White supremacists' favorite myths about black crime rates take another hit from BJS study
Vast majority of most crimes are committed by a person of the same race as the victim, Bureau of Justice Statistics reports.
The Justice Department’s statistics-crunching arm just blew up a whole stack of white-supremacist myths about the nature of interracial crime and violence committed by minorities.
In a report released Thursday titled Race and Hispanic Origin of Victims and Offenders, 2012-2015, the DOJ’s Bureau of Justice Statistics found that a majority of most violent crimes are committed by people who are the same race as their victims. Indeed, the rate of white-on-white violent crime, it found, is about four times the rate of black-on-white crime.
White supremacists frequently like to manipulate crime statistics in order to claim that nonwhite minorities, particularly African-Americans, are far more crime-prone and the source of most violent crime against whites. Indeed, it is a core belief that this is the case, and many white nationalist ideologues — including politician and pundit Patrick Buchanan, Jared Taylor of American Renaissance, and the Council of Conservative Citizens — all have made considerable hay out of proffering “studies” laden with risibly bad statistics and other evidence to make their case.
The BJS study demonstrates plainly that this is simply not the case. Some 57 percent of crimes involving white victims were committed by white perpetrators, while only 15 percent were committed by blacks, and 11 percent by Hispanics. Black crime victims fell along similar racial lines, with 63 percent of the crimes committed by black perpetrators, while 11 percent were committed by whites, and 6.6 percent by Hispanics.
Overall, the BJS reported, “the percentage of intraracial [that is, same-race] victimization was higher than the percentage of interracial victimization for all types of violent crime except robbery.”
Moreover, it explained, “the rate of white-on-white violent crime (12.0 per 1,000) was about four times higher than black-on-white violent crime (3.1 per 1,000). The rate of black-on-black crime (16.5 per 1,000) was more than five times higher than white-on-black violent crime (2.8 per 1,000). The rate of Hispanic-on-Hispanic crime (8.3 per 1,000) was about double the rate of white-on-Hispanic (4.1 per 1,000) and black-on-Hispanic (4.2 per 1,000) violent crime.”
This is consistent with previously collected data, including a National Crime Victim Survey in 2000 that showed that 73 percent of white violent crime victims were attacked by whites, and 80 percent of black victims were targeted by blacks. This pattern is even clearer in the category of murder.
That hasn’t chastened the people promulgating the distorted statistics. Buchanan, citing Taylor’s fake statistics in 2007, wrote: “The real repository of racism in America — manifest in violent interracial assault, rape and murder — is to be found not in the white community, but the African-American community.”
Nor have the smears faded at all: In 2016, then-candidate Donald Trump retweeted a graphic that originated on a neo-Nazi website trotting out statistics mainly lifted from Taylor and the CofCC.
The false beliefs that arise from these smears have consequences, too: Dylann Roof, the domestic terrorist who killed nine members of a Charleston church’s black congregation in June 2015, shouted during the rampage at his victims his belief that they were “killing us.” In his manifesto, he specifically cited the CofCC’s website and Taylor’s smear pamphlet as the source of his information.