Inspired by a recent exchange of views on another post on this blog, I’d like to offer a few statistics about race and criminal behavior in the U.S.

The comment which sparked this exchange, offered by Louis Calabro, was as follows:

Daily we discuss slavery’s damage to blacks, but what about the extreme disproportionate number of black on white crimes–some horrible?

The idea that black criminals are preying on white victims is a persistent myth in our country, not unlike the mistaken belief that welfare recipients are overwhelmingly black.

Race and crime

According to the Department of Justice’s Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS), for instance, in 2005 86% of white homicide victims were killed by other whites.

The related claim that the victims of crime related to the legacy of slavery are primarily white is also patently false. The same statistics show, for example, that in 2005 blacks were murdered at a rate six times higher than the rate for white Americans. In 2006, for all violent crimes, the BJS reports that blacks were victimized at a rate roughly 50% higher than whites.

It is generally true, of course, that black Americans are more likely to commit crimes than whites are. The same BJS homicide statistics show that blacks are convicted of murder at more than seven times the rate of whites. It is also true that blacks are more likely to be the victims of crime, and these two facts are not unrelated.

This connection to crime, as both perpetrators and victims, is due partly to the fact that blacks are disproportionately likely to be poor. Blacks are also more likely to live in neighborhoods with many of the hallmarks of poverty, such as a lack of infrastructure and jobs. These circumstances, of course, are largely a result of the legacy of slavery and discrimination. There are undoubtedly other factors at work which are more specific to race, and these, too, are in one way or another the consequence of our nation’s difficult history with race.

Racial segregation and crime

One of the most striking facts in all of this, for me, is that most murders in the U.S. are “intraracial,” that is, they are committed against a person of the same race as the offender. This reflects the fact that our society is still largely segregated by race, especially in housing, neighborhoods, schools, churches and other social institutions. As a result, most homicides (92%) committed against a friend or acquaintance are intraracial, and even homicides against strangers (75%) are committed against someone of the same race.

The impact of racial segregation on crime in the U.S. goes a long way towards explaining the dramatic black-on-black and white-on-white crime statistics mentioned above. However, this is hardly a cause for celebration, but rather a dramatic illustration of the extent to which our society to remains highly segregated by race, despite all of our enthusiasm over diminishing signs of racism and the election of a black president.

425 Responses to “Black Americans and crime”

  1. Percyval says:


    As I’ve shown repeatedly, if white people are most of the population, then we can expect interracial crime to be mostly black-on-white, rather than white-on-black, even assuming everything else is uniform.

    The reason that this is wrong is that white people also commit crime. White people make up most of the potential victims but they also make up most of the potential criminals.

    If we think of a criminal making random draws out of the population, then by the law of large numbers his relative rates of victimisation will approach population shares as the number of draws becomes large. So on average our criminal will pick white victims 87% of the time and black victims 13% of the time (say).

    If rates of criminality are racially uniform, then 13% of the time our criminal will be black and 87% of the time he will be white. The white population provides the majority of the victims and the attackers. Then, even though the group of potential white victims of black criminals is much bigger than the group of potential black victims of black criminals, the group of potential white criminals is much bigger than the group of potential black criminals.

    So we should end up with 11% of total violent crimes being committed by whites against blacks (and 76% against other whites), and 11% of total violent crimes being committed by blacks against whites (and 2% against other blacks).

  2. James says:

    The reason that this is wrong is that white people also commit crime. White people make up most of the potential victims but they also make up most of the potential criminals.

    Yes, but this doesn't affect rates, which is what you've repeatedly said you're talking about (and a word I probably should have repeated, yet again, in the passage you quote).

    I agreed about absolute numbers, and about percentages relative to all crime, but not rates at which black or white criminals victimize people of the other race.

    Why the absolute numbers, or rates relative to all crime, should bother you, or seem significant in any way, still mystifies me. The rate at which black criminals victimize white people, on the other hand, or how much of the crime directed at white victims is the result of black criminals — these seem like important facts, and they argue against worrying about black crime.

  3. Frank says:

    Percyval ask James to move, with his family, in a black neighborhood..let him try the experiment…see how that ends…LOL

  4. James says:

    Frank, what makes you so sure I live in a white neighborhood?

  5. Percyval says:

    Yes, but this doesn’t affect rates

    Yes it does: the rate at which blacks victimise whites should be exactly the same as the rate at which whites victimise blacks, if these assumptions hold.

  6. James says:

    Yes it does: the rate at which blacks victimise whites should be exactly the same as the rate at which whites victimise blacks, if these assumptions hold.

    Relative to what, Percyval? If you're defining the rate at which blacks victimize whites, for instance, as the rate at which they do so relative to all crimes they commit, then no, the rate should not be the same, as I've shown.

    As you, yourself, have shown, this only works if, instead of using rates at all, you're looking at the ratio of, for instance, black crimes against whites, relative to all crimes committed by anyone, of any race, against anyone else, of any race. And that's not what anyone usually means by a "rate."

  7. Percyval says:


    Two definitions picked at random from Google:

    A measure, quantity, or frequency, typically one measured against some other quantity or measure: "the crime rate".


    A quantity measured with respect to another measured quantity: a rate of speed of 60 miles an hour

    The relative frequency of b-w crime as a proportion of the whole should equal the relative frequency of w-b crime as a proportion of the whole. In other words, number of b-w crimes divided by total number of crimes should equal the number of w-b crimes divided by total number of crimes.

    This is standard usage and not ambiguous in my opinion, but I would be happy to explain in more detail if needed. I don't really want to have an argument about what "rate" means though. The important thing is understanding what the figures show.

  8. James says:

    Percyval, you're absolutely correct that the rate of black-on-white crime, expressed relative to crime committed by all races, against all races, would be defined in that way. I believe I've already said so.

    As for "standard usage," it isn't inherent in the definition of "rate" that you'd be comparing to all crimes. That's a shift from the rates we were talking about, you didn't define your rates, and I haven't seen anyone seek before to compare black-on-white crime to white-on-black crime by expressing both relative to all crimes.

    I believe the reason you won't find this particular comparison in crime reports, or in analyses of crime rates, is that it isn't considered meaningful. And I have yet to hear you try to explain why you think it is.

    What's important to society is how much any group contributes to overall crime, or how much any group contributes to crime against any particular group. What's important to the individual is how much any group contributes to the risk of crime against her or him.

    What's the relevance of black-on-white or white-on-black crime, expressed against the totality of crime, if any disproportion vanishes when looking at crimes committed by only one group, or against only one group?

