Sunday, August 9, 2015

Shooting "Unarmed Black Men"

The Washington Post ran an article this week whining about the number of unarmed black men who have been killed by the police recently. This article is the latest liberal attempt to get people to care about “police brutality.” Of course, the article is completely biased and, naturally, avoids or sidesteps all sorts of relevant information to make its biased point. Let’s discuss.

For starters, the article states that “24 unarmed black men” have been shot by the police this year. Without knowing anything else, that works out to 3 a month or 36 a year. That’s a tragedy, but it’s hardly an epidemic as the left wants to claim. Indeed, that represents only 0.0013% of the deaths in the country each year.

Moreover, compare that to other causes of death that don’t seem to upset liberals:
40 die each year from salmonella
2,988 die from ulcers
3,697 die each year from the flu
16,121 die from homicide
30,208 die from falls
46,471 die from drug overdoses
Sorry, but your 99,000 lives don’t matter.

Now, 36 death is certainly too many in my book, but it is hardly evidence of some vast anti-black conspiracy by racist cops. What’s more, it turns out that the cops actually shoot more people than blacks. In fact, in the same time period in which they shot these 24 innocent noble black males, the “racist” cops also killed 36 unarmed non-blacks. What’s more, they actually killed a total of 585 people in that period with most of those being killed being white or Hispanic. “Surprisingly,” The Post doesn’t actually give a percentage because that presumably distracts from the point they want you to believe.

The article also makes no comparison to other time periods. If, say, 1,000 were killed each year on average in the 1960’s, then today’s number is to be commended, not condemned. But again, that would interfere with the point if it showed dramatic improvement... as I guarantee you it does.

At one point, the article makes the shock-value claim that 40% of the unarmed people killed were black males, yet black males make up only 6% of the population! O... M... G!!! Well, if we’re going to play the game of misusing statistics, let me point out that zero of those killed were black females, whereas statistically at least 3.6 of those killed should have been black women. So what gives? Why aren’t cops shooting more black women? Are they pro-black woman? They don’t seem to shoot enough Jews or Asians or Muslims or white women either. What is wrong with cops?

Oh, wait, I know. You’re thinking that you can’t use statistics like that because groups choices make broad statistical comparisons like this invalid for predicting this type of behavior. In other words, what I said isn’t valid because black women (and Jews and Asians and Muslims and white women) simply don’t put themselves in situations where they are likely to get shot by a cop. Hmm. Yeah, that’s right. So why do we accept that black women do something to warp the statistics to make them less likely to get shot, yet we consider it impossible (or even racist) to think that black men are doing something that makes them more likely than others to get shot?

Interestingly, the article starts by identifying three or four of the unarmed blacks who were killed. The idea is to show the best case scenarios where the killing was the biggest outrage, and thereby to implant the idea in the reader that these blacks did nothing that could lead to the statistical bulge. But there are two problems with this.

First, by only listing a handful of the instances, it makes you wonder how “unarmed” and “innocent” the other 20 or so were.

In fact, secondly, looking at the ones they list already throws into question whether or not the cops were justified. One of the men was yelling and jumping in traffic; irrational, potentially violent behavior often leads to shootings. Another was “harassing” people on a beach. That suggests an aggressive demeanor. Two started their nights with the burglary of corner stores. Only one seems plausibly innocent, and he was driving without a front tag. Of course, we are not told if the car was stolen.

They even mention the shooting Friday of “Christian Taylor, 19, a promising defensive back on the Angelo State University football team.” Angelo crashed an SUV through the front window of a car dealership and seems to have acted violently.

This is the key point actually. If these blacks are doing something to provoke this, then the real issue is not “why are the cops shooting them,” it’s “what is wrong with young black males that they are forcing cops to shoot them.” See, the article glosses over that. It even starts with this utterly deceptive statement:
“I begins with a relatively minor incident: A traffic stop. A burglary. A disturbance. Police arrive and tensions escalate. It ends with an unarmed black man shot dead.”
I hate to break this to my retarded liberal friends, but “burglary” is not “a relatively minor incident.”

