Tag Archives: Evidence
This method of deception can be seen throughout almost all of the racialists evidence. This is when a racialist is faced with information and simply interprets it wrong or collects the information dishonestly. One of the most embarrassing examples of this, which is worth examining in detail, is the following written by Tim Wise:
One of the most widely reported and talked about studies in recent years has been that of an MIT/University of Chicago experiment that sought to find racism in employment. The name of the study is titled: “Are Emily and Greg More Employable than Lakisha and Jamal?” The provocative title is very important, as we will discover later, and for goodness sake MIT did it, so it must be bulletproof. The study in their own words does the following:
A major problem with professional racialists is their dependence on each other for facts. If a sociologist publishes a bogus study like the ones previously identified, inevitably his/her colleagues will take that study at face value because the result will reinforce their own position. They will in turn cite that study which will be cited by other racialists and so on until a normal unassuming person is convinced at the mere mention of “studies show.” This credulity is the driving force of the myth of an “institutionalized racism” in America. If a study has a certain conclusion, no matter its credibility, it is seen as gospel. For example, Wise writes:
Often professional racialists will use unreliable sources to make a point with the illusion of factual backup. A good example of this is when Tim Wise declares on his website that “police in New York City are blatantly profiling blacks and Latinos, stopping and frisking them in massive numbers, even though in 90 percent of all cases, the people they stop are released without any charge because they are found to have done nothing illegal.” This is a very strong claim. What is his proof? It is a link to a website called racismreview.com where a blogger named “Jessie” declares the same. What more evidence does one need to slander a city’s entire police force after all? Fortunately the RAND corporation did a study of 500,000 police encounters in 2006 in order to test the occurrences of racial profiling. Their findings had a different conclusion than “Jessie.” The RAND study concluded after taking into account actual percentages of crimes, arrests, demographics, and suspect behavior that there was virtually no statistical difference between white and non-white encounters. Or in other words, the amount that non-whites were being searched was proportional to the amount of crimes non-whites commit in New York City. Amazingly RAND found that of the over 15,000 police officers in New York City, only five officers appear to have stopped substantially more black suspects than other officers, while nine officers stopped substantially fewer black suspects. (“Analysis of Racial Disparities in the New York Police Department’s Stop, Question, and Frisk Practices.” Greg Ridgeway, RAND Corporation 2007) Wise effortlessly libels the entire NYPD based on the authority of “Jessie” even though it isn’t apparent how such conclusions were determined, and much more reliable sources were available.
Some fallacies made by racialists are so perplexing it is difficult to categorize them. These claims rely on people not looking them up, or even stopping to think about them. Tim Wise makes one of these claims in his book Speaking Treason Fluently without a citation:
“2006 saw the largest number of race-based housing discrimination complaints on record, and according to government and private studies, there are between two and three million cases of housing discrimination each year against people of color”1
Another statistical fallacy used by professional racialists to prove institutionalized racism, is a method that skews reality by extrapolating a very small (and often carefully selected) study sample in the attempt to paint a broad picture of America. Its like going to a Yankee game in New York and asking the people around you what their favorite baseball team is. The people around you aren’t representative of the entire country. Thinking that their opinions are representative, is about as logical as what Tim Wise writes here:
Sociologists routinely divide people on the basis of one characteristic and then observe the different outcomes when comparing each group. This is problematic because rarely does one single characteristic reveal relevant differences in groups of people. For example if you divide people by skin color and see that whites and blacks show a different result in terms of income, this by itself doesn’t reveal very much about the role of skin color. It is likely that there are other determining factors that account for the difference in income, but it appears the disparity is caused by skin color simply because that is the only characteristic that was taken into account. To accurately demonstrate the role of skin color, one should be able to account for as many variables as possible when making a comparison; so in other words, comparing whites with blacks whose parents earned the same amount, who are in the same age group, who received the same education level, who both had the same family structure growing up, who live in the same type of region, etc. If skin color truly is a determining factor in peoples lives than the gap between their incomes should remain. But the gap almost disappears after accounting for only a few of those variables. At the very least not accounting for a few important variables paints an exaggerated picture, that may shock people, but doesn’t come close to illustrating the true role of race in our society.