  9. Frank says:

    James..i am sure ..I AM…liberals don't practice what they preach…

  10. James says:

    Well, I can't speak about the practices of liberals, Frank. I can only speak about myself.

  11. Frank says:


    I am sure you live in a black neighborhood…LOL..

  12. James says:

    Frank, I've lived in neighborhoods that were majority white, majority black, and majority Latino/a. Without exception, my sense of personal safety has varied with the socioeconomic status of my community, not its racial or ethnic composition.

    And I suspect you would be horrified at the neighborhood I currently live in.

  13. Frank says:

    must be the exception. Tell you where I am not going to live: Detroit, Atlanta, , New Orleans and tons of other colored neigfhborhoods in the major US cities. I lived in an area with a Latino majority and i had no problems at all as well, but i mingled very well with Latinos in appearance. Also I stayed away form a certain area, you know which one, because i was told was not safe for whites. I don't know where do you live…unless you are talking about middle class neighborhoods. I live in the US, do you? Heaven?

  14. Frank says:


    by the way i don't walk in any black neighborhood i have been in the eastern coast, I drive!! And so the majority of "other" people, even blacks that are not from the area. Does this tell you anything? Is it that hard to admit the truth?

  15. James says:

    Does this tell you anything?

    Does it tell me what, Frank? That you fear your fellow citizens, if they're black? That you believe other people do, too? After what you've said here, no, I don't find these things hard to believe.

    I do find it disappointing that you're so willing to believe the "truth" of how you see the world–what you openly admit is simply your behavior, and your perception of how other people like you behave–and so reluctant to acknowledge the fact that millions of white people in this country live in close proximity to black people, and suffer no dramatic negative consequences as a result.

    If there are problems in poor black communities in this country–and I've certainly never suggested that there aren't–then those problems have old causes, Frank. The situation, in terms of a socioeconomic gap between the races, as well as discrimination, neglect, and despair, was little different in 1960, in 1930, in 1900, or in 1865. For anyone to point their finger at black Americans and imply that it's somehow their fault, when the situation in 1865 was plainly not, and little has been done by the majority in this country to change that situation in the generations since, is ridiculous.

  16. Darryl (US Veteran) says:

    Excellent rebuttals James to the RACIST…..

  17. Darryl (US Veteran) says:

    @Percyval- What is more important…to talk about "statistics" or to discuss "causation". Statistics can be changed because they reflect the quantification of "activity". Activity in itself does nothing to address the "cause" of that activity. The statistics identify a problem that has to be addressed….practicing RACISM as the GNAT suggests doesn't address the problem. Don't you want to deal with solving the problem??

  18. Percyval says:

    Hi Darryl,

    (Thanks for the book recommendation earlier, by the way).

    You're right to point out that solving problems is important. But it's hard to see how a problem can be solved if people don't think that it really is a problem, or don't agree on what the problem is.

    If the problem (whatever it might be) is solved in such a case, then it will be solved by happenstance and not by determined action on the part of humans.

  19. Darryl (US Veteran) says:

    @Percyval- Very interesting reply! I would like to know your thoughts on solving black crime by "happenstance". I believe humans can solve this problem, both black and white (also yellow, brown, green, purple, and blue!). There will always be poor within a capitalist system (the system can't provide a quality of life equally for everyone – so crime will exist). Humans created capitalism and the social and racial structures that operate within the capitalist environment. If the majority don't want members not of the majority to participate, then that should be made clear on a national level to set the record straight, and then people can determine how they want to respond to the social injustices that impact their daily lives. The Detroit riots of 1967 was such a response, and certainly not the response we need in this modern era.

  20. Darryl (US Veteran) says:

    Hmmm….quite quiet lately. What, no new radical ideas from the bat galleries and white and black crime!? Well here is snippet for your general consumption…..interesting that racial profiling helps contribute to stereotypes!!

    Source: PRRAC 18 May Newsletter(Feel free to look it up if you're curious!)

    Stop and frisk: Last week, the New York Civil Liberties Union issued a report documenting grossly disproportionate rates of "stop and frisk" activity by NYC police directed at Black and Latino city residents, especially young men of color. The report found, for example, that in the 10 precincts with Black and Latino populations of 14 percent or less, Black and Latino city residents accounted for more than 70 percent of the stops. This week U.S. District Judge Shira Scheindlin, in granting class action status to victims of the policy, found that there was "overwhelming evidence" that a centralized stop-and-frisk program has led to thousands of unlawful stops.

    Sooo, how much crime is deterred with racial profiling!? Perception ain't reality…..better living conditions, middle income wage jobs, and access to quality education benefits society more than irrational attempts to show the public that the NY City police ae on top of crime WHEN THEY AIN'T….so when will the NYC Police begin stopping and frisking wall street criminals for the destruction their doing to our economy….why don't they start first with Chase Bank execs on wall street!!!

  21. Darryl (US Veteran) says:

    …excuse any bad grammer above….but you get my point!


  22. Frank says:

    Here he goes again! LOL. Go figure: "New York Civil liberty Union"!! LOL. It is like sating that Al Sharpton is the champion of civil rights? BLACKS and LATINOS commit more crimes therefore they get stopped and frisked more! Unlawful? How does she knows? Where is the evidence? Just like the evidence against Arpaio? Zero? When will you get it? I think we are writing in English here. There is overwhelming evidence, that's the fact, that the crime rate of blacks and latinos are WAY more than white and Asians. " here is an excerpt from an article off American Thinker: " The topic of race and crime is taboo, especially amongst those who consider themselves daring and broad-minded thinkers. The trend of racial “flash mob” violence by black teens against “random” non-black victims has gone relatively unnoticed, when it should be a national scandal. Several people have died in separate incidents of the “knock-out game,” a race-based and unmentioned disgrace. As for crime rates overall, the picture is stark: the CDC’s National Center for Injury Prevention and Control lists the homicide rate per 100,000 as 23.1 for blacks, 7.8 for Native Americans, 7.6 for Hispanics, 2.7 for whites, and 2.4 for Asians. The reality of crime in America is that the white and Asian homicide rate is on par with Finland’s. The American black homicide rate is on par with those of Zambia and Rwanda (22.9 and 26.6 per 100,000, respectively). Any discussion of “America’s” supposedly violent culture that does not take race into account and disaggregate the statistics is terribly misleading."..WHEN will you get it Darryl?

