted on this subject, to have grown enormously in numbers in the 1960s and the 1970s, the objective correlative of the madness of the times.

Now that I think about it, I’m struck that I never noticed Moseley’s story before because it’s so familiar. He sounds like he was made up by irate Silent Majority callers to talk radio complaining about liberal judges. Of course, the callers probably were referring to Moseley. His further adventures were covered in the newspapers, but Moseley didn’t become part of The Narrative of the era. The Narrative is controlled in the retelling of the story.

• Category: Race/Ethnicity • Tags: American Media, Race/Crime 
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One of the creepier experiences I had last year was walking past the TV as the local news reported on a woman who had been knifed repeatedly in the neck and face by a robber in her apartment. As the broadcast introduced more details about the nameless victim, I started to feel a horrible sense of inevitability: the victim was somebody I knew. Finally, when the reporter mentioned the victim had been a Peace Corps volunteer, I found my wife to tell her that some intruder had attempted to murder her friend T., but that she was in stable condition in the hospital.

Just two weeks later, T. was back at work, speaking through a voice amplifier. She said that while doing paperwork on her bed on Saturday night, she had fallen asleep and failed to lock her door. The robber had walked in at dawn and awakened her. When she said, “Take my laptop, he replied, “But you’ve seen my face,” and startedstabbing her (seven times, by one report). Her screaming brought neighbors out of their apartments, so the would-be killer made a run for it, taking her computer, cell phone, and credit card.

He wasn’t exactly a criminal mastermind. He used her credit card at his local Jack-in-the-Box and called all his friends in his Latino street gang on her cell phone. When the cops came down hard on thegangmates, they rolled over on him and said he always went to Jack’s for breakfast. There, the police collared him the next day.

This 19-year-old idiot’s criminal career reminded me that the real sociological mystery is not why the crime rate came down after its crack-driven peak in the early 1990s (when, for example, New York City alone experienced over 4,000 murders in just 1990-1991), but—why it hasn’t fallen farther?

According to the FBI, the number of homicides dropped sharply from 1992-1999, but has gone up slightly since then.

It’s traditionally said that crime doesn’t pay. That’s not necessarily true for organized criminals. But it’s becoming ever truer for run-of-the-mill disorganized criminals.

Think how easy it was to steal stuff back when crime was just starting to boom in the mid-1960s. In those innocent day s, many folks not only parked their carsunlocked in their driveways overnight, for example, but left their car keys in the ignition! You could pursue a lucrative career in auto theft just by climbing into random cars and driving them away.

One of my earliest memories of reading the news in the mid-1960s is of all the articles warning citizens to start taking their car keys withthem. But even when that lesson sunk in, many people still didn’t locktheir cars. A common memory of my boyhood is my father and I seeing a parked car with its headlights left on, so he’d open the car door and switch them off before the battery drained down. In thattrusting era, thieves merely had to hotwire the ignition.

And even if they got caught, punishment was light back in those naively liberal days. Indeed, the imprisonment rate was lower in 1975 than in 1960, although the murder rate had more than doubled.

In response, owners began to lock their cars. Since my childhood, I’ve tried a few dozen times to turn off the headlights of strangers’ cars, but the last time the car turned out be open was 1972. Andautomakers began armor plating the ignition system, and then building steering wheel locking system.

As it became harder for crooks to steal cars in toto, they started smashing the windows and prying out the expensive new 8-Trackstereos. This set off a defensive arms race to harden the target that isstill going on. Ultimately, though, electronic in-dash gizmos got so cheap that these days it really isn’t worth fighting past all the defenses just to sell the loot to a fence for a small fraction of its heavilydiscounted retail price.

Similarly, the public’s shift from carrying cash to plastic has made robbery a more risky business because using a stolen credit card leaves an electronic trail.

When my wife dropped her credit card in the Costco parking lot, the person who picked it up got away with spending $1,800 at six grocery stores in a couple of hours (buying alcohol, I would guess, because liquor is quicker to stock up on than anything else). He or she knew the cops were unlikely to watch security camera tapes and interview checkout clerks just to track down a nonviolent credit card fraudster.

On the other hand, the police took the intruder who stabbed our Peace Corp volunteer friend multiple times very seriously. They used therecords from the stolen credit card and cell phone to put him behind bars in just over 24 hours.

And then there are all the advances in forensic technology, such as DNA testing, that are so heavily publicized in television dramas.

The public’s biggest defensive move, of course: moving to the suburbs, far away from the bad guys. In contrast to Britain’s more enterprising urban criminals, who routinely drive 50 or 100 miles out into the countryside to commit home invasions, American hoods don’t like to leave the ‘hood. Homeboys aren’t comfortable away from home—fortunately.

It must be discouraging to be a career criminal these days. You can still sell drugs, of course, but there haven’t been many hot new productslike crack in years.

This doesn’t mean that these days there aren’t a lot of young men who want to be career criminals. But now, they get caught faster andget out of jail slower. The imprisonment rate is quadruple what it was in 1975.

But one side effect of the lower crime rate in this decade is that the media thinks even less cogently about crime. For instance, the WallStreet Journal editorialized on New Year’s Eve [Keeping Book on Immigration]:

“Today, immigrants on balance are five times less likely to be in prison than someone born here.”

My comments:

A. I doubt if the study the WSJ is citing is methodologically reliable. The government does a terrible job of keeping track of immigrants. Statistics that are driven by illegal immigrants, such as the immigrant crime rate, are inherently untrustworthy.

B. On average, immigrants haven’t been in the country as long as natives, so they have less time to wind up in jail.

C. Many immigrant criminals get deported after their terms are up—one strike and you’re out. Well, that’s how it’s supposed to work in theory. And it works often enough in practice to reduce the number of immigrant career criminals.

D. Immigrant criminals are less likely to be imprisoned because they are more likely to flee across the border to escape arrest. Check out the Los Angeles Police Department’s Most Wanted List, which consists heavily of fugitives who take the money and run back to the Old Country.

E. Immigrants tend to arrive too old to fall into a life of crime. The critical years are about ages 11 to 16, while most first generation immigrants are a decade or more older when they get here.

F. Why is it a good thing that the next generation of American-born Hispanics has so much higher crime rates than their dads? Linda Chavez trumpeted a study implying that American-born Latinos are eight times more likely to be criminals than Latino immigrants. Aren’t the problems posed by the first generation of immigrants supposed to diminish in the second and third generations, not increase? Overall, the Hispanic imprisonment rate is 2.9 times the white rate.

G. A lot of these statistics about native-born Americans are inflated by blacks, who, although they only comprised one-eighth of the population, committed 52.2 percent of all homicides from 1976-2005. That’s a little over half of all murders despite being barely more than 1/8th of the population. Blacks commit murder at 7.6 times the rate of the rest of the population.

Because the black crime rate is so high, it makes it easy for immigrants to slide under the black-driven national average.

Nevertheless, with all hundreds of millions of peoplewilling to compete for the right to be allowed intoAmerica, why in the world should we be satisfied with immigrants whose qualification is that they are somewhat less criminal on average than African-Americans?

Don’t expect this question to appear on the WSJ Edit page anytime soon. (VDARE.COM note: See also Ed Rubenstein‘s WSJ rebuttal here)

[Steve Sailer (email him) is founder of the Human Biodiversity Institute and movie critic for The American Conservative. His website features his daily blog.]

(Republished from by permission of author or representative)
• Category: Ideology • Tags: Immigration, Race/Crime, VDare Archives 
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Last Thursday in the small Louisiana town of Jena, the Reverends Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton led a march of thousands of protestorschanting “Jail the Jena Six!”

The demonstrators and the press had come from all over the country to condemn the savage racist attack of December 4, 2006, in which ablack high school student was jumped from behind, knocked unconscious, and then kicked and punched by six white football players until they were dragged off their supine victim.

“Phrases like ‘stomped him badly,’ ‘stepped on his face,’ ‘knocked out cold on the ground,’ and ‘slammed his head on the concrete beam’ were used by the students in their statements,” wrote reporter Abbey Brown in “Documents Give Details of Fight,” a June 11, 2007 article in the local Alexandria-Pineville Town Talk.

On Thursday, the two ministers demanded that hate crime charges be added to the indictments against the six muscular white athletes accused of beating black student Justin Barker senseless. “Why in the world isn’t this being called a hate crime?” asked Sharpton.“Given the long series of racial incidents in Jena, this was clearly a racially-motivated attack.”

The black leaders denounced District Attorney Reed Walter’s decision to reduce the main charge from second-degree attempted murder to second-degree aggravated battery. They implied that only bias couldaccount for his leniency toward the white athletes. “These six football stars might well have killed this poor boy if they hadn’t finally been stopped,” said Jackson. “Let the jury decide whether it was attempted murder or not.”

