From the Office of the Missouri Attorney General: Racial Profiling Data for the City of Fegurson for the Year 2013

Posted by Elaine Magliaro

Ferguson1

Ferguson3

From the Washington Post (August 13, 2014):

The department bears little demographic resemblance to the citizens of this St. Louis suburb, a mostly African American community whose suspicions of the law enforcement agency preceded Saturday afternoon’s shooting of Michael Brown, an 18-year-old who this week had been headed to technical college.

But while the racial disparity between the public here and its protectors has come to define the violent aftermath of Brown’s death, the department’s problems stretch back years and include questions about its officers’ training and racial sensitivity.

The office of Missouri’s attorney general concluded in an annual report last year that Ferguson police were twice as likely to arrest African Americans during traffic stops as they were whites.

And late last year, the state chapter of the NAACP filed a federal complaint against the St. Louis County police department, whose officers are now assisting Ferguson’s force since the shooting, over racial disparities in traffic stops, arrests and other actions.

Tensions between residents and the police have shaped the aftermath of Brown’s death in unpredictable and alarming ways. Those include the nightly clashes between young residents, most of whom are African American, and a predominantly white police force dressed in full riot gear and armed with tear gas and rubber-coated bullets.

 

SOURCE

Ferguson Police Have a Long, Troubling Record of Racial Profiling (Reason)

Even before Michael Brown’s slaying in Ferguson, racial questions hung over police (Washington Post)

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93 Responses to From the Office of the Missouri Attorney General: Racial Profiling Data for the City of Fegurson for the Year 2013

  1. bron98 says:

    those statistics seem to tell the story. the funny thing is that there was a higher hit rate on contraband among the white population. you would think they would target whites more.

    although in a small town the cops know who is doing what for the most part. how many of the stops are the same person stopped multiple times? if these were individual stops, well that is a problem but if the same person is stopped multiple times because he is a known felon, that may skew the statistics and not necessarily against the police.

  2. Elaine M. says:

    bron,

    “those statistics seem to tell the story. the funny thing is that there was a higher hit rate on contraband among the white population. you would think they would target whites more.”

    They found the same thing with Stop and Frisk in NYC–a higher rate of contraband for the whites who were stopped.

  3. eniobob says:

    Facts will get you every time.

  4. Mike Spindell says:

    I wonder how Nivico would parse these statistics to deny that there is any “real” data that shows bigotry? On the other thread Nivico postulated that these stops were on the Interstate and so not of Ferguson locals. The stats above show that the stops on all local roads were 20 times higher than the Interstate stops.

  5. bigfatmike says:

    The data seems to raise questions regarding the claim expressed on this blog that higher stop, arrest, and conviction rates among African Americans are reasonable due to higher crime rates in that community.

    It seems to me there is a fundamental question to what extent crime rates for ethnic groups reflect criminal activity in the group or bigotry toward the group.

  6. Bob Stone says:

    Ferguson PD Arrest Rate per 1000 residents.

    Black: 186.1

    White: 66

    Santa Monica, CA Arrest Rate per 1000 residents

    Black: 630.7

    White: 91

    According to disparate impact theory, Santa Monica is 3.3 times more racist than Ferguson.

    And yet it voted for Obama over Romney 35,991 to 9,772.

    Racist liberals!

    • Mike Spindell says:

      Bob,

      Nice statistics parse. Why would you think there aren’t liberal racists, or why would you think that those here who disagree with you on Wilson would think that? In any event my point all along, which I’ve made again and again, is that racism is endemic in ALL of America and particularly manifests itself in law enforcement.

  7. bron98 says:

    Bob:

    you may be on to something, St. Louis County is predominantly democrat and was one of only 3 counties which voted for Obama in 2012.

    New York City is too as well as Chicago.

    You really are onto something.

    • Bob Stone says:

      Bron “You really are onto something.”

      Yes, it’s called reasoning.

