Monday, September 5, 2016

One actress' "credibility" problem merely underlines a greater hypocrisy

I don’t pay too much attention to the current celebrity culture these days, but occasionally I come across a news story that requires truthful commentary instead of the usual media advocacy spin. The actress Gabrielle Union—who I never heard of before—is also apparently a “well-known” black and gender victim advocate. A great deal of what she advocates, according my research, not surprisingly borders on the kind of self-service that dispenses with reality and "righteously" denies the validity of alternative points of view. Union has claimed that 24 years ago she was raped at “gunpoint” during a robbery at a Payless shoe store, and because of that incident she now has a “credibility” issue because she has just completed a film which is directed and starred in by Nate Parker, another person I am completely unfamiliar with. In 1999 as a college student, Parker—who is also black—was accused by a white female student of rape, but was acquitted of the crime. I don’t know if he was actually guilty or not (the alleged victim supposedly had an “active” sex life, if that means anything), but Union, gender victim advocacy groups and the media are all behaving as if he was guilty, which is indicative of the insidious nature of the very act of mere accusation.

I have a bad habit of not playing by the “rules” of current “victim” advocacy; truth is more important to me than sitting on my hands and being a masochist (especially as an “ethnic” person) who is supposed to quietly endure a barrage of misinformation and falsity. This latest media incident just regurgitates the usual lack of insight. I’ve written before about the “epidemic” of domestic violence incidents committed by WNBA players against mainly female “intimate partners,” including at least one murder; yet for the media, these episodes are not worth reporting, for reasons one need not speculate too hard about. Because sexual assault is characterized as a female victim only crime, it has allowed government reporting agencies, the media and gender advocates to ignore other forms of violent crime committed by women. We don’t get a sense of the “big picture,” because it is politically incorrect. While men are more likely to commit violent crime than women, this doesn’t mean that such crime is any more or less repellent because of gender—as I noted in my recent posts on child killings. 

One rare document is the 2000 “Special Report” by the Bureau of Justice that revealed that 22 percent of all “arrestees” are women, and two-thirds of those were arrested for “violent” crimes.  16 percent of felony convicts are women, and as well as those in correctional institutions. Since 1990, the rate of increase of female offenders doubled that of males. 28 percent of all female violent offenders are “juveniles.” Some—but by no means the majority—of offenders claimed to have been “abused” in the past, although probably most people can make that claim in regard to corporal punishment by a parent or simply because they want someone to feel “empathy” for them, rather than judge them as they deserve to be.  The average sentence and time served by women were on the average much less than men for “equivalent” offenses. Of course, these have to be taken in the context of relativity, and men are obviously much more likely to be involved in crime, violent or otherwise. But the point should not be lost that women are not the complete “victims” they claim to be.

Other interesting information in the report: For every racial/ethnic demographic save for blacks, the percent of males and females in the population is or is nearly identical; black females, on the other hand, outnumber black males 52-48 percent, which in raw numbers is a significant difference; you can rationalize the difference however you wish. Other findings: The percent of victims of violent crime who were injured and/or required hospitalization from the committing of the crime was roughly the same whether committed by a male or a female—the different certainly not as “significant” as the report tried to imply. Although half of violent crime in raw numbers by females was committed by white women, and “only” a third by black women, all this means is that black women commit violent crimes at a far higher rate than white women, in fact three times their percentage of the population. One may recall a local incident which occurred in Seattle’s Metro tunnel, when a gang of black females beat another black female while a security guard simply stood by and watched, not knowing what to do; it was this incident caught on video camera that led to Metro “revamping” its security, employing “tougher” looking guards in “official” looking law enforcement outfits.

The report also found that although the murder rate by both male and female offenders had decrease slightly overall in recent years, this was not true of black women, who committed six out of every 10 murders by female offenders. The percentage of black females convicted of crimes went up from 117 per 100,000 in 1990 to 212 per 100,000 in 1998. These numbers may not appear to be that significant in the “big” picture, but they nevertheless are “significant” in the fact that this represents seven times the rate of white females. Of course we shouldn’t ignore the report’s other items, like one-sixth of all Hispanic males—a large percentage of those in federal prison for non-violent (or for that matter, non-criminal) legal immigration violations—will serve time in prison at some point in their lives, while 28.5 percent of all black males (more than one-quarter) will serve time in prison at some point in their lives; this compares to “just” 4.4 percent of white males and 3.6 percent of black females. 

There are of course social implications to all of this. Two-thirds of female offenders under probation supervision were white, while two-thirds in state and federal prison were minority; does this indicate more “favorable” treatment of white offenders? Also, 7 in 10 women in correctional institutions had minor children; how does having a mother in jail effect their attitude concerning crime when their own mothers cannot teach them right from wrong?

Not much in the way of more recent research has occurred since then on the subject, but a “briefing paper” by the liberal reform advocacy group The Sentencing Project in 2007 merely repeated the trends, finding that the percent increase of incarceration of women over the past two decades double that of men, the net number increasing four times during that period. How to explain this? The report claims that female are more likely than male inmates to suffer from “mental illness” and abuse as a child, although not by that significant a margin, and one wonders to what extent it is a sympathy “act.” What we may be seeing is that judicial systems (outside of Texas, perhaps) are less willing to uses such claims to look the other way in meting out punishment for crimes committed by females. 

But the media and gender advocacy groups have little use for such statistics.  We are fed one line to forward a self-serving victim narrative that bares only the slimmest relation to the facts, and no one is “served” by that.

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