The Rev. Jackson blamed school authorities for not disciplining theirstar white players for earlier crimes. He pointed out that the only one of the football players so far to be tried and convicted,fullback/linebacker Mychal Bell, had been accustomed to running amok off the field because of preferential treatment he enjoyed due to his athletic stardom. In the twelve months leading up to the attack on Barker, Bell had scored 18 touchdowns and been convicted of four crimes, two of them violent. Capping off the junior’s busy year, on December 17, 2006, Bell was named All-State while he was sitting in his jail cell.

Jackson quoted Brown’s August 25 article “Bell denied bond due to criminal history:”

“… Bell was placed on probation until his 18th birthday —Jan. 18, 2008 — after an incident of battery on Dec. 25, 2005. After being placed on probation, he wasadjudicated of three other crimes, the two in Septemberand another charge of criminal damage to property thatoccurred on July 25, 2006.”

The Rev. Jackson noted that Brown’s article showed that school officials were negligent in reining in their violent star:

“Mack Fowler, Jena High’s football coach at the time, said that … he discovered that while he was punishing his players, the school ‘wasn’t doing anything’ to them. Fowler said he decided then that he was going to do the same thing the school did—nothing.”

Discriminating on Bell’s behalf paid off on the football field. Brown wrote:

“Bell was adjudicated—the juvenile equivalent to a conviction—of battery Sept. 2 and criminal damage to property Sept. 3 … A few days later, on Sept. 8, Bell rushed 12 times for 108 yards and scored three touchdowns—one of the best performances of the year for the standout athlete.”

The Rev. Sharpton argued that the youngest of the attackers, Jesse Ray Beard, should have been charged as an adult. “Instead, he is frolicking on the football field right now!”

Brown reported in “‘Jena Six’ all ran together — on the field and off:”

“Since returning to school, Beard has shined as one of the Jena Giants’ star players on the football field. … He had 91 yards rushing and scored the game-winningtouchdown Friday night in the Giants’ 12-6 overtime winover Iowa.”

Both civil rights organizers agreed that … oh, wait … No … hmmhmmh …

Look, this is kind of embarrassing for me. I’m not sure how to explain this … Okay, here goes:

I just realized that this article I’ve been writing is about an “alternate universe” in which the six football players were white and their victim was black.

In our universe, though, the attackers were black and the youth was white.

So, in our space-time continuum, Jackson and Sharpton weren’t denouncing the perpetrators of this brutal racial beating, they were defending them.

On this particular Earth, everybody who is anybody in the media feels that the stompers are the victims, not the stompee.

I got all the facts and quotes from the local newspaper right, I just got backwards the races of the students and the reasons Jesse and Al were so mad.

But, now that I think about it, maybe my mistakes don’t really mean much. No matter who stomped whom, we would have seen exactly the same brouhaha on the TV news last Thursday, except for details about whether the protestors’ signs read “Jail the Jena Six” or “Free the Jena Six.”

In both worlds, there would have been a big demonstration in Jena. Hey, look, there’s Jesse! And over there’s Al! And behind them are all the activists trying to act outraged whenever the TV camera points in their direction. And here in front are the TV correspondents putting on concerned-looking frowny faces as they make vague references to Jim Crow, lynchings, Emmett Till, and that ever-popular perennial, whiteracism“.

So, what difference does it make whether I got right who committed this hate crime?

Nobody else seems to care.

As we saw with the Duke lacrosse case (which we at rightly labeled a hoax—motivated by what Tom Wolfe called “the hunt for the Great White Defendant—way back in April 2006), there’s a tremendous hunger in modern America for news accounts of white violence against blacks. But there isn’t enough actual supply of white-on-black violence to meet the overwhelming demand. So the press promotes hoaxes, as with Duke, or simply spins the story 180 degrees in reverse of the plain facts, as with the Jena stomping.

The Jena attack is interesting not because it’s some flashback to ancient times, but because it’s a state-of-the-art example of our OJ Era. There are now two sets of law: one that applies to the rest of us and one that applies, ever so erratically, to celebrities, which, on a very local level, the Six had been in football-crazy Jena.

On Saturday Night Live’s “Weekend Update in 2004, Tina Fey announced:

“Yesterday, in a New Jersey courtroom, former NBA star Jayson Williams was acquitted of manslaughter charges, although by all accounts he did pull the trigger in the shooting death of his limo driver. The verdict sends a clear message that no matter where you live, retired sports stars are allowed to kill you.”

Funny – but the Williams case was further proof that the famous and talented can run wild … until they go too far. Although in the cases of Robert Blake and Phil Spector, they might even get away with murder. (Can you believe that Spector might end up with a hung jury? I remember The Ramones telling the press that their producer was a dangerous gun-waving loon way back in 1980.) [Going After the Real Nuts, by Jay Cocks, Time Magazine, March 10, 1980]

When you combine the slack cut for celebrities with the slack cut for blacks by whites afraid of being called “racist,” you get the Venn Diagram from Hell. As any reader of the police blotter in the newspaper sports section can tell you, athletes, especially black athletes, routinely do very bad things to the people around them. Much of the time, they get away with it, but every so often they finally get the book thrown at them, as happened to the Jena Six.

Eddie Thompson, a minister in Jena, explained how the stomping ofBarker was merely the culmination of the Jena Six’s long skein of privileged criminality:

“Some of these students have reputations in Jena for intimidating and sometimes beating other students. They have vandalized and destroyed both school property and community property. Some of the Jena Six have been involved in crimes not only in LaSalle Parish but also in surrounding parishes. For the most part, coaches and other adults have prevented them from being held accountable for the reign of terror they have presided over in Jena. Despite intervention by adults wanting to give them chances due their athletic potential, most of the Jena Six have extensive juvenile records. … These boys did not receive prejudicial treatment but received preferential treatment until things got out of hand.”[TheBattle Against Racism In Jena: Jena-Cide,,September 10, 2007]

In the end, the Jena Six should be thankful they stomped a mere white boy.

If, like possibly prison-bound NFL quarterback Michael Vick, they had instead stomped a dog – well, then, there would be hell to pay.

[Steve Sailer [email him] is founder of the Human Biodiversity Institute and movie critic for The American Conservative. His website features his daily blog.]

(Republished from by permission of author or representative)
• Category: Race/Ethnicity • Tags: Race/Crime, VDare Archives 
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Ill-informed and innumerate theorizing about crime trends is a popular pastime among America’s ambitious academics and pundits. The latest example: Open Doors Don’t Invite Criminals, a March 11th New York Times op-ed by Harvard sociologist Robert J. Sampson claiming that massive Hispanic immigration has reduced America’s crime rate inrecent years.

It’s easy to see why this silly theorizing happens. There are vast and highly un-PC differences in criminal tendencies among the different races—for example, African-Americans wind up in prison an incredible 33 times more often per capita than Asian-Americans. So the Mainstream Media almost never dole out enough information on crime trends to foster understanding.

My favorite example up to now: the popular theory put forward by celebrity economist Steven D. Levitt in his massive 2005 bestseller Freakonomics that the legalization of abortion from 1970-1973 caused the late-1990s crime drop by pre-natally culling future criminals.

Yet, as I pointed out to Levitt when we debated his theory in in 1999, he forgot to look at crime rates by the proper age groups. In reality, the crime decline began among those born beforethe legalization of abortion. Those born in the years after

Roe v. Wade went on the worst youth violence binge in recorded American history. Murder rates tripled compared to the cohort born just before legalization. The peak years for murder and other serious violent crimes committed by youths under 18 were 1993 and 1994—more than two decades after Roe.

Additionally, the Freakonomics Factor should have driven the murder rate down fastest among black youth, because according to Levitt and his co-author John J. Donohue in 2001:

“Fertility declines for black women [due to the legalization of abortion] are three times greater than for whites (12 percent compared to 4 percent). Given that homicide rates of black youths are roughly nine times higher than those of white youths, racial differences in the fertility effects of abortion are likely to translate into greater homicide reductions.”

But instead, the black male age 14-17 homicide rate was more than 4times higher among the first cohort born after Roe. Not surprisingly, last year, two economists at the Boston Fed, Christopher Foote and Christopher Goetz, redid Levitt’s complex state-by-state statistical analysis and found that he had made two fatal errors. When corrected,his abortion effect vanished.

Another example of silly theorizing: In his bestseller The Tipping Point, Malcolm Gladwell offered his theory of why New York City crime had declined in the 1990s, based on his insight into the marketing concept of tipping points.

You see, and follow me closely here, rising trends, such as crime rates or sneaker sales, tend to go up until they reach a “tipping point,” and then they go down. Or vice-versa. Or sometimes they reach a tipping point and then they go up even faster. Or down even faster. It’s hard to predict.

