A Time of Reckoning Over Race in America

If you don’t agree that black lives matter you should stop reading now.
Conversely, if you believe blacks in America are victims of a deadly conspiracy of systemic police racism you may want to look away. The facts simply do not bear out that claim.

Yes, we have heard about a horrific series of black citizens killed by police. But over the years there have been many more white citizens killed by police.
Precise numbers are not known because, almost unbelievably, no one is keeping track! There is a federal law called the “Death in Custody Reporting Act of 2013” but it has largely been ignored by both states, which are required to report such deaths, and the Justice Department tasked with compiling and analyzing the information.

In 2015 the Post Began a Police-Involved Shooting Database

To fill the void, in 2015, the Washington Post started keeping track of every on-duty police officer shooting. Let’s look at last year’s figures.
There were 1,004 police involved shootings in 2019. Of the 802 cases in which the race of the suspect was available we see that 371 were white, 236 were black. Given that blacks make up only about 13 ½ percent of the U.S. population African Americans were disproportionately killed more often than Caucasians. Additionally, as the Post’s data shows, blacks suspects were more likely to be armed with a deadly weapon at the time of the fatal incident.
As for the oft-repeated claim that police routinely target unarmed black men, this starting fact from the Post’s 2019 tally: there were just 10 fatal cases involving a black citizen who carried no weapon. Make no mistake, one case is one too many but ten cases in a population of 330 million people is hardly a routine or “systemic” occurrence.

The Charge of “Systemic Racism” is Not Born Out by the Facts

Now, let’s drill down on those ten fatal cases. It is undisputed that in five of them the perpetrator attacked the officer first either during the commission of a crime or as they were being pursued on outstanding warrants. In another case the officer struggled with a mentally ill man suspected of burglary and it was determined that his weapon discharged “accidentally.” That leaves four remaining cases – and in two of those the officers were criminally charged. One policeman in Newark, New Jersey is now charged with manslaughter, another in Ft. Worth, Texas now faces trial for homicide.
Facts are facts. Street protestors who carry signs about black “genocide” or “white terrorism” in America are either grossly uninformed or lying for effect. Is there racism in the U.S.? Without a doubt, sad to say. But last year was the safest year for suspects – black or white – since the Washington Post started tracking police involved shootings.
It was not, however, the safest for police. Forty-eight law enforcement officers were murdered on the job last year.

 Marines and San Diego police officers escort the body of Officer Jeremy Henwood in San Diego, Aug. 12. 2011. Henwood, a Marine reserve officer, was posthumously promoted to the rank of major after being killed in the line of duty serving with the San Diego Police Department, Aug. 7.
Source: https://www.dvidshub.net/image/445105
Author	Cpl. Michele Watson
Murdered Officer Jeremy Henwood, San Diego, 2011 – wiki

It is high time and positively right for us to question deadly police actions and to demand more accountability from law enforcement. It is also way past time for all citizens – especially minorities – to demand an end to gratuitous police brutality. Police work for us and we all should be treated with respect.
By the same token, protesters must come to grips with some harsh realities. The biggest threat to people of color does not come from police, it comes from criminal elements within their own communities.
Crime is generally intra-racial. White killers overwhelmingly slay other whites and the same holds true in black society. FBI Statistics from 2018 concluded when a murder victim was black 88 percent of the time the culprit was also black.

John L. Hudgins is co-director of the Human Services Administration and an Associate Professor at Coppin State University's  Department of Social Sciences, Political Science, and Sociology. He is also a Doctor of Philosophy.
Sociology Professor John L. Hudgins

“The truth is, there are some black folk who do bad things. The sad truth is that their victims are most often other black people,” Professor John Hudgins wrote recently in the Baltimore Sun. Hudgins, an African American professor of sociology at Choppin University, urges other blacks to look within to help end the violence.
“We must realize that some black people are a much greater threat to other black people than the Ku Klux Klan or the White Citizens’ Councils,” he wrote.
The scab that hid this nation’s racial tension has been torn off. We only heal if everyone accepts responsibility for their prejudices, admits their failures and marches forward in calm solidarity to bring this country together. Otherwise, welcome to the new normal.



  1. Diane Dimond on June 15, 2020 at 10:40 am

    Reader Gay Kernan writes:

    I always appreciate your common sense response to the challenges we face in our state and country. Thank you for articulating my thoughts so succinctly.

