Who Woulda Thought

Probably no one who relied on wikipedia for their what’s what.

Beaver, K. M., DeLisi, M., Wright, J. P., Boutwell, B. B., Barnes, J. C., & Vaughn, M. G. (2013). No evidence of racial discrimination in criminal justice processing: Results from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health. Personality and Individual Differences.

One of the most consistent findings in the criminological literature is that African American males are arrested, convicted, and incarcerated at rates that far exceed those of any other racial or ethnic group. This racial disparity is frequently interpreted as evidence that the criminal justice system is racist and biased against African American males. Much of the existing literature purportedly supporting this interpretation, however, fails to estimate properly specified statistical models that control for a range of individual-level factors. The current study was designed to address this shortcoming by analyzing a sample of African American and White males drawn from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health (Add Health). Analysis of these data revealed that African American males are significantly more likely to be arrested and incarcerated when compared to White males. This racial disparity, however, was completely accounted for after including covariates for self-reported lifetime violence and IQ. Implications of this study are discussed and avenues for future research are offered.

Roland Fryer found basically the same relationship between cognitive ability, race, and incarceration in the NLSY97 sample. In that same survey sample, the independent effect of SES was dwarfed by that of IQ.

Image 41
(Elaboration on the association between IQ and parental SES with subsequent crime).

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2 Responses to Who Woulda Thought

  1. Der Alte says:

    “Ronald Fryer found…”

    It’s Roland Fryer.

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