      It was all the rage in ancient Greece.

      • Mike Spindell says:

        What some call “reasoning” others might call self-justification in service to one’s ego.
        Just sayin

  8. swarthmoremom says:

    And who says that the police department is liberal in Santa Monica?Just because the city overall is does not mean that the police department follows suit. Rarely are pd’s liberal. DeBlasio may be liberal but the nypd certainly is not.

  9. Elaine M. says:

    Bob,

    I think you’re helping to prove that racism is rampant in many parts of this country. I don’t think anyone claimed that it was isolated to a small city in Missouri. The important point to be made is that we must address the problem of racism/bias where we discover it. Should we ignore the racial disparity in Ferguson because it may be even worse somewhere else in the US?

  10. Bob Stone says:

    SWM: “And who says that the police department is liberal in Santa Monica?Just because the city overall is does not mean that the police department follows suit.”

    No sweeping generalizations for SWM; excepting in Ferguson, MO of course.

  11. Bob Stone says:

    Elaine: “I think you’re helping to prove that racism is rampant in many parts of this country.”

    Perhaps if disparate impact theory was a true measure of racism you would be correct.

  12. swarthmoremom says:

    Racism is everywhere as you have pointed out, Bob. The lapd has been well known for racism but that is no reason to excuse the Ferguson pd for their actions.

  13. Bob Stone says:

    Mike: “In any event my point all along, which I’ve made again and again, is that racism is endemic in ALL of America and particularly manifests itself in law enforcement.”

    And that’s how you ended up falsely accusing Wilson of being a racist killer.

    • Mike Spindell says:

      Bob,

      You really do have a reading deficit, especially because I even addressed my charge of “murder” in earlier comments on earlier threads. Remember it was only a day ago on anther thread where you accused me of something and then had to apologize because you had failed to read my first comment on the thread. Some call their thought processes “reason” because they’re unaware of their strong psychological defense mechanism of denial.

      • Bob Stone says:

        Mike,

        Not only have you always implied that Wilson was a racist killer while sounding the alarm that there was an epidemic of such killers in police departments across the country, but you still see Brown as the victim while refusing to read why the DOJ says otherwise.

        • Mike Spindell says:

          Not realy Bob about Wilson’s racism, but as I’ve previously noted you seem to read what you want to see. As for sounding the alarm because there’s an epidemic of police shootings of unarmed Black people, I am guilty as charged and proud of it. And that is because of my ability to reason, rather than my affinity for police father figures to look up to, or is it throw a bone to?

  14. Bob Stone says:

    SWM: “Racism is everywhere”

    Well then; with a theory like that how can you ever be wrong?

  15. Bob Stone says:

    Oh dear, I just realized that “everywhere” includes “here” — where I am.

    Therefore I’m racist.

    And since everywhere also includes “there” — which is where SWM is, then she must be racist too!

  16. swarthmoremom says:

    http://thinkprogress.org/economy/2015/03/11/3632325/unions-black-lives-matter-activists-join-forces-scott-walker/ Here is a situation in Madison where the unions and “black live matters” got together to protest.

  17. swarthmoremom says:

    “And since everywhere also includes “there” — which is where SWM is, then she must be racist too!” Yes I live in a liberal city now but the pd has some problems with the community.

  18. Elaine M. says:

    swarthmoremom,

    Now Bob’s referring to you as “dear.” What next? Honey? Sweetie? Doll?

    😉

  19. swarthmoremom says:

    “dear?” Bob S. Patronizing, too.

  20. swarthmoremom says:

    Elaine, Feels like I am back on RIL, again. Better call it a day.

  21. Bob Stone says:

    SWM,

    My apologies.

    I took it back.

  22. Elaine M. says:

    Bob,

    I see you edited your comment…and removed the word “dear.” That’s okay. We know what you wrote. Older dolls like me remember things like that.