    Gay G. Kernan
    NM State Senate

  2. Diane Dimond on June 15, 2020 at 10:44 am

    Reader Boz writes:

    Ms. Dimond,
    I enjoyed reading your opinion. Well written!
    Please dispense with the trigger warnings. Let’s just have conversation, and debate, talk normally, and not pander to the immature leftist, afraid to read an opinion other than their own.

    • Diane Dimond on June 15, 2020 at 10:44 am

      Diane replies to Boz:

      Thank you! But – I’m at a loss to think what “trigger warning” you think I dispensed?

  3. Diane Dimond on June 15, 2020 at 10:45 am

    Reader Geoff MyCloud writes:

    Cannot reason with them They have been hysterical for 3.5 years.

  4. Diane Dimond on June 15, 2020 at 10:46 am

    Reader Michael Brown writes:

    BLM could care less about actual facts. They are a political group focused on acquiring power and money through race baiting. It’s obviously good business for them.

    And, of course our Liberal media panders to BLM as do an overwhelming number of woke millennials who are mostly lemmings trying to out virtue signal one another. Millennials don’t have a clue.

    Facts have no bearing on what is going on now or the protests, riots, looting and crimes committed since Floyd’s wrongful death.

    The root of the issue is in all forms of public unions who brow beat politicians into submission like the Teachers union and the Police union. Chauvin should have been fired well before this incident but the Police union got him back on duty multiple times.

    Force the BLM and the Police union to be held accountable. The majority of us shouldn’t have to deal with this continuing shit show.

  5. Diane Dimond on June 15, 2020 at 10:47 am

    Reader Thomas Anderson writes:

    Again, no one who does not support the Left has figured out how they do it. Try the following:

    Look at history – Germany’s Weimar Republic, Kerensky’s Russia, even Cuba and Venezuela, in order to …

    Know where we are now, because historically socialist parties have never needed a majority to gain power but use tried methods.

    Stop being on the defensive. Turn it around by learning the Blame Game. The Democratic platform is shifting blame, then shaming and denouncing the target (usually for their own failings). Look at 2016. They lost the election because of (a) miscounted ballots, (b) the electoral system, (c.) the Russians. There was never introspection to see what THEY might have done wrong and would correct for winning the next election.

    Their blaming has worked superbly. It has flowed onto and started rotting the whole body politic, first attacking the one bulwark of civil society, local law enforcement. Without them, the gangsters rule.

  6. Diane Dimond on June 15, 2020 at 10:48 am

    Reader SSBN writes:

    Until the perpetual hate of being successful is pushed out of the black communities, nothing will change. The same goes for the white communities that do the same, however that does not make the news since racism can not be used for a cover.

  7. Diane Dimond on June 15, 2020 at 10:49 am

    Reader Stephen Thomas writes:

    All lives matter, or no lives matter. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

  8. Diane Dimond on June 15, 2020 at 10:51 am

    Reader Made in USA writes:

    All lives matter, no one race more than another.
    The idea that “no lives matter until black lives matter” is extreme racism. If I walked around with a sign that said, “no lives matter until white lives matter”, I would be called racist by Democrats.
    Reverse racism is still racism regardless of the target.
    White men are the most discriminated against people in US.

  9. Diane Dimond on June 15, 2020 at 10:53 am

    Reader Paul Hasson writes:

    Odd that this author mentions nothing about the work of Dr Heather Mcdonald on this topic, who has studied this extensively. Still an article worth passing along and sharing, at the risk of being called racist.

    • Diane Dimond on June 15, 2020 at 10:54 am

      Diane replies to Paul Hasson:

      For the record, I adore Heather MacDonald and I am well acquainted with her exemplary work on this issue. I have met her on several occasions. For this column I relied on my own research. ~ DD

  10. Diane Dimond on June 15, 2020 at 10:54 am

    Reader joe Fox writes:

    Repair? We were fine until we were divided. BLM don’t want repair. The issue is police brutality not racism. A great disservice was done us all by calling it good old fashioned racism instead of what it is.

  11. Diane Dimond on June 15, 2020 at 10:58 am

    Reader Cliff Darnell replies to Q: How do we repair?

    Easy each one of us looks in the mirror, raises our consciousness level and tries to be a better person

  12. Diane Dimond on June 15, 2020 at 3:19 pm

    Reader Mike writes:

    A big thanks and pat on the back. Your article in today’s paper was fact based and helpful in the times we are in. All too often the facts are ignored and our problems just keep getting larger because people are only seeing what certain others want them to see and hear. If your line of fact based thinking would be picked up by a Dateline or 60 Minutes so many more could see how it really is would be a blessing. Sadly it seems that the population is just being led without having the ability to see all sides of these issues.
    For your part I say very well done.


