A new FBI report indicates that hate crimes committed against white Americans are the fastest growing racial hate crimes in the United States.
The FBI report on 2016 Hate Crime Statistics shows that in 2016, there were 876 reported anti-white hate crime offenses in the United States. In 2015, this number was 734, indicating a 19.34 percent increase.
There were more racial hate crime offenses altogether in 2016 compared to 2015 – the total tally of hate crimes in 2016 was 6,121, compared to 5,850 in 2015. More than half of those incidents were motivated by the victim’s race.
There were 4,029 single-bias incidents that targeted “Race/Ethnicity/Ancestry” in 2015, compared to 4,229 in 2016.
Anti-Hispanic or Latino hate crimes also increased in 2016. In 2015, the number of offenses targeting Hispanic/Latino Americans was 379. In 2016, that increased to 449, an increase of 18.46 percent. Anti-Black hate crimes actually declined by three offenses.
Within religious hate crimes, there were also increases.
Anti-Jewish hate crimes increased by 20 percent and anti-Islamic hate crimes increased by 26.57 percent. Anti-Catholic hate crimes also slightly increased.
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However, as NPR notes, the FBI statistics are based on voluntary reporting by nearly 16,000 local law-enforcement agencies. Civil-rights groups, however, say the figures are deeply flawed because of what they say is systemic under-reporting.
The Anti-Defamation League, for example, noted that nearly 90 cities with populations of more than 100,000 either reported zero hate crimes or did not report data for 2016.
“There’s a dangerous disconnect between the rising problem of hate crimes and the lack of credible data being reported,” said ADL CEO Jonathan A. Greenblatt. He called for an “all-hands-on-deck” approach to get better nation-wide figures on the problem.
Sim Singh, the national advocacy manager of the Sikh Coalition, agreed. He noted that the FBI statistics count seven anti-Sikh hate crimes in 2016, which he said “represents the tip of the iceberg.”
“If law-enforcement agencies fail to document the true extent of hate crimes against our communities,” Singh said, “our nation will have a hard time mobilizing the political will and resources necessary to prevent and combat the problem.”
The only way to fix the data problem, he added, is for law enforcement to adopt mandatory hate crime reporting.
In cases where law enforcement was able to identify the perpetrator, 46.3 percent were white and 26.1 percent were black.
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Since Donald Trump’s election win, many mainstream media reports have centered on hate crimes being supposedly inspired by Donald Trump and his supporters. A number of these reports have turned out to be false.