    • Bob Stone says:

      Elaine,

      So, it’s more important to remember the sarcastic remark than the faulty reasoning that elicited it?

      Alrightee then.

  23. Elaine M. says:

    Okay. I wrote that last comment while Bob was posting his apology to SWM.

  24. bron98 says:

    I went to Costco the other day [2 days ago] with a black guy who helps me in my office and around the house and I had a very interesting experience.

    When we left [I had gone ahead so the checker did not know we were together] Costco the door checker took extra time and looked at each item in the cart, they usually only do a brief glance and mark your receipt with a black line or x. So I stayed and watched the guy for another 10 customers and damned if he didn’t just do the quick glance.

    The guy that did it was an Arab Muslim [I know this because I usually say hello to him and exchange pleasantries] and so is my buddy who is from Africa but he is black. So that may have something to do with it.

    I doubt Costco has a corporate policy to check black customers thoroughly but there sure seemed a little bit of bigotry in his actions.

    It would be nonsensical to think that Costco promotes racism and bigotry based on that small observation.

    no matter how hard we try to eliminate racism, some is going to rear its ugly head. I am not saying we shouldn’t be vigilant.

  25. Oh, I don’t know, Bob. I wouldn’t call you a racist. Obtuse regarding some matters, perhaps, but not a racist.

  26. swarthmoremom says:

    “Bob,

    I see you edited your comment…and removed the word “dear.” That’s okay. We know what you wrote. Older dolls like me remember things like that.” Hope your comment is not edited, Elaine, because the remark he made is very telling. He must not do much cross examining in court as his tactics would certainly not impress a jury or a judge these days these days.

  27. Bob Stone says:

    Gene,

    There are three topics that would require me to change the definition of truth to alter my position on them.

    Bush v. Gore; the lies leading up to the war in Iraq and I think you can guess the third.

  28. Elaine M. says:

    Swarthmoremom,

    Women of my generation notice comments like that. I grew up at a time when girls/women were supposed to be quiet and let men do the talking. We were supposed to know our place…and never contradict the Y-chromosome gender because males were smarter, wiser, more practical–and not emotional like us silly gals.

  29. Elaine M. says:

    Bob,

    I have disagreed with your reasoning on many occasions. Yet, I have never referred to you by any other name/term than Bob.

    You pointed out that Santa Monica’s arrest rate for blacks is worse than Ferguson’s. What am I to assume was your reasoning for doing that?

  30. nivico says:

    “On the other thread Nivico postulated that these stops were on the Interstate and so not of Ferguson locals.” – Mike S.

    Nivico will have to eat crow regarding his claims that the “vast majority” of tickets were likely given to drivers on I-270 😉

    The fact remains, though, that is improper for the DOJ to use the population and demographics of the “city” of Ferguson as the basis for comparison when the number of stops on “city” roads only represents less than half of the stops. The totals for Interstate Hwy, US Hwy, State Hwy, and county roads exceed the number of stops on city roads. As someone else mentioned on the other thread, the only legitimate comparison that can be made is to the demographics of those driving in and through Ferguson… the DOJ even admits as much in a footnote in the report (“…there are limitations to using basic population data as a benchmark when evaluating whether there are racial disparities in vehicle stops…”). In other words, the DOJ is using the city demographics as its benchmark for lack of any other means of comparison even though they readily admit that this is improper and problematic methodology.

    It’s interesting to note, too, that the DOJ report mentions that the local school district’s student population is 80% A.A. … which demonstrates that the demographics can fluctuate dramatically when you look at other factors. If the school age demographics can vary by almost 20%, then it’s reasonable to believe the demographics of those who commit traffic violations can vary by a similar %.

    (* It is somewhat surprising to see that female drivers are pulled over more frequently than male drivers.)

    • Mike Spindell says:

      Ah Nivico,
      I guess it is always good to have a fallback position when trying to sell the Brooklyn Bridge.

