Author Topic: How Poorly Informed We Are Re: Police Killings  (Read 507 times)

mahagonny

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Descartes

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Re: How Poorly Informed We Are Re: Police Killings
« Reply #1 on: February 24, 2021, 10:30:48 AM »
All of this.  And keep in mind, out of those "about 10," at least several were holding objects as if they were a gun, or reaching into their waistbands or making other movements that amount to a death wish, usually even after having been yelled at to stop and put their hands in plain sight.

That leaves maybe "about 6 or 7" who were killed in truly murky circumstances.  Out of those, a couple cops have been or will be convicted of a crime, the remaining ones fired and their lives ruined for their poor judgment, and maybe one who "gets away with it," usually in a truly odd and weird set of circumstances with enough twists and turns in the story to be a country road; and that's the ballgame, folks.

Kron3007

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Re: How Poorly Informed We Are Re: Police Killings
« Reply #2 on: February 24, 2021, 10:51:11 AM »
This raises some good issues, but the real heart of the matter is how this compares to the number of unarmed white people that were killed by police which was suspiciously missing from the discussion. 

13-25 killings of unarmed black people might not sounds like a big number (as sick a that is...) but considering only 3 people were killed by police in all of the UK during that year (including white, black, armed, unarmed, etc.) it is a pretty big number.  Basically, the police in the US kill unarmed black citizens at a similar rate as all of the UK police killings for the entire country (on a per capita basis).  How is that not problematic?
« Last Edit: February 24, 2021, 10:53:35 AM by Kron3007 »

Descartes

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Re: How Poorly Informed We Are Re: Police Killings
« Reply #3 on: February 24, 2021, 10:59:27 AM »
This raises some good issues, but the real heart of the matter is how this compares to the number of unarmed white people that were killed by police which was suspiciously missing from the discussion. 

13-25 killings of unarmed black people might not sounds like a big number (as sick a that is...) but considering only 3 people were killed by police in all of the UK during that year (including white, black, armed, unarmed, etc.) it is a pretty big number.  Basically, the police in the US kill unarmed black citizens at a similar rate as all of the UK police killings for the entire country (on a per capita basis).  How is that not problematic?

Because this isn't the UK.  Our gun regulations and culture just aren't the same.  It's apples and oranges.

mahagonny

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Re: How Poorly Informed We Are Re: Police Killings
« Reply #4 on: February 24, 2021, 12:50:10 PM »
This raises some good issues, but the real heart of the matter is how this compares to the number of unarmed white people that were killed by police which was suspiciously missing from the discussion. 

13-25 killings of unarmed black people might not sounds like a big number (as sick a that is...) but considering only 3 people were killed by police in all of the UK during that year (including white, black, armed, unarmed, etc.) it is a pretty big number.  Basically, the police in the US kill unarmed black citizens at a similar rate as all of the UK police killings for the entire country (on a per capita basis).  How is that not problematic?

Aside from what to do about preventable deaths at the hands of police the issue it raises for me is how do we get to be so poorly informed? It's almost as if we try to be.
One explanation is stars who use the occasion to make exaggerated claims that, maybe tap into a wish that we pretty much all share, that being to see black America have safer more successful lives. Al Sharpton, one example.
“I stood on that spot [where Floyd died], and the reason it got to me is George Floyd's story has been a story of black folks. Ever since 401 years ago, the reason we could never be who we wanted to be is because you kept your knees on our necks.”
https://www.timeslive.co.za/sunday-times/lifestyle/2020-06-05-you-want-us-to-suffer-in-silence-powerful-quotes-from-rev-al-sharpton-at-george-floyds-memorial/
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Kron3007

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Re: How Poorly Informed We Are Re: Police Killings
« Reply #5 on: February 24, 2021, 01:56:23 PM »
This raises some good issues, but the real heart of the matter is how this compares to the number of unarmed white people that were killed by police which was suspiciously missing from the discussion. 

13-25 killings of unarmed black people might not sounds like a big number (as sick a that is...) but considering only 3 people were killed by police in all of the UK during that year (including white, black, armed, unarmed, etc.) it is a pretty big number.  Basically, the police in the US kill unarmed black citizens at a similar rate as all of the UK police killings for the entire country (on a per capita basis).  How is that not problematic?

Because this isn't the UK.  Our gun regulations and culture just aren't the same.  It's apples and oranges.

Yes, it is apples and oranges but to trivialize the death of 13-25 unarmed people without context is also problematic.  The per capita rate of police killings is about 60x higher.  That in itself should be alarming.   