  23. Darryl (US Veteran) says:

    Does it surprise any sane individual that the Racist Gnat supports racial profiling, even though it doesn't stop crime. Ooooooohh, the gnat sits in its cave droooling over statistics, falling into an endless cycle of false analogy (actually taking advantage of statistics to justify racism) and false assumptions which prevents it (IT doesn't really care — racists don't have real morals) and many other community leaders among the priviledged class to address the root causes of social ills. For many like the Gnat, the use of "minority" crime is a convenient excuse to keep races apart. WE ALL KNOW THAT CRIME IS A RESPONSE TO EXISTING SOCIAL CONDITIONS (good movie on this weekend which typifies that — it was called the "Blackboard Jungle"; exploring inner city existence from a "white" perspective", because the primary victims where white!). The Gnat supports segregation in all aspects of human existence because within the recesses of its corrupt and foul mind, its preverse notion of assigning lesser value to one's human existance based on skin color is as flawed as ITS ancestor's notions of racial subordination was over 150 yrs ago which afflicts the nation today. The legacy of race hatred and race subordination is manifested in statistics like crime. If all things were created equal, crime would be more evenly spread out within society, but the hording of economic resources and exclusion of others from society at large stunts growth in many areas of our society and weakens the nation.

  24. Frank says:

    @Darryl. You just don't get it, and so your people. Don't want to take responsibility for your action. The "racist" is just stating FACTS, known and re-known by everybody. While people like yourself are dishing out nonsense. Statistics might be cold numbers but it is what they are: just the facts on paper. Racial profiling doesn't stop crime, that is true, but it stops MORE crime than non-racial profiling. YOUR false assumptions are just justifications for most of your people failure to integrate into a civilized society. Keep burying your head in the sand, just like the millions of liberal [censored] that were screaming "racism" at the South African and NOW they have completely ignored the barbarism i which that Nation has fallen! What are you blabbering about? "Existing social conditions"? What has that to your existing social conditions excuse do with your young people killings, making their neighborhoods unsafe to walk through, flash mobs, car jackings, fathering children like rabbits, dropping off from school and so on? Poor people live everywhere in the world! Take a walk in the Balkans or any of the ex-Russian republic! You don't see mobs of youth punching people randomly in the streets just for the hell of it! You don't see mob of youths terrorizing entire neighborhoods! In which other country or Nation in the world had Africans more chances to study, better their lives and build a "normal' social life? Instead what they do? Notwithstanding handouts, the lower standards imposed to get them to work, quotas, and a plethora of other liberal [censored] and the cover up of the Mass Media on their/your failure to meet a minimum of acceptable standard…they/you still want more..still can't do it! should just shut up Darryl.

  25. Darryl (US Veteran) says:

    Well, well, looks like some of the racist Gnat's friends were rounded up this week… from Florida:

    KISSIMMEE – A "skinhead" Barbie doll, a knotted noose and AK-47s were seized in this month's raid of a compound in eastern Osceola County where a white supremacy group prepared for a race war, court records obained Wednesday show.

    Members of the FBI and local law enforcement targeted a 10-acre training area on Harris Road, near Holopaw, where 13 members of the American Front are accused of conducting firearms and combat training.

    KISSIMMEE – A "skinhead" Barbie doll, a knotted noose and AK-47s were seized in this month's raid of a compound in eastern Osceola County where a white supremacy group prepared for a race war, court records obained Wednesday show.

    Members of the FBI and local law enforcement targeted a 10-acre training area on Harris Road, near Holopaw, where 13 members of the American Front are accused of conducting firearms and combat training.

    The collection of buildings, a motor home and a gun range are owned by Marcus and Patricia Faella, a St. Cloud couple who incorporated the group last year for the "Religious and cultural preservation of the European peoples," state records show.

    An undisclosed number of American Front records, along with three laptops, a computer tower and address books, were taken as well and listed by an FBI agent on an Orange County Sheriff's Office property form.

    Information for the raid came from an informant who infiltrated and joined the American Front as part of a three-year investigation of white supremacy groups in Central Florida. In late March, members of the Aryan Nations, Kavallerie Brigade and the Outlaws motorcycle club were arrested in St. Cloud on drug and weapon charges.

    In the most recent case, agents were looking for "literature pertaining to the assemble, manufacture and functioning of explosive devices, weapons or materials, including but not limited to: books, pamphlets, drawings, sketches, diagrams, photographs, photocopies, computer generated information of same," wrote Metropolitan Bureau of Investigation Agent Kelly Boaz. "Any items likely to be contaminated or show traces of any chemical or explosive materials."

    The Faellas are accused of hosting shooting practice for convicted felons prohibited by state and federal laws from using firearms, court records state. The informant secretly filmed the practice where Marcus Faella told shooters to visualize the targets as African-Americans and made "threatening remarks toward Jewish people," records states.

    Most members of the American Front charged weeks ago with participating in anti-government paramilitary trainingg remain held in the Osceola County Jail, unable to post bond.

    Little is known why 10 followers of the white supremacy movement must pay bails of at least $500,000 while two senior members posted just $50,000 bond to go free.

    Bail for one of the mystery defendants was dropped last week from $500,000 to $50,000 — almost a month after her arrest, Osceola County court records show.

    Circuit Judge Jon Morgan initially considered dropping Jennifer McGowan's bail to $250,000, but her lawyer Samuel Edwards of Melbourne successfully argued it was the 25-year-old Cocoa woman's first arrest. And he pointed out the group's accused ringleader, Marcus Faella, 39, had been released on $50,000 bail when arrested May 4.

    Patricia Faella, 36, initially had been released by error on $5,000 bail. She was re-arrested and remains held in lieu of $500,000.

    "I'm happy with the 50 grand for now," Edwards said last week, whose client posted bail and was released on GPS monitoring.


    Racist like the Gnat are irrationally focused on people of color but fail to realize their own activities are violent, evil, and "un-American" to the core! Misguided idiots with the minds of children……

  26. frank says:

    LOL..Darryl..Darryl..that's all you have? I have listed, in my previous posts, at least ten cases of black on white attacks for the past month and I haven't updated that list yet!! The subject is black crime right? I guess there is no point of discussion here…you will lose in every aspects. Pathetic Darryl..pathetic. If you want i can list, one by one, from flash mobs to single attacks…your people behavior. Want to go for that? Your people are as "racist" , including yourself, if not more as the white racists. Black crime and racism is anti-American as well..we can begin from the New Black panther party. Shut the [ ] up…

  27. Darryl (US Veteran) says:

    The ranting of irrational thought, upset over the truth that the Gnat and those that think like it are part of the problem….corrupt minds clouded in hate….what a waste!

