Anti-vaxxers, 5G, Lizard People, the Illuminati…and Black Lives Matter.
Imagine if anti-vaxxers were rioting, burning and looting across America’s major cities. Imagine if store owners were being beaten to death by thugs convinced that Bill Gates was impurifying their precious bodily fluids. Imagine if celebrity chefs and soccer moms were besieging the White House.
The Legacy press and social media would be in a frenzy of condemnation of violent, lunatic conspiracy theorists plunging the nation into a war zone.
Yet, that’s exactly what’s happening now.
Black Lives Matter and its associated lunacy is nothing more than the loudest, most violent conspiracy theory in the Western world.
A “conspiracy theory” is defined as an attempt to explain harmful or tragic events as the result of the actions of a small, powerful group, when other explanations are more probable. In its pejorative sense, a “conspiracy theory” is based on prejudice or insufficient evidence and resist falsification and[…]reinforced by circular reasoning.
This is true in every sense of Black Lives Matter. As journalist Jim Goad writes, “the entire Black Lives Matter phenomenon is moored in lies and rampaging innumeracy”.
What (black) academic Wilfred Reilly dubs the “Continuing Oppression Narrative” (CON) – the claim that America is permeated by “systemic racism”, that police routinely and with impugnity hunt down and kill unarmed Black Americans and that this constitutes an existential threat to black people – is not just wrong but “nonsensical”. So are such CON claims as “white privilege”, and that racism has never declined in America.
Those are all not just damaging fantasies but knowing lies. Because there is freely available data on it all and because some very intelligent people (many of them black) have analysed this data and published it for all who want to see.
But, you may protest, we know that George Floyd died under a police officer’s knee.
That’s true, but it doesn’t make the CON anything more than a willfully stupid conspiracy theory.
After all, we know that a very small number of people have adverse, sometimes deadly reactions to vaccines. But that doesn’t change the fact that vaccines are incredibly safe (and beneficial) to everyone but a handful out of tens of millions of the vaccinated. Nor does it lend the least crendence to swivel-eyed conspiracy theories about population control via mass genocide induced by vaccines.
In the same way, the tragic death of George Floyd at the hands (or knees) of an apparently brutal and dangerous police officer doesn’t change the fact that some 63 million Americans, black and white, have non-deadly interactions with police every year. Even less does it lend any credence to Black Lives Matter’s idiotic conspiracy theories.
Reilly writes that only 1,200 people of all races die during encounters with police in even a bad year. 1,200 may seem a lot, but in a population of 330 million, with some 63 million interactions between citizens and police every year, that’s a miniscule number. Of those miniscule 1,200, a tiny 258 were black. A vanishingly infinitesimal 17 were unarmed.
Call me a cynic, but that hardly constitutes a “war” on America’s 56 million black people.
Even less does it justify the narrative that blacks in America are being hunted like game by gleefully yee-hawing racist white cops.
It’s true, of course, that blacks are a minority population in the United States. On that basis, race-baiters like BLM try to claim that blacks are twice as likely to be killed by police. Leaving aside that twice bugger-all is still bugger-all, that’s the kind of statistical dunderheadedness you’d expect from deranged conspiracy theorists. By all means, control for relative population – and also control for relative rates of crime, hostile encounters with police, and so on.
When you do, the CON conspiracy theory vanishes in a puff of numbers.
“Rates of crime, violent crime, hostile police encounters, and arrests…adjusting for any of those rates eliminates the apparent disparity in police shootings,” writes Reilly.
A (also black) Harvard academic, Roland G. Fryer, found almost identical results when he published a study which controlled for variables such as suspect and officer demographics, the characteristics of each police encounter, the presence or otherwise of a weapon. “There are no racial differences in officer-involved shootings,” Fryer concluded. In fact, Fryer suggested, blacks were “27.4 percent less likely to be shot at by police”.
Other supposed “proofs” of the CON conspiracy, such as the supposedly constant racial harassment of blacks similarly vanish under an instant’s scrutiny.
Social media regularly lights up with witch-hunts of allegedly vile white racists, such as “BBQ Becky”, who was publicly shamed and vilified for supposedly abusing and setting the police on black people, just for grilling in the park. In fact, the woman was merely angry because a large group was hosting a full-on cookout in a dog run area of the park where charcoal grilling was banned.
In another dog-in-park incident recently, a white woman was publicly shamed for supposedly racially harassing a black man in Central Park. Yet, she said nothing racially abusive at all and the man himself later smugly admitted to deliberately goading her. A man who demanded to see the IDs of a group of black men using a private gym in an apartment block did so only because he (correctly) suspected that a resident of the apartments was allowing his friends to use the gym in contravention of the rules.
Perhaps all of those people were being dicks – no argument from me, there. But, being a dick is not being racist. Nor does it prove the conspiracy theory of Continuing Oppression.
Nothing does. Because it isn’t real.
America is not uniquely, or even very much racist at all: “America is not a racist country,” says black activist Candace Owens. Black Americans are not being hunted down. Police aren’t routinely shooting unarmed black men. Neither is anyone else.
Dozens of American cities are burning because of willful lies and insane conspiracy theories.