ON-Lion Letter

"[T]here is no government agency more dedicated to the proposition that black lives matter than the police," Bradley Prize recipient Heather Mac Donald testified during a subcommittee hearing of the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee.  "Tens of thousands of black lives have been saved thanks to the data-driven policing revolution that began in the mid-1990s in New York City and spread nationally."

Mac Donald is the Thomas W. Smith Fellow at the Manhattan Institute (MI) in New York City and a contributing editor of its City JournalThe Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation in Milwaukee substantially supports MI.

"The police could end all uses of lethal force tomorrow, and it would have a negligible effect on the black death-by-homicide rate," Mac Donald told the Senate.  "Over 6000 blacks are murdered each year, more than the number of white and Hispanic murder victims combined, even though blacks are less than 13% of the nation's population.  Their murderers are neither the police nor white civilians, but overwhelmingly other blacks. 

"The rate of police shootings of blacks -- less than one-third of all police fatalities -- is less than what the black crime rate would predict," she continued.  "Over the past decade, blacks were responsible for 40% of all known homicides of law enforcement officers.  Blacks were charged with 62% of all robberies and 57% of all murders in the 75 largest U.S. counties in 2009.

"Police departments must and usually do work relentlessly on improving officer courtesy and making sure that officers use lethal force only as a last resort," Mac Donald concluded, but President Barack Obama's "delegitimation of law enforcement is dangerous and irresponsible."

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