Race and Crime in America

Thursday, October 24th, 2013

“Reality is what continues to exist whether you believe in it or not,” Philip K. Dick once said, and the unpleasant reality of race and crime in America is no exception, Ron Unz notes:

Recall the notorious case of Daniel Patrick Moynihan, whose 1965 report on the terrible deterioration in the condition of the black American family aroused such a firestorm of denunciation and outrage in liberal circles that the topic was rendered totally radioactive for the better part of a generation. Eventually the continuing deterioration reached such massive proportions that the subject was taken up again by prominent liberals in the 1980s, who then declared Moynihan a prophetic voice, unjustly condemned.

This contentious history of racially-charged social analysis was certainly in the back of my mind when I began my quantitative research into Hispanic crime rates in late 2009. One traditional difficulty in producing such estimates had been the problematical nature of the data. Although the FBI Uniform Crime Reports readily show the annual totals of black and Asian criminal perpetrators, Hispanics are generally grouped together with whites and no separate figures are provided, thereby allowing all sorts of extreme speculation by those so inclined.

In order to distinguish reality from vivid imagination, a major section of my analysis focused on the data from America’s larger cities, exploring the correlations between their FBI-reported crime rates and their Census-reported ethnic proportions. If urban crime rates had little relation to the relative size of the local Hispanic population, this would indicate that Hispanics did not have unusually high rates of criminality. Furthermore, densely populated urban centers have almost always had far more crime than rural areas or suburbs, so restricting the analysis to cities would reduce the impact of that extraneous variable, which might otherwise artificially inflate the national crime statistics for a heavily urbanized population group such as Hispanics.

My expectations proved entirely correct, and the correlations between Hispanic percentages and local crime rates were usually quite close to the same figures for whites, strongly supporting my hypothesis that the two groups had fairly similar rates of urban criminality despite their huge differences in socio-economic status. But that same simple calculation yielded a remarkably strong correlation between black numbers and crime, fully confirming the implications of the FBI racial data on perpetrators.

This presented me with an obvious quandary. The topic of my article was “Hispanic crime” and my research findings were original and potentially an important addition to the public policy debate. Yet the black crime figures in my charts and graphs were so striking that I realized they might easily overshadow my other results, becoming the focus of an explosive debate that would inevitably deflect attention away from my central conclusion. Therefore, I chose to excise the black results, perhaps improperly elevating political prudence over intellectual candor.

Apparently he recently ran out of political prudence and decided to share his findings — as Excel graphs, like this one:

Homicide Rates Cities Correlation by Race

As he notes, discovering an important correlation of 0.80 or above is extraordinary in the social sciences. Henry Harpending more or less duplicates Unz’s finding; the correlation between murder rate and percent black in the state data is 0.82:

Murder Rate and Black Population Percentage

Unz suggests that this disparity between Hispanic and Black crime rates may be why our elites seem so quick to import Hispanics and thus displace poor Blacks.

Handle has a more thoroughly fleshed out explanation:

“Where does the displaced black population end up?”

It’s better to start with “What do SWPL White American people want?” Mostly they want to move back downtown from the suburbs. They want an ethnic reversal, reconquista, uber-gentrification of core urban living — to live like Urban Whites did before the 1960s — without fear of crime from Blacks, with “good” public schools (full of children of their own type and class), without long traffic-jammed commutes, enjoying cultural opportunities and proximity to centralized institutions (especially of upper middle class employment), and enjoying “pleasant person patronized” public transport.

They want a more European-style white-urban experience, and for that they have to accomplish the “Parisization” of the cities and move all the underclass to the banlieus or low-rent suburbs. This has already begun in several cities, giving a map of the racial distribution a kind of bulls-eye, archery-target appearance.

DC is probably the best example of this process that I’ve ever witnessed, but that’s because it’s one of our few “elite” cities (like San Fran and NYC) with something unique and special (and lucrative) going for it and driving the process. The process works mostly through real estate prices and government housing vouchers (“Section 8″), which price out everybody but the upper-middle class, and makes low-class blacks move to the old-near-suburbs and middle and lower-middle class whites flee the Black influx to the new far suburbs, having to suffer the commuting consequences.