  28. Frank says:

    " the reason I talk to myself is because I am the only one whose answers I accept"..that's Darryl

  29. Frank says:

    And why do you keep assuming that I "hate"? Just because I disagree totally with you and I tell the truth about blacks, doesn't mean that I hate them!! What's wrong with you? Would I be accepted by your black brain if I had said that Blacks are people whose examples whites had to follow, model citizens, peaceful, laborious, intelligent and superior to everything I have known on the planet? (that is..lying). No one in his sane mind would ever say that not even a white liberal retard, because is simply not true. You people got a lot to do to fill the "gap" and it is exclusively up to you. Nothing to do with slavery or other [expletive]. Whites are so stupid that after giving equal rights and freeing the slaves, and rightfully so, went a step beyond that….whites start taking rights away from themselves!! White it the way you want…it's anyway a bunch of nonsense. This "feeling sorry" and yielding to a black, alleged, induced inferiority is a myth and is not sustainable anymore, economically and morally. It is destroying the fabric of the same people that intend to help. Your people. Instead of helping these liberal affirmative action policies and induced welfare are numbing the minds of African Americans and instead of putting an end to true racism is enhancing it. More and more whites are feeling the this "levelling" the inequalities is biting them in the butt, so to speak. The more we try to make AA and minorities "equal" the more WE are unequal and the more we lose as society. We are going towards the de-civilization of the US. Soon, in few decades, our Nation will be a third World nation, some like Brazil today. We lost the sense and the true meaning of the word "merit". We are punishing the brilliant and the genius and rewarding the idiot and the stupid, because we feel sorry for them. We are going to have soon a Nation on welfare and the verge of bankruptcy and with strong dependency on Government handouts. We are being geared to go in that direction! People of any colour are not being stimulated any more in "doing"..people are told to sit and wait for a divine (intervention). Blacks are the first victims of this trickery just because of their history and different pace in evolution of their civilizations which was and is still well behind the white ones. Keep dreaming day your grand-grand kids will be waking up in Nation that will resemble more Detroit (turned into [expletive] by your people not mine) today than a civilized one. …African Americans (Africans in general also) have a long way to go before they can handle a civilization…they should learn first how to participate and integrate…

  30. Darryl (US Veteran) says:

    The language, current and past examples in its writings, misunderstanding of what diversity means vice affirmative action, and the irrational/homophobic vision of the future as expressed by the Gnat clearly indicates it is in another universe of the mind…..corrupt and "mis-informed"……

  31. Frank says:

    ..So I am misinformed on black under-achievement and failures (well documented in schools, politics etc) but yours, the miserable article on few white nationalists idiots…is information. More biased than yourself…I don't know which reality YOU live in….may be I am writing to someone from another planet…

  32. M.A. says:

    Listen everyone, if you do not know Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord, you will perish [in Hell] (John 3:16). We all have an appointment with death (Hebrews 9:27).

    Fine, I am an African-American; my IQ is 125. You might be a White American with an IQ of 140. However, I am 100 percent sure, I am on my way to heaven to spend eternity with Jesus. On the contrary, if you do not know Jesus as your Savior, you and your 15-point IQ advantage will BUST HELL WIDE OPEN! Forget the non-sense; seek Jesus while you still have time.

    Oh, here is another statistic: 10 out of 10 people die. By the time the clock strikes 12:00 midnight on December 31, 2012, 50 million people would have entered either Heaven or Hell (the implication of Matthew 13: 1-23 is that 37.5 million of them will wind up in Hell). You and/or I could very well be of of the 50 million by year’s end.

  33. Frank says:

    @ M.a….125 IQ and you speak lie a religious freak…do you believe that 2012 will be the end of the world also?

  34. Darryl (US Veteran) says:

    The gnat has the gall to call someone a religious freak….knowing well it's ancestors used religion to justify slavery. Hypocrit, scoundrel, liar, and fiend!

  35. Rachel says:

    Why do you think that blacks are more prone to be both victims and perpetrators of these acts of violence in South Africa today?

  36. James DeWolf Perry says:

    Because of South Africa's recent history with severe racial discrimination, Rachel, black South Africans are, on average, far poorer and living with lesser education, employment, wealth, and infrastructure than white South Africans.

    Those material conditions, as well as the cultural norms and sense of despair that arise out of generations of discrimination, tend to produce significantly more crime than stable, prosperous middle-class lives filled with opportunity for those who are hard-working and goal-driven.

    This isn't limited to race: poor white communities, for instance, tend to experience more crime than more affluent white neighborhoods, even if those poor white communities don't experience racial discrimination (and thus, for instance, experience significantly more opportunity for advancement than do non-white communities).

    So I wouldn't be the least bit surprised if blacks in South Africa are more likely than their white counterparts to perpetrate crime. As for the victims, it only makes sense that in a highly segregated society like South Africa, criminals tend to prey on those who live near them. It's the same in the U.S., where criminals are far more likely to target members of their own race than of others, because that's more likely to be who they encounter in their neighborhoods.

  37. Rachel says:

    Thank you James your explanation clarifies the answer to my question.

  38. Darryl(US Veteran) says:

    James, great answer, but why do you believe many people can't connect the dots with respect to crime, poverty, and racism; especially in light of an example like apartheid as a national policy example!? Could it be psychological as a result of their social conditioning??

  39. James DeWolf Perry says:

    I do think, Darryl, that social messaging is key to how most Americans filter information about race, crime, and poverty. All Americans are exposed to powerful social messages that link black citizens, for instance, to criminal behavior and other stereotypes, to the point where many Americans (and certainly not only white Americans) are mistakenly convinced that social ills like crime or welfare dependency are primarily black problems, and that any disproportionate black involvement in these issues somehow stems from individual or cultural factors, rather than deep, systemic issues with long roots in our history of racial violence and discrimination.

    When people hold simple, powerful ideas like these, a few facts usually aren't enough to sway their basic assumptions, even if, on paper, those facts would seem overwhelming.

  40. Darryl (US Veteran) says:

    James, you are right on target. Having traveled abroad as a member of the armed services, I have seen the same conditions in poor black communities in America in other coutries, especially in countries where the indigenous/or immigrants are discriminated against – i.e. high poverty, crime, drug use, and joblessness.

  41. Janjan says:

    I have read all your comments and to tell you the truth, as a black woman.. I've read about thousands of serial killers which are always whites except for two or three black men. All the burning of churches, all the school shootings, movie theatre shooting, mall shootings .White man lose a job,they just kill themselves their families.
    What does this have to do with the topic, you ask? the point is they kill more than any race but they're usually found 'crazy' and sent to a mental institution. Blacks commit crimes in ghetto on each other but are sent to jail even when they're not guilty because they can't afford agood reputable lawyer. I believe in carma.
    Just by reading the previous comments made it easy for me to speak this way. I come from the caribbean a family of 12, my parents had 6 boys 6 girls all have jobs and good education from Nurses, to Soldier, to Police officer and we all live in the city.Lower IQ talk to Oprah and scientists from past and present that are black. Poverty does play a role in some cases but not excuse for all, nontheless, never forget what you are capable of. You too are not perfect. Barack Obama went to college it's not white genes.

