At a panel last night on the ACLU, I mentioned that the organization’s standard method for accusing the police of racial profiling–comparing police stop rates to racial population ratios–ignores crime rates. In New York City, for example, blacks are 23% of the population and 53% of all stops, but commit 66% of all violent crime and 80% of all shootings–according to the victims of and witnesses to those crimes.
Well, if such statistics are true, responded ACLU president Anthony Romero (without offering any evidence why they were not), you are ignoring the lack of opportunity that blacks face. Moreover, your employer, the Manhattan Institute, only exacerbates that lack of opportunity with its favored policies.
I’m just wondering: would Romero, Sharpton, Jackson, et al. ever accept “lack of opportunity” as an excuse for a white-on-black shooting? Because there are so few of such incidents:
Seventeen percent of what the FBI calls “white” homicide victims in 2009 were killed by blacks, compared to 8 percent of black homicide victims who were killed by “whites.” There were two and a half times as many white and Hispanic victims of black killers in 2009 as there were black victims of white and Hispanic killers, even though the black population is one-sixth that of whites and Hispanics combined. If Hispanics were removed from the category of “white” killers of blacks, the percentage of blacks killed by Anglo whites would plummet, since a significant percentage of what the FBI calls “white”-on-black killings represent gang warfare between Hispanic and black gangs.
there’s not much precedent to evaluate, but somehow, my gut tells me: No, the lack of opportunity defense would not be allowed.