  13. Diane Dimond on June 15, 2020 at 3:20 pm

    Reader Mark Bankston writes:

    Thank you, thank you, thank you for having the courage to write what every protester should have to read before marching. The statistics you use remind me of similar findings from author Heather MacDonald. We as a people/nation certainly have a problem, but also time for a reality check.

    Thanks again. Mark Bankston

  14. Diane Dimond on June 15, 2020 at 3:21 pm

    Reader JHawk writes:


    It’s about time someone pointed out the stats and what is really happening behind the scenes……

  15. Diane Dimond on June 15, 2020 at 3:22 pm

    Reader Richard St John writes:

    Ms. Dimond,

    I agree with and appreciate reading the thoughts in your recent article.

    BUT, as a white male I worry about confirmation bias. Using the meaning of the recently popularized term, “gaslight” (to show I’m truly woke in the new lexicon), I worry my belief in these “facts” is a result of our society’s subversive culture insidiously maintaining my place as a racist.

    No, I don’t really think that, but way in the back of my mind is a gnawing uncertainty that it could be true. Or is that simply a result of being gaslit by other, more frequently proclaimed views?

    You keep writing, and I’ll keep reading,

    Richard St. John

  16. Diane Dimond on June 15, 2020 at 3:37 pm

    Reader Regina Z writes:

    Thank you for excellent and informative article. I know the facts are true from other sources. One important factor to address is lack of two parent intact families of so many black criminals. That’s the cornerstone of their dysfunctional communities.
    Which of course is a taboo subject.

    I hope you have excellent security and a strong stomach for vilification your right on and politically incorrect viewpoint. Mine, also.

    Regina Z
    Albuquerque NM

    • Diane Dimond on June 15, 2020 at 3:39 pm

      Diane replies to Regina Z:

      I don’t think its just Black families that suffer from lack of two parent households. I believe the research shows that ANY child, from any racial or ethnic background, that grows up without a father goes forward in life with issues. Some are more seriously affected than others. ~ DD

  17. Diane Dimond on June 15, 2020 at 3:52 pm

    Reader Joel Berman writes:

    There is no possibility of healing with Trump as President. Everything else starts from there. He is uninterested and incapable of leading us out of this.

    • Diane Dimond on June 15, 2020 at 3:52 pm

      Diane replies to Joel:

      I don’t want to get into the political weeds with you, Joel. And I’m no big Trump supporter – but in every city that has exploded with racial violence the DEMOCRATS are in charge. (Minneapolis, Atlanta, Seattle…etc)

      Please…Don’t just buy into the “lets-everybody-blame-everything-on-Trump” mantra. Facts just don’t match the reality. Hate Trump if you want, that’s okay with me….but, honestly – he’s not to blame for the state of police/black tension. That has been festering for years.

      • Diane Dimond on June 15, 2020 at 4:06 pm

        Reader Calvin DeMond replies –

        The fact that violence has sprung up in cities with Democratic regimes is no coincidence. Folks out to discredit liberals and the movement have descended on those places where they have been creating chaos, violence and looting. People have stopped burning down their own neighborhoods, because they know that they will never be rebuilt.

      • Amir Tabrizi on June 15, 2020 at 7:41 pm

        Most of the states with increases and spikes in COVID-19 cases are controlled by Republicans. At that high of a level, Democrats and Republicans are not really that different.

  18. Diane Dimond on June 15, 2020 at 3:53 pm

    Reader Calvin De Mond writes:

    The racists men who ran things when I was brought into this world are dead and gone. But they had children. And those children had children. They passed down “their heritage” to their offspring. And here we are.

  19. Timmy T., your old friend. on June 15, 2020 at 6:32 pm

    I couldn’t help but notice that you cherry-picked your “facts.” You only talk about shootings. Many of the most egregious examples are simple brutality.

    An honest examination of the whole issue requires a LOT more than the examination of one isolated feature of our societal structure. Shootings? By themselves? Do we really think that if “shootings” were somehow fixed that the racism that’s baked into our country would change?

    I guess most of your fans are privileged white people based on the comments today.