  31. Bob Stone says:

    Elaine: “You pointed out that Santa Monica’s arrest rate for blacks is worse than Ferguson’s. What am I to assume was your reasoning for doing that?”

    Elaine,

    That’s just the point. Like you, I didn’t rely on reasoning to arrive at my conclusion; just raw data.

  32. Elaine M. says:

    Bob,

    What is your conclusion? That there is/was no racial bias in the Ferguson police department?

    I’d add that my “raw data” included much more than one statistic.

  33. nivico says:

    “What is your conclusion? That there is/was no racial bias in the Ferguson police department?”

    You’ve identified a protected class that is even more “disparately impacted” by the system than minorities… the raw data you posted shows that women are pulled over more frequently for traffic violations than males.

    Why is no one shouting from the rooftops that FPD’s policies and procedures are misogynistic?

    Why aren’t N.O.W. and women taking to the streets to decry this gender disparity?

    When can we expect the DOJ to release its 105 page investigative report on the issue of gender disparity?

    Apparently people aren’t willing to make themselves look foolish unless it’s the ‘p.c. cause du jour’ thing to do 😉

  34. Elaine M. says:

    Mike,

    Don’t forget that we members of the mob are’t into “reasoning.” We just make snap judgements about things.

  35. Mike Spindell says:

    I think Nivico has been a victim of White Privilege.

  36. Elaine M. says:

    According to the data that I posted:

    Total vehicle stops on city streets: 2325
    White: 220
    Black: 2076

  37. Mike Spindell says:

    Elaine,

    How nice it must be for those who feel so far above the fray that they see the rest of us as an unreasoning mob guilty of PC. The fact that the term PC itself was developed by fools too caught up in their own presuppositions and “reason”, is lost today on those who brandish PC to deny bigotry.

  38. bigfatmike says:

    “According to disparate impact theory, Santa Monica is 3.3 times more racist than Ferguson.”

    Does this even make sense?

    The concept of disparate impact concerns adverse impact regardless of motivation or intent. The whole point of the concept is to illuminate the damage done to ethnic groups – even when there is no racist intent.

    The practice of ‘red lining’ is an example. Red lining has a history of devastating ethnic communities. Yet, it is doubtful the motivation for ‘red lining’ has to do with anything beyond financial gain.

    Facts beyond disparate impact on a community are required to demonstrate racism on the part of those responsible for the disparate impact.

    Yet the author claims disparate impact demonstrates racism and then elsewhere pats himself on the back for his own reasoning.

    The author manages to bring together unsupported statistical conclusions, conceptual confusion, bounding self esteem and contempt for others in a parody of rigorous analysis.

    • Mike Spindell says:

      BFM,

      Wouldn’t that be “unbounded” self esteem, or am I being too picky?

      • bigfatmike says:

        “Wouldn’t that be “unbounded” self esteem, or am I being too picky?”

        You may very well be right.

        But I tend to be conservative with the data. I see plenty of evidence for bounding as in leaping higher and higher. Whether it is actually unbounded – well I will let the readers decided for themselves.

  39. Elaine M. says:

    Now, now, Mike, you’re talking like a certified member of the Grievance Syndicate. There ain’t no bigotry or bias in Ferguson…unless “someone of reason” tells us there is. Ain’t heard nothin’ yet on that front. Guess we’ll just have to assume for now that things is just hunky dory there.

  40. swarthmoremom says:

    http://www.unz.com/isteve/arrest-rates-ferguson-v-peoples-republic-of-santa-monica-ca/ Here is where the Santa Monica stats were recently published.

    • Mike Spindell says:

      SwM,

      Thank for that link about Unz. Now I know where Bob gets his opinions about Israel.

  41. Bob Stone says:

    bigfatmike,

    “Facts beyond disparate impact on a community are required to demonstrate racism on the part of those responsible for the disparate impact.”

    Really?

