On The “Facts Matter” Front…Heather MacDonald’s Testimony, And The Washington Post’s Deception

Heather Mac Donald, the Thomas W. Smith Fellow at the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research, testified before the House Committee on the Judiciary regarding the local and national upheavals over police policies. MacDonald could be said to be watching her warning come true, as she wrote in  The War on Cops (2016), a New York Times bestseller, that raced-based attacks on the criminal justice system erode the authority of law and putting lives at risk. MacDonald is no mindless ideologue . A graduate of Yale and Stanford Law School, she is a prolific and best selling author, and has won many awards for her writing. Nonetheless, you will never see her on panels or as a guest on news shows anywhere but Fox News. Intelligent and persuasive advocates for conservative positions are not welcome in the vast majority of the broadcast news media, for the same reason Senator Cotton’s op-ed in the Times prompted an editor’s resignation and the paper’s abject promise to avoid publishing upsetting non-conforming  views in the future.

McDonald was invited to testify by Republicans on the committee (of course) but her statement should (but won’t) be considered by policy-makers and citizens of all political persuasions, if facts matter to them.

Among McDonald’s points yesterday:

  • “Blacks between the ages of ten and 43 die of homicide at thirteen times the rate of whites, according to the CDC. In New York City, blacks make up 73 percent of all shooting victims, though they are 23 percent of the city’s population. In Chicago in 2016, there were 4,300 shooting victims, almost all black.”

It is fascinating that Black Lives Matter’s focus is on police misconduct.

  • “The percentage of black respondents in a 2015 Roper poll who wanted more police in their community was twice as high as the percentage of white respondents who wanted more police. “

Seems like an excellent topic for a more up-to-date survey…

  • ” For the last five years, the police have killed about 1,000 civilians a year, the majority of those victims armed or otherwise dangerous. In 2019, the police killed 235 blacks, most of them also armed or dangerous, out of 1,004 police shooting victims overall. That roughly 25 percent ratio has also remained stable. It is less than what the black crime rate would predict, since police shootings are a function of the rate at which officers encounter armed and violent suspects, a fact confirmed most recently by a 2019 study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. In the 75 largest U.S. counties, which is where most of the population resides, blacks constituted around 60 percent of all robbery and murder defendants, according to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, even though blacks comprise only 15 percent of the population in those counties.”

Read it all, but especially take note of this shocking revelation, which ought to be headline material:

  • “As of June 1, the Washington Post’s data base of fatal police shootings showed nine unarmed black victims and 19 unarmed white victims of fatal police shootings in 2019. That number of black unarmed victims is down 76 percent from 2015, when the Post began keeping its data base. The Post defines “unarmed” loosely to include suspects who have grabbed an officer’s gun or who are fleeing from a car stop with a loaded semi-automatic pistol in their vehicle. Those nine allegedly unarmed black victims represent 0.1 percent of all black homicide victims, which number about 7,500 a year—more than all white and Hispanic homicide victims combined.”

But then…

  • “After the tally of nine unarmed black victims was reported in certain news outlets last week, the Post reclassified over a dozen of its armed victims of police shootings as unarmed. This reclassification occurred six months after the Post had already closed its 2019 data base. The reclassification was not done on the basis of any new information; it was undoubtedly done to get the black victim numbers up. The Post is now showing 15 unarmed black victims in 2019. That is 0.2 percent of all black homicide victims, still a negligible number.”

16 thoughts on “On The “Facts Matter” Front…Heather MacDonald’s Testimony, And The Washington Post’s Deception

  1. There is a place for advocacy by news media; it is in their editorial pages where opinions are put forth using information carefully selected to make a point. Honest publications allow for opposing opinions as well. Such opinion should be anathema in news reporting, but it obviously is not. I routinely remind people (with little effect for some) that they cannot rely on any single news source if they are interested in the truth.
    The Post’s current slogan, “Democracy Dies in Darkness,” would better reflect the state of journalism if it included as well this: “And that Death is Accelerated by Dishonest Reporting.”
    Also, not sure what is going on, but Heather MacDonald’s excellent analysis is not included on the Judiciary Committee’s site for the hearings, nor is she listed among the witnesses.

  2. There probably isn’t a database or statistic for this, but I’d like to know how many people have been killed while in police custody and how that breaks down by race and circumstance. Shooting is one thing, but probably not a good indicator of the problems being protested now.

  3. I’ve been raising the same kind of numerical arguments with a few friends for a while and I’ve been called a racist for contradicting the narrative that police are racist, these “friends” say or directly imply that I’m ignorant. Their police are racist arguments are 100% emotional bull shit and not supported by the facts. These people are acting as if they’re in a social justice cult, don’t bother them with facts if the facts contradict their belief; this is a societal cancer and it will destroy us.

