ethel’s words

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Surely no one has escaped reading (not to mention hearing): “A preponderance of crime is committed by Black (or African-American) or Mexican (or Latino) youths.” This conclusion is based on the (correct) fact that our millions in our prisons are disproportionately ethnic minorities--BUT:

The shallow observation does not consider reported crimes for which no one has been convicted, including rampant “white-collar” fraud; nor the indisputable effect of racial profiling; does not factor in the conviction of innocents--not an idle speculation. It is sometimes easier to convict an innocent suspect, who knows nothing of facts or circumstances of said crime and therefore does not know how to defend him/her self. A guilty suspect knows what happened and can figure out ways to cover guilt.

There is yet another factor--or complex of factors--to bring into the analysis, if the goal is to establish the prevalence and nature of criminal behavior. That is the long list of unreported crimes.

Most everyone accepts the well-publicized belief that countless rapes went unreported before the women’s movements of the late Seventies. The scornful and accusatory treatment of women or girls who reported to police that they had been raped became well-recognized. Blame was heaped on the victim--not only by police but by the general public: How she was dressed, the time of day, the neighborhood or section of the town she was in, how long she had known (if at all) the perpetrator. “Blaming the victim” is still common.

Incestuous rape and other sexual subjugation is judged to be fairly common, based on official reports that are soon withdrawn (known to prosecutors), as well as the late-life revelations of victims. Usually unreported are cruelty to children; assaults in the family; larceny within the family or in charitable organizations or political circles; attacks on minority individuals who know the “blame” would be placed on them; the “traditional” assault on homosexuals for being homosexual and on Black men for being Black. Minority women know there is no protection for them and the wise course is to disappear.

In recent years a whole new scene of previously unreported crimes has surfaced: the rape or other sexual predation on children by ecclesiastics. To unprejudiced eyes crime has a different face.

Ethel C. Hale