Login Register Logout Edit Account search
The Mythical Rise in White Supremacist Violence
David Catron
by

The Democrats face a unique obstacle in their bid to win back the White House in 2020. To win, they need to garner over 90 percent of the black vote, which requires considerable dissatisfaction in that community with its current plight. However, as President Trump said during his SOTU address, African-American unemployment stands at its lowest rate ever. The resultant increase in prosperity will make it more difficult for the Democrats to stir unrest. Thus, they need to create a new source of concern among blacks, and have hit upon the fiction of metastasizing white supremacy and violence against minorities.

Predictably, the media has enthusiastically abetted this strategy. Indeed, it is why they were so willing to run with the preposterous Jussie Smollett story and a long list of equally absurd hate crime hoaxes perpetrated since Donald Trump became President. It is why we are increasingly subjected to editorials in the major “news” publications claiming that killings perpetrated by “right-wing extremists” are on the rise and that this alleged increase coincides with the Trump era. A useful example is a New York Times op-ed titled, “The Grave Threats of White Supremacy and Far-Right Extremism”:

Killings committed by individuals and groups associated with far-right extremist groups have risen significantly. Seventy-one percent of the 387 “extremist related fatalities in the United States” from 2008 to 2017 were committed by members of far-right and white-supremacist groups, according the Anti-Defamation League’s Center on Extremism. Islamic extremists were responsible for 26 percent.

The first thing anyone familiar with cause-of-death statistics will notice about this passage is that the total is infinitesimal. The 71 percent figure the author, Thomas T. Cullen, attributes to “far-right and white-extremist groups” averages 28 per year. Every death is tragic, but this is less than half the annual fatality rate associated with bee and wasp stings. To suggest that this constitutes a “grave threat” to the republic is ridiculous. The author also fails to note that the 71 percent figure attributed to “far right” groups was derived by arbitrarily including every fatality that was not explicitly linked to Islamist or Leftwing groups.

This is no inadvertent error. The source of Cullen’s data explicitly states, “Total deaths include both ideologically and non-ideologically motivated killings.” That is, some of the fatalities that Cullen attributes to “far-right and white-extremist groups” were committed by people with no ideological ax to grind at all. He commits another telling sin of omission by belaboring attacks by alleged white supremacists while studiously ignoring several horrific Islamist mass murders. But by far the worst feature of Cullen’s op-ed is his “solution.” He praises the federal Hate Crimes Prevention Act, but laments certain inconveniences:

The hate crime law has its limitations. First, it requires proof that an individual acted because of a specific proscribed animus enumerated in the statute. That means investigators must uncover concrete evidence.

This character is the U.S. attorney for the Western District of Virginia, but he evidently dislikes the hassle of providing genuine evidence that a hate crime has been committed. His recommendation to the states is even worse:

States can authorize localities to place reasonable time, place, and manner restrictions on demonstrations that will likely result in widespread violence and other criminal activity, like the rally in Charlottesville.

Evidently Cullen is unaware that the First Amendment to the Constitution guarantees individuals the right to freedom of assembly. And it applies to every American, including the kind of creep who joins the KKK. Even the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) understands that neither the states nor the federal government are permitted to interfere with this provision of the First Amendment. In fact, the ACLU supported Unite the Right organizer Jason Kessler in court after city (of Charlottesville) officials tried to revoke his protest permit. For those who can’t see why, the ACLU provides this explanation:

The ACLU is frequently asked to explain its defense of certain groups — particularly controversial and unpopular entities such as the American Nazis, the Ku Klux Klan, and the Nation of Islam. We do not defend them because we agree with them; we defend their right to free expression and free assembly.… Once the government has the power to violate one person’s rights, it can use that power against everyone.

Returning to the rise in white supremacist murders that has allegedly occurred under Trump, the actual data is telling. As to domestic terrorist attacks, the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) shows that 14 percent were committed by white supremacy groups in 2016 and that this percentage rose to 53 percent in 2017. But this was due to the ratio of overall deaths versus attacks. During 2016, 49 of 71 fatalities occurred during one Islamist attack. Consequently, the percentage of deaths associated with other attacks was driven down. The fatality rate in 2017 was far lower, so White supremacist attacks (18 of 34) rose to 53 percent.

With regard to hate crimes in general, the FBI reported that they increased by 17 percent from 2016 to 2017. That rise was an artifact of the increased number of agencies reporting. More telling is the ethnicity of the offenders: 25.7 percent were Hispanic; 25.0 percent were non-Hispanic white; 21.33 percent were black; 19.1 percent were unknown; 8.87 percent were mixed race. In other words, there is apparently no “white privilege” when it comes to hate crime. If one checks political bias at the door, this looks like a bunch of violent thugs attacking one another, not for racial reasons, but because that’s what violent thugs do.

The evidence of pervasive white supremacist violence is pretty thin, if you allow for the number of random crazies that appear in any particular ethnic community. You won’t get the Democrats to admit this, of course. They need the black vote, so they will do and say just about anything. Thus, they claim that a guy from Queens and the GOP — the party that ended slavery, Jim Crow, and segregation — has revived the Democrat traditions of white supremacy and lynching. They seem to believe that this strategy will bring back the black voters who failed to show in 2016. This is even dumber than the Green New Deal.

David Catron
David Catron
Follow Their Stories:
View More
David Catron is a health care consultant and frequent contributor to The American Spectator. You can follow him on Twitter at @Catronicus.
Sign Up to receive Our Latest Updates! Register