    • Diane Dimond on June 16, 2020 at 1:14 pm

      Yes, this column was designed to address the notion that there is “systemic police racism” because they “keep killing unarmed black men.” I think it is important to point out untruths when they spark such massive nationwide reaction.
      In a country with more than 700,000 law enforcement officers and a population of 325 million I think the fact that there were just TEN cases
      (tallied not by me but by the Washington Post) from last year is an important fact for people to know.
      Yes, there seems to be a serious discrepancy with police tactics used on Blacks vs Whites in this country. That absolutely needs to be addressed as well. ~DD

      • Timmy T., your old friend. on June 21, 2020 at 3:45 pm

        Interestingly, in this morning’s news a graph was presented that showed, that despite the fact that the vast majority of police calls do NOT involve actual policing, but instead involve drug overdoses, drunks, mental health breaks, homelessness and a variety of trivial offenses, the number of police in the country dwarfs the number of public mental health professionals, social workers, substance abuse counselors, etc.

  20. Amir Tabrizi on June 15, 2020 at 7:39 pm

    There is a reason for the lack of two parent households in America in the black community. Ms. Dimond barely even highlighted the statistics that are necessary to truly understand the systemic racism in many of our nation’s institutions specifically law enforcement.

    They say there are lies, more lies, even more lies, and then statistics. Ms. Dimond, so nicely laid out one year’s worth of data for us. Looking at a point in time at one data point, really means nothing. We need to look at trends over time.

    All lives do not matter until black lives matter. the BLM movement is quite aware that all lives matter, but black lives are less valuable then white lives, and there is ample evidence, data, statistics, historical accounts and everything else that proves this to be true.

    There is a reason intraracial violence exists and black on black violence permeates the inner-city. The underpinnings of the US are built upon the exploitation of others “inferior” ground (native americans, blacks, chinese, and others). Violence has been historically passed down by white men through the imposition of brutal treatment on black people.

    Redlining, lack of access to financial capital through lending, and other documented historical government sanctioned discriminatory practices like Jim Crow laws have paved the way for black people and other people of color to always be 10 steps behind white people.

    The BLM movement is not about black superiority, it is about equal treatment under the law in all areas of society for black people. It is about time we got treated the same. Simply being black in America is a danger in and of itself. The George Zimmerman’s and McMichael father son duos of the world have been empowered by their white supremacy to go around freely thinking they can hunt black people down. Police have been no different. If you have been around for a while, and you really take the time to think and reflect in a critical way and not just cater to confirmation bias as one poster mentioned, we can make some headway.

  21. Jimmy Reynolds on June 15, 2020 at 11:30 pm

    As always, you provide an unbiased and insightful view of the issues. Statistics don’t justify any abuse of power, but they do provide insight into the underlying background which points out that there’s much more that meets the eye than the clamor of the current protest movement.
    Thank you for your perspective.

  22. Diane Dimond on June 16, 2020 at 1:30 pm

    Reader John Steffen

    Good morning Diane,

    You are my hero above all this tension. You are so right on absolutely every statistic. Thank you for stating the facts an not including any of the political trash that circulates around this crazy time. I Thank you for your diligence.
    John Steffen. Findlay, Ohio.. 4children, 11 grandchildren, landlord, retailer..

  23. Diane Dimond on June 16, 2020 at 1:33 pm

    Bill Gorman
    Mon, Jun 15, 9:20 PM (16 hours ago)
    to Diane@DianeDimond.com

    Hello Ms. Diane Dimond,

    This is the first time I have read one of your articles. I am a new subscriber to the Albuquerque Journal. I appreciate the opportunity to write to you. It is important to look at statistics for they can often provide us insights. I am wondering if your article has to be very narrow in scope, given that you have limited space to make a point for it seems to me to leave many aspects unaddressed. Also you may have already written about some of the issues I will be raising in this email. In this article, I feel you have grossly oversimplified the situation and grossly understated the issues at hand. What are you driving at in this article, given that your focus is so very narrow?

    That said, I believe that what seems to be at issue is not just gun related killings, but repeated restraint techniques used against black citizens. Where are the statistics about those deaths? Where are the stats about how a black citizen can expect to be treated versus how a white citizen can expect to be treated when encountering a “peace” officer? What about when a white person accuses a black person of anything, versus the other way round? The breadth of what happens when a person of color encounters law enforcement compared to what happens when a white person encounters law enforcement is very different. We need statistics on those encounters and how they play out.

