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Fact Check: Do Black People Suffer Disproportionately From Police Brutality?


Geee

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fact-check-do-black-people-suffer-disproportionately-from-police-brutality

recent New York Times article by Jeremy W. Peters claims it is a “fact” “that black people suffer disproportionately from police brutality.” He also asserts that President Trump’s rejection of this accusation is “racially inflammatory” and “racially divisive.” On the contrary, comprehensive facts show that this allegation against police is false. Furthermore, this deception has stoked racial divides and driven people to despise and even murder police officers.

In an interview with CBS News that is slated to air in full tonight, reporter Catherine Herridge asked Trump, “Why are African-Americans still dying at the hands of law enforcement in this country?” He responded that this is a “terrible question” and that “more white people” are killed by police than black people.

CBS News, the New York Times, and many other media outlets are criticizing Trump’s response because blacks are a much smaller portion of the U.S. population than whites. Thus, the odds of being killed by police are higher for each black person than each white person. This frequent argument is highly misleading because it omits facts that are vital to this issue. As detailed in a 2018 paper in the journal Social Psychological and Personality Science:

  • “The most common means of testing for racial disparity in police use of deadly force is to compare the odds of being fatally shot for blacks to the odds of being fatally shot for whites.”
  • That logic is flawed because it relies upon the false assumption that white and black people commit life-threatening crimes at the same rates.
  • The rational way to analyze this issue is to compare the odds of being fatally shot to each race’s “involvement in those situations where the police may be more likely to use deadly force.”
  • Based on four different national datasets on “murder/nonnegligent manslaughter, violent crime, and weapons violations,” “in nearly every case, whites were either more likely to be fatally shot by police or police showed no significant disparity in either direction.”

:snip:

 

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