Many of us have heard commentary about how black-on-black violence/murder is crippling the black community and how it represents a form of self-hatred. But how much evidence is there to support this belief? I went to the August 2007 special report, Black Victims of Violent Crime, produced by the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) and found some data speaking to the issue. They report that between 2001 and 2005, 77% of blacks were victimized by other blacks. And in 2005 93% of black homicide victims were killed by other blacks. Pretty disturbing.
It may seem logical to make the leap to saying there is something really abnormal about blacks being so violent towards members of their own ethnic group; that is, until you look at the white crime patterns and find similar trends. 70% of white violent crime victims are committed by whites and 85% of white homicide victims were murdered by whites. It appears that intraracial violent crime is actually the norm.
Now, this is in NO way excusing or minimizing the violence problem in the black community. It would be ignorant to say we don’t have a problem just because intraracial crime is “normal.” It is a fact that homicide is the leading cause of death among black men ages 15-34; there is absolutely no way of getting around admitting this to be a tremendous problem. But does the fact alone that the majority of black homicide victims are killed by blacks mean that we posses a dysfunctional self-hatred? I’d say not, unless one believes that self-hate also motivates white violent crime. There may be plenty of other compelling arguments one can make to this point, but this is not one of them.