    I don’t know what you hear from every day folks (white, brown, black) about their experiences with law enforcement, but overwhelmingly, I hear and have heard over a lifetime, very different accounts. What needs to be figured out is a way for law enforcement to de-escalate tense situations. Knowing that people of color start from a place of fear and suspicion when approached by law enforcement in a way that most white folks don’t, is central to how an event will unfold. There has to be a way for law enforcement to do their job, remain safely in control and deal with the spectrum of illegal occurrences for ALL citizens. Obviously that has not been figured out yet or it has been ignored and different standards are applied to different citizens based on skin color, race, status or wealth or something. When has there been a video of an officer kneeling on a white persons neck or doing a choke hold on a white person until they die? Do you have statistics for that?

    Obviously neither your article nor my letter can cover the myriad ways racism affects minorities in our USA community. It does feel to me that highlighting statistics in such a narrow way does more to create sides than to create dialogue. My deep heartfelt hope is that as a country we can concentrate on listening to each other’s experience, each other’s fears, each other’s points of view and genuinely come to a way of creating a country where fear of the other is reduced to as small a degree as possible. How amazingly optimistic that sounds to me, how about you?

    Thank you for considering my thoughts. I wish you well.

    Peace and tolerance,

    William B Gorman

    • Diane Dimond on June 16, 2020 at 1:37 pm

      DD repeats her reply from above:

      >>> Yes, this column was designed to address the notion that there is “systemic police racism” because they “keep killing unarmed black men.” I think it is important to point out untruths when they spark such massive nationwide reaction.
      In a country with more than 700,000 law enforcement officers and a population of 325 million I think the fact that there were just TEN cases
      (tallied not by me but by the Washington Post) from last year is an important fact for people to know.
      Yes, there seems to be a serious discrepancy with brutal police tactics used on Blacks vs Whites in this country. That absolutely needs to be addressed as well. Statistics on that are very hard, indeed, to find and quote. >>>

      And – a final note: My columns are restricted to 700 words. That’s not much space to address every single issue in a topic. For example, Mr. Gorman, the email you sent me totalled 539 words.


  24. Diane Dimond on June 16, 2020 at 1:39 pm

    Reader Barry Davis writes:

    Suddenly, everyone is “supposedly” appalled and insulted by Civil War statues, names of Military Posts after Confederate Generals, and all the other items that are now considered racist! Funny, how most of these so called “outraged individuals” never began making noise about racism until in became fashionable and cool to do. Where were all these “celebrities” when the various acts of racism, violence, and death were occurring out around the world? Living their very comfortable, privileged, & insulated lives where only if their own “bottom line” is impacted, will they venture out into the world, pontificating to all the lowly citizens who must listen to their every word, read every post or tweet they issue, because they know what’s best for the rest of us.
    This current situation with the demonstrations, marches, protests, and, yes, the horrible violence that is permeating the entire nation, will solve NOTHING! What good did it achieve to damage the Historic, Beautiful KIMO Theatre? By burning the Wendy’s in Atlanta, did it improve the neighborhood where most of the protesters live? Do any of us REALLY want to live in a world with no police? How ANYONE in Albuquerque would want to be in this city without the Police is incredulous when you look at the Crime Rate, the failure of our Courts to adequately even detain violent offenders, let alone actually sentence any criminal to anything even closely considered punishment, and the idiotic behavior of our Politicians, who would rather paint a crosswalk, than do anything that actually benefited the entire city.
    Diane Dimond stated in her editorial today, that more “white” persons were killed by Police than persons of “color” and yet not one celebrity has gotten their ire up about that! There are big issues staring at all of us these days and these rich, sheltered celebrities should either get off their compound and be engaged on a continuing basis and not just “cherry-pick” the issues they want to appear concerned about, or stay in your isolated life and quit being hypocritical!

  25. Diane Dimond on June 16, 2020 at 1:41 pm

    Reader JJ writes:

    Diane Dimond’s editorial from Saturday, 3/28, needs to be reprinted on the FRONT PAGE of the (Albuquerque) Journal.

    The news media needs to STOP all the gloom and doom that panics people who do not research the facts and do the math.


  26. Diane Dimond on June 16, 2020 at 1:43 pm

    Reader Calvin Hyer Jr. writes:

    Finally a media person…YOU…with some guts……..

    Calvin Hyer Jr.

  27. Diane Dimond on June 16, 2020 at 5:53 pm

    Reader phyllis waller writes:

    Will the idiots ever stop being idiots? Yes, it is time to show the facts; cut out all the BS, put antifa members in jail who are destroying our country and the livelihood of thousands. Where is the penalty for them? The police are doing their damnedest to keep things going safely. So glad you included the facts but they do not care about facts, only chaos, mayhem, and hell. The American people have had enough of this crap and I would expect many to speak their voices in another way most would not like.

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