For NYC, the banlieus are increasingly located in New Jersey, and tolls-plus-congestion over the bridges and tunnels works its special magic. Everything Bloomberg does has a dramatic disparate impact on Blacks in the guise of something “Progressive”. That’s why he’s popular. In the future, the Democrats will give us Jim Crow with a Progressive Face.

There are two sets of Black politicians these days: the Obama class of white-popular enlightened Progressive Reformers (Patrick, Fenty, Booker) and the old-school Urban-Black-Machine bosses (Marion Berry) who are trying to use every political trick in the book to fight “The Plan” and keep things as they are and preserve the black character of their shrinking vote-bank wards.

My own father grew up in an “old near suburb” which would be very low-rent by today’s standards, but back then it was a thriving, spotless, crime-less, meticulously maintained, orderly neighborhood with excellent schools and about which he never expressed anything but genuine justified nostalgia. And a fellow in his High School just a class above him went on to win the Nobel Prize in Chemistry. Today it’s a 98% Black rubble-field that’d make Detroit look good and they closed down the school because of all the fires set by the inmates students. It wasn’t the rapes or drugs or murders, we can tolerate that socially, but, gravitationally and structurally, arson is just intolerable.

It you were to do the ethnic musical chairs overnight, you could literally witness the ghetto and all it’s social statistics be picked up and moved a few miles away from the center and replaced. Almost like the Indian Removal Act, but on urban scales. That’s “The Plan”. It’s just like Baldwin said in 1963, “Urban Renewal is Negro Removal”.

Now, whether or not this process will succeed depends on a few key factors of the city. The black population percentage, industry-income-employment trends, the geography (“natural borders”), and whatever “special sauce” the city has to rely on as a young-family moneyed-SWPL attractant (“cognitive concentrator cities”). A lot of cities will never be able to achieve this vision, and they will continue to die and hollow out. Some will and will become the few “Whitopias” — with, by the way, very hefty windfall rewards for the first generation of pioneer gentrifiers.

I would be remiss if I didn’t at least mention the slow trickle of reversal of The Great Migration of blacks returning to the South, especially to cities like Atlanta. In time, maybe the fondest wishes of those old crazy Black Nationalists will come true and this time the USG can just let the entire Very Deep South secede without a fight this time (and maybe some generous severance pay).

Everything Bloomberg does has a dramatic disparate impact on Blacks in the guise of something “Progressive”. Wow.

By the way, Unz’s intellectual candor got him predictably purged.


  1. Alex J. says:

    I wonder what would happen to attendance if the federal government dropped the “school” part of free school lunches and breakfasts. And, for that matter, if the warding function of schools could be separated from the education part — which is even less likely to happen, I admit. It’s too important to pretend to educate our inmate-students.

  2. T. Greer says:

    Last month I sketched out a post for my place about how Ron Unz’s data and interpretation explain the recent DC tax/foreclosure scandal. Ended up not having time for it. But if you want to see the mechanics of how plutarchs create their enclaves, the WaPo series on the scandal is a good place to start.

  3. Bob Sykes says:

    Fifty years into the civil rights movement and we are still, thank God, a segregated society. We do have two low-level race wars ongoing — Mexicans hunting and killing blacks, and blacks hunting and killing whites — but segregation minimizes the death toll and public awareness. Also, almost all the victims of violent crime are black or brown and have criminal records, so no one really cares.

    What is really striking is the Ruling Class’s war on blacks. On the one hand, they have decided to replace blacks with Mexicans. Evidently they believe that Mexicans will be better servants, more obedient, more productive, etc. On the other hand, they are clearing blacks out of desirable cities like Boston, New York, Washington, San Francisco and Los Angeles. This is done via “gentrification.” Other less desirable cities like Baltimore, Detroit and possibly Chicago have been or are being turned over to the black underclass and their owners. Some just commented that Bloomberg is the most anti-black mayor in America. It would be ironic if he succeeded Obama in the Presidency.

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