If that explanation of tipping points isn’t totally clear, you can pay Gladwell $40,000 to come out and explain it at your annual sales conference. (Gladwell and Levitt’s co-author Stephen J. Dubner are currently debating each other on their respective blogs. For once, the normally lucratively vague Gladwell may have more specifics on his side.)

Now, along comes Robert J. Sampson’s theory in the NYT:

[E]vidence points to increased immigration as a major factor associated with the lower crime rate of the 1990′s (and its recent leveling off).”

This makes Levitt’s abortion theory look like Einstein’s GeneralTheory of Relativity. I mean, Levitt’s theory at least sounds semi-plausible, if you don’t actually know the historical facts. But Sampson’s is self-evident flapdoodle. It has to be one of the sillier theories ever seen in the New York Times—and that’s saying a lot!

Even the headline is hilariously self-refuting: Open Doors Don’t Invite Criminals.

Yes, actually, they do.

The NYT editors should try an experiment—leave the doors to their homes and automobiles open and see what happens.

Why do we see such knuckleheaded arguments in favor of immigration in the prestige press? Because incisive thinking about the subject has been ruled off-limits. If you criticized this op-ed by pointing out that theHispanic imprisonment rate is 2.9 times the white rate, as reported in The Color of Crime 2005, recently published by Jared Taylor’s New Century Foundation, then you are an evil racist and nobody should listen to you. The Establishment’s most effective ploy in eliminating debate over immigration has been to insinuate that only shallow (or sick) people think deeply about immigration.

Sampson presents the following graph to show that immigration flows were negatively correlated with homicides in the 1990s.

My response:

  • First, even if all immigrants were utterly law-abiding, only the homicide rate would fall—not the total number of homicides, as shown on this graph.
  • Second, immigration wasn’t sizable enough to even theoretically account for much of the decline in the crime rate. According to Sampson, net immigration per year was running at about a half percent of the American population in the mid 1990s. So, if every single immigrant were a crime-free saint, then the homicide rate would fall a half percent per year. But the total number of homicides was falling more than an order of magnitude faster. (In fact, of course, immigrants aren’t all saints, as the vicious Salvadoran Mara Salvatrucha gang shows.)
  • Third, Sampson’s contention that the slight decline in the rate of immigration in this decade has contributed to the rise in homicides is even more irrational. He’s confusing the rate of new immigrants entering the country with the stock of immigrants already in the country, which is the only number that might even theoretically impact the murder rate. Sampson’s theory would only work if every time a new immigrant disembarks from his plane at JFK airport, somewhere in America a murderer stays his hand.

That’s just magical thinking, voodoo sociology.

To further confuse his readers, Sampson then offers his “Hispanic Paradox:”

“Hispanic Americans do better on a range of various social indicators—including propensity to violence—than one would expect given their socioeconomic disadvantages.”

That may or may not be true. But the bottom line is that Hispanic socioeconomic disadvantages are so severe—for example, Robert J. Samuelson wrote in an excellent Washington Post op-ed last week:“The median net worth of Hispanic households is about 9percent of that of non-Hispanic whites”—that the Latino imprisonment rate is 2.9 times the white average.

Sampson’s logic is similar to saying, “Adjusted for height, Congo Pygmies are better basketball players than North Carolinians.”Well, that’s … interesting, but college basketball coaches would still be better off recruiting in the Tidewater than in the Mbuti rainforest.

Now, it’s mathematically possible that an influx of Mexicans, with their high crime rates, can marginally lower the overall crime rate in a city, such as New York, by “economically cleansing” blacks, with their extremely high crime rates. If blacks flee New York because Mexicans are taking their jobs and causing rents to go up, that could make the New York crime rate go down.

Of course, on the national level, Mexican immigration just raises the crime rate because African-Americans have to go somewhere else in our country. (But you can see why Mexicans driving blacks from New York to other cities would appeal to the self-interest of the editors of the New York Times.)

Sampson does tell us one useful thing: all else being equal, propensity toward violence increases as immigrants assimilate:

“Indeed, the first-generation immigrants (those born outside the United States) in our study were 45 percent less likely to commit violence than were third-generation Americans, adjusting for family and neighborhood background. Second-generation immigrants were 22 percent less likely to commit violence than the third generation.”

In other words, Hispanic immigrants tend to assimilate toward African-American norms of violence unless they soar upwards economically and educationally. Many do. But many don’t.

This isn’t surprising. New immigrants often arrive too old to join youth gangs and they are scared of deportation. But their American-born sons grow up on the streets feeling much more confident, and much more territorial about their native neighborhoods. The gangs, like the 18th Street Gang in LA, get the American-born ones young. As Colorof Crime 2005 reports, “Hispanics are 19 times more likely than whites to be members of youth gangs.”

So, by importing vast numbers of Hispanic immigrants now, according to Sampson’s data, we’re just making an unholy mess for ourselves in the future.

Finally, Sampson [send him mail] is wrong about Hispanic immigrants being the cause of lower violent crime rates because we know which ethnic group contributed primarily to the recent decline in homicides—and it wasn’t Latinos.

No, it was the same group that also contributed the most to the previous rapid rise in murders from 1984 to 1991: African-Americans. They commit a little over half the murders in America.

Here’s a graph of the homicide offending rates from the Bureau of Justice Statistics.

Please note that in order to minimize public awareness of Hispanic criminality, the federal government, which is otherwise so careful to break Hispanics out separately in its statistics, counts all Hispanic murderers as “Whites.” So we can’t learn anything from federal statistics about Hispanic murder rates. Allwe know is that the actual non-Hispanic white rate is even lower than shown in the graph. (Ask the federal government why it does this.)

What you can see is that the black murder rate rises and falls much faster than the white/Hispanic rate. This is probably due to convulsions in the drug markets. The worst year of the powder cocaine dealers’wars was 1980. It was followed by a sharp decline in the black murder rate that reversed when the crack cocaine wars began. They peaked in 1990-1994 and then were followed by a sizable decline, which,unfortunately, has bottomed out in this decade.

In terms of number of murders, the low in recent decades was 1984, at 20,337 homicides across all races. From 1984 up through the peak year for murders in 1991 (at 28,268), blacks accounted for 84 percent of the rise in homicides committed.

Then, from 1991 until the low year in 1999 (at 17,402 murders), blacks, who make up only 13 percent of the population, contributed 65 percent of the decline in murders.

So, what did actually cause violent crime to drop—especially in New York City?

An overlooked explanation was brought up by Newhouse News reporter Jonathan Tilove recently: there are today in New York City, 36 percent more black women alive than black men. Nationally, there are now 26 percent more black women than men. In contrast, among the total population, there are just 8 percent more women than men alive.

Tilove wrote:

“In the March/April issue of Health Affairs, Dr. David Satcher, surgeon general under former President Bill Clinton, … exposes the core of the problem: Between 1960 and 2000, the disparity between mortality rates for black and white women narrowed while the disparity between the rates for black and white men grew wider. Exponentially higher homicide and AIDS rates play their part, especially among younger black men.” [Where have all the black men gone? May 08, 2005 ]

Obviously, this gigantic black male shortage in NYC wasn’t caused by abortion or by immigration—there was virtually no sex selective abortion at the time. No, it was mostly caused by an enormous increase in imprisonment and by the most dangerous black men murdering each other in large quantities in the late 1980s and early 1990s. (AIDS played a role too in killing off drug addicts.)

Freakonomics’ Levitt has never written, as far as I know, about the impact of these “selective post-natal abortions,” as it were, on the crime rate. But it’s clearly a substantial factor in a number of big cities that were hit hard by crack.

Moreover, as I pointed out to Levitt in 1999—and as his deservedly famous chapter in Freakonomics on how dealing crack pays so badly confirmed—a lot of the next cohort of urban youths, those born more than a half decade after abortion was legalized in their state, figured out that dealing crack was a stupid career choice. Seeing how their older brothers and cousins wind up in prisons, wheelchairs, and cemeteries, they became less likely to commit murder.

Participating in the crack wars turned out to be, for the vast majority of the gangstas, extremely bad life choices. It’s hardly surprising that the later cohort, born in the early 1980s, did a better job of figuringthis out.

So, the good news is that poor teens in the ghetto can eventually figure out the difference between smart and stupid.

The bad news, as exemplified by Professor Sampson’s op-ed, is that the Harvard faculty and the New York Times can’t.

[Steve Sailer [email him] is founder of the Human Biodiversity Institute and movie critic for The American Conservative. His website features his daily blog.]

(Republished from by permission of author or representative)
• Category: Race/Ethnicity • Tags: Race/Crime, VDare Archives 
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When Peter Brimelow asked for my opinion of Jared Taylor’s white nationalist critique of me, I was reminded that out of the hundreds of thousands of words I write each year, I devote relatively few to ideologizing and exhorting—the main stock in trade of so many writers more popular than me.

