- Overall there are more black men in prison than in college.
- There are more college aged (18-24) black males in prison than college.
- Incarceration went up 25.3% for black males aged 18-24 from 2000-2010
- College enrollment is down 32.7% for black males from 2000-2010
- The high school graduation rate has gone down 6.6% for black males from 2000-2010.
- Black women are leaving black men behind in gaining college degrees.
- In terms of percentage per group there are more white men in college than black men.
- In terms of percentage per group there are more Asian women in college than black women. (Ok – One for the ladies)
- 50% of black boys drop out of high school.
- In the past decade the high school drop out rate went up 37.9% for black males.
Warning: this blog post is for grown folk and not the squeamish. Put your big boy and big girl pants on before reading. No doubt about it – I’m about to rant! Now that you’ve been aptly warned let’s get it. Being the nerd that I am, one thing I like to do is check statistics when I hear them in media. Oftentimes numbers can be reported one way but after you dig deeper you find what was reported isn’t necessarily what you think it means.
I started doing this when I was pastoring a church in inner city Cincinnati and a negative narrative was constantly depicted about crime and other stats in our neighborhood. When I would check them out it would be amazing how much misinformation was presented.
I’m not a conspiracy theorist. I don’t have a Christian (or black) persecution complex. I don’t see a boogeyman behind every tree, believe in the “Illuminati,” or any other of the quirky stuff that’s out there. So I didn’t think there was any great plot out there to marginalize the neighborhood the church was in. However I do believe there is no such thing as objectivity.
Everything is subjectively evaluated. We all as humans have a bias, and what needs to happen