Ferguson Fake-Out: Justice Department’s Bogus Report

John R. Lott Jr., New York Post, March 9, 2015

Addressing the nation from Selma, Ala., on Saturday, President Obama said that while racism may be “no longer endemic,” as it was 50 years ago, his Justice Department’s report on Ferguson shows that the “nation’s racial history still casts its long shadow upon us.”


Racism is serious, and those engaging in it should be shamed–but we should have real evidence before accusing others of it. And every one of the Justice report’s main claims of evidence of discrimination falls short.

Starting with the primary numerical claim. The report notes on Page 4: “Ferguson’s law-enforcement practices overwhelmingly impact African-Americans.

“Data collected by the Ferguson Police Department from 2012 to 2014 shows that African-Americans account for 85 percent of vehicle stops, 90 percent of citations, and 93 percent of arrests made by FPD officers, despite comprising only 67 percent of Ferguson’s population.”

Those statistics don’t prove racism, because blacks don’t commit traffic offenses at the same rate as other population groups.

The Bureau of Justice Statistics’ 2011 Police-Public Contact Survey indicates that, nationwide, blacks were 31 percent more likely than whites to be pulled over for a traffic stop.

Ferguson is a black-majority town. If its blacks were pulled over at the same rate as blacks nationally, they’d account for 87.5 percent of traffic stops.

In other words, the numbers actually suggest that Ferguson police may be slightly less likely to pull over black drivers than are their national counterparts. They certainly don’t show that Ferguson is a hotbed of racism.

Critics may assert that that “31 percent more likely” figure simply shows that racism is endemic to police forces nationwide.

Hmm: The survey also reveals that men are 42 percent more likely than women to be pulled over for traffic stops. Should we conclude that police are biased against men, or that men drive more recklessly?

In fact, blacks die in car accidents at a rate about twice their share of car owners.


The Justice report on Ferguson continues, “African-Americans are at least 50 percent more likely to have their cases lead to an arrest warrant, and accounted for 92 percent of cases in which an arrest warrant was issued by the Ferguson Municipal Court in 2013.”

Again, this pretends that a mere difference is evidence of discrimination.

But the report’s statistic doesn’t even look at whether people pay their fine or appear in court–something that makes a big difference in whether to issue a warrant.

Could it be that blacks are more likely to face particularly serious charges?


Another major complaint in the Justice report: “Most strikingly, the court issues municipal arrest warrants not on the basis of public-safety needs, but rather as a routine response to missed court appearances and required fine payments.”

If you think that this is unique to Ferguson, try not paying your next speeding ticket.


Finally, for “direct evidence of racial bias,” the report describes seven emails from Ferguson police officers from 2008 to 2011 that Justice describes as offensive to blacks, women, Muslims, President Obama and his wife, and possibly people of mixed race.

But this begs some big questions: Did only one or two of the 53 officers send the emails? Did the objectionable emails end in 2011 because those officers no longer worked for the department or were told to stop?


Share This

We welcome comments that add information or perspective, and we encourage polite debate. If you log in with a social media account, your comment should appear immediately. If you prefer to remain anonymous, you may comment as a guest, using a name and an e-mail address of convenience. Your comment will be moderated.
  • Samuel_Morton

    Sometimes I’m amazed that people need such obvious facts spelled out for them. But the fog of crimethink is very thick indeed.

  • John Lott had a faculty office next to mine back in the 80s. He’s always challenging popular interpretations of events using this sort of reasoning.. He’s the author of the best selling book More Guns, Less Crime.

    John really has never understood that since the USA is not a serious country anymore that facts don’t matter. The Justice Dept whites surely don’t believe the nonsense report they created, but they wrote it to please their cultural Marxist masters.

    It’s all politics, and no amount of presenting facts is going to change it. The report is intended to keep the LIE alive that everything in the US is RACIST and that blacks can never get a fair shake from whites. The report is being taught to school children. The whites are made to feel guilty. The black kids are then justified for beating up the white kids.

    The cultural Marxists want more black on white violence, so that when we retaliate, we can be demonized some more. The end game is simply the imposition of total Marxist tyranny over us–the exercise of power over the hated white race by Marxists, ultimately leading to our extermination via the same means used in the USSR.

    Facts have never defeated Marxists. Facts are cold and unemotional. Our enemies use emotion to sell their agenda. Jared Taylor is also a facts guy. It doesn’t work. We need to stir the emotions, not bore uninvolved middle class whites with facts.

    It takes cunning and fighting fire with fire. Pull out of the System. Ann Barnhardt advises to stop filing a tax return and weapon up. Good advice, but if that’s too much for you, do the small things that will ultimately lead to the defeat of a government that is now totally Marxist except in name.

