NYPD’s Ray Kelly: Blacks “Understopped” by Police

Natasha Lennard, Salon, May 2, 2013

Echoing what Joan Walsh called Mayor Bloomberg’s “ugly” defense of the NYPD’s stop-and-frisk practice, police commissioner Ray Kelly asserted Wednesday night that African Americans are “understopped” by police. During an interview with ABC, the commissioner and the policing tactic’s greatest defender, said that “African Americans are being understopped in relation to people being described as perpetrators of violent crime.”

While Mayor Bloomberg has been mayor, the NYPD has carried out over 5 million stop-and-frisks. Analysis by the ACLU of official police data found that over 86 percent of the stops were of black or Latino individuals. {snip} The number of innocent people stopped alone serves as ample riposte to Kelly’s suggestion that any demographic is “understopped.”

Kelly suggests that since 75 percent of violent crime victims describe the perpetrators as African American males, it is therefore valid to treat millions of black young men in New York as criminals without grounds. The fact that many perpetrators of violent crime in New York have been African American does not in turn mean that per se African Americans in New York should be assumed violent criminals. {snip}

And, while we’re at it, here are a few relevant facts to challenge Kelly’s “understopped” claim: The number of stop-and-frisks carried out yearly since 2003 has nearly quadrupled. However, the number of weapons recovered from stops each year has remained pretty much constant. Meanwhile, marijuana arrests have spiked (while suspicion of drug possession is cited by police in less than 1 percent of instances as the reason for a stop). Federal statistics also consistently show that marijuana use is more prevalent among young white people than young black people. So: more guns are not being recovered, more young black men are being arrested for marijuana possession, while more white people are users of the drug. And yet, says Kelly (with malleable stats at his finger tips), African Americans are being “understopped.”

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  • I don’t think Joan Walsh would consider SQF and its apologists to be so “ugly” if Mother Jones was based in New York instead of where it actually is based, San Francisco.

    • Paleoconn

      I was wondering what you meant QD, but I guess the official name is Stop, Question, Frisk. I was puzzled by the Q. Thanks

      • The Q as in Question turns an SQF stop into a Terry stop, because it intros the element of reasonable suspicion. With reasonable suspicion, SQF has a lot better chance of surviving in court.

  • The__Bobster

    In NYC, the White crime rate is almost an asterisk, so stopping and frisking any significant number of Whites will result in Bantus and Pardos being understopped.

    • Paleoconn

      As a male, I feel we are being targeted. I bet 99% of stop and frisk involves males. Why don’t do they harass women the way they harass us? Joking of course to illustrate the ridiculousness of equating profiling which is totally legit to racism. I bet senior citizens are never stopped, either? Should younger adults protest? Should brunettes protest because it seems the stopped are almost all brunettes?

      • 99% of violent crime is commited by males.

        • Paleoconn

          I was joking.

        • Token Finn

          I doubt it’s that much. Probably more like 85% or up to 90% but the logic is right.

    • Marc B.

      And that TV show Law and Order makes it appear that NYC has been a constant blood fest of upper class of White violent criminality for the last twenty-something years…

  • Bandmo

    The comeback on this will be something like “72% of blacks don’t commit crimes, so why are they singled out?”.

  • So CAL Snowman

    New York should not have ANY police as police are a remnant of an inherently institutionally racist control structure implemented by the White man to keep the black and brown man down.

    • Paleoconn

      Or to keep the black and brown man black and blue?

    • Who Me?

      In an all-white or even a majority-white nation the police force could be reduced by 50-to-75% and there’d still be far less crime, especially violent crime than we have now.

  • APaige

    It should read that ‘blacks are undeterred by police’.
    Also “Federal statistics” that show whites use drugs more often, are surveys-not real hard stats.

    • GeneticsareDestiny

      Also, the most recent stats at the link are from 2007. Having had considerable experience dealing with blacks in more recent years, I have a strong suspicion that blacks are more likely to do marijuana.

      I don’t know a single black person (and I know a lot of them) who doesn’t smoke weed. I don’t know a single white person who does. Anecdotal, yes, but it makes me very suspicious of their claims.

