SHAPIRO: 6 Leftist Myths About The Criminal Justice System That Get Blacks Killed

TOPSHOT - Flames rise from a liquor store and shops near the Third Police Precinct on May 28, 2020 in Minneapolis, Minnesota, during a protest over the death of George Floyd, an unarmed black man, who died after a police officer kneeled on his neck for several minutes. - A police precinct in Minnesota went up in flames late on May 28 in a third day of demonstrations as the so-called Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul seethed over the shocking police killing of a handcuffed black man. The precinct, which police had abandoned, burned after a group of protesters pushed through barriers around the building, breaking windows and chanting slogans. A much larger crowd demonstrated as the building went up in flames.
KEREM YUCEL/AFP via Getty Images

While Hillary Clinton throws the prostrate body of her husband under the Black Lives Matter bus, destroying his legacy of crime-fighting on the altar of racial politics, crime rates around America are soaring. FiveThirtyEight.com, a left-leaning website run by Nate Silver, released a study today of crime data in the city of Chicago after the release of video in the shooting of Laquan McDonald, a 17-year-old black teenager shot 16 times and killed in October 2014. The video had been held up by Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s administration, and was only released after a judge ruled that it had to be.

Now, says FiveThirtyEight.com:

The severe spike in gun violence Chicago is experiencing can be dated to the release of the video…the city has seen a significant drop in arrests made for homicides and nonfatal shootings, as well as other crimes, since the video’s release on November 24. This suggests a decline in law enforcement activity that may be contributing to the rise in gun crime.


As it turns out, the greatest threat to young black lives in America is the racial politics of the left, which insists on less policing, crackdowns on decent policing, and widespread release of criminals in the name of fighting “mass incarceration” – as though the authorities have been randomly picking up innocent young black men and throwing them in jail. Here’s Hillary pushing exactly that position:

I have been consistently speaking out about what I would do as president. And I think it’s important for people to recognize we have work to do. that there were a lot of people very scared and concerned about high crime back in the day. And now we’ve got to say, okay, we have to deal with the consequences. And one of the consequences is, in my view, over incarceration of people who should not have been in the criminal justice system.

This perspective, if implemented, will continue to get people killed. It’s already getting people killed everywhere from Los Angeles to Chicago to New York.

Heather Mac Donald of the Manhattan Institute has a new book due out in June, titled The War On Cops; it’s the most important book of the year. In that book, she explodes myth after myth promoted by the radical racial left. Here are just six:

1. The Criminal Justice System Does Not Overprosecute Blacks. For literally decades, studies have demonstrated that there is statistical parity between crime reports and arrests. Unless witnesses in the black community – predominantly the victims of black crime – are somehow racist against blacks, cops are arresting people who are guilty of crimes.

2. The Criminal Justice System Does Not Sentence Blacks Disproportionately Longer. MacDonald points out that studies have actually shown a slightly lower chance of prosecution and slightly lower sentences for black convicts. She writes, “A 1994 Justice Department survey of felony cases from the country’s 75 largest urban areas discovered that blacks actually had a lower chance of prosecution following a felony than whites did and that they were less likely to be found guilty at trial. Following conviction, blacks were more likely to receive prison sentences, however – an outcome that reflected the gravity of their offenses as well as their criminal records.”

3. “Overincarceration” Is Not A Function Of Drug Prosecution. Federal crack penalties are responsible for less than 5,000 black convicts for year. That’s out of a total federal prison population for blacks of 562,000 black prisoners in the state and federal system. More powder cocaine sentences have been levied than crack cocaine sentences in recent years. And the penalties for distribution of crack and crystal meth are precisely the same on the federal level. Violent offenders represent the largest and growing segment of those in prison, not drug offenders. As MacDonald points out, Barack Obama’s contention that he would have gone to jail for drug use in high school is false, unless he was also dealing. Less than 1 percent of federally sentenced drug offenders were charged with simple possession, and a huge number of those who are sentenced to prison for drug use are largely those who have pled down larger drug charges or criminals who have violated parole through drug use. Actually, when it comes to federal drug prosecutions, Hispanics represent a disproportionate share of those convicted.

4. Most Criminals End Up Back On The Streets Forthwith. A 2007 Bureau of Justice Statistics report explains that 69 out of every 100 arrested for violent felony at the state level are released back onto the streets, while the other 31 go to prison. In 2009, according to a study in the Journal of Criminal Justice, fully 64 percent of convicted felons in the nation’s 75 largest counties either got parole or a jail sentence – meaning a short-term sentence in the slammer, rather than a long-term prison sentence. Only 57 percent of convicted violent felons went to prison altogether.

5. Social Programs Do Not Make Convicts Into Good Citizens. There is no serious statistical evidence to suggest, as Hillary has, that magical government programs convert convicts into great citizens. According to MDRC, approximately the same number of convicts who are handed government jobs in cities like Chicago, Detroit, Milwaukee and St. Paul end up back in prison as those who aren’t handed such jobs: a majority of them.

6. Cops Are Not Wiping Out Large Numbers of Innocent Black People. In 2015, a grand total of 36 unarmed black men and two unarmed black women had been killed in confrontations with the police. That’s out of a population of 30 million black Americans, and in a population with a significantly higher crime rate than any other racial subgroup. Even that statistic is exaggerated – it includes “victims” who went for cops’ guns, for example. MacDonald does the math: “The per capita rate of officers being feloniously killed is 45 times higher than the rate at which unarmed black males are killed by cops. And an officer’s chance of getting killed by a black8 assailant is 18.5 times higher than the chance of an unarmed black getting killed by a cop.”

These myths have done more to damage proper law enforcement than anything else since the initiation of federal and local anti-crime measures in the mid-1990s. With the left in ascendance, we’re on the brink of a serious upswell in crime, as even FiveThirtyEight notes:

In fact, the change in arrests for gun violence began at least four months ago, around the time the video was released, and arrest rates have continued dropping to a level unseen since at least 2001, the earliest year of available data… A similar decline in police activity and increase in violence occurred inBaltimore after protests over the death of Freddie Gray, who died in police custody. Likewise, police activity in New York City slowed down dramatically after police killed Eric Garner.

Propaganda has effects.

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