    You mean I can’t point to raw data as ipso facto proof of discrimination; like the MSM has been doing since the Ferguson report came out?

    Wow; ya learn something every day I guess….

    • bigfatmike says:

      “You mean I can’t point to raw data as ipso facto proof of discrimination”

      Your claim was racism not just discrimination.

      Discrimination refers to treatment and impact.

      Racism includes intention and motivation.

      Hope that helps.

  42. swarthmoremom says:

    He certainly has an interesting collection of far right sources. I guess they possess superior reasoning skill unlike those mob like libruls and progressives..

  43. Is “willfully ignorant and proud of it” a race?

    If so, then perhaps I am a racist.

    But what I really hate? Marathons.

  44. Mike Spindell says:

    BFM,

    Thanks also for clarifying the point that in terms of what statistics prove there is a difference between actually harboring a racist attitude and discrimination against a class of people. People’s actual attitudescare hard to prove, but you can discern from statistics if they discriminate in practice. Thus one doesn’t have to have actusl proof of what is in the mind of Officer Wilson, to at least construe that he was a member of a police force that practiced discrimination against Blacks. This is why Bob and Nivico keep trying to discredit the DOJ report since it undercuts their argument about Wilson. Also too in their assertion that the report exonerated Wilson they can’t possibly see the realpolitik that might be behind it by the DOJ.

  45. Oh come on. Realpolitik isn’t a real thing. For Dog’s sake, it’s spelled with a “k”.

  46. Only following your lead, Bob, if making a joke about the metaphorical use of dog imagery was part of our agreement. Which it wasn’t. Nor was making fun of denying realpolitik considerations in other contexts. As here that context is willful distortion of statistical data, this is another context, ergo not what you seem to think it is either. To be clear, I’d make fun of anyone in most any context for just brushing off, minimizing or otherwise willful failure to see the considerations and interplay of realpolitik in a situation where people could loose their jobs and/or political influence. Firstly because they probably haven’t read or understood the lessons of Machiavelli and Cicero and secondly because of a failure to realize that realpolitik is grounded firmly in human nature’s egotism and tribalism. It does happen. All the time. We are primitive creatures in many regards. But to deny that plains ape brain still influences our social hierarchies is simply unrealistic.

  47. blouise says:

    Bob,

    I see you edited your comment…and removed the word “dear.” That’s okay. We know what you wrote. Older dolls like me remember things like that. – Elaine

    Yep … both the word and the edit.

  48. Elaine M. says:

    Mike said: “This is why Bob and Nivico keep trying to discredit the DOJ report.”

    They haven’t tried to discredit the OTHER DOJ report that explained why no charges would be brought against Officer Wilson. That one was a good report!

  49. Elaine M. says:

    Make of the “raw data” what you will:

    SEARCHES: 611
    White: 47
    Black: 562

    ARRESTS: 521
    White: 36
    Black: 483

    CONTRABAND HIT RATE: 22.59
    White: 34.04
    Black: 21.71

  50. swarthmoremom says:

    Mike, Yep.

  51. Bob Stone says:

    BFM,

    “Discrimination refers to treatment and impact.”

    “Racism includes intention and motivation.”

    Now you’re getting lost in the same disparate impact lexicon that you accuse me of failing to comprehend.

    For example, exactly how does one discriminate without intent?

    Overindulgence in legal fictions may result in self-deception and the failure to retain the ability to discriminate between truth and falsehood. Witness Citizens United.

    Hope that helps.

    • bigfatmike says:

      “For example, exactly how does one discriminate without intent?”

      I suppose you were just sloppy and meant racial intent.

      Red lining – that we discussed, by the way.

      Pre-employment tests that have little or nothing to do with the actual job.

      Over reliance on standardized tests for admissions when other (life) experience are better predictors of success.

      I am sure any group of students form into statistics or sociology could give you a dozen or more examples.

      If you are still confused just let me know. .