The apple is rotten...
« Last Edit: February 24, 2021, 02:02:34 PM by Kron3007 »

Kron3007

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Re: How Poorly Informed We Are Re: Police Killings
« Reply #6 on: February 24, 2021, 02:01:29 PM »
This raises some good issues, but the real heart of the matter is how this compares to the number of unarmed white people that were killed by police which was suspiciously missing from the discussion. 

13-25 killings of unarmed black people might not sounds like a big number (as sick a that is...) but considering only 3 people were killed by police in all of the UK during that year (including white, black, armed, unarmed, etc.) it is a pretty big number.  Basically, the police in the US kill unarmed black citizens at a similar rate as all of the UK police killings for the entire country (on a per capita basis).  How is that not problematic?

Aside from what to do about preventable deaths at the hands of police the issue it raises for me is how do we get to be so poorly informed? It's almost as if we try to be.
One explanation is stars who use the occasion to make exaggerated claims that, maybe tap into a wish that we pretty much all share, that being to see black America have safer more successful lives. Al Sharpton, one example.
“I stood on that spot [where Floyd died], and the reason it got to me is George Floyd's story has been a story of black folks. Ever since 401 years ago, the reason we could never be who we wanted to be is because you kept your knees on our necks.”
https://www.timeslive.co.za/sunday-times/lifestyle/2020-06-05-you-want-us-to-suffer-in-silence-powerful-quotes-from-rev-al-sharpton-at-george-floyds-memorial/

I remember seeing a survey where 25% of respondents claimed they would not eat food that contained DNA, so I would not put too much faith in the general public having a good sense of much.

Reminds me of the quote "nobody ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the American people".

mahagonny

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Re: How Poorly Informed We Are Re: Police Killings
« Reply #7 on: February 24, 2021, 02:52:30 PM »
Sure, but people who identified as liberals were more wrong than people who describe themselves as conservatives by a big margin on both
  • number of unarmed black persons killed
(overestimated) and
percentage of those killed that were black (overestimated)

Yet, it is liberals whom we are trusting to craft our new anti-racism movement throughout higher education. We would expect that those liberal academics with training in race studies fields are much better informed than the lay public in the poll cited. Does that mean when we get to these anti-racism webinars and such they will have their attention on correcting misconceptions the public has? Wouldn't the fact that liberals are way more mistaken in answering these very basic questions be an embarassment, something that needs to be rectified quickly?[/list]
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Sun_Worshiper

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Re: How Poorly Informed We Are Re: Police Killings
« Reply #8 on: February 24, 2021, 04:04:21 PM »
The average American is totally clueless about data and statistics, so this doesn't surprise me. Same is true if you ask Americans how much foreign aid we give or how many immigrants their are around the world. My strong suspicion is that people on the left and on the right have erroneous beliefs about data that correspond to their priors.

But if the author is really concerned about getting the data right then he should note that 27% remains a disproportionately large number, since blacks make up about 13% of the population. He should also cite some of the other (and better) statistical analyses showing a less rosy picture, if he wants readers to really understand the issue:

mahagonny

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Re: How Poorly Informed We Are Re: Police Killings
« Reply #9 on: February 24, 2021, 04:34:21 PM »
The average American is totally clueless about data and statistics, so this doesn't surprise me. Same is true if you ask Americans how much foreign aid we give or how many immigrants their are around the world. My strong suspicion is that people on the left and on the right have erroneous beliefs about data that correspond to their priors.

But if the author is really concerned about getting the data right then he should note that 27% remains a disproportionately large number, since blacks make up about 13% of the population. He should also cite some of the other (and better) statistical analyses showing a less rosy picture, if he wants readers to really understand the issue:

So we should expect black Americans to commit exactly 13% of the crimes and thus be apprehended by police at a rate of 13% of the total? On what basis?
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dismalist

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Re: How Poorly Informed We Are Re: Police Killings
« Reply #10 on: February 24, 2021, 04:45:49 PM »
I have at least one different take. From the abstract of Risk of being killed by police use of force in the United States by age, race–ethnicity, and sex https://www.pnas.org/content/116/34/16793


Quote
Risk of being killed by police peaks between the ages of 20 y and 35 y for men and women and for all racial and ethnic groups.

I infer that police are biased against people between 20 and 35 years of age. They are inverted U ageist.
« Last Edit: February 24, 2021, 05:22:54 PM by dismalist »
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Kron3007

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Re: How Poorly Informed We Are Re: Police Killings
« Reply #11 on: February 24, 2021, 05:27:36 PM »
I have at least one different take. From the abstract of Risk of being killed by police use of force in the United States by age, race–ethnicity, and sex https://www.pnas.org/content/116/34/16793


Quote
Risk of being killed by police peaks between the ages of 20 y and 35 y for men and women and for all racial and ethnic groups.

I infer that police are biased against people between 20 and 35 years of age. They are inverted U ageist.