    • TruthBeTold

      I agree that today, or maybe since forever, feelings trump facts. But I’m not willing to give up on facts.

      I would suggest stating facts in outrageous that stir things up and force people to pay attention. Unfortunately that gets you banned for websites.

    • Earl P. Holt III

      And all because we are afraid to call a spade a spade, (or a n***er for that matter…)

    • propagandaoftruth

      The Marxist revolution began sometime after the Kennedy assassination, ended around the Manson trials. Sure there have been counter-revolutionary challenges here and there but Neocons are not anti-Marxists.

      Marxism realized long ago that prosperous and functional White societies were largely impervious to class hatred of the level needed to take control, but race and ethnicity now…

      “Progressive” is code talk for “Marxist” of some form regardless of the true believer’s eumucayted ignorance.

      “Magna Europa” – non-gubbamintal organization that forms the seed of a new, alternate form of governance for our people.

    • Earl P. Holt III

      Correction: Facts DO matter!

      After Lott’s scholarly articles and books, Concealed-Carry laws have swept through every state in the union. There are 41 “Shall Issue” states, and the remaining nine are “May Issue” states allowing varying degrees of Concealed-Carry Weapons.

      As Richard Weaver noted, “Ideas have consequences.” (Don’t be so skeptical and cynical…)

  • Oldcorporal

    Here are a couple of thoughts from me: Why are police required to keep track of the race of those who they stop for traffic violations? Isn’t it possible that this is a deliberate set-up to enable the race hustlers to get all blue (heh!) in the face and scream “Racism!”? And how are police officers supposed to automatically know the race of the driver of a car before it even stops? Have you noted all the heavily-tinted windows in vehicles nowadays? How could they be stopping “too many” blacks when they probably can’t even tell they’re black until they walk up to the driver’s window? And why aren’t the news media pointing out things like this?

    • Reverend Bacon

      This last one is an excellent point. In the NJ study, they had no idea the race until they pulled them over. See Ann Coulter’s column on this from a few months ago, in response to Holder’s faux outrage about being profiled.

    • Earl P. Holt III

      If the nigros didn’t commit most felonies, they wouldn’t have so much contact with law enforcement. The same applies to their scofflaw attitude towards traffic laws.


  • Wow, what a suprise! The seven-month chimpout has killed business and also has property prices in a free-fall descent, and none of the Officialistas in Federalstan can find anyone to blame except the Ferguson Police Department.

    Go cry me a river, Leonard Pitts.

    • Earl P. Holt III

      Pitts isn’t really crying: The nigros and their white enablers make neighborhoods unlivable so blacks can eventually possess homes formerly belonging to whites. It’s kind of like the Mad Hatter’s Tea Party: We keep moving away from them, and they keep seizing the homes we’ve vacated.

      • Hammerheart


        Move to the cold?

        • Earl P. Holt III

          I hate the cold. I moved from St. Louis to my Ozark farm and froze my *ss off! If you can, move to a rural area at least two counties away from nigro savagery, and buy lots of ammo…

          • Hammerheart

            I admit that despite my European heritage, I had to get used to the cold as well. Born and raised in Southern California, got my first taste of snow in the USMC. Shoot houses in the Virginian winter where it was colder inside than outside, and of course lovely excursions to Bridgeport Mountain Warfare Training Center frolicking around in the cold and snow. But hey, it’s a small price to pay to get away from government overreach and various elements of ‘diversity’.

          • Earl P. Holt III

            Thanks for your service. Stay warm and stay free…!

          • I am a nearly lifelong Coloradan, and I still don’t like the cold, but I get lots of useful things done indoors when the weather is bad. One adjusts one’s habits.

  • superlloyd

    Disparate impact is evidence of idiots that confuse correlation with causation without bothering to look at true causation or facts. One of the biggest lies that the left is trying to sell us.

  • disqus_Xz3UA6obwj

    Their entire racial equality package is a fraud so what do you expect?

  • LHathaway

    “Racism is serious, and those engaging in it should be shamed–but we should have real evidence before accusing others of it”.

    No, all Whites in the US are pretty much victims of racism. I am absolutely certain of this fact. I don’t have a lot of proof to reference. Then again, tens of millions educators, political groups, researchers and journalists haven’t spent the last 50 years attempting to prove this is true (and nothing else) as part of their job description. Nope. They’ve actually spend the last 50 years attempting to distract us from the truth any way possible.

    • libertarian1234

      “They’ve actually spend the last 50 years attempting to distract us from the truth any way possible.”

      Yes, and to substitute made-up facts as part of their agenda in place of it.

