In a longitudinal study of 394 families in England, David P. Farrington, professor of criminology at Cambridge University, found that approximately 4 percent of these families accrued almost half of the convictions of the entire sample. "The fact that delinquency is transmitted from one generation to the next is indisputable.... [F]ewer than 5 percent of the families accounted for almost half of the criminal convictions in the entire sample.... In order to achieve such concentration of crime in a small number of families, it is necessary that the parents and the brothers and sisters of offenders also be unusually likely to commit criminal acts."This is similar to the study done about male rapists where it was found that ~4% of the men had committed 90% of the admitted to rapes. Overall it is a small portion of the population that is causing a LOT of problems. So beware the “Walk Like A Duck” argument. The person offering that argument is telling you that they aren't interested in details and specifics. That's always a bad sign in any attempted informed conversation.
Thursday, August 08, 2013
If It Walks Like A Duck....
Most of us know the phrase “If it Walks like a duck...'etc. This phrase is generally used when someone is trying to show that two things that are claimed to be different are probably not. It is also one of the weakest “intellectual” argument that exists. Long ago I decided that the best way to counter the “walks like a duck” argument is to give an example of water and ethanol. Water is one oxygen atom with two connected hydrogen atoms (H=O=H). Ethanol contains 2 carbon atoms, 6 hydrogen atoms and one Oxygen atom. (H3C-H2C-OH). Water and Ethanol are both clear. Walks like a duck. Water and ethanol are both liquids (at room temperature). Quacks like a duck. Both can exist in a vapour form. Looks like a duck. One will put out a fire. One is very flammable and is a psychoactive drug. Definitely not a duck. This one example shows the weakness of the proposition that because an argument “sounds a lot like....” another one, that they are indeed equal. As someone who strongly advocates for African people I often hear garbage comments like “that sounds racist” (and they don't mean that in the way I mean it). Similarly as someone who doesn't do the gender bullshit I get the “that's sexist/misogynist” commentary from folks who usually have never even bothered to research their own favorite topic because if a man wrote it it's wrong (mansplaining) and if a woman wrote it in “support” of men then she's a dupe.(brainwashed by The Patriarchy) Like a duck. This phenomenon one of the largest problems facing African intellectuals. They don't want to sound “racist” or that could sound like something a “racist” might say about black people and so they say something not entirely truthful or supportable with evidence instead of speaking frankly and truthfully. And that's when they're not busy burying unfavorable information. For example I was listening to a podcast where a group of men were discussing the new movie Fruitvale Station. The conversation went into the Zimmerman verdict and one of the individuals decided to inform the public that when it comes to violent crime, white people assault/kill white people, black people assault and kill black people, etc. etc. His point being that criminals generally target the people who they live around and so the term “black on black crime” is stupid. Of course the statement is absolutely true. No doubt about that. The problem of course was that by and large the issue of crime is not so much who is doing crime against whom (though when you look at things such as the flashmob violence in Chicago and the epidemic of iPhone roberries, interracial crime can be higher than people think) but how much crime each group is committing. There was another salient fact left out of that statement. When you compare rates of crime, specifically assault and homicide, between the groups, African-Americans stand out, far and ahead as both perpetrators and victims. As a matter of fact in some geographic locations upwards of 90% of all assaults and homicides are caused by African-American males (generally between the ages of 15 and 30). In other words, in some places African-American males are theface of certain crimes. Generally speaking there are many white people who object, quite strenuously, to the idea that they pay taxes that go to policing “those people” who they already pay taxes for welfare, etc. There are a lot of people, particularly African-American who do not want to make statements in public that seem to be supportive of such attitudes because it would provide “ammunition” for racists. Never mind that millions of black middle class families make such statements with their feet and money by moving into the neighborhoods that these “racist” white people created and live for “better schools” and “better lifestyles” and to “not deal with niggas”. I mean seriously did you see masses of rich black people moving INTO Detroit over the past 30 years or so? Even though doing so would have raised property values, provided an increased tax base and provided employment which would have lead to better schools (among other things) for that 86+% black city? Nope. Shortly after the Zimmerman verdict I saw a repost of the report that every 28 hours there is an extra-judicial killing of an African-American. Certainly that is a cause for concern. Police ought not be killing anyone who isn't an immediate threat to them or others. However; in the few weekends that past after the Zimmerman verdict we saw 15 people shot in a weekend in Brooklyn NY. All African-American. All. In Chicago 21 people were shot over a single weekend of July 15. On the weekend of July 20 another 22 were shot, 6 dead. In Chicago. Oh and over the July 4th weekend, 72 people were shot. In Chicago. If my math skills serve me correctly that's 130 shot in two cities in the space of a month. According to the Malcolm X Movement document it would take the police, nationally, 4 months to shoot that many people. In fact between NY and Chicago alone in July, AA men have shot at more AA men than the total number of extrajudicial killings cited in the report. I take my police brutality seriously but methinks there is a far larger problem afoot. But what do I know? My friends, acting as if there is not a serious crime problem in our communities and playing “it's no different than any other group” is not going to play in the world where statistics and news is but a click away for anyone to find. But that isn't the entire argument though because even with these absolutely horrible statistics, the fact is that relative to the entire black population of Chicago and NY. These individuals represent a small minority of the population. That is what makes citing such information “not racist”. Because it separates out the criminals from the general population. It is racist to state that the high level of crime is representative of all members of the community. To underscore this fact we can look at an old report at the Heritage Foundation we find the following: