15 May 2008

Why Do Blacks Commit More Crime?

Blacks make up only 12.2% of the US general population, yet constitute roughly 47% of the US prison population. Why are blacks so prone to committing crime?
About one in 33 black men was in prison in 2006, compared with one in 205 white men and one in 79 Hispanic men. Eleven percent of all black males between the ages of 20 and 34 are in prison or jail...From 1976 to 2005, blacks committed over 52 percent of all murders in America. In 2006, the black arrest rate for most crimes was two to nearly three times blacks’ representation in the population. Blacks constituted 39.3 percent of all violent-crime arrests, including 56.3 percent of all robbery and 34.5 percent of all aggravated-assault arrests, and 29.4 percent of all property-crime arrests.

...The evidence is clear: black prison rates result from crime, not racism. America’s comparatively high rates of incarceration are nothing to celebrate, of course, but the alternative is far worse. The dramatic drop in crime in the 1990s, to which stricter sentencing policies unquestionably contributed, has freed thousands of law-abiding inner-city residents from the bondage of fear. __CityJournal
So again, why do blacks commit so much crime? Clearly, poverty is not the main reason. Blacks make up 24% of the poor US population but commit 40% of violent crime.

Looking at genetics as a determinant of crime:
The case for a genetic contribution to criminality is conclusive. What remains to be figured out are exactly which genes contribute to criminality and how they exert their effects . These questions will be addressed with the tools of molecular biology, and it will be far more difficult to assail the results as "biased". __Gnxp
So it would be wrong to consider ethnicity as a cause of criminality, although a correlation exists. Rather within the broader ethnic groups, there likely exist gene clusters which influence behaviour in such a way as to make criminal activity more likely.

What about IQ? Can the 1 SD difference in IQ distribution means between US blacks and whites lead to the enormous differences in criminal behaviour between the groups? Low IQ correlates positively with rates of arrest and incarceration. But poor Executive Function probably correlates much more positively with crime than IQ, just as high executive function correlates more positively with ultimate life success than does IQ.

Better research is needed on this issue, to separate the different correlations, correcting for confounders, and utilising the best and most recent information from studies of genetics, IQ, executive function, and other related factors.

Political correctness is the enemy of the truth in this area. The dishonest tendency to blame racism for differential rates of arrest and incarceration, rather than facing the truth that crime rates do vary generally by ethnic group, prevents the type of research that could get to the heart of the matter. A long term solution is impossible without the type of honest exploration that I suggest.

Sailer: Imprisonment Rates Vary Wildly by Race

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Blogger Barba Rija said...

The purpose "seems" fine, Al Fin, but traditionally, every attempt at defining "scientifically" the inferiority of blacks over other ethnics won't contribute to further prejudices and social malaises? Isn't it in contradiction of a libertarian (constitutional!) point of view that we are an original human being that has the right not to be placed in any human subset, aka descrimination? Isn't this talking of further divise and tribal grouping?

And how much prejudice is really contained in such studies? I could also invoke that the majority of incarcerated people are christian, and that the percentage of atheists in jail is far inferior to the percentage of atheists outside. Does it say anything about anything?

Genetics has been evolving to show us that the attributes we abstract from human behaviour (agressiveness, etc) aren't confined to a single point in the gene, but rather are spread in a much more holistic sense. So, anything a scientist can do is infer and guesstimate, correlate. Imagine the variables involved. Now, knowing your stance on GW, doesn't even sound more suspicious to you this notion that we can "know" what genes provoke certain aspects of IQ and agressiveness, and "determine" which subset of human species are "better fit" to modern ages and that we can therefore "infer" political actions guided by such studies?

If I were the same Al Fin who's skeptic against GW, I would ask: "who profits with these kinds of researches?"

The answer to that question is always a very nasty one.

Friday, 16 May, 2008  
Blogger Barba Rija said...

Hey, noticed the time zone. You live in azores?

Friday, 16 May, 2008  
Blogger SensibleEnergy said...

It is an egregious, albiet common, error to reduce human equality to one measure. Human worth is transcendent of any physical or mental attribute. Those who claim that speaking the truth is racism are themselves the true racists; they cannot see others as equals and thus they must hide the truth. Al Fin speaks the truth.

Friday, 16 May, 2008  
Blogger al fin said...

A lot of postings here are meant to provoke outrage--at least disagreement. There are plenty of echo choir sites on both ends of the political spectrum.

