Is defunding the police systemically racist?

Addendum from earlier posting: This article is now online. For perhaps better viewing quality, go here.

One thought on “Is defunding the police systemically racist?

  1. • I think it was Henry Clay who once said that ‘statistics are no substitute for judgment.’ Studies and their results can be powerfully influenced by context (and even the sequence of survey questions); in some cases these factors are actually manipulated to produce a desired outcome.

    • I suspect that the studies showing minority people want more policing would be quite different if they had clearly distinguished between a desire for more police (especially if the PD is thoroughly racist) and a desire for safety (with an often unstated assumption or implication that more police = safer).

    • Is Prof. O’Brien cherry-picking his studies? DOJ / OJJDP has, over the years, published many studies showing that investments in prevention (including effective education & social services) return more than its cost in reduced costs in the criminal justice system.

    In general, I think statistical results should be thought of not as answers, but as prompts for more / better questions.

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