Here, then, is the data from the Bureau of Justice Statistics’ Race and Ethnicity of Violent Crime Offenders and Arrestees, 2018, with regard to “rape/sexual assault, robbery, aggravated assault, and simple assault“:
And here is the data for serious nonfatal violent crimes, which excludes simple assaults, and thus focuses on “rape/sexual assault, robbery, and aggravated assault”:
Blacks, which here means non-Hispanic blacks, were 12.5% of the U.S. population, and non-Hispanic whites were 60.4%. It thus appears from this data that the black per capita violent crime rate is roughly 2.3 to 2.8 times the rate for the country as a whole, while the white per capita violent crime rate is roughly 0.7 to 0.9 times the rate for the country as a whole.
It also appears that the arrest rates for violent crime are roughly comparable to the rates of offending, especially if one takes into account those offenses reported to the police (which is a choice of the victims, not of police departments). And the great bulk of such violent crime is intraracial.
The disparity is even more striking for murder and nonnegligent manslaughter, which the NCVS doesn’t measure (since the crime victim can’t respond to the survey), and which thus relies on the police department reports in the UCR:
When the race of the offender was known, 55.9 percent were Black or African American, 41.1 percent were White, and 3.0 percent were of other races….
Many homicides are unsolved, and of course there is the risk of race-based investigation and enforcement. But again this is the best data we have, and it’s consistent with victim demographics—it’s clear that blacks are disproportionately likely to be murder victims—and the broadly accepted view that the overwhelming majority of homicide is intraracial.
Now naturally this reflects just aggregate statistics; the great majority of people in all racial groups don’t commit violent crimes, and even the aggregate data may differ from place to place. Moreover, this doesn’t tell us about property crimes (other than robbery, which is classified as a violent crime), because it’s so hard to approximate the true rates of offense commission there: Most such property crimes are unwitnessed, so it’s hard to gather survey data. And again, I’d love to hear any other data that might shed a different light on the violent crime statistics as well.
Still, the best data that I know of suggests that
— black-on-black violent crime is not a myth;
— blacks and whites generally commit violent crimes at substantially disparate rates (and, for homicides, sharply disparate rates); and
— as best we can tell, the disparity in arrest rates for violent crimes is pretty close to the disparity in crimes that are committed, and especially crimes that the victims report to the police.
I want to highlight especially one chart Eugene refers to, here. It’s the FBI/UCR chart for expanded homicide data for 2019. The most startling fact it reveals is this: Even though non-Hispanic whites in the United States outnumber blacks by close to five-to-one, among murderers whose race was known, blacks outnumbered whites by 6,425 to 4,728. (Black murder victims also outnumbered white victims).
I’ve said before and I’ll say again for emphasis. Race to an extent correlates with violent crime, but it is not the cause of violent crime. Indeed, race has nothing to do with causation. The cause is to be found elsewhere, mainly, in my view, in family structure and the rearing of children by a married, stable, loving, sober mother and father who value discipline when needed and educational excellence. But the statistics are what they are, and I’m not going to either lie about them or hide them. We’re not going to fix the problem if we won’t even look at it.
Finally, my hat is off to Prof. Volokh for having the courage to write his piece in Reason. In our current academic climate of Be Woke Or Else, telling a truthful but unwelcome story takes guts.