Hate crimes: I hate ‘em
Jan 31st, 2011 by Unamused
What is a hate crime? The FBI’s definition is reasonable enough: a hate crime, also known as a bias crime, is “a criminal offense committed against a person or property which is motivated, in whole or in part, by the offender’s bias against a race, religion, disability, sexual orientation, or ethnicity/national origin.” For the purposes of this post, I will abbreviate “racially-motivated hate crime” to simply “hate crime,” since I will not discuss other types of hate crime (e.g. crimes motivated by religion or sexual orientation).
Let me start with two relatively uncontroversial points:
- hate crimes occur in the United States every year
- hate crimes are bad
Some people — and I’m always amazed by this attitude — seem to think that this concludes any debate on the matter. I suppose those people can just stop reading. Personally, I need to know more.
How many hate crimes occur in the United States each year?
After all, a meteor hitting your house is pretty bad, and it certainly occurs from time to time. But it’s so rare, we shouldn’t spare it a second thought. We probably don’t need special legislation — or a special category of natural disasters — to combat the epidemic of meteor strikes. So we need to know how bad the hate crime problem really is.
I checked the FBI’s often-cited statistics on crime (and hate crime specifically). In 2009, about 1,318,398 violent crimes were committed nationwide. That includes murder, rape, and assault (simple and aggravated). Of these, about 1,759 were anti-black hate crimes. That’s 0.1%.
I feel better already. But I still need to know more.
How do we know how many hate crimes there are?
Is it possible there’s a reporting bias? Consider the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC). They’re making a nice profit from America’s war on hate, taking in $44 million in 1999 but spending only $2.4 million on litigation and $5.7 million on fundraising, according to the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR). Is it surprising that the SPLC has turned up 932 hate groups in the United States?
Look at our country. Look at its demographics, its immigrants, its media, its music, its President. Ask yourself how effective these supposed hate groups, including FAIR, can possibly be.
I am not surprised that the SPLC is not a credible source for data on hate crimes and hate groups. If I handed you $44,000,000 to fight the national epidemic of rabid woodchucks mauling picnickers, would you come back a week later and give me back $43,999,900 because you made some calls and discovered no such epidemic exists? Assume that you can count on the mainstream media to treat as credible every allegation of rabid-woodchuck picnicker-mauling. Further assume that you can silence your opponents by calling them “pro-woodchuck.” Be honest. (Remember, “George Bush doesn’t care about picnickers.”)
On July 16, 2009, Henry Louis Gates Jr. experienced what he described as “the worst racial profiling [he had] ever heard of in [his] life”: being arrested for disorderly conduct, after exhibiting nothing more than disorderly conduct. And being black. In his words: “[the arresting officer] presumed that I was guilty because I was black. There was no doubt about that.” But the real story casts plenty of doubt. Great big mountains of doubt. And that makes me wonder what constitutes a hate crime to a man like Gates, and brings me to my next question:
How can we tell if any given crime is a hate crime?
By the FBI’s standards, “facts such as the following, particularly when combined, are supportive of a finding of bias:”
- “The offender and the victim were of different race, religion, disability, sexual orientation, and/or ethnicity/national origin. For example, the victim was black and the offender was white.” (Wonderfully unbiased example, that.)
- “The victim is a member of a racial, religious, disability, sexual-orientation, or ethnic/national origin group which is overwhelmingly outnumbered by other residents in the neighborhood where the victim lives and the incident took place.”
- “A substantial portion of the community where the crime occurred perceived that the incident was motivated by bias.”
- “A historically established animosity existed between the victim’s and the offender’s groups.”
- “The victim, although not a member of the targeted racial, religious, disability, sexual-orientation, or ethnic/national origin group, was a member of an advocacy group supporting the precepts of the victim group.”
There are more criteria — and some of the others make a lot more sense—but restricting our attention to just these five, I invite the reader to imagine ways in which someone like Gates, or the SPLC, could stretch them enough to find racial motives in… well, just about anything done to anyone. See if you can stretch “advocacy group” to include all Obama supporters, for instance; or find “a substantial portion of the community” willing to blame just about anything on, say, white people.
I have to agree with this criterion, though:
- “Bias-related drawings, markings, symbols, or graffiti were left at the crime scene. For example, a swastika was painted on the door of a synagogue.”