      • mrcan

        more white people smoke weed because there are more white people. whites have much lower rates of drug related overdoses and drug use in general

    • StillModerated

      What other result could you expect from the lazy and shiftless? When punishment involves free room and board, prison time is seen as winning a prize for being lawless losers.

      • Bill

        Adds to their street creds too. The mentality of the bantu is unfathomable by any civilized person.

  • “The fact that many perpetrators of violent crime in New York have been
    African American does not in turn mean that per se African Americans in
    New York should be assumed violent criminals.”

    Uh, not many, but most, 75.00% to be precise. Those who are frisked and have broken no laws should vent their anger towards the black criminals who give their race a bad name. However, as I have learned in my life, very few black people are capable of such introspection, and seem to suffer from a pathological narcissism, which always blames someone or something else for their problems.

  • LastBastionOfHope

    Ray Kelly of the NYPD is one of the few people with the balls to call blacks out as they should for insane crime levels.

  • bigone4u

    Miss Lennard, the author of this oped, appears to be a young Jewish woman with that New York City liberal/progressive look that screams “naive.” She is a prolific writer, suggesting that she is out to earn a buck rather than take a nuanced, common sense approach to an issue. In other words, she’s a provacateur for liberal causes.

    Her analysis is shallow, which I think I can prove. Say a bank is robbed by a 6 foot black man with a goatee,and he was wearing a blue jacket. The description goes out in an all points bulletin. Forget the blue jacket because clothing can be changed. Common sense police work dictates that ALL persons in the vicinity fitting the description of a 6 foot black man with a goatee be stopped. Let’s say there are six such men who are stopped and that man #6 is arrested with the gun and stolen money. Chalk one up for the good guys.

    A liberal would look at the numbers and focus on the five innocent men who were stopped and claim that the police were racists. Not so. If the police had been lucky and captured the robber immediately, men numbers 1 through 5 would never have been stopped. So, superficially it appears that the police are hassling innocent men, but that’s how crimes are solved. The police must talk to everyone who MIGHT be involved, either as the perp or as a witness. It’s called doing your job, not racism.

    • George

      This is exactly the point.

      I do hope you’ve also posted it in response to the original article. Your second paragraph, in a few short words, debunks her entire argument against stop-and-frisk.

    • Black men numbers 1 through 5 would not have been searched at all if black number 6 had not robbed the bank.

      • bigone4u

        Yes, and innocent whites surely get searched too when they fit the description. The Elvis impersonator who was recently wrongfully arrested in Mississippi for the Ricin attacks did not claim racism I noticed. If he had been black Sharpton and the national media would have been all over his arrest.

  • K

    Who gives a flying crap if whites smoke more pot? I ‘m worried about being attacked and killed for my iPhone by the black thugs who are described as the suspects in 75% of violent crimes, not about a bunch of hippies watching ‘Beastmaster’ and eating brownies. The cognitive dissonance here is deafening.

    • sbuffalonative

      That’s the common retort. There are more whites and therefore more whites are using drugs but only minorities are prosecuted.

      The difference is that white people seem to be using drugs more responsibly (with the exception of meth which seems to drive people mad) and they aren’t on the streets killing each other over drugs.

      If blacks used and sold drugs without violence they wouldn’t come to the attention of the police.

      • PesachPatriot

        This is a pretty good point. I’m sure there are white hippy weed growers who have been producing and selling cannabis since woodstock who haven’t even gotten a speeding ticket. The difference is visibility….most whites who are involved in the illicit narcotics business try to stay low key, have regular jobs, pay taxes and are reluctant to use violence to settle business disputes unless there is a very large sum of money involved.

        Black independent pharmaceutical distributors blast rap music while hanging out on street corners slinging nickel and dime bags of crack, coke and reefer. Shootings, stabbings and beatings over drug debts of less than a $100 happen so frequently in american hoods that they aren’t even newsworthy anymore. They also drive cars with ridiculous metallic flake paint jobs, giant rims and super loud bass that screams to law enforcement “negros with drugs and warrants inside, please pull over and search immediately” Your average white, or even hispanic dope merchant will usually drive a more subdued, nondescript vehicle while delivering product.