I’ve always been more interested in reality than morality.

I think I have a certain knack for coming up with new insights into how the world works. Yet, at least by the self-confident standards of opinion journalists, I’m not all that strongly motivated to proclaim how it should work.

I have the personality of a born staff man. My natural predilection is to lay out the logical alternatives in a situation rather than to either make the decisions myself or to propagandize the masses.

I was struck by that again when the absurd Bill Bennett Brouhaha broke out last week, because I had indirectly set it off many years ago.[ note: not this Bennett Brouhaha, this one.]

All last month, ever since the New Orleans Nightmare became evident on September 1st, the hysteria built among the political and media elite over which of them would crack first and mention the elephant in the living room: that blacks have higher average crime rates.

Finally, it has burst forth in a spasm of irrational and self-righteous denunciations of former Education Secretary William J. Bennett.

The triviality of the triggering incident reflects the tensions bottled up within the media.

On Bennett’s talk radio show, a caller claimed that legalized abortion damaged Social Security’s financial health. The pro-life Bennettdoesn’t like pragmatic arguments against abortion, feeling abortion should be opposed even if it had positive effects. As an example of how the caller’s approach could be turned against anti-abortionactivists, Bennett cited economist Steven D. Levitt’s popular theory (in his bestseller Freakonomics) that legalizing abortion had cut the crime rate.

First, Bennett expressed skepticism over Levitt’s claim. But then he issued a logically impeccable reductio ad absurdum:

“But I do know that it’s true that if you wanted to reducecrime, you could—if that were your sole purpose, youcould abort every black baby in this country, and yourcrime rate would go down. That would be an impossible,ridiculous, and morally reprehensible thing to do, but your crime rate would go down.”

Bennett was immediately roasted alive by the Great and the Good. Many of them fraudulently claimed Bennett had endorsed genocide.

Bennett’s real crime: he had indirectly alluded to the unmentionable fact of African-American above-average crime rates.

I felt a little responsible for his plight. According to Bennett, he had been introduced to the abortion-cut-crime theory six years ago in a debate in between Levitt and myself.

Funny thing— although I am constantly being accused of being a eugenicist (despite my long record of expressing strong concerns about eugenics), for half a dozen years I have been perhaps the leading opponent of Levitt’s crypto-eugenic logic.

Levitt argued in his 2001 article with John J. Donohue:

“Fertility declines for black women are three times greater than for whites (12 percent compared to 4 percent). Given that homicide rates of black youths are roughly nine times higher than those of white youths, racial differences in the fertility effects of abortion are likely to translate into greater homicide reductions.”

My objection to Levitt’s racial eugenic argument is not on moral grounds, but on factual ones. In the real world, the direct opposite of his theory’s predictions actually happened: the first cohort born after abortion was legalized in 1970-73 grew up to be the most violent teens in recent American history, with a homicide rate triple the last cohort born before abortion was legalized. Among African-American 14-17 year-olds, the murder rate more than quadrupled.

But what I’ve learned in the six years that I’ve been diligently punching empirical holes in Levitt’s theory is that virtually nobody, on either the pro-choice or pro-life sides of the enormous debate over abortion, cares about facts.

Both sides mostly want Levitt’s theory to be true. Many pro-lifers want to feel virtuous for opposing legalized abortion even though it makes them safer from crime.

In contrast to the hundreds of hours I’ve spent digging up the facts about abortion’s impact on crime, I’ve seldom offered a strong opinion on the morality of abortion. That’s because I’ve never noticed that I had much that’s unique to contribute on the question.

Everybody is entitled to an opinion on morals, and I don’t see any reason that mine should count for more than other people’s do.

What moral principles I do frequently promote tend to be basic ones. For example, as a journalist writing for a fairly elite audience of adults, my code is simple in the extreme:

Tell the truth.

And that’s what Bill Bennett just did.

[VDARE.COM note: Steve originally added another couple of thousand words replying to Jared Taylor. We'll thriftily save them for next week.]

[Steve Sailer [email him] is founder of the Human Biodiversity Institute and movie critic for The American Conservative. His website features his daily blog.]

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And so it begins again

“President Bush, who had just returned from his fourth visit to the Gulf Coast, told an audience at the National Cathedral today that he would use the rebuilding process to correct the poverty born of racial discrimination that had left so many of Hurricane Katrina’s victims vulnerable. ‘The greatest hardship fell upon citizens already facing lives of struggle: the elderly, the vulnerable and the poor,’ he said. ‘And this poverty has roots in generations of segregation and discrimination that closed many doors of opportunity. As we clear away the debris of a hurricane, let us also clear away the legacy of inequality.’”[Bush says Reconstruction Must Address Poverty, Inequality, By Emma Vaughan and Johanna Neuman Los Angeles Times September 16, 2005]

Of course, what we all saw on TV from New Orleans was less the “legacy of inequality” with “roots in generations of segregation and discrimination” than the full display, in the absence of the Police Power, of the modern black underclass tendencies toward violent criminality and feckless dependency.

Indeed, the great majority of the thugs who terrorized the flood victims and rescue workers were born long after LBJ’s War on Poverty began in 1965. Most, probably after the last white mayor of New Orleans left office 27 years ago.

Yet, already our visual memories are being overwritten by the professional word-slingers because—as John Derbyshire recently pointed out in a column that got spiked by National Review for thetautological reason cited in its title—”You Can’t Talk About That.”

So, now, 41 years after LBJ’s, we have GWB’s War on Poverty. The first one turned out to be a moral disaster for African-Americans, helping their crime and illegitimacy rates shoot upwards. But, judging by the President’s recent speeches, he is gearing up, like a French general in 1939, to refight the last War on Poverty.

Will the new one turn out any better? Only if America’s policy elite freely discusses what actually are the problems of poor African Americans—the ones that cause too many of them to behave as we saw in New Orleans.

And what are the odds of that?

Instead, the social engineering programs will be designed to battle those ills that we are allowed to write about: segregation,””discrimination,” and inequality,” to quote the President, who, I seem to recall, was once a Republican.

Of course, one step the Bush Administration could take to help poor blacks would be enforce the laws against the illegal immigration that drives down the wages African-Americans could earn by honest labor.

But don’t expect any mention of that!

Here’s one simple test of whether the New, Improved War on Poverty will be based on reality rather than tired clichés: Will Jared Taylor‘s fact-filled new report on racial difference in crime rates, an updating of his 1999 survey “The Color of Crime,” [PDF] be discussed openly in the press or will it be as hushed up as the original?

I’m not optimistic.

The self-serving reasons that journalists don’t write in public what everybody talks about in private are thoroughly entrenched.

Taylor notes:

“In total, blacks had the highest incarceration rate at 7.2 times the [nonHispanic] white rate, followed by Hispanics, at 2.9 times the white rate. [American] Indians and PacificIslanders were imprisoned at about twice the white rate,and Asians at only 22 percent of the white rate.”

The black imprisonment rate is a striking 33 times higher than the Asian imprisonment rate—a figure I’ve never seen quantified before (although I don’t think anybody could be too surprised by it).

These incarceration statistics, the report shows, are very much in line with the racial patterns also seen in both arrest rates and in the FBI’s Annual Survey Of Crime Victims.

So unfairness in the justice system plays little or no role in these disparities.

High crime rates in black neighborhoods are a terrible burden on localentrepreneurs, thus holding back the economic advancement of the race. But it is largely taboo to discuss racial disparities in criminality in the mainstream media, even though most of the data Taylorassembles is currently available on scattered government websites. For example, the federal Department of Justice’s page on homicide statistics by race states, “Blacks were 7 times more likely than whites to commit homicide in 2002.”

I’m sure the statistics Taylor reports will be dismissed simply because it will be easy to criticize Taylor’s principles.

He and his journal, American Renaissance, espouse a white nationalist viewpoint. Of course, Black, Hispanic, Asian, Armenian, Jewish, Arab and all those other cheerleaders-with-a-chip-on-their-shoulder activistspush for the interests of their ethnic groups too—but that is different, apparently.

I disagree with Taylor’s principles. As I wrote in last year:

“Personally, I am a citizenist… My starting point in analyzing policies is: ‘What is in the best overall interests of the current citizens of the United States?’

“In contrast, so many others think in terms of: ‘What is in the best interest of my: identity group / race / ethnicity / religion / bank account / class / ideology / clique / gender / sexual orientation / party / and/or personal feelings of moral superiority?’

“Precisely because basing loyalties upon a legal category defined by our elected representatives is so unnatural, it’s the least destructive and most uplifting form of allegiance humanly possible on an effective scale.”