    • Mike Spindell says:

      “How does one discriminate without intentd?”

      Bob,

      Seriously? It is a quite common human phenomena. It’s been shown in thousands of psychological experiments. I really think the crux of your problem understanding this whole area is that you see people as conscious actors all the time. Weighing right and wrong. Logically applying themselves to problems. Like the words you read in the Bible https:// youtu.be/kP5O_NUhrK0:

  52. Bob Stone says:

    Santa Monica stats actually showed up while Shepardizing, so to speak, a USA Today article on Ferguson. And it wasn’t that Unz site either.

    But thanks for playing anyway.

  53. Bob Stone says:

    BFM,

    “I suppose you were just sloppy and meant racial intent.”

    I wouldn’t call mocking what the MSM and most everyone else has been using those statistics for as being “sloppy.”

    This is sloppy:

    “Discrimination refers to treatment and impact.”

    “Racism includes intention and motivation.”

    In terms of Disparate Impact/Treatment theories, discrimination can be both intentional or unintentional.

    In terms of epistemology, to discriminate necessitates an intent.

    • bigfatmike says:

      “In terms of epistemology, to discriminate necessitates an intent.”

      I suppose any conscious action in life presupposes an intent. So what?

      We have been discussing your claim that some stats support a conclusion of racism.

      You can’t get to racism from disparate impact alone.

      Fortunately in Ferguson we have other independent data that clearly indicates racism. We have discrimination. We have disparate impact.

      I suppose an official from Ferguson might make an argument along the lines:

      ‘yes we are racist’
      ‘yes we discriminate’
      ‘but we had other good reasons for our discrimination’.
      Perhaps a gifted lawyer might make a convincing argument along those lines. Maybe you would like to give it a try.

  54. Bob Stone says:

    “We have been discussing your claim that some stats support a conclusion of racism.

    You can’t get to racism from disparate impact alone.”

    Thus the reason for the sarcasm.

    Jesus H. Christ.

  55. bigfatmike says:

    “Thus the reason for the sarcasm.”

    Perhaps you missed it when you were working out the sarcasm routine.

    But in addition to discrimination in Ferguson, we have independent, compelling evidence of racism from the highest levels of government in Ferguson to rank and file.

  56. nivico says:

    “They haven’t tried to discredit the OTHER DOJ report that explained why no charges would be brought against Officer Wilson. That one was a good report!” – Elaine M.

    Have you read the two reports?

    Here’s the Wilson report:

    http://www.stltoday.com/news/multimedia/special/doj-report-regarding-the-criminal-investigation-of-the-shooting-death/html_b7c67e73-5ea3-5a5c-8d14-2696dd5a70d0.html

    Here’s the Ferguson PD report:

    https://www.scribd.com/fullscreen/257669909?access_key=key-xQau5A6wlC6WtXt0gOT5&allow_share=true&escape=false&view_mode=scroll

    In the Wilson report, the DOJ was extremely thorough and systematically went through every witness and assessed their level of credibility and truthfulness. In the Ferguson PD report, they simply accepted anecdotal stories from every Tom, Dick, and Mary at face value without assessing the truthfulness of those statements or the credibility of the source.

    And let’s be honest here, if McCulloch hadn’t made the grand jury records public, the Wilson report would have been full of unsubstantiated gossip and rumors as well.

  57. bigfatmike says:

    ” It is a quite common human phenomena. It’s been shown in thousands of psychological experiments. I really think the crux of your problem understanding this whole area is that you see people as conscious actors all the time.”

    Silly me. I forgot to mention unconscious racism. Here is a pretty good article in the NYT summarizing as study of professional referees in the NBA:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2007/05/02/sports/basketball/02refs.html?pagewanted=all

    And here is a key paragraph:

    “A coming paper by a University of Pennsylvania professor and a Cornell University graduate student says that, during the 13 seasons from 1991 through 2004, white referees called fouls at a greater rate against black players than against white players.”