Well, there is some truth to that.  I remember them searching our backpacks when I was a teen.  Haven't had that happen recently...

mahagonny

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Re: How Poorly Informed We Are Re: Police Killings
« Reply #12 on: February 24, 2021, 08:08:55 PM »
I have at least one different take. From the abstract of Risk of being killed by police use of force in the United States by age, race–ethnicity, and sex https://www.pnas.org/content/116/34/16793


Quote
Risk of being killed by police peaks between the ages of 20 y and 35 y for men and women and for all racial and ethnic groups.

I infer that police are biased against people between 20 and 35 years of age. They are inverted U ageist.

Well, there is some truth to that.  I remember them searching our backpacks when I was a teen.  Haven't had that happen recently...

No, neither have I. The police don't necessarily have tons of imagination.  Did you ever hear about how easy it was for Louis Armstrong to get President Nixon to carry his marijuana through US customs?
https://www.thevintagenews.com/2016/10/08/louis-armstrong-asked-richard-nixon-to-carry-his-bags-through-customs-the-bags-had-marijuana-in-them/
Thing is now we are all being asked to sign up with something called 'antiracism in the university' which amounts to guilt by association, i.e. teaching while white. This racial profiling is the same thing being complained about by social justice activists.
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Sun_Worshiper

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Re: How Poorly Informed We Are Re: Police Killings
« Reply #13 on: February 24, 2021, 09:12:59 PM »
The average American is totally clueless about data and statistics, so this doesn't surprise me. Same is true if you ask Americans how much foreign aid we give or how many immigrants their are around the world. My strong suspicion is that people on the left and on the right have erroneous beliefs about data that correspond to their priors.

But if the author is really concerned about getting the data right then he should note that 27% remains a disproportionately large number, since blacks make up about 13% of the population. He should also cite some of the other (and better) statistical analyses showing a less rosy picture, if he wants readers to really understand the issue:

So we should expect black Americans to commit exactly 13% of the crimes and thus be apprehended by police at a rate of 13% of the total? On what basis?

Our baseline assumption should be that blacks are killed by the police at the same proportion that they appear in the population. If the proportion deviates significantly from that, then we should ask why. The article you posted doesn't offer any insight, but there could be any number of reasons, such as biased policing or blacks living in high-crime areas. If you are actually curious to find out what is going on, then I'm sure you can find some peer reviewed studies that offer insight.

I have at least one different take. From the abstract of Risk of being killed by police use of force in the United States by age, race–ethnicity, and sex https://www.pnas.org/content/116/34/16793


Quote
Risk of being killed by police peaks between the ages of 20 y and 35 y for men and women and for all racial and ethnic groups.

I infer that police are biased against people between 20 and 35 years of age. They are inverted U ageist.

Sure, police may hassle 20-35 yr old people at higher rates, or these people may commit more crimes or just be out and about more.

Here is the full abstract, in case anyone cares to see the full overview the findings:

Police violence is a leading cause of death for young men in the United States. Over the life course, about 1 in every 1,000 black men can expect to be killed by police. Risk of being killed by police peaks between the ages of 20 y and 35 y for men and women and for all racial and ethnic groups. Black women and men and American Indian and Alaska Native women and men are significantly more likely than white women and men to be killed by police. Latino men are also more likely to be killed by police than are white men.


mahagonny

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Re: How Poorly Informed We Are Re: Police Killings
« Reply #14 on: February 24, 2021, 10:04:56 PM »
The average American is totally clueless about data and statistics, so this doesn't surprise me. Same is true if you ask Americans how much foreign aid we give or how many immigrants their are around the world. My strong suspicion is that people on the left and on the right have erroneous beliefs about data that correspond to their priors.

But if the author is really concerned about getting the data right then he should note that 27% remains a disproportionately large number, since blacks make up about 13% of the population. He should also cite some of the other (and better) statistical analyses showing a less rosy picture, if he wants readers to really understand the issue:

So we should expect black Americans to commit exactly 13% of the crimes and thus be apprehended by police at a rate of 13% of the total? On what basis?

Our baseline assumption should be that blacks are killed by the police at the same proportion that they appear in the population.

Again, why? I do not understand this. Different demographics have different lifestyles, ways of speaking, values that are emphasized, attitudes, family settings etc. Getting killed by a policeman is not like experiencing an earthquake or being born on the fourth of July. It is not exactly random. It involves interaction with authority, for one thing. I don't see any reason to assume whites, blacks, Asian Americans, Latino Americans, Indian Americans all have the same attitude towards compliance with law, or trust of police for example.
Quote
If the proportion deviates significantly from that, then we should ask why.
Well sure, let's do that. but to assume racism is the answer is only a guess.
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