Yet disputes over values are irrelevant to whether the facts in Taylor’s report are correct or not. (They are.)

Of course, that won’t keep Taylor’s report from being denounced ad hominem.

In 1942, George Orwell famously observed:

“Nazi theory indeed specifically denies that such a thing as ‘the truth’ exists. There is, for instance, no such thing as ‘Science.’ There is only ‘German Science,’ ‘JewishScience,’ etc… This prospect frightens me much more than bombs

And yet, this manner of thinking, this dismissal of objective reality in favor of assessing whose side the speaker is on, is probably as popular today in America as it was in Berlin and Moscow in Orwell’s day.

In recent weeks, I’ve written extensively about the racial IQ gap, a subject the press typically ignores—or disseminates disinformation about. Still, we shouldn’t blame them too much: IQ is a moderatelycomplex topic, one that many members of the press simply aren’t smart enough and intellectually curious enough to master.

In contrast, censoring the news about crime rates can’t be blamed on journalists’ stupidity. Instead, it demonstrates an appalling degree of moral corruption in our media because virtually every adult in Americaknows there are racial differences in crime rates.

Everybody talks about real estate, and the racial makeup of neighborhood is the largest single factor driving crime rates and thus differences in house prices and apartment rents within a metropolis.

The media elite’s assumption appears to be that if the public someday became aware of the truth about race, then the American people would instantly dig up Hitler’s ashes, clone his DNA, and elect Hitler 2.0 as Fuhrer-for-Life.

Or something like that…

But, as I’ve been pointing out for a decade, most Americans do in fact know the basic facts about race. They talk privately about them all thetime. And the world continues spinning on its axis.

Instead, what we’re really not supposed to do is write about the facts for the elites interested in public policy.

This 21st Century attitude toward thinking about race contrasts strikingly with the Victorian attitude toward thinking about sex. This was that the masses should not be allowed to read erotic materials, but that the policy-making elites did need the facts.

Consequently, the raffish adventurer Sir Richard Burton (not the actor, but the Victorian explorer, writer, and diplomat who was a model for Evelyn Waugh’s Basil Seal) was knighted by Queen Victoria threeyears after he published his translation of the Kama Sutra.

Burton was Victorian Britain’s most prominent advocate of polygamy, harem-keeping, and Eastern erotica. But he was also employed by theForeign Office for decades. Her Majesty’s Government didn’t approve of Burton’s enthusiasm for non-Western sexual mores and practices. But if they were going to run the Empire, they knew they needed to understand them.

In contrast, the American elite’s attitude is that the worst sin is to try to understand race honestly.

So what exactly would happen if the press told the truth? Would white neighborhoods have higher housing prices than black neighborhoods?

Oh, wait, that already happens…

No, the main difference would be that if we could honestly discuss how the world works, we could use that understanding to craft policies more likely to achieve the goals of the American people.

So why do the pundits and reporters lie? In my experience, the liberal whites who run the media don’t actually care much about blacks or other minorities. Nor are they consumed by White Guilt.

They’re not blaming themselves, you’ll notice, just other white people, ones they already despise. What they truly care about isclaiming social superiority over other whites by demonstrating their exquisite racial sensitivity.

The typical white intellectual considers himself superior to ordinary white people for two contradictory reasons:

  • b] He has a high IQ, but they don’t.

For this reason, Taylor’s strategy of wanting whites to imitate the ethnocentrism of minorities, while it will inevitably gain adherents as the white majority is reduced to a white minority by immigration, is highly unlikely to succeed any time soon. There is simply too much rivalry among whites.

To many elite whites, minorities are just useful pawns in the great game of clawing their way to the top of the white status heap.

Which is, more or less, the only game in town. Taylor’s dream of white solidarity has no appeal to white intellectuals and writers simply because they believe, condescendingly but also fairly accurately, that they don’t face significant nonwhite competition. The vast majority of their rivals are other whites.

For media people, white solidarity makes no more sense than for Professional Golf Association stars like Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson to agree to stop competing against each other so they can band together to do battle with the Ladies Professional Golf Association.

Thus, America’s verbal elite favors illegal immigration—nobody from Chiapas is going to take their jobs.

For American citizens on the whole, however, especially for poor African-Americans who desperately need the dignity and the discipline provided by having a decent-paying job, illegal immigration is amassive problem.

Still, the American elite is going to pay at least some of the taxes for the GWB War On Poverty. And Jared Taylor’s data suggests that dumping dollars on the problem won’t cure it this time either.

[Steve Sailer [email him] is founder of the Human Biodiversity Institute and movie critic for The American Conservative. His website features his daily blog.]

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On this fourth anniversary of 9/11, I’m reminded that’s immediate response to the terrorist attacks was to evoke Rudyard Kipling’s 1919 poem with the funny-sounding name The Gods of theCopybook Headings. (“Copybook headings” are the stern ancient maxims that English schoolboys once had to write at the top of their notebook pages.)

Our message: hard social truths can be ignored or derided—but not permanently avoided:

We were living in trees when they met us. They showed us each in turn

That Water would certainly wet us, as Fire would certainly burn:

But we found them lacking in Uplift, Vision and Breadth ofMind,

So we left them to teach the Gorillas while we followed the March of Mankind…

And that after this is accomplished, and the brave new world begins

When all men are paid for existing and no man must pay for his sins,

As surely as Water will wet us, as surely as Fire will burn,

The Gods of the Copybook Headings with terror and slaughter return

Now, in the wake of the shameful anarchy in New Orleans, our elites are again confronted with the need to relearn some unfashionable, politically incorrect lessons.

But whether they will remains much in doubt.

I don’t like watching my fellow American citizens of any color suffer the horrors of anarchy. So my September 3rd essay “Racial Reality and the New Orleans Nightmare” expressed anger that all levels of government had made the happy-clappy multi-culti assumption that, in case of hurricane, the politicians, police, and people of New Orleans would all pitch in together like Good Samaritans to help each other out.

In many places, survivors will do that. But the demographics and culture of New Orleans were always prohibitive.

My article elicited a firestorm of rage from the pundits. As when television news broadcasts hours of blacks behaving badly, enormous pressure builds up amongst the commentariat to denounce furiously the first person who is so crass as to mention what everybody can see with their lying eyes. Almost all these condemnations of me have been of the now-traditional point-and-sputter ilk. The critic can’t think of any facts or logic to disprove my argument. So he merely gesticulates about what an awful person I must be to say such a horrible thing.

For example, the thuggish John Podhoretz at National Review’sCorner demonized my article for purportedly containing the “the most disgusting sentence [sic] yet written about Katrina.”

My disgusting “sentence” (paragraph, in fact) turned out to be merely:

All this is now common parlance, more or less. What you won’t hear, except from me, is that “Let the good times roll” is an especially risky message for African-Americans. The plain fact is that they tend to possess poorer native judgment than members of better-educated groups. Thus they need stricter moral guidance from society.

Yet, my essay has been one of the most emailed-out in history, and for precisely the same reason the media folks hated it: because it explained honestly the reasons behind the ugliness we could all see.

Our mainstream media is so intellectually hamstrung by self-censorship, so lacking in a conceptual vocabulary for describing racial realities, that after watching blacks tormenting blacks night after night in New Orleans, shooting at the helicopters and boats trying to rescue their fellow African-Americans, all the pundits could do was scream “white racism!”

And prescribe massive new spending on urban poverty—despite all the evidence that the last War of Poverty made the New Orleans Nightmare worse by undermining African-Americans’ already tenuous family structure.

The revelations of the succeeding eight days have vindicated my original analysis.

While partisan talking heads continue to blame whichever level of government is controlled by the opposition, my criticism of each, along with the culture and residents of New Orleans, has stood up well:

  • Bush’s appointee to run the Federal Emergency Management Agency, political hack Mike Brown, turns out to have been a failed horse show bureaucrat.
  • Louisiana’s state government, while perhaps somewhat less at fault than the federal and city governments, once again lived down to its notorious Latin political heritage of incompetence and demagoguery.

Each of these failures of government was unsurprising, given their track records.

Even more controversially, I pointed out that officials should have expected that the population that failed to evacuate would be numerous, improvident, poor in judgment, laced with criminals, andhighly dangerous to each other.

Even when New Orleans’s police force is not otherwise occupied with looting and fleeing, the city’s overall murder rate is ten times the national average. Among that fifth of the population who did not evacuate, the homicide rate would have been something like 30 times the national average.

Hundreds of school buses were left lined up in a flooded parking lot because residents were supposed to offer rides to their neighbors without cars. But let’s think through a common situation. Imagine you are a single mother on a poor street who owns a car. After you’ve loaded up your family to evacuate, to which car-less neighbor are yougoing to offer your one empty seat: the churchgoer on your left or the gang-banger on your right?