    For the enthusiasts among you, the researchers used to keep their data on the internet for anyone to play with. I did not check but it is probably still out their.

    And here are some interesting remarks by FBI director Comey regarding unconscious racism and law enforcement:

    http://www.fbi.gov/news/speeches/hard-truths-law-enforcement-and-race

    “A second hard truth: Much research points to the widespread existence of unconscious bias. Many people in our white-majority culture have unconscious racial biases and react differently to a white face than a black face.”

    When it comes to racism I think we could almost make the claim that intention is the easiest part to deal with. It is certainly the part of racism where we can have the most direct interaction. When the racism is intentional, we can at least try to have a rational discussion. With unconscious racism we first have to demonstrate to the actor that the racism actually exists.

    • Mike Spindell says:

      “With unconscious racism we first have to demonstrate to the actor that the racism actually exists.”

      BFM,

      There you go. Back in the 60’s, the writer Tom Wolfe wrote about what he called “limousine Liberals”. Wealthy Manhattanites from the upper Eastside who would have parties where they invited “radical” Blacks to attend and allow themselves to be verbally attacked for their wealth and privilege. Money was exchanged, but of course the “chastened” Whites would continue to live their lives in their same privileged way thinking they had contributed to the cause. These particular liberals exhibited an unconscious bias in somehow assuaging their conscience by picking out black people to in effect perform for their gatherings. In the 50’s and 60’s the American Communist Party had a slogan that “Black Is Right”. The slogan meant that no matter what Black “leaders” espoused party members should support them.It was a cynical recruitment method. I saw it in the radical union I was prominent in, when a man named George Wiley from the National Welfare Rights League came to address us and in effect said “We want you to help us take your jobs!” They were carrying the day, until my friend who was the head of the union’s Black caucus and my other friend who was a union VP, rose with indignation and demolished his argument, using their own careers as an example of what the union did for Black people. In discussing it with them afterwards they let this young, naive radical understand that in listening to people like Wiley, some “leftists” were being unconsciously racist in judging the person’s speech by the color of their skin alone. This is the essence of why Bob annoyed me in his dog series. He made the assumption that “us libruls” were siding with Michael Brown simply because he was Black. He aldo assumed that because some of the organizers who came to Ferguson may have been self serving, that the protests there were unfounded. He further assumed that because a few people in the protesters acted badly, that the whole protest was a sham. I’ve worked long and hard in my life to know myself. A big part of that work was in learning not to deceive myself as to my own motivations, my perceptions and my actions. My reactions and thoughts about the killing of people of color by police is based on the overwhelming evidence and the histotical context, not some naive political belief. Bob’s and Nivico’s condescension in this matter has been insufferable and from my perspective indicates an inability to understand their own driving motives.

      Most people at one time or another discriminate and their discrimination is unconscious. This is psychological in nature and yes it can be statistically determined by the results of their actions. As you pointed out “red lining” has racial consequences, even though the motivation may merely be profit. To dismiss the DOJ study as unproven, represents a form of confirmative bias, where one determines an outcome based on their own pre-assumptions. I left that mistaken lack of awareness years ago, but I suspect Bob and Nivico still see things blinded by their own biases and mis-assumptions.

  58. swarthmoremom says:

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/03/12/rudy-giuliani-darren-wilson-commended_n_6857086.html Giuliani commends Darryl Wilson. That’s fairly predictable considering the pd he had when he was mayor. I don’t post on RIL but I do check it every once in a awhile and mespo should be commended for taking on Bob S, nick, and Darren on this subject. Bob is throwing insults around but is not that what one does when one is losing the argument?

  59. bron98 says:

    I am unclear as to how “discriminating” can be unconscious since one has to be aware to be able to discriminate.

    Bob Stone, would you please help me understand how I can discriminate without being conscious of the act?