Moreover, let’s consider the idea of stopping a driver without tags. An Alabama Police Detective pulled over a young black gentleman this weekend for a moving violation. This would have been described by The Post as “a relatively minor” traffic stop. Yet, lo and behold, said unarmed black gentlemen, got out of his car, took the cop’s gun and beat him until he was unconscious. He then left him for dead. Oh, and it turns out that this innocent black gentleman had a prior record... assault, attempted murder, unlawful breaking and entering a vehicle, and robbery. Other than that, no doubt, he was an angel, and if he had been shot, he would be one of the “unarmed black men” The Post is lamenting.

Finally, for the record, 18 cops have been shot and killed this year so far. The Post mentions this at the end of its article in a throwaway line, but it doesn’t break down their killers by race, because that would probably make the 40% number seem tiny by comparison and might send the wrong impression about who is really at fault here.



Anthony said...

I haven't read the article in question, but I have heard about it and what I heard (from a liberal I know) wasn't complimentary. He was of the opinion (as am I) that while there have been a few squirrely shootings, most are clean.

I have seen the media try to gin up outrage over the thug who broke into the car dealership. The Huffpo headline blared 'Unarmed black man killed by police' and then talked about how he was afraid of dying young and didn't trust the police and his family though well of him. A couple paragraphs in it casually mentioned that he had broken into a car dealership in a stolen car and that the officer claimed he violently resisted (which given that he had stacked up felonies that night made sense).

That being said, while rare, police brutality/overreaction is rare, but sometimes happens. That coupled with the willingness of some cops to cover up for bad cops (quite a few police brutality cases feature a couple cops who didn't participate but were willing to lie to protect the accused) make body cameras a good idea. Also, such cameras can help demolish spurious accusations from the accused and their families.

On that note, I recently read Michael Brown's mother talking about her son like he was a normal person who the cops just randomly killed, not a hardened thug who thought a strong arm robbery of an old man in front of a terrified woman and child was hilarious and who all evidence indicates attacked the cop who shot him.

AndrewPrice said...

Anthony, The article was meant as advocacy clearly, not as anything else, and the point it wanted to make was to leave the impression that cops are out there hunting black men basically.

I agree with you 100%. I think the vast, vast majority of cops are great people who risk their lives to help people of all colors. But there are a few bad ones and those are a problem and need to be prosecuted or terminated and the such when they misbehave. Not only are they unjust, but they are bad for society and bad for the other police.

That said, the left's attacks on the police are purely cynical attempts to stir up problems rather than solve them. They want blacks to have a bunker mentality because it means those blacks won't consider voting for the other side.

I completely agree that cameras are a great idea, but not for the reason the left expects. I think they will instead protect the cops from the false claims made by the families and the politicians that these thugs were noble, innocent children who were minding their own business when the big bad racist cop shot them for no reason. I think it will instead show that with only a few exceptions, cops go well beyond what most of us would consider reasonable before using lethal force. It will also show the abuse they take in these cases, and it will show the thuggish behavior of the "innocent victims" of the shooting.

AndrewPrice said...

P.S. I saw the Huffpo thing and you are right. It was entirely misleading. The headline suggested that this was some rookie cop who shot the guy for no reason whatsoever. It wasn't until nearly the end that they mentioned what he had done.

And then today, there was a video of him smashing windows.

Kit said...

"That said, the left's attacks on the police are purely cynical attempts to stir up problems rather than solve them. They want blacks to have a bunker mentality because it means those blacks won't consider voting for the other side."

The left's oldest game. Us-versus-them, while accusing the Right of playing it.

AndrewPrice said...

Kit, True. They have always used that approach, be it the poor v. the rich, Germans v. Jews, blacks v. whites, women v. men, Arabs v. Jews, etc. Their ideology requires a level of anger because it is about taking what the other side has.

Kit said...

Shots fired at protest in Ferguson, MO.

Kit said...

Andrew, those #BlackLivesMatter protesters are getting crazier. They recently stormed a Bernie Sanders speaking event.