But if you and all the other decent people flee your street, who is going to stop the left-behind criminals from looting your hard-earnedpossessions?

So you decide to stay behind—only to be forced to flee to the Superdome or the Convention Center when the levees break.

Everybody should have assumed that when the hammer finally came down, the New Orleans Police Department would fold and underclass thugs would run amok, making it unsafe for unarmed rescue workers to do their jobs. Rescue can’t proceed effectively when workers fear for their lives from violence. How enthusiastic would you be about going out in a small boat to haul survivors off their rooftops if you needed to wear a heavy bulletproof vest that would drag you right down to the bottom if you fell in?

The first priority of government in a Hobbesian place like the impoverished ‘hoods of New Orleans must be to provide order. The government should have planned to helicopter combat troops in and do what it takes to restore order: tear gas, rubber bullets, even live ammo if necessary.

But nobody is supposed to mention the barbarism likely to break out, so nobody in government initially acted as if they had a serious problem on their hands.

For instance, according to the New York Times, the hapless FEMA boss Mike Brown admitted, “that the lawlessness surprised him.”

Why didn’t anyone discuss realistically how the people who were going to be left behind by the city’s feckless evacuation effort would behave? Because they were overwhelmingly black. And, as the Two Minutes Hate conducted over my essay shows, you can’t talk about that if you want to keep your job.

In fact, it’s much safer for your career if you train yourself never to think about it at all.

While a sizable majority of the 365,000 African-Americans in New Orleans had the assets, prudence, and/or friends or family to get themselves out of town before the hurricane, something like 100,000 were left behind.

And, as we all saw on TV for several horrible days, the survivors were not, on average, the most civic-minded.

Yet they were still human beings and American citizens. They shouldn’t have to survive in chaos.

Government, at bottom, is supposed to maintain a monopoly on violence. And that’s exactly what was lost.

Just as Donald Rumsfeld catastrophically refused to stop the looting that broke out in the wake of our conquest of Baghdad in 2003, government agencies delayed disastrously in doing what it took to put down the chaos in New Orleans.

(I’m going to focus now upon IQ. But it’s not the only racial difference. For over a decade, contributor Professor J.P. Rushton has been documenting that for a host of measures, not just IQ but also behavioral, Northeast Asians and West Africans tend on average to stand at opposite ends of the spectrum with Europeans in the middle.

(Of course, you don’t have to read Rushton’s book Race, Evolution, and Behavior to see this for yourself: Anybody who lives in a cosmopolitan big city and hasn’t noticed this general pattern must not get out much.

(What are particularly relevant to the New Orleans disorder are the large racial gaps in crime rates. My next article, on the evening of Sunday September 18th, will review a major new study of racial differences in crime, as revealed by government statistics of arrest rates, imprisonment, and victim surveys, to be published by American Renaissance. For example, this report provides the first estimate I’ve yet seen of Asian-American imprisonment rates. They turn out to be, to the surprise of nobody with eyes in their heads,about 1/30th the African-American rate.)

The racial IQ distribution, however, is something that’s both powerful in impact and relatively simple to understand. So all semi-numeratepublic-spirited citizens owe it to their country to take time to familiarize themselves with it.

Let me

  • start with the vexed question of the innateness of the IQ gap;
  • then discuss its size,
  • then show that those on the left and right who claim that IQ is meaningless are either uninformed or hypocritical, and finally
  • air a new and helpful idea on one small step we can take regarding this massive fact of American social life.

The innateness of the IQ gap

A bugaboo that often paralyzes rational thought about IQ is the controversy over whether or not the racial IQ gap stems solely fromenvironmental differences, or has a hereditary component as well. Yet, this question isn’t terribly relevant for thinking about planning better for urban disasters. As Thomas Sowell has pointed out, IQ is fairly stable throughout one’s lifetime. So environmental interventions in the hope of raising black IQ would take at least one generation to work. So we can say for sure that the IQ gap will be around long enough to make it worth understanding.

My New Orleans Nightmare article was exposed to a lot of scientifically illiterate loathing. But I had a couple of genetic aces up my sleeve: I knew that later in the week, the leading American scientific journal,Science, would publish two blockbuster papers by U. of Chicago geneticist Bruce T. Lahn about the global distribution of brain development genes.

Here’s Nicholas Wade’s article “Researchers Say Human Brain Is Still Evolving” in the New York Times:

“Two genes involved in determining the size of the human brain have undergone substantial evolution in the last 60,000 years, researchers say, suggesting that the brain is still undergoing rapid evolution…They report that with microcephalin, a new allele arose about 37,000 years ago…Some 70 percent or more of people in most European and East Asian populations carry this allele of the gene, as do 100 percent of those in three South American Indian populations, but the allele is much rarer in most sub-Saharan Africans.

“With the other gene, ASPM, a new allele emerged some time between 14,100 and 500 years ago, the researchersfavoring a mid-way date of 5,800 years. The allele hasattained a frequency of about 50 percent in populations of the Middle East and Europe, is less common in East Asia, and found at low frequency in some sub-Saharan Africa peoples.”

These findings are far from definitive on the IQ innateness question. But I can assure you there will be more announcements to comeabout these two brain genes that will be most interesting. And more brain genes with politically incorrect racial distributions are likely to follow.

What we can say for sure is that Darwinian logic suggests there’s something about sub-Saharan Africa that prevented these brain genevariants from becoming common there—either the Sahara kept blacks reproductively isolated from the rest of the world while these genes were spreading, or the sub-Saharan environment wasn’t conducive to the survival of people with these genes.

The size of the IQ gap

The size of the black-white racial gap in IQ has been studied for over 80 years. Of course, the answer is purely probabilistic. To say that blacks on average have lower IQs than Asians or whites is not to say that all blacks have lower IQs. In fact, about six million African-Americans possess higher IQs than the average white.

The most comprehensive investigation of the size of the white-black IQ gap was carried out by Philip L. Roth of Clemson and colleagues in a 2001 article, “Ethnic Group Differences in Cognitive Ability inEmployment and Educational Settings: A Meta-Analysis,” in the academic journal Personnel Psychology.

They looked at 105 different studies covering 6,246,729 individuals and found an overall average difference between whites and blacks of16.5 IQ points, or 1.1 standard deviations. The 95 percent confidence interval runs merely from 1.06 to 1.15 standard deviations (in other words, there is strong agreement among the 105 studies).

(By the way, Roth et al. found that the IQ gap between non-Hispanic whites and Hispanics is 10.8 points.)

IQ tests are typically set up so the average score is 100 and the standard deviation is 15. Because IQ scores fall according to a normaldistribution (or “bell-shaped curve”), you can use the NORMDIST function in Microsoft Office Excel, or this interactive web applet, to see where different IQ scores appear in percentile terms.

For example, if the average white IQ is 100 and the average black IQ is at 83.5 (according to Roth’s meta-analysis), then the typical black falls at about the 14th percentile among the white population.

The most readable and up to date discussion of the white-black IQ difference is Charles Murray’s “The Inequality Taboo” in the September 2005 issue of Commentary. (Paradoxically, John Podhoretz’s father Norman has been Editor or Editor-at-Large for the last 45 years, during which time the elder Podhoretz has given strong support to Murray’s book The Bell Curve.)

As I pointed out in two weeks ago, Murray presents tentative evidence suggesting that in recent years the IQ gap may hasnarrowed to 14 points, which would put the median black at about the 18th percentile among whites.

The black-white IQ gap is not the end of the story. I’ve been arguing for close to a decade, IQ tests probably do not measure well certain cognitive skills that blacks may tend to be better at than are whites and East Asians, such as improvisation. Life consists of trade-offs, so perhaps it’s not startling that New Orleans, home to the great black improvisatory art form of jazz, did not display tremendous talent at planning ahead for this inevitable disaster.

But, nevertheless, the IQ gap does matter.

You thought the IQ test has been officially discredited by somebody or other? Not according to the Supreme Court and the military.

In the 2002 case Atkins v. Virginia, the Supreme Court, in effect,abolished the death penalty for killers with IQs below 70. Liberals applauded. As Andrew Sullivan blogged:

“It’s an article of faith among many liberals that I.Q. has no meaning, it’s culturally constructed, and should neverbe used to judge people’s intellectual ability. Butsuddenly, when I.Q. is the means by which to rescueretarded criminals on death row, I.Q. is just fine, thank you very much.”

Roughly 10-20 percent of the overall black population is now ineligible for capital punishment (compared to approximately two percent ofwhites and one percent of the Asian-Americans). Among the survivors at the Superdome and Convention Center, it would hardly be surprising if a quarter or more were so unintelligent they are legally immune from the death penalty.