  60. Inga (Annie) says:

    Darren certainly can take on the persona of arrogant cop at times. Bob Stone seems overly concerned with proving Wilson’s complete innocence. Wilson wouldn’t have had to keep shooting, he could’ve gotten back into his vehicle, locked the doors and waited for backup.

  61. bigfatmike says:

    Just a reminder that tomorrow is international pi day – accurate to 5 digits, 31415.

    Hope you all have time to shop and make something delicious for you families – ummm chocolate, pecan pie would be nice.

  62. nivico says:

    Here’s an interesting article from the New York Times…

    Random checkpoints catch three times more unlicensed drivers in cities with large immigrant/minority populations than in cities with small immigrant/minority populations.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/02/14/us/14sfcheck.html?pagewanted=3

    Must be all that implicit unconscious bias… /sarc

    A NHTSA study of red light camera data also found an age disparity in offenders (the study did not look for racial disparities):

    “As the age of the red light violator increases, the probability of running the red light while
    speeding decreases. The predicted odds of a younger driver running a red light while speeding
    is about 1.5 times the odds of a middle-age driver. The same odds ratio also applies
    when the age category goes from “middle-age” to “older.”

    Point being, when we look at completely random methods of traffic law enforcement where bias can’t be claimed, we still find disparities in demographics. Even in the Ferguson report, the DOJ found that “with respect to speeding offenses for all roads, African Americans account for 72% of citations based on radar or laser.”

    • bigfatmike says:

      The data tells us there are differences in driving habits according to age.

      What happens to the ethnic percentages when we control for age?

      As a first cut, it looks to me that you can’t tell the disparity by ethnic group without first looking at age. Is a particular group mostly boomers or millennials? Do two groups match pretty closely in age distribution or are their significant differences?

      And I would bet there are other confounding factors as well. Does socio-economic status or education have anything to do with driving habits? Maybe you know, but I don’t.

      And red light data is problematical. Very few red ligt cameras capture driver information. Red light cameras in most locations capture tag, hence owner, information. The owner may be the drive much of the time. But that is a complicating factor that changes the analysis in ways we just don’t know till we actually check.

      I see a lot of questions. But not many conclusions – at least not any I would bet on.

      Course there are some who are driven and will bet on most anything.

  63. Bob Kauten says:

    …and racists post 100% of the racist comments on this blog!
    What could this mean?

  64. Elaine M. says:

    San Francisco Cops Said It Was Legal To Murder Black Man Because He Was An ‘Animal’
    http://thinkprogress.org/justice/2015/03/15/3633907/sfpd-deplorable-racist-emails/

    Excerpt:
    The San Francisco Police Department (SFPD) will investigate dozens of racist and homophobic text exchanges between a former SFPD sergeant convicted of corruption charges and four other police officers, the San Francisco Chronicle first reported. The texts made public Friday included jokes about Kwanzaa, calling African Americans monkeys, calling for the lynching of all African Americans, and even one that said, “Its [sic] not against the law to put an animal down.” The four officers have been on the force for at least a decade, with two having faced disciplinary action in the past. The revelation comes at a time when police practices around the country are under scrutiny for racial bias.

    The text messages came to light after the Attorney General’s office filed a motion to release the texts to keep former SFPD Sgt. Ian Furminger in custody as a way “to show the officer’s character” and deny him bail, ABC News reported. Furminger, a 20-year veteran, is currently seeking to appeal his conviction and a three-year prison sentence for charges stemming from “a scheme to steal money and property seized during searches and arrests in 2009,” a local CBS news affiliate reported.

    Here is a selection of the text messages exchanged between October 2011 and June 2012, while Furminger was still on the police force:

    In response to a text asking “Do you celebrate quanza [sic] at your school?” Furminger wrote: “Yeah we burn the cross on the field! Then we celebrate Whitemas.”

  65. Pingback: A Further Explanation of the Blindness of White Privilege | Mike Spindell is Alive and Well

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