And here is some footage from today's rally:

AndrewPrice said...

Kit, I know. I'm loving their impotence in the face of their crazies. I hope they keep shutting the Democrats down over and over and that their candidates try to pander to them... which never works.

AndrewPrice said...

Here's the video on Taylor at the car dealership. It makes you wonder what he thought was going to happen? I'll be curious to see if he was high or if he was just an a-hole.


Based on comments he made online about a year ago about the cops getting to shoot black males and how he hoped he didn't die too soon, and with the anniversary of Ferguson coming up, it wouldn't surprise me if he hoped to get into a fight with the cops that he could then exploit and he just got more than he bargained for.

Anthony said...


Barring a seance, we'll never know, but it might have been an exotic form of suicide by cop (my death will help further the cause!).

*Shrugs* Or he might have smoked something really powerful.

tryanmax said...

Anything occurring at a rate of 0.0013% is a statistical improbability. Which means comparing the proportionality of that improbability against the general population is utterly meaningless.

AndrewPrice said...

Anthony, That's true. There's no way to know what his motive is. One thing is for sure though, he wasn't just sitting in the park. His behavior is the exact type of behavior that will draw cops and cause a situation to escalate. We don't know what happened next, so it's hard to say if the shooting was justified, but when someone is slamming an SUV through windows intentionally, that is asking to be killed.

AndrewPrice said...

tryanmax, Exactly. Something that small is an anomaly and cannot be looked at as a broad trend. The problem is that the people trying to make a big deal of it are treating it as a broad trend when they want to and ignoring all of the broad trends that would counter their argument... i.e. "black men are like everybody else, but black/white women are completely different than everyone else."

Even worse, they are dismissing loads of idiosyncratic evidence to create a fake broad trend. Hence "unarmed black" becomes "innocent unarmed black acting without aggressive manner," which isn't true.

AndrewPrice said...

And let me point this out too... this number is so small that people need to realize that this says nothing about cops, except that (1) such a vast majority as to be almost 100% statistically don't do what the activists are claiming, and (2) so few black males are involved that again almost 100% statistically aren't involved in this.

That means we are really talking about either an anomaly of bad cops or an anomaly of black thugs. Trying to make this into a cultural thing on either side is idiocy.

Kit said...

"I'm loving their impotence in the face of their crazies. I hope they keep shutting the Democrats down over and over and that their candidates try to pander to them... which never works."

I dare them to try that at a Chris Christie speech.

AndrewPrice said...

Kit, I would hope that every GOP candidate (and crowd) is ready to shut them down with a chant of "All lives matter." The left fumbles big time whenever they try to turn that phrase into something evil.

BevfromNYC said...

I am sure Bernie was pretty stunned since he probably has never had black people he didn't know at any of his in-state senate rallies. Vermont is 94% white and I venture to say, he is probably on a first name basis with all of people of color in his state...all 100 of them. Vermont is the whitest state in the union, btw. Well, except for New Hampshire,

Anthony said...

The cop in the Texas car dealership shooting has been fired for A) not following standard procedure by charging inside rather than waiting for back-up and B) using his gun, not his taser. Meh. Taylor was still an idiot.

Called to the scene of a suspected burglary early Friday morning, Miller pursued 19-year-old Christian Taylor through the broken glass doors of a car dealership showroom without telling his supervising officer, Johnson said.

Instead of helping to set up a perimeter around the showroom, Miller confronted Taylor and ordered him to get down on the ground, Johnson said. Taylor did not comply. Instead, he began "actively advancing toward Officer Miller," Johnson said.

Miller's field training officer, who had followed Miller into the showroom, drew his own Taser. The training officer heard a single pop of what he thought was Miller's Taser, but Miller actually had drawn his service weapon and fired it at Taylor, who is believed to have been 7 to 10 feet away from the officer, Johnson said. After Taylor continued to approach, Miller fired his gun three more times.

AndrewPrice said...

Anthony, I saw that and it again proves that the system doesn't cover these things up anymore.

Post a Comment