Now, let’s be clear. I’m not saying that low IQ people are not morally culpable or that they lack free will or all those other metaphysicalissues that are fun to stay up all night talking about in the dorm room.

What I am saying is that policymakers need to plan for the likely problems that have been shown to be statistically correlated withhaving large numbers of low IQ people around.

But, how can any public servant make plans based on realistic assessments of how a particular population is likely to react in an emergency if the entire subject of racial behavioral differences is a career-killing thought crime?

Those were our fellow human beings and our fellow Americans in New Orleans. But we let some of them die because we’ve been terrified to make plans based on politically incorrect facts.

The meaningfulness of the IQ gap

Many on the right as well claim, at least in public, that IQ is meaningless. As the rightist blogger Tacitus alleged:

“I tested with a ridiculously high IQ as a child, and I waspretty proud of that till I got to the Army and found itdidn’t count for anything… we should not pretend [IQ tests] are an objective basis for science.”

Well, go tell it to the military, which has been giving IQ tests to enlistment applicants since the First World War.

Almost nobody in the media is aware of the vast investment the U.S. military has made over the last 88 years in IQ testing of potential recruits, and the huge number of correlation studies they have done comparing soldiers’ IQ with their actual performance. I was only barely aware of it myself until I spent hours last fall interviewing military psychometricians for my article showing that John F. Kerry scored a bitlower on his officer application IQ test than George W. Bush did. (This was the report that Tom Brokaw asked Kerry about on the NBC Nightly News.)

Because the U.S. military knows that bad things tend to happen to low IQ soldiers—and to their comrades who have the misfortune to be standing nearby—since 1991 only about one percent of new enlistees have IQs below the 30th percentile (i.e., an IQ of about 92). (See Table 2.8 in this Defense Department report.)

Last year, the Army announced that because of tribulations in meeting recruitment quotas due to the Iraq War, it would up its share of newsoldiers scoring below the 30th percentile all the way to … 2 percent.

Even a guerilla war isn’t making the military enthusiastic about inducting volunteers from the bottom 30 percent of the Bell Curve.

Stop and think about that for a second: well over 80 million Americans lack high enough IQs to become a buck private in our high-techmodern military.

I bet you’d never heard that from the mainstream media!

The fine 1997 book All That We Can Be: Black Leadership and Racial Integration the Army Way by sociologists Charles C. Moskos and John Sibley Butler reported that in 1994:

“83 percent of white recruits scored in the upper half ofthe mental aptitude test (compared with 61 percent ofwhite youths in the national population), while 59 percent of black recruits scored in the upper half (compared with 14 percent of the black youths nationwide).”

In other words, the Army’s black enlisted personnel score just as well on the general aptitude test as typical white Americans—although not as well as white recruits. (African-American officers average even better, of course.) That shows the impressive patriotism of blacks who possess many options in life.

On the other hand, a sizable majority of all blacks are ineligible to enlist. This has created a social problem that nobody has noticed…because you aren’t allowed to talk about race and IQ.

We like to imagine that the military frequently instills character-buildingdiscipline in underclass ghetto youths raised by single mothers. But, in fact, it hasn’t let in many truly poor blacks since the collapse of the Soviet Union allowed the military to get leaner and meaner.

Black enlistees are well above the national black average in IQ. They come from families that average 15 percent higher income than the national black mean.

My new and helpful idea about the IQ gap

But perhaps there’s an opportunity for a government program that might actually improve the morals of the poor. So I’d like to end this perhaps bleak summary of the basic facts of American urban life with an idea I’ve been kicking around for years.

I want to tell you first, though, about a young African-American man I knew from a rough neighborhood in Chicago.

High school wasn’t easy for him, but he stuck it out, stayed out of trouble, and got his degree. He went to work at McDonald’s, where the boss liked his attitude and the way the other kids followed his lead, and put him on the management track. But he messed up the paperwork too many times and got fired.

He started hanging out with loser friends and had a minor scrape with the law. He decided then that he didn’t want to waste his life and that his best shot at getting on the right path was the Army. It offered the purpose and order he craved.

The recruiting sergeant liked him a lot, seeing leadership potential in him. Everything looked promising, but then he flunked the military’s IQtest (the one used throughout The Bell Curve), the Armed Forces Qualification Test. Like more than 80 million other Americans would have done, he didn’t score in the top 70 percent.

However, the recruiter was so enthusiastic about this young man that he offered him a special chance: the Army would pay to send him to alengthy training program where he’d live in a barracks, wear a uniform, and cram for the AFQT.

He found there that he loved military life. And the military liked him: he won the award as the best cadet in his class. Fired up, he went home, and took the AFQT again.

And flunked once more.

Sadly, we don’t live in Lake Wobegon, where all the children are aboveaverage. The tautological fact is that 30 percent of Americans are going to score below the 30th percentile on IQ.

The tragic conundrum is that the young men like this fellow who could most benefit from serving a hitch in the Army, the decent but not toobright 18-year-olds who are on the knife-edge between getting their act together and falling into a lifetime of drugs and crime, are the ones least likely to make the Armed Forces’ cognitive cutoff.

Now, the military exists to win wars. Modern weapons are so lethal and so complicated that the Pentagon is perfectly sensible in only wanting easily trainable recruits. The military isn’t a social program. Indeed, much of what success it has as a social program originates from its asking soldiers, unlike the participants in the old Job Corps, to serve larger moral goals—duty, honor, country—than merely their own financial advancement.

Perhaps, though, our country could make good use of a Disaster Relief Corps, one with the discipline of the military but somewhat less rigorous IQ requirements, accepting young men down to, say, the 10th percentile (80 IQ, which is the legal minimum for soldiers). Many young men want the chance to be heroes, which is why small towns get by with volunteer fire departments. Those ambitions should be encouraged.

Disaster Relief Corpsmen would wear uniforms and train for a year on a base, learning to fill sandbags to fight floods, perform first aid, control crowds, and other basic skills that would have been useful in New Orleans.

After that they’d go home and serve, say, six years in the Disaster Relief Reserves, spending one weekend a month training (where they’d also take a drug test to keep them on the straight andnarrow).

When the worst happened, each community, instead of waiting passively for FEMA functionaries to fly in from around the country, would have 19-25 year old men on hand ready to take initiative to organize and protect their neighborhoods…rather than loot them.

Of course, this program would only offer a modest remedy for the terrible social problems we saw in New Orleans. Maybe it wouldn’t work at all. I’m sure somebody could come up with a better plan.

But to get this crucial conversation started, the media, left and “Righteous Right,” have to stop demonizing anybody who mentions the hard facts about IQ and racial differences.

[Steve Sailer [email him] is founder of the Human Biodiversity Institute and movie critic for The American Conservative. His website features his daily blog.]

(Republished from by permission of author or representative)
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In the climactic final scene of Michael Moore’s Oscar-winning documentary Bowling for Columbine, the highest grossing documentary before Moore’s own Fahrenheit 9/11, the rotund one stalks Charlton Heston, the elderly president of the National Rifle Association, to his lair, and asks him:

Moore : But you don’t have any opinion as to why we’re the unique country, the only country that does this? That kills each other at this level with guns. Heston : Well, we have, probably a more mixed ethnicity, than other countries, some other countries.

Moore pounces on Heston’s shocking faux pas:

Moore : …So you think it’s an ethnic thing?

Sensing his gaffe, Heston paddles desperately upstream:

Heston: Well, I don’t think it’s—I wouldn’t go as far as to say that. We had enough problems with civil rights in the beginning.

For mentioning ethnicity’s connection to crime, Heston was trashed in the press as a racist. However, his announcement that he wassuffering from Alzheimer’s led many critics to recommend pity rather than censure—he must have been senile to say such a horrible thing.

Yet everybody knows Heston was telling the truth. I’ve only met one man in my life who adamantly argued in private conversation that there are no racial differences in crime rates. An Oregonian, he told me it was racist to assume blacks are more likely to be muggers than whites are.

I proposed to him a thought experiment:

“Say your wife’s car runs out of gas in the middle of the night in a desolate neighborhood. She has no idea which way to walk to find a gas station. However, if she walks one way she has to pass by a half dozen black youthslounging on a corner. If she walks the other way, shewould have to pass by a half dozen Indian immigrantyouths. Which way would you prefer she went?”

“I would be completely indifferent,” he replied.

“Well, then, for your sake, I’m glad you live in Grant’s Pass.”

“Where I live is irrelevant!” he responded triumphantly.“I’ve already been mugged three times!”

The ethnic gap in crime proclivities is one of those subjects that everybody accepts when discussing real estate (which is all about location, location, location), but nobody writes about.

To test this, I looked in the search engine of, the pioneering public affairs webzine that combines a slightly snarky attitude withEstablishment respectability. I checked to see how many of the thousands of articles it has published since 1996 include the words race crime rate.”