  • JohnEngelman

    Those who complain about racial bias in police behavior and hiring practices imply that blacks on the average behave and perform as well as whites. This is obviously not true. Unfortunately, it is dangerous to draw attention to the fact that it is not true

  • libertarian1234

    “Statistics do not lie, but liars use statistics.”

    And no where is that truth more blaringly evident than what comes from white leftist weenies and black liars.

    They cite high black incarceration and arrest rates as proof the problem is rooted in racism when the problem unequivocally amounts to an out-of-control situation of high crime and violence by blacks far and away more than any other group in this country. It’s so bad it’s shameful. There’s absolutely no question about it.

    They only thing more shameful is black and white weenie rejection of the facts and a lack of any motivation to try to improve the situation.

    Blacks are so naturally arrogant they probably consider themselves oh so clever by turning black pathologies into pluses by screaming racism, while, at the same time, using the ongoing Black Terrorism as a tool to negotiate more Black Privileges from whitey. “We’ll call off the primitives, whitey, if you give us what we want.”

    What they’re doing amounts to Black Terrorism. It’s dumb and obviously based on false premises, but because they have the media on their side they’re able to keep it going somewhat.

    However, when they barge into restaurants filled with white weenies demanding they stand and execute the raised fist, black power salute as they have been doing recently, even the white weenies who have led sheltered lives are beginning to get resentful of blacks, and many of us are hoping that will continue.

  • Reverend Bacon

    I’m a fan of Lott, but he’s made a math error. He says blacks are 31% more likely to be stopped. From the DoJ site, that seems to come from the 12.8% of blacks vs. 9.8% of whites who were stopped. 12.8/9.8 ~ 1.31. If that’s the case, and the driver population is 67% black, then the proportion of blacks pulled over should be 73%. If that’s not clear why, read my last paragraph. It’s not my main point.

    Ferguson population is shifting dramatically; white population is shrinking about 4% per year, while the total stays constant. So in 2013 (the midpoint of the years studied) we’d actually expect blacks to be about 71% of the population. Using Lott’s 31%, that still gives about 76% of those pulled over who should be black.

    A far more telling stat he gives is that blacks have fatalities at 2x of whites. Remember that the DoJ survey was self-reported; and remember what this site and a score of others say about self-reporting. It’s wrong. And blacks more than whites lie when they self-report; see for example drug use vs. drug overdoses in ER’s. Also, there was no weighting given for being pulled over more than once in the DoJ study. If blacks were pulled over an average of 3 times, and whites an average of 1.3, that skews the data by a lot.

    If you use 2x, instead of 1.31x that Lott used, you get about 83%. That is, you’d expect that 83% of those pulled over to be black. They found 85%. Not exactly a smoking gun; this could be accounted for by a greater than 4% white flight, or by just a margin of error in the sample vs. the population. Also, blacks may be doing more driving than their percent of the population; Dorian Johnson and Michael Brown clearly had more leisure time than do the average white person with a job. Regardless, firing people over this without even going down this path is just evil.

    There was a NJ Turnpike study that showed that blacks were twice as likely to speed. That’s more consistent with Lott’s contention that they’re twice as likely to die in a car accident. There needs to be a correction for miles driven (if they’re dissimilar), but let’s ignore that for now. The main point, which is Lott’s also, is that this study proves nothing. Lott just got sloppy with the math, and failed to consider the two things I point out above (self-reporting and different mean number of stops per year by race).

    Here’s the math for the 31% that Lott got wrong. Many of you already realized this, and don’t need to read this part.

    Suppose x% of white drivers get pulled over in a year. Then, per Lott’s interpretation of DoJ, 1.31x% of black drivers get pulled over. If there are 67% of the drivers who are black, then blacks will be pulled over (.67P) x (1.31x) times a year, and whites (.33P) x (1x) times (where P is the total population). Percent of stops involving black drivers will be (.67) x (1.31)/ [(.67) x (1.31) + (.33) x (1)], which is just under 73%. (72.675% if you’re following along; note that the P and the x cancel out).

  • LS Wight

    Why are our police trained by the ADL? !

    • John Smith

      Who really runs things?

      • Hammerheart

        I don’t think anyone is really running things anymore. It seems like everything is spiraling out of control.

        • John Smith

          Could be a hidden strategy to that.

  • If they are 50% more likely to have their cases lead to an arrest warrant, this means they aren’t doing the things the court tells them to do for these cases, like paying fines and court costs or doing community service. Who would ever guess that a race of congenital idiots would have trouble following simple instructions as part of misdemeanor plea-bargains?

  • voiceofstl

    I like stats. But I’m surprised that no one has mention the age issue. I’m sure the average age of a white driver is much older the the average age of a black driver in ferguson. Its a fact that young drivers are pulled over at a much higher rate then older drivers.
    So its not racism ….its ageism!