You might ask yourself, why would a blogger want to provoke disagreement in his readers?

BR, unless you are a geneticist, I suggest you do not try to teach someone else about genetics. Particularly when you do not know what the other person's background is. ;-)

You see, that is one big problem with ideology. As I mentioned, the respected author SJ Gould allowed his ideology to influence his science, and his reputation suffered for it. Ideology is a harsh and dishonest task master.

The truth is a difficult thing for many persons to want. Instead they want to sweep unpleasantness under the carpet. But in this case, what is being concealed below is not dust, but high explosive.

Friday, 16 May, 2008  
Blogger Barba Rija said...

Al Fin

"A lot of postings here are meant to provoke outrage--at least disagreement"

Yes, I saw that. I like that style too.

About SJ Gould, well, it is worse for an author to acknowledge his own influences while working on such a hot subject than to pretend to be "fair and unbiased", when that is almost impossible.

About the subject, yes it is explosive. Thing is, I can only see two outcomes from this enquire of thought:

a) A long trend of research and better knowledge about ethnics, DNA, and the human genome, (in the order of decades, if not centuries). Completely apolitical, its conclusions may not be "innocent", but rather provide a heated debate. Nothing comes out of it rather than academics though, until knowledge is really matured (a century? two centuries? Couldn't tell)

b) A divisive political science comes forth, and subliminally influences the scientists in wrong scientific paths, but deadly in political terms. A renewed conscience of differences brings racism back with a vengeance: it is proven by science! How much more will we wait to cleanse the world with those morons? Notice how they have more babies than us bright whites! Soon there will be more morons than intelligent people! This has to stop! Hail to the butchers that will pave the road to bring back intelligence to America! History DOES repeat itself.

As long it stays on one, I accept everything, no matter how saddening it may be. The moment it crosses the rubicon line, hit the alarm button.

Friday, 16 May, 2008  
Blogger al fin said...

There is something disturbing about your first comment: "every attempt at defining "scientifically" the inferiority of blacks over other ethnics ". You may not recognize it, but there is an undercurrent of racism beneath your phrasing.

If you truly believe that demonstrating that blacks score lower on IQ tests and commit more crime than other ethnic groups is the same as defining blacks as inferior, then you have a problem in your own thinking.

Comparing groups on variables such as crime rates and IQ scores is necessarily statistical. We are dealing with means and variances. The comparison says nothing about an individual of any given race. Blanket statements using terms such as "inferiority of blacks" have no place in this discussion.

Projection: Projection is one of the defense mechanisms identified by Freud and still acknowledged today. According to Freud, projection is when someone is threatened by or afraid of their own impulses so they attribute these impulses to someone else. For example, a person in psychoanalysis may insist to the therapist that he knows the therapist wants to rape some women, when in fact the client has these awful feelings to rape the woman.

Friday, 16 May, 2008  
Blogger Barba Rija said...

"Those who claim that speaking the truth is racism are themselves the true racists"

sensibleenergy, the problem is that any findings by scientists right now in the subject of IQ, DNA and genes can only be speculation, correlations, and hypothesis. You are terribly confusing those with "Truth". What's the truth in those graphs? That blacks are more criminal than whites, that they are not as intelligent, that they are not as rich. That's the "truth". No one's hiding it.

Any rationale that comes on top of that is speculation, hypothesis and rationalization. It is not truth, it is your own interpretation of facts. And I dare say a very long shot interpretation, for it has a number of prejudices well embedded inside your own brain, that we don't even "know" for sure that they are right or not.

So, to try to dispute that somehow we are telling the "Truth" when we say that blacks are irreversibly stupid, moronic and criminal, because hey, it's in their genes, is beyond ridiculous. That's not truth, that's only your stupid racist hypothesis of things.

Friday, 16 May, 2008  
Blogger al fin said...

Your concern about comparative research being used to support racist ideas, or worse, racist violence, is important. While necessarily relying on a certain amount of projection from one's inner shadow self, such concerns are valid and important. As long as one does not focus exclusively on those concerns and use them in an attempt to shut down valid research and debate.

I have been quite lucky so far in not attracting comments advocating racial violence or exclusion. Racial violence is something that I also fear, and racial exclusion is something that I strongly oppose.

Friday, 16 May, 2008  
Blogger Barba Rija said...

"You may not recognize it, but there is an undercurrent of racism beneath your phrasing.