There was only one article with a strong match, but this 1999 essay was surprisingly blunt: “Janet Reno’s Justice Department flatly states that ‘blacks are 8 times more likely than whites to commit homicide.’”

“Wait a minute. This article seems strangely familiar,” I thought. “Oh, of course, it’s by … me.”

And that may explain why I haven’t been invited back to write for Slate since!

A Russian immigrant called me up once to ask why almost no other American journalist ever mentioned the racial patterns he had seen with his own eyes everyday since he’d come to America. When I explained that the average writer was just lying, he replied:

Vladimir (audibly relieved): “You mean, he’s hypocrite?”

Me: “Yeah, exactly. It would hurt his career to write for the public what he thinks in his private life.”

Vladimir: “Thank God!”

Me: “Huh?”

Vladimir: “Hypocrite I understand. I grow up in Soviet Union. Lying to save your job, that’s life. No, I was very worried smart people in America weren’t hypocrites. You know, this country is supposed to be land of free, home of brave. I was scared that smart Americans weren’t hypocrites, but instead were hallucinating. I am very happy to hear they’re just hypocrites. Hypocrisy much less scary than mass hallucination.”


Actually, the government makes much detailed information on crimerates by race available. But almost nobody ever tries to learn anything from it.

Also, there’s been this frustrating problem: In crime statistics, Hispanics are often lumped in with non-Hispanic whites. This has the effect of narrowing the gap between the black and white crime rates by inflating the white rate. It also obscures the relatively high rate of Hispanic crime.

Bureaucrats are normally very scrupulous about breaking out data by Hispanic ethnicity. It’s impossible to avoid the conclusion that this is done to make diversity in general, and current immigration in particular, look better.

Fortunately, a liberal activist group called the

National Center on Institutions and Alternatives crunched state-level data for a 2001 report that managed to break out the number ofHispanic prisoners in most states. The data is from 1997, but it appears to be the best we have.

To help you visualize racial crime patterns, I plotted the data in Ethan Herdrick’s convenient Mapinator on-line program.

I graphed 1997 imprisonment rates per 100,000 people for non-Hispanic whites, blacks, and Hispanics, all using the same scale with yellow as low and purple as high. Here’s the non-Hispanic white imprisonment map:

As you can see, in all states, white imprisonment rates are relatively low, so the whole map comes out in shades of yellow. The largestpercentages of whites are imprisoned in old Wild West states: Alaska, Oklahoma, Nevada, Arizona, and Texas. Whites are least likely to be locked up in the District of Columbia, Minnesota, New Jersey (much to the surprise of Sopranos fans), North Dakota, and New York.

This geographic spread might suggest that Lutherans, Catholics, and Jews tend to have lower crime rates than, say, Baptists.

But it’s also worth keeping in mind that the average age of a state can affect the crime rate. North Dakota, for instance, is an older state that has a hard time hanging on to its young folk. In general, that’s bad, but it has the good side effect of lowering the crime rate, since crime is a young man’s profession.

There’s a moderate correlation (r = 0.44) between a state voting for Bush and having a higher white imprisonment rate.

Here is the black crime rate:

As you can see, for blacks, many states reach the color scale’smaximum of 3 percent of the population in jail. So they show up as solid purple.

The state with the highest rate of black imprisonment, with 4.8 percent of the black population—male and female, young and old—behind bars, is Iowa. (Bet you didn’t guess that.) It’s followed by Wisconsin, Rhode Island, Oklahoma, and Connecticut.

The only two states with less than 1 percent of their black population imprisoned are Hawaii and North Dakota. I suspect that many of their blacks got there via the U.S. military and are thus pre-selected for discipline and intelligence.

The most striking feature of this map is relatively low rate of black imprisonment in the Old South.

Here’s the Hispanic imprisonment rate map. Unfortunately, the datawere either completely missing or obviously inadequate for ten states, which show up in black.

Clearly, Hispanics fall between whites and blacks in their tendency to be incarcerated.

The Northeast has the worst-behaved Hispanics in the country, followed by the Southwest. Florida, of all the states with a large Latino population, has the best-behaved Hispanics.

There is a racial aspect to this. Northeastern Latinos have traditionally consisted of mulatto islanders, such as Puerto Ricans and Dominicans. Southwestern Hispanics are mostly mestizo Mexicans and Central Americans. Florida Hispanics were traditionally white Cubans.

The South has low numbers of Latinos in prison relative to theirpopulation sizes.

But that could be an artifact of the currently exploding Hispanicpopulation there. A state’s imprisonment rate tends to lag its immigration rate. Someone who has been in a state for a only a short time has had less chance to get caught and jailed than someone who has been there his whole life.

So it’s hard to say what the future holds for the South.

States vary in laws and zeal of enforcement (although the federal sentencing guidelines have narrowed some of the differences in recent years). That’s why it’s useful to also map the ratio of black to white imprisonment rates. In the following map, ratios of more than 20blacks imprisoned for every white (on a per capita basis) show up as bright red. Less than 3 blacks imprisoned per white shows as a bright green.

Nationally, blacks are imprisoned on average 9.1 times as often as whites.

If this high rate of black imprisonment was caused by anti-blackconservatism, then the ratio of blacks to whites imprisoned should be highest in Republican strongholds like the Old South. But instead, it is lowest there of any major region.

Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, and South Carolina are only about six times more likely to imprison blacks than whites—just two-thirds of the national average.

In contrast, by far the greatest racial disparity was found in the most liberal spot on the map: the black-run District of Columbia, where Bush won only nine percent of the vote. Blacks in Washington D.C. are 56 times more likely than whites to wind up in the slammer.

The next biggest gap was 31 to 1 in Minnesota, which has normally been quite a bit more liberal than the typical heartland state.

Overall, the two regions with the biggest racial differences in black-white imprisonment rates are the Old Northwest and the Mid-Atlantic.

States with relatively high black vs. white imprisonment rates tended to vote for Kerry—the correlation was a strong r = 0.62

Obviously, the discrimination explanation for the racial gap does not hold water.

Another popular theory, put forward by New York Times reporter Fox Butterfield in his 1996 book All God’s Children is, in the words of reviewer:

“… that the primary origin of black violence is the tradition of white violence that was transferred to them from their former slave owners.”

Josh Marshall, proprietor of the blog, wrote his history Ph.D. dissertation on the same premise—that blacks learned to be violent from those dueling and feuding Southern whites.

Of course, looked at from an international perspective, this theory requires Occam’s Butterknife at its dullest. It would requite a local rationalization for each of the many countries with violent black communities.

Thus, presumably, the extreme crime in the black favelas of Brazil, as seen in the terrific 2003 movie City of God, is in imitation of the Portuguese; the sometimes genocidal violence in Ethiopia was learnedfrom the Italians during their five brief years of colonization; and Shaka(1785-1828), King of the Zulus, would have been a pacifist if not for those vicious vibrations emanating from white men somewhere over the horizon.

But Fox Butterknife’s hypothesis makes little sense even within the U.S. As we have seen, the most crime-prone blacks are in Iowa and Wisconsin, where whites were traditionally quite law-abiding. In contrast, the most honest blacks tend to be found in the Cotton Belt, where the Butterfield-Marshall theory predicts they should be most contaminated by white duelists.

What about Hispanics? Here is the Hispanic to white imprisonmentratio:

Nationally, Hispanics are on average 3.7 times as likely as whites to be imprisoned.

The most unequal ratio is seen in the Mid-Atlantic, where the badbehavior of Puerto Ricans and Dominicans contrasts sharply with the good behavior of Italians, Jews, and Yankees.

The second worst ratio is in the Old Northwest, where whites are well-behaved.

Mexican-Americans are found most in the Southwest, where the white crime rate is above average.

The Hispanic to white ratio is over 4 to 1 in Western states with law-abiding whites, like Colorado, Utah, and Washington.

In lax California the ratio is still 2.4 to 1, in hell-raising Texas, it’s 2.2 to 1, and in Sin City-dominated Nevada, it’s 1.5 to 1.

As Mexicans pour into Eastern states with lower white crime rates, thenational Mexican-American to white imprisonment ratio will likely rise.

The Hispanic crime rate is lower than the African-American mark. But at the current pace of immigration, legal and illegal, the number of Hispanic criminals should exceed the current number of black criminals within a few decades.

Immigrants may not have built America, but they are certainly building its prison population.

[Steve Sailer [email him] is founder of the Human Biodiversity Institute and

movie critic for The American Conservative. His website features his daily blog.]

(Republished from by permission of author or representative)
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About Steve Sailer

Steve Sailer is a journalist, movie critic for Taki's Magazine, columnist, and founder of the Human Biodiversity discussion group for top scientists and public intellectuals.

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