Stay up to date with notifications from The Independent

Notifications can be managed in browser preferences.

Donald Trumps retweets false race and murder stats from fictional organisation

The graphic suggested that black people were responsible for most killings of other black people and white people

Philip Bump
Monday 23 November 2015 10:42 GMT
Comments
Donald Trump is no stranger to retweeting questionable information
Donald Trump is no stranger to retweeting questionable information (AP)

On Sunday morning, Donald Trump told Fox News that a Black Lives Matter protester who was assaulted at a rally in Alabama on Saturday "maybe ... should have been roughed up" for interrupting. The Black Lives Matter movement began in the wake of a series of deaths of black men at the hands of police.

On Sunday afternoon, Trump retweeted a graphic dealing with the same issue that was also contentious — and quickly revealed as erroneous.

The graphic, first tweeted by a Twitter account called @SexyPatriots and then retweeted by @SeanSean252, cited data from an organization called Crime Statistics Bureau in San Francisco, suggesting that blacks were responsible for most killings of black people —and most killings of whites.

(Washington Post)

That is not true. According to data from the FBI, most whites are killed by whites, as most blacks are killed by blacks. There's an obvious reason for that: Most people are killed by someone they know - as is the case in 78.1 percent of homicides between 1980 and 2008, as The Washington Post have noted before — and most people are related to and live near people who are of the same race as themselves.

That data is from 2014, the most recent available. Data on 2015 is, of course, still incomplete.

It is also worth noting that there isn't reliable data on the number of black and white Americans killed by police in 2014. The Washington Post has been tracking reports of police killings in 2015 because there isn't good national data on the subject. So far this year, 873 people have been killed by police, 25 percent of whom were black and 47 percent of whom were white.

And, finally, there doesn't appear to be any such organization as the "Crime Statistics Bureau." There is a Bureau of Justice Statistics, which is a federal organization and is, therefore, based in Washington.

Trump is no stranger to retweeting questionable information. Earlier this year, he retweeted an insult of Iowa voters. That retweet was eventually disowned by Trump and blamed on an intern.

Washington Post

Join our commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in