        Their is usually a big difference when caught by the law. Most white potheads will just tell the cops “ok you got me, I’m not going to resist and will go along quietly and I’ll have my lawyer deal with this in court” the cops write them a ticket and they go home, or get quietly taken to county jail to bond out.. Blacks will try to run or occasionally even shoot at or stab the arresting officer and then wonder why a misdemeanor weed charge became felony assault on an officer.

        • sbuffalonative


          If whites are using illegal drugs for fun or profit, they keep it low key and out of sight. Blacks, on the other hand, hang out flashing their ‘bling’ and practically scream they’re drug dealers. They have this innate need to show off.

          Their clients drive up to the drug house with the music blaring and they wonder why the neighbors call the cops.

          Blacks just can’t help but flaunt the fruit of their ill gotten gain. In doing so, THEY’RE the ones putting the target on their backs. They make it easy for the police to identify them.

          Meanwhile, whites stay at home or go out to clubs (without carrying knives and guns) and use drugs without drawing attention to themselves and remain invisible to law enforcement.

          Along with the charges of using and selling illegal drugs, they should also be charged with epic stupidity.

        • Nathanwartooth

          This is absolutely true. While White drug dealers are so paranoid as to not even want to discuss things over the phone, Black drug dealers are busy posting pictures of themselves smoking blunts and throwing money around on Facebook.

        • MBlanc46

          I was never a more careful driver than when I was carrying contraband back in my errant youth.

  • LastBastionOfHope

    “The fact that many perpetrators of violent crime in New York have been African American does not in turn mean that per se African Americans in New York should be assumed violent criminals”

    It doesn’t? I guess logic and noticing patterns is not among this guy’s strong suits. What is the alternative…ignoring the race that commits over 85% of all violent crime? Is he suggesting we just turn the other way?

    Another thing…”Federal statistics also consistently show that marijuana use is more prevalent among young white people than young black people” even if that’s true (and I don’t believe it is), marijuana USE is not the issue. It’s marijuana SELLING that is the shady business that draws drug dealer violence and ruins neighborhoods. And I wonder if they’d do a study on what race sells the most drugs…probably not because 70% of marijuana and cocaine is probably sold by blacks. Listen to rap songs…it’s all they talk about…they love selling it.

  • Franz Eigen

    I am SOOOO tired of hearing this B.S. about how white people are doing all the drugs in the country while blacks are getting punished.

    1) The drugs that whites do usually COME from blacks in the nearby ghettos. They make their way from larger dealer into the suburbs.

    2) My town, which is 93% white, has a special police unit called “The Quality of Life Unit” that is specifically tasked with finding people using drugs in the town or selling drugs out of their house. Just about every white drug dealer from my high school eventually got their home raided by them.

    3) About 90% of all arrests in my town are for drug use. Less than 1% of arrests are for violent crimes of any kind, including simple assault.

    Stop trying to hide the fact that blacks are a danger to public safety.

  • K

    “Kelley suggests that since 75% of violent crime victims… as criminals without grounds. Hello? Without grounds? Isn’t the fact that 75% of violent crime victims describe their attackers as black males kind of a ground, particularly when black males in the age group most associated with criminality only make up about five percent of the general population? Usually you have to read a paragraph or two of libtard rhetoric before the glaring logical contradictions render their argument invalid; here the premise cancels itself out within the very same sentence with which the writer is attempting to state it. They’ve been allowed to spout complete nonsense for so long without being called on it that they don’t even bother trying to make actual sense any more. They don’t have to.

  • brengunn

    Federal statistics also consistently show that marijuana use is more prevalent among young white people than young black people……more young black men are being arrested for marijuana possession, while more white people are users of the drug.

    This puzzle can be solved by even the most dull among us, and having solved it, it seems far less sinister than having a racist police force. Simply, Black men commit most crime including violent crime, this leads to the police stopping and searching a higher proportion of them than they do white people. Having searched them, should they find marijuana, they have to arrest them as it’s an illegal narcotic. They may have been completely innocent otherwise, but the police still have to arrest them. Really, it is not because of racism in policing.

    They should campaign for the legalization of drugs rather than lambast the police for doing their jobs.