  42. James says:

    Whenever the question of crime and Blacks or Asians is discussed, racism is always the charge if you speak your mind and point out that crime in these communities is widespread. The Asians (Indians, Pakistanis, Bangladeshis) tend to be more in the realm of financial fraud, white collar crime while the blacks focus on violent crime. However, falling back on accusations of racism doesnt remove the fact that crime in these communities is widespread. In Europe, they are struggling with the issue of crime in these communities that have made it unsafe to visit many areas of big cities at night. Rape and muggings are widespread in the UK, France, Holland and Scandanavian countries and largely committed by these people. Scandanavia has a particularly large outbreak of black on blonde female rapes.

  43. James DeWolf Perry says:

    The charge of racism isn't only leveled when people speak their minds. It's also used when people offer false information to defame particular racial groups. In this case, the idea that those of Indian, Pakistani, and Bangladeshi origin tend to commit financial crimes, for instance, is obviously untrue, and the notion that black people are responsible for a wave of rapes and muggings across Europe is absurd on its face.

    You are, of course, correct that in certain societies at certain times, particular demographic groups–often defined by race–may commit more crime, on average, than other groups. This is true on average, for instance, for black Americans, as was pointed out in this blog post.

    You write, though, as if this is somehow the fault of black citizens, or as if it's an inherent characteristic of those of African descent. In fact, though, a higher crime rate is characteristic of any group–including white people–that is disproportionately poor, historically discriminated against, or deprived of community infrastructure. Thus we find that in the United States or in Europe, poorer white communities tend to have a higher rate of crime, including violent crime, than middle-class or affluent white communities.

    So I think the question you have to ask yourself is why you're focusing only on non-white citizens, and why you're writing as if this is their fault or even a racial characteristic, rather than a natural consequence of a long, unresolved history of racial oppression and of the racial inequality and prejudice which remains in each of these societies today.

  44. Darryl(US Veteran) says:

    Excellent reply but I'm not sure the dude will be convinced!

  45. MOE1 says:

    only one white majority country iin the history of time has elected a non white leader…twice !

  46. sweaty guy says:

    James, you like most liberals are not only still living in the 1960's which was almost half a century ago, but you are also suffering from dilusional fantacies!!! I'll pray for you. Yes the 1960s was a challenging time for blacks espeacially in the south,but now we are in the 2010s!!! there's no segragation for whites anywhere!!! not in schools place of work or communitys and as far as public transportation goes it is flat ass out suicide. I dont know where you live I dare you to take a DART bus through south Dallas through Oak Cliff, or Pleasant Grove and you let me know how they treat you!!! Let's see if they will champion for you, or will they laugh at you while your head is caved in by their feet.

  47. James DeWolf Perry says:

    The fantasy is believing that in 2013, the racial problems of the 1960s have somehow vanished.

    Yes, we've made tangible progress since the days of the civil rights movement. For instance, segregation by law is, as you point out, prohibited now. Did you think that was the only thing holding back black families? What about racial prejudice in housing, education, and employment? Research consistently shows that such prejudice is still prevalent in our society, a half-century later.

  48. Darryl (US Veteran) says:

    Just what version of a delusional history or reality are you trying to perpetrate! How about the entire time blacks have been in this country there has been resistance to full integration and extending full civil liberties – up until the mid sixties, that resistance was in the form of outright VIOLENCE!! The method now is to enforce total separation, thru any form of discrimination in the private sector. Urban areas remain segregated by race and income. Job sprawl is at an all time high — Minorities have to travel a min of 20 miles from their neighborhoods to compete for jobs because people with your attitude have divested from America's cities with minority populations.

    Living in fear is not the answer….you might as well board up your windows, and bunker yourself in your home never to come out again, because your mind has already arrived at that destination.

  49. Frank says:

    To all the people here that asks us (whites) not to stereotype: look at the stats and tell why we should not..

  50. James DeWolf Perry says:

    Frank, it is wrong to stereotype not because there aren't statistical associations, here and now, between different racial groups and crime or other factors, but because these associations say nothing about individuals.

    I'm sure you wouldn't want to be stereotyped for being short, or fat, or bald, or disabled, or for any other reason, even if statistics backed up the stereotype, on average.

    Now, the reasons for the statistical associations are another matter, and these, too, back up the need to avoid stereotyping people. The statistics don't, as you've suggested in another comment, prove that different races have different propensities towards crime, violence, etc., but rather that centuries of brutal violence and discrimination towards those of certain races have taken a toll. Statistically, the members of some races are more likely to be impoverished, to live in communities with little in the way of jobs or infrastructure, to have little education, etc. And all of these things are correlated, statistically, with crime and other social ills. So it is utterly wrong to "blame the victim" by pointing to the consequences of a racist past and attributing those consequences to the failings of those on whom the burdens of the past now fall.

  51. Darryl (US Veteran) says:

    Very elegantly written James!!! It's a shame some of your respondents DON'T KNOW HISTORY, or simply refuse to accept it. Some posting who are not minorities may have a hard time understanding causation with this subject, especially if they are not well off economically or have come from working class backgrounds themselves and can't make the connections because they are racially segregated in their communities. Unfortunately, when it comes to race in this country, perceptions and misinformation are taught and passed down in many instances. A website like this one helps people confront their past, present, AND THEIR FEARS. Unfortunately, many like the "gnat" fight on for a different outcome!

  52. Frank says:

    James, your reasoning is flawed. being short, bold or fat has nothing to do with race. It is scientifically proven that there are biological differences among races and IQ differences have been long tested and ignored because of political correctness. Probably you live in an all white, safe and quite, neighborhood or with very little interaction with minorities. Just do this for me: take your white liberal ass and move in Detroit, Chicago, Newark, Memphis or any other minority infested city and let's how long will it take for you to change your mind. Facts are out there but people like you just don't want to see them. Quit finding excuses: discrimination ..blah blah. Tell me what discrimination affects the cities of Detroit or Atlanta? And please explain us how discrimination of the past affects these young thugs behavior? Is it because of discrimination that we have a rampant black young crime rate, school drop out rate, out of wedlock babies and all the good things that mostly young AA are bringing in our neighborhood? If it is so then you are saying that no white group in the world have suffered discrimination or violence, which is obviously very stupid to say!. What about the Jews, to pick one? They have been persecuted, killed, discriminated against and oopssss I can't recall Jewish neighborhood to be in the same mess that African American neighborhoods are. Shall I continue?