    • Give them this choice:

      1. #BlackLivesMatter
      2. Police are violent, racist sociopaths who habitaully gun down unarmed black men.
      3. Police (but not the general public) should get to have high-capacity magazines.

      Pick AT MOST two

      • Or, 3 is insignificant. A reasonably practiced pistolero can get off 30 (for example) well-aimed rounds in the same length of time with 2 15-rd mags or 3 10-rd ones. To quote Paul Hornung: “Practice, practice, practice…” And, in fact, in actual gun fights, the smaller magazine provides more efficient use of ammo as fewer rounds are dumped when “topping off” during lulls in the action. Waste not, want not.

  4. As for the Washington Post changing the data to better match the narrative they want to push; that’s blatant manipulation of statistics. I firmly believe that blatant manipulation of any statistics that are remotely political is done all the time (that’s what happens with agenda based statistics) and that’s exactly why I don’t believe any political statistics or, more importantly, any interpretation of political statistical data.

  5. It’s nice to have something like this in the tank: a collection of hard facts, stated by someone who knows what they’re talking about, delivered in plain, digestible language. As good as it is to know nebulously the facts around a topic, I find it useful to keep copies of articles like this in case I ever need to refer to them.

  6. Have you seen the NY Times Best Seller list for non-fiction lately? It’s all grovel to the mob/SJW/be a white ally stuff.

  7. “Intelligent and persuasive advocates for conservative positions are not welcome in the vast majority of the broadcast news media, for the same reason Senator Cotton’s op-ed in the Times prompted an editor’s resignation and the paper’s abject promise to avoid publishing upsetting non-conforming views in the future.”

    Correction: ANY advocates for conservative positions are not welcome in the vast majority of the broadcast news media.

  8. I had a revelation today after some recent lengthy discussions with some of my black friends and a couple of white friends that are “woke” social justice warriors; many in the black community, or social justice warriors, actually think that white privilege is equivalent to anti-black racism? Yes I said equivalent, meaning the same. I actually asked this specific question “Do you think that white privilege is equivalent to anti-black racism?” of one of my black friends today; I told him I was aware that I was putting him on the spot and he could feel free to decline to comment but I’ll update you if there is a reply.

    So the way I’m understanding it now is that if you are born into a middle class (or above) white family you are immediately considered a racist, first because you are white, and second because your family has the means to provide for itself. Of course this kind of “logic” falls completely on it’s face when you talk about the millions of children that are born into middle class (or above) black families. There seems to be little ambiguity as to whether white privilege can apply to a white persons that are born into a family below the poverty level but most seem to believe that even they have the racist privileges that are associated with being a white person.

    When there are black people that firmly believe that white people genetically inherit racism, white babies are physically born as evil racists, and then add my revelation that people are thinking that white privilege is equivalent to anti-black racism and all white people have white privilege; it becomes ridiculously easy to see that a false narrative demonizing all white people is being fabricated in much the same way as the false narratives were fabricated against the Jews in Germany or the Bosniaks in Bosnia-Herzegovina or the Tutsis in Rwanda.

    Remember the words of Martin Niemöller
    First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out because I was not a Socialist.

    Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out because I was not a Trade Unionist.

    Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out because I was not a Jew.

    Then they came for me and there was no one left to speak for me.

    • I did get a reply back but as I suspected he’d do he didn’t answer the question directly. To be truthful; the thrust of the conversation began with getting his personal opinion about Heather Mac Donald’s testimony and how he worded his reply led me to ask that particular question. I told him I knew I was putting him on the spot and it was fine if he declined to comment.

      What he did do in his reply was talk about historical events and cherry picked a few incidents from recent history to justify that anything bad that happens to any black person today is the direct result of systemic racism against blacks from whites. It’s apparent to me from our conversations that he blames whites for just about everything that happens in the black community, there is no other source to blame it all unethically tracks back through the use of rationalizations to white people. He can’t prove systemic racism but he believes it with his entire body, soul and mind; additionally, anyone saying that they haven’t seen evidence of systemic racism is “insulting” even if they agree that there is evidence of individual cases of racism. That’s all I choose to share from our private conversations.

      It’s very clear to me that this friend is, at some level, an anti-white racist whether he wants to openly acknowledge it or not. I have a couple of old friends on both sides of this black-white racism problem and they are friends where the Julie Principle is regularly applied. These “racists” all get treated exactly the same, they get asked regularly to support their claims and S.O.P. for all racists is that they cherry pick incidents and then they immorally apply all the negative they perceive on the entire race. It can sometimes get interesting placing myself in opposition to the racism from both sides.

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