  • sbuffalonative

    86% were black or Hispanic. If we divide that in half we get 43% black and 43% Hispanic.

    How does this match up to the percentages of black and Hispanics in the areas where they are being stopped and frisked?

    • DiversityIsDeath

      It has nothing to do with FACTS or STATS. Liberals run on EMOTION.

  • Twerking video with White High School students. And, Guess who’s presiding over the degeneracy?



  • StillModerated

    Reporters need to spend some time at their local courtroom — especially the felony trials. There, they would see 80% of the perps would be non-White. They’d probably blame black crime on a racist police force. Silly, sob sister reporters apparently can neither confront nor handle the truth.

  • David Ashton

    Black, white or khaki – whoever pushes dope is a social menace.

    Miley Cyrus T-shirt promoting “SEX, DRUGS & RAP” sums it up.

    • Garrett Brown

      Miley Cyrus is a stupid whore.

    • Garrett Brown

      She’s a dumb whore

  • DiversityIsDeath

    Maybe the cops should start arresting more White people to appease the blacks, hispanics, and white liberals. Arrest and convict more White liberals. Statistically White liberals and White progressives are the ones who break the laws and get high more than White conservatives. All those dirty, shiftless White “Occupy Wall Street” types, those ignorant, lowlife Whites who protested for Trayvon Martin. THOSE are the criminal Whites that need to go down hard. Self-hating leftist Whites should sacrifice themselves, they should practice what they preach. They should offer THEMSELVES up for a change instead of staying safely out of it and sacrificing OTHER White people.

  • LHathaway

    At least the author of this piece displays some real statistics. What happened to just lying. She’ll be the next one kicked off the leftist team

  • Lotsa Monkeyshines

    Something that escapes attention with a lot of people when you hear this

    “More white people do that then black people.” Well yeah…duh… unless of course we are talking about violent crime.
    For example, lets say we have a population of 1000 people. 10% is is black. That’s 100 people are black and 900 are white. if 90 white people and 75 black people were all on welfare, then you can say that more whites are on welfare then blacks. You could also say that 75% of blacks are on welfare as opposed to 10% of the whites.

    • josh316

      Right. But before you take population proportion into account blacks, 13% of the population, still commit 52% of the homicides in the U.S., which is more than whites.

  • josh316

    I think it’s racist that white businessmen and investors are disproportionately audited by the SEC. Most of the time, the businessmen are doing the right thing. But we need more regulation and more auditing…

    This is one big contradiction.

  • More young white people may smoke pot then young Blacks, but what portion of the population of New York City is composed of young white people;

  • Hunter Morrow

    Also, something not noted in these Stop and Frisk policies is Asians are 12 percent of NYC and only 3 percent of the stops. The reason being is that they commit even less violent crime than Whites! Whites are 35 percent of the city and fewer than 5 percent of the burglars and less than 2 percent of the shooters and Asian crime makes those numbers look like an all-out riot.

    Stop racism, quadruple the Stop and Frisk rate for Asians.

  • JohnEngelman

    During the 1970s New York city earned the reputation as “the mugging capital of the United States.” Since then it has acquired one of the lowest crime rates for any large city in the United States. The stop and frisk policy has contributed to that.

  • Marc B.

    Stop and frisk should not be allowed in NYC, or anywhere else, and the only reason it is tolerated is because the Disingenuous White Liberals who live in NYC demand additional protection from the diversity they claim to enjoy. It’s just another of a long list of Fourth amendment violations perpetrated by federal, state and local governments, and they will find a way use it on law-abiding White males if they can invent an excuse to do so.

    Anybody living in a multiracial city like New York should suck it up and enjoy ALL of the fruits of multiculturalism. They should not receive any additional protection citizens in White majority cities are not afforded. Perhaps if they stopped this practice, the post-modern leftists masquerading as liberals would be forced to confront the racial realities they pretend don’t exist.

    • Funruffian

      That’s a valid argument in opposing ‘Stop and Frisk’ procedures. As a White man, if I were living in NYC I would feel a bit safer if the ‘Stop and Frisk’ was practiced regularly. But I would never move to NYC.