  53. James DeWolf Perry says:

    Respectfully, Frank, this isn't about anyone's reasoning being flawed, but about the facts. It is NOT scientifically proven that there are inherent, biological IQ differences among the races. On the contrary, there is a mountain of evidence that average differences in IQ between the races are the result of factors other than genetics (such as average differences in poverty, and striking differences in average per-pupil spending in schools).

    "Tell me what discrimination affects the cities of Detroit or Atlanta?"

    Do you mean what discrimination affects black residents of these cities? Research consistently shows dramatic racial discrimination in this country, in education, employment, housing … the list goes on and on. And that's before looking at infrastructure: residential segregation by race is still prevalent in our society, and on average, white-majority neighborhoods have far more infrastructure and investment than non-white-majority neighborhoods.

    "And please explain us how discrimination of the past affects these young thugs behavior?"

    As I've just suggested, racial discrimination isn't just a thing of the past in this country. But past discrimination also has its impact: not just in how racial stereotypes abound, and perpetuate prejudice today, but inadequate infrastructure, the locations of jobs, cultural attitudes such as distrust, and so on.

    "They have been persecuted, killed, discriminated against and oopssss I can't recall Jewish neighborhood to be in the same mess that African American neighborhoods are."

    This is just about history, Frank. Jewish Americans have faced plenty of discrimination in this country, but it has generally not prevented people from succeeding in school or business, especially in small or majority-Jewish businesses. That's a broad picture, and there have been damaging admissions quotas, mainstream firms that wouldn't hire Jews, and so on, but this is not much compared to chattel slavery, Jim Crow segregation, and the maintenance, to this day, of racially-segregated communities.

  54. ConcernedCitizen says:

    "It is generally true, of course, that black Americans are more likely to commit crimes than whites are. The same BJS homicide statistics show that blacks are convicted of murder at more than seven times the rate of whites."

    I appreciate your dispelling myths about black vs white crime but you still perpetrate the same mentality with this quote. Whites and blacks commit crimes at the same rate but the difference is in the conviction rate. Stand your ground for instance allows Zimmerman to get off, but a black women goes to jail for shooting at her husband and missing. She didn't fire more than one shot so therefore that was a warning shot, but she is still doing 20 years.

    Whites therefore are hypocrites for the most part. White kids steal more than black kids but never see a prison for it. Black teens serve decades for stealing candy in America. Blacks are still a victim of white lack of humanity .

  55. frank says:

    Not at al. Tha case of the black woman that shot her husband…read the whole case before judging. You are committing the same mistake that was made when the media jumped on the Zimmerman "whiteracist" bandwagon. I can give a long list of black on white crime and you call e hypocrite? That's preposterous! Whites are victimized by blacks and the media are not reporting the news. Do you really want a list of cases? We'll see who's got more. Please shut up. White kids steal…LOL? Stealing …everyone steals little things in his/her youth days. I haven't heard about whites being in flash mobs or involved in "knockout" games yet and they are epidemically a black" youth problem. Just to cite two examples. Shall we continue my hypocrite black racist friend?

  56. James DeWolf Perry says:

    Frank, it's disappointing to see you responding with myths about crime in this country. We all know well, for instance, that the dominant picture in the media emphasizes blacks, not whites, as criminals, despite white people committing the majority of the crime in this country. It's simply not true that the media report only white-on-black crime and present a picture of black Americans as victims, not perpetrators, of crime.

    Likewise, you suggest that the problem for white people is black crime, yet as the original post indicates, the vast majority of crime committed against white people is by other white people. The only way for a white American to worry about crime in this country, and to focus his attention on black people in this regard, is to believe a myth that's easily contradicted by basic crime statistics. The fact that black Americans are convicted of crime at a statistically higher rate than white Americans simply can't change this reality.

  57. Richard Kane says:

    Blacks are not designed for great civilizations. They are designed for locations marked by intense competition and struggle for survival. A majority black population cannot prosper and flourish. Blacks cannot sustain what they are given because they are not intelligent enough to do so. They destroy everything.

  58. James DeWolf Perry says:

    Well, at least that's refreshingly candid, Richard. You don't attempt to hide your racism–which I mean in a strictly technical sense, the unscientific belief that humanity is divided, biologically, into different races, and that these races aren't just divided by superficial characteristics, but by more fundamental differences in areas like intelligence or temperament.

    The fact that biologists are confident that there are no races, that the mix of outward traits involving hair, skin, and other surface features doesn't correspond to any coherent groupings, does ensure that your views will be relegated to the ash heap of history, or at least to a radical fringe ideology.

    Life must be very unpleasant, believing that you're surrounded by inferior races that possess substandard intelligence and "destroy everything." Especially if you live in the U.S., where white people will soon be in the minority, or elsewhere in the so-called first world, where the non-white population is rapidly increasing almost everywhere.

  59. Mouse says:

    I do have to chime in as a person of color (blatino) who actually grew up in the toughest neighborhood in NYC in the 70s/80s… The South Bronx. I do notice most of the times, when there is a discussion on the "causes" of poverty and crime and their correlations, it is usually white liberal activists and intellectuals who speak with authority on the subject, as if they actually lived in a ghetto or grew up in one and know the environment well.

    I truly believe that even people like the original author of this article have good intentions but their data is usually based on stats and other author's works… usually other white well-meaning liberals. I used to be one of those militant, Cornel West-types, conspiracy theory anti-whitey, anti government types; commie and proud, back in my late teens, early twenties. It was a way for me to explore other points of view and question authority and dogma. I just felt bitter at the what I saw around me; the poverty and despair and had to find someone to blame.

    Fast forward 25 or so years (I am in my 40s) and I finally decided to give some conservative, libertarian principles a second look. The main impetus for my wanting to investigate my own views on the causes of poverty was working in the social services field and reading John McWhorter's book "Losing the Race". I suggest anyone who wants a truly eye opening experience with regards to the "poor" to either work in the field or find someone who does who isn't biased. Read McWhorter's book and give it a chance… read it with an open mind and see if it has some good points. You won't agree with every point he makes, but in my experience growing up in the ghetto, mostly everything he wrote about rang true. It truly changed the way I see the "poor" now; from first-hand experience.

