Only 16% of Population is Black, But 91% of Those Cited for Jaywalking Are Black
The law is pretty straight forward right? Do the crime, do the time. But whether or not you do the time, or pay the penalty, usually stems from whether you’re called to account for your infraction. More often than not, blacks are arrested and cited for crimes, whereas white are just allowed to walk – literally.
This is exactly what VíveloHoy learned when the Spanish language site submitted a freedom of information request for years of arrest data for the towns Champaign and Urbana Illinois.
According to the 2010 Census, the two municipalities are only 16 percent black, but more than forty percent of the arrests in the town were of black people. And don’t even try jaywalking because, apparently, there is just something about a black person jaywalking that sends the police in Urbana and Champaign over the edge, at least according to the data.
In Champaign from 2007 to 2011, 658, or 88 percent, of the 744 jaywalking arrests were of black people.
In Urbana, the percentage of black arrestees for the same crime was even higher during those same years.
From 2007 to 2011, 110, or 91 percent, of the people cited for jaywalking in Urbana were black.
To ViveloHoy’s credit, they kept digging, and discovered that the reason more blacks were arrested for jaywalking is because there are fewer sidewalks in black communities. Essentially, blacks are being punished because their communities are underfunded. How that for fair?
That’s probably not the entire explanation, but it’s a beginning. And it shows how blacks are automatically treated as criminals, and cited for infractions, while cops often look the other way when the same infraction is committed by a white person. Sadly, not all crimes are equal. The weight they carry is determined as much by hue as anything else.
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