That’s good to know if you’re planning to fake a hate crime, like these and these and this and anything else you might turn up by searching for “fake hate crime.” (I really am the world’s laziest researcher, you know.)
Between January 1995 and November 1996 the burning of black churches in the South created a sustained news frenzy. By the summer of 1996, Americans had been treated to over 2,000 articles in major newspapers, many on the front page. Not to be outdone, church arson lead all other stories in the TV nightly news.
Political types of various stripes chimed in. Ralph Reed, then Director of the Christian Coalition, termed the arsons, “the greatest outbreak of violence against the black church since the height of the civil rights movement.” Deval Patrick, assistant attorney general for civil rights, proclaimed the fires to be “an epidemic of terror.” President Clinton, in one of his weekly radio addresses, recalled in a now famous evocation, “vivid and painful memories of black churches being burned in my own state when I was a child.” (It was later discovered that no black church had been burned in Arkansas during his childhood.) Clinton called a conference of Southern governors to deal with the burnings. He toured burned-out churches, once on his 50th birthday. The press tagged along. Congress, not to be upstaged, passed the Church Fire Prevention Act of 1996, making church burning a federal crime.
Not everyone bought in. Michael Fumento, writing in the Wall Street Journal, analyzed the data and found that much of it was spurious. He showed that there had been no increase in church arson in the South from 1990 to 1995. Fumento noted that in 1995, USA Today reported 45 arsons against white churches, compared to 27 against black churches. He also observed that the 1996 figures were inflated by copycat crimes.
Eventually, numbers began to roll in indicating that more white than black churches had been torched. It did not make much difference to some in the press. Paula Walker, vice president and news director of WNBC-TV, reacted to the reports while attending a National Association of Black Journalists convention in August 1996. She concluded that, “There didn’t seem to be much substantiation other than raw numbers… while whites were being blamed for burning black churches, and were drowning in their own guilt, the facts reveal a black was 5 times more likely than a white to commit bias-motivated church arson.”
So who are the real victims of hate crimes?
Usually, white people.
There are two ways to assess the growing problem of black-on-white racism in the United States: hard facts and big news — or, to be more accurate, how the media and the public handle big news. We’ll come at it both ways.
When it comes to data, I’m very grateful that La Griffe du Lion is here to help — by which I mean, do all my work for me. From his study Crime in the Hood (emphasis mine):
The best and most complete evidence [of white victimization by blacks] comes from the Justice Department. Its annual National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS) canvasses a representative sample of about 80,000 Americans, from roughly 43,000 households. … From [the NCVS’s last full report] we learn that blacks committed 1,600,951 violent crimes against whites. In the same year, whites committed 165,345 such offenses against blacks. Despite being only 13 percent of the population, blacks committed more than 90 percent of the violent interracial crime. Less than 15 percent of these had robbery as a motive. The rest were assaults and rapes.
The asymmetry of interracial crime goes still deeper. More than half the violence committed by blacks is directed against whites, 57 percent in 1994. Less than 3 percent of the violence committed by whites is directed against blacks. Population and NCVS statistics reveal that in 1994 a black was 64 times more likely to attack a white than vice versa. In the city, the races live mostly apart from one another, so that the most convenient victims of thugs are others of the same race. Only a hunter’s mentality could account for the data. Given a choice, a black thug will select a white victim.
How many of these crimes, do you think, would be reported as hate crimes to the FBI? Would the SPLC factor them in? To their credit, they list active black separatist groups as hate groups. There’s 121 of them.
And then there’s the big news. Can you really even charge blacks for hate crimes? Will a white rape victim blame the black perpetrator or herself and her entire race? Are we even allowed to talk about this? Will the media report the races of the victims and of the offender when it’s a black-on-white crime? How about horrific crimes? How about the worst and most sickening crimes in American history?
Special bonus atrocities
If you haven’t yet had your fill of the “black experience,” there’s a big list of racial atrocities committed by blacks against whites at the end of this article about the 2009 massacre of five whites by three blacks.
Don’t worry, the media’s all over it when it comes to really important racial issues, like the discovery that adding words to other people’s sentences can make them sound racist. Morons.