    I have nothing against entitlement programs as they have helped me when I attended college to make it through 4 years with no family assistance (Pell Grants, Food Stamps), but coming from a ghetto and environment that I still visit now and then because I have family still there… it became apparent to me that the War on Poverty hasn't changed anything or uplifted browns and blacks or even some family members of mine who lagged behind (stats prove that!); perpetuating a cycle of generational poverty but still blaming others for their failures. If anything, entitlements have made us more dependent on government.

    While working for those entitlement programs as a worker; I would see the same faces most of the time… repeat clients of young black women. Most were already known by name because every time they came in, it was because of another pregnancy. I mean, seriously? I understand making a mistake the first time because of faulty birth control or an abusive a-hole of a bf, but twice… three times, four times? All before the age of 23? This isn't an issue of "racism" or "poverty" but PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY. It finally got so frustrating, seeing this type of behavior rewarded by entitlement programs, I finally left and pursued another career. It's also made me somewhat mad, as I didn't take that route; stayed out of trouble, kept my legs closed and avoided thugs; focused on me and my education. If I could do that, why can't the rest of my people? (cont…)

  60. Darryl (US Veteran) says:

    We are all responsible for our actions- that is a given, but there is a cause or reason why someone does something. Low esteem, psychotic, low intelligence faculties, lack of hope, family abuse, etc. One thing is clear and proven, one's environment also influences behavior- both good and bad. There are societal and personal factors at play and they all have a bearing and must be factored. In my neighborhood those who turned out "bad" usually had family/socio-economic deficiencies…while a handful from good backgrounds chose the underground economy or some aspect of crime for thrill, money, and excitement. I grew up in Detroit in the same time frame….each urban city is unique but there is one thing in common they all have, and that is residential segregation and the effects from that. Urban job sprawl takes away opportunity and so does residential segregation. Minorities have advanced but the majority of us are stuck in place in resource starved urban areas, and that is the sad truth.

  61. Mouse says:

    If despite growing up poor, single parent, growing up amidst drugs and violence, I was able to excel in school (despite being bullied by my own kind for speaking "white) and then aspire to college, then any other person of color can do it. Sure, there are economic factors to take in, like lack of high paying jobs in the ghetto, but opportunities to surpass those obstacles existed and I was still able to work retail, make it through college in NYC in the 90s and still got my degree, moved out of the ghetto into the suburbs.

    After reading McWhorter's book, I then realized that the fictional white boogieman wasn't keeping me down. In fact, for the past 3 or so decades, there have been more opportunities for people of color, affirmative action, free or low cost opportunities for educational advancement than ever before. Sure, there is racism… although John seems to downplay it, but I wouldn't agree as most militant liberals do, that it is institutionalized. McWhorter focuses mainly on education: that education uplifts those out of poverty. I couldn't agree more. I have never seen more anti-education, "education is for whitey", "stop acting white" mentality as I had growing up and still see amongst young blacks. If Asians, African immigrant Blacks succeed despite "racism", why can't native born browns and blacks? How many Asian ghettos do you see? Hardly any. Yes, they didn't go through Jim Crow and worse yet, slavery, but neither did modern blacks. Asians and immigrant people of color still have obstacles, job discrimination and all of those racial hurdles to overcome, yet still manage to open businesses (which are usually the target of black on Asian or black on immigrant crime) or go to college and become doctors, lawyers, business professionals. Why can't other native born people of color do the same?
    it's because there is a deeply ingrained distaste for education amongst my people, that's why. That is not a fault of the white man or government but personal responsibility and values. and let's not blame "bad" schools for lack of learning incentive, because if Asians, Indians, Native Africans can go to the same schools and then move on to Harvard, how do you explain the others who lag behind? It's cultural hatred for learning. You make the most of the situation, like I did and still prosper.

    But that lazy, apathetic attitude doesn't come from anywhere: it comes from a generational addiction to government programs and entitlements. No amount of government intervention helps unless the people see these entitlements as a stepping stone to a better life. Not as a lifestyle. How do we reach those young women who are having tons of babies out of wedlock, instead of going to college? I am not sure, but I do know that hip-hop culture with its emphasis on thuggery, anti-white, anti-education and having sex without responsibility (treating women as hoes to use and women seeing this behavior as attractive) is partly to blame. Neither does it help that Obama has violent, misogynist, homophobic artists on his Ipod and praises Jay-Z as a role model (are you kidding me??!) in order to be "hip" to young blacks instead of reprimanding them like Bill Cosby does. Hip-hop culture promotes "bling" and materialism; the kind that makes you want to go out and rob whitey or those of color who actually worked for their luxury goods, instead of working hard for it. Hip-hop culture promotes having more baby mama's, because it's another notch on their bedpost, instead of frowning upon out of wedlock babies. Hip-hop promotes that violence and drug dealing is the way to make it out of the hood, instead of education. Its a very pessimistic view and harmful to our people. (cont….)

  62. Mouse says:

    The liberals it seem these days want to punish success, tax me to death because I actually did something with my life, instead of pushing out baby after baby by 5 different men. Why should I be punished for being childless and successful? Why should I (and the rest of the black, white, asian or immigrant middle-class) be made to feel guilty for being successful and have their taxes raised for being successful. This is what has made me bitter to my own people. And for the record, I taught in a poor all-white area of Wisconsin recently for the past 4 years where despite immense poverty, I never felt unsafe or discriminated against, even walking down the streets late at night. You can't say the same for Chicago or NYC late at night… where you run the risk of being mugged by people of color.

    Enough of this blaming poverty and whites. There are poor whites who hardly ever mug you or kill you for your Iphone, as is what is happening here in NYC lately. The faces of those pushing you on the train tracks or punching you for your Iphone are brown and black faces. The sooner we admit this to ourselves and do something about it, the sooner we will recover and move forward instead of blaming whitey, slavery and "oppression", because their truly isn't any. When Bill Cosby spoke the truth a few years ago, every intellectual, black and white, bashed him for his views. Why? Because he spoke the truth? But if you read the comments I have found for the past few years…. comments not from "academics" like West or white liberals, but black middle class and working class decent folks… they are mostly all in agreement with Cosby!!! Why? Because they went through what I went through. They faced humiliation, bullying from other blacks for wanting to excel. And they see the reasons for ghetto blacks lack of success as coming from lack of personal responsibility. There are even blacks that refuse to be associated with "ghetto" folks. And if you talk to African immigrants, even THEY despite ghetto blacks and want not to be considered "black American", because they are upstanding, hard-working citizens.

