Harvard Study Finds No Racial Bias In Police Shootings
A very recently published Harvard study on racial bias in police use of force finds that, as the mainstream narrative proffers, black men and women are treated differently in the hands of law enforcement. However, in what the(African-American) author of the study calls "the most surprising result of my career," when it comes to the most lethal form of force - police shootings - the study finds no racial bias, contradicting the mental image of police shootings that many Americans hold.
As The NY Times reports, the study did not say whether the most egregious examples — the kind of killings at the heart of the nation’s debate on police shootings — are free of racial bias. Instead, it examined a much larger pool of shootings, including nonfatal ones. It focused on what happens when police encounters occur, not how often they happen. (There’s a disproportionate number of tense interactions among blacks and the police when shootings could occur, and thus a disproportionate outcome for blacks.) Racial differences in how often police-civilian interactions occur have been shown reflect greater structural problems in society.
Black men and women are treated differently in the hands of law enforcement. They are more likely to be touched, handcuffed, pushed to the ground or pepper-sprayed by a police officer, even after accounting for how, where and when they encounter the police...