If you truly believe that demonstrating that blacks score lower on IQ tests and commit more crime than other ethnic groups is the same as defining blacks as inferior, then you have a problem in your own thinking."

Oh, please. Are you trying to fool me? That's not what I said at ALL. I have no problem whatsoever in demonstrating what you propose, because that is EASY to do, and it is all over the graphs you showed. It is evident. That's not what it is in question here.

The central question here is: is it possible to demonstrate that blacks DO score lower IQs and commit crimes due to genetic causes or not? It is THAT question that creeps me up.

About the projection stuff... I really think it should be banned to invoke that lower jab. It's beyond lame. Why? Because I could just as well invoke that you're projecting your accusation of projection on me. I call on "times infinity" and win. But that is something I don't do like since I was 8 years old.

Friday, 16 May, 2008  
Blogger al fin said...

Interesting. There seems to be a bit of a disconnect here.

Genetics operates regardless of race. In other words, if there is a genetic causation for criminality, that genetic causation operates independently of underlying race.

You may find particular genetic clusters more commonly within particular ethnic groupings, and these clusters may be associated with increased criminality.

But unless you understand that the same (or analogous) genetic clusters could just as easily be found within other ethnic groups, and similarly be associated with higher criminality in those groups, you may in your confusion mistakenly assume that it is the race, rather than the independent genetic cluster, that is responsible for the criminality.

Such confusion comes from trying to communicate a genetic mechanism to the general public, which may not be sophisticated enough to make the proper distinctions.

As soon as you can keep people from subconsciously projecting their own prejudices onto others, I will be quite willing to ban the term in these discussions, since then it would play no useful role. Until then, however, ....

Friday, 16 May, 2008  
Blogger SensibleEnergy said...

barba rija

Al Fin is arguing for better research, but you seem to think that these studies will prove that blacks are inferior. The error you make is equating things like intelligence scores with intrinsic human worth. Why is it that a 60 point IQ gap between two whites doesn't say anything about their worth, but a 10 point black-white average gap does? You acknowledge that they are, on average, not as intelligent, more criminal and not as rich but you don't want to find the cause. Holding on to the hope that it can all be explained by their environment is a rather risky proposition, as it will continue the series of failed efforts to eliminate the achievement gap. As to my being a racist; I'll think about it as I put my black daughter to bed and sleep beside my black wife tonight.

Friday, 16 May, 2008  
Blogger Barba Rija said...

"but you seem to think that these studies will prove that blacks are inferior"

Excuse me, isn't the title of the post "Why Do Blacks Commit More Crime?", huh? And isn't the post about "genetics"? Is that far-fetched to make the case that black people are "worse" than whites because genetics will prove that "black people commit more crime"? Isn't that the whole point of the post?

It's amazing. You're the ones making the connections, and I am the racist one by calling you on it. I'm dumbfounded at your hypocrisy.

Monday, 26 May, 2008  
Blogger al fin said...

There is no need to be so defensive, BR. No one is perfect, after all. No one thinks less of you for it.

Monday, 26 May, 2008  
Blogger mark said...

Couldn't a similar conclusion have been reached about Italian American's during prohibition.

Tuesday, 04 August, 2009  
Blogger al fin said...

As a nation of immigrants, America's ethnicity of disproportionate criminality has probably changed over the centuries.

At this time immigrants from Latin America are vying for that title.

Blacks seem to have held the title ever since the civil rights and welfare legislation of the 1960s, paradoxically.

A 70% illegitimacy rate is a lot of children growing up without fathers. Combine poverty with fatherlessness and an environment of commonplace crime and violence, and you tend to perpetuate criminality.

Denying or excusing the phenomenon is the worst thing you can do for the horde of crime victims that result.

Wednesday, 05 August, 2009  
Blogger theorder said...

your a fucking idiot. more poverty means more crime regardless of the race or area. when people are hungry they do whatever they can to eat and most blacks find themselves in jail over doing things just to eat. I.E. selling drugs, killing people over items they can sell for money for food. You fucking moron blacks who are eating on a daily cause almost no problems dumb ass

Saturday, 21 April, 2012  
Blogger al fin said...

Hmmm. You must be a college professor, TO. But even you should not refer to people as fucking moron blacks. That is disrespectful. Someone of your educational stature should be able to find more dignified ways of discussing others, who may lack your advantages and your access to knowledge.

Saturday, 21 April, 2012  

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“During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act” _George Orwell

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