    In all honesty, I won't ever vote Republican (despite my fiscal, conservative leanings), because of the religious-right firmly entrenched in their platform, but if they ever do loosen up and clean house of the religious nutjobs, I might consider it. We need a healthy middle ground government that praises education, doesn't reward promiscuity and out of wedlock babies and but encourages government entitlements as a stepping stone to better things; to reward those who actually want a better life. Tough love is hard to swallow but I think our community needs it desperately.

  63. timbo says:

    Why James did you not have a rebuttal to John's completely logical and scientifically backed argument posted on his comment of 308 weeks ago (the first page)? I know the answer, but I'd like to hear yours.

  64. James DeWolf Perry says:

    Thanks for asking. If you'll scroll down, you'll see that I did answer him, within a matter of days. My full answer is there, but in short, I don't think his answer *was* completely logical and scientifically backed, as it didn't respond to the post but, instead, to a straw argument he wanted to rebut.

    This post was explicitly about the myth that black criminals are a major problem (perhaps *the* major problem) for white people in the U.S. to worry about when it comes to crime. Instead, as I noted, white people are victimized overwhelmingly by white criminals. Yet that's hardly the focus of most conversations in the U.S. about crime.

    John took issue with that by making unrelated arguments about crime and its roots. He made specious arguments about race and IQ, for instance, which are easily rebutted by the most basic scientific evidence about IQ (e.g., that IQ measures primarily education and academic achievement, and is influenced primarily by socioeconomic status, and what little is influenced by genetics isn't about race).

  65. timbo says:

    Ok James I have read your reply, which is incorrect by the way. I respect the way that you argue your points very respectably and without malice, but you are still incorrect.
    Please closely read the following, which is REAL scientifically backed evidence and not just racist bologna. Facts don't need to be viewed as hatred, they just are what they are.
    "Thirty Years of Research on Race Differences in Cognitive Ability", a body of scientific research on the topic of IQ differences was published in leading medical journals showing that blacks are intellectually inferior to Caucasians and Asians in IQ tests. The findings show that most of this is due to heredity.

    "Race differences in average IQ are largely genetic
    26. April 2005 17:29

    In a 60-page review of the scientific evidence, some based on state-of-the-art magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of brain size, has concluded that race differences in average IQ are largely genetic.
    The lead article in the June 2005 issue of Psychology, Public Policy and Law, a journal of the American Psychological Association, examined 10 categories of research evidence from around the world to contrast "a hereditarian model (50% genetic-50% cultural) and a culture-only model (0% genetic-100% cultural)."

    The paper, "Thirty Years of Research on Race Differences in Cognitive Ability," by J. Philippe Rushton of the University of Western Ontario and Arthur R. Jensen of the University of California at Berkeley, appeared with a positive commentary by Linda Gottfredson of the University of Delaware, three critical ones (by Robert Sternberg of Yale University, Richard Nisbett of the University of Michigan, and Lisa Suzuki & Joshua Aronson of New York University), and the authors' reply.

    "Neither the existence nor the size of race differences in IQ are a matter of dispute, only their cause," write the authors. The Black-White difference has been found consistently from the time of the massive World War I Army testing of 90 years ago to a massive study of over 6 million corporate, military, and higher-education test-takers in 2001.

    "Race differences show up by 3 years of age, even after matching on maternal education and other variables," said Rushton. "Therefore they cannot be due to poor education since this has not yet begun to exert an effect. That's why Jensen and I looked at the genetic hypothesis in detail. We examined 10 categories of evidence."

    The Worldwide Pattern of IQ Scores. East Asians average higher on IQ tests than Whites, both in the U. S. and in Asia, even though IQ tests were developed for use in the Euro-American culture. Around the world, the average IQ for East Asians centers around 106; for Whites, about 100; and for Blacks about 85 in the U.S. and 70 in sub-Saharan Africa".

  66. James DeWolf Perry says:

    Timbo, I appreciate the courtesy of your reply. But I'm afraid you've been lured into believing in racial pseudo-science.

    Just look at what you shared: everyone agrees that there are IQ differences in the U.S. by race, and that there have been for as long as we've been measuring IQ. Yet the racial IQ gap has been closing dramatically, as educational opportunities for black Americans have improved over the generations. Either IQ measures largely educational opportunity and attainment (which is what virtually all experts believe), or else people of African descent are rapidly evolving in intelligence and will become a race of superintelligent beings. (Somehow, I doubt you're prepared to believe the latter.)

    The one article you cite agrees with all of this, except on one point: this article makes the suggestion that IQ differences by age 3 prove that IQ is inherent, not acquired.

    In fact, however, scholars don't exactly place a lot of faith in IQ scores for 1- and 2-year-old children. And in any event, research overwhelmingly shows that the academic achievement gap in our country, by race and by socioeconomic status, opens up long before age 3, and is not just the result of formal schooling.

    When just about every published research paper concludes that IQ differences among societies, social and economic classes, and race are the product of educational preparation, and not innate intelligence, you simply can't argue that those who believe this are "incorrect" because one paper speculates that matters could be otherwise.

    Please also note that you've dramatically mis-cited the paper: it doesn't conclude that IQ differences are genetic, and not the result of different educational opportunities. Instead, it argues that the racial IQ gap is largely the result of opportunities, but that there may still be "some" role for genetics.

  67. James says:

    No one alive in the USA today ever owned a slave!! 1.6 percent of America owned slaves. The same 1% that are economically enslaving all American people today! My Indian ancestor was forced to marry a white guy in 1642! My Irish family told of no Irish wanted signs!

  68. James DeWolf Perry says:

    I don't know where you heard that only 1.6% of Americans were slave owners, but that's wildly inaccurate. In much of 18th century New England, for instance, 25% of white households included at least one enslaved person. In 1790, 75% of white families in Flatbush, N.Y. (now part of N.Y.C.) were slave-owning.

    Meanwhile, roughly one-third of southern families owned slaves. And the most common pattern there was to own between 1 and 4 enslaved people. So the idea that only a wealthy southern elite owned slaves, on large plantations, is a convenient myth which shields Americans from the truth that slave-owning was widespread.

    Your broader point seems to be that only a privileged few benefited from slavery, which couldn't be further from the truth. Both the northern and southern economies were heavily dependent on slavery, in colonial times and in the period leading up to the Civil War. Ordinary families, when they didn't own slaves themselves, were almost always directly connected to, and profiting from, slavery.

    So it's true that no one alive today participated in U.S. chattel slavery, just as it's true that other bad things happened in history, including forced marriages and discrimination against German, Irish, and other immigrant groups. But this hardly says anything about who benefited from slavery, what legacy we have inherited as a society from this history, or what (if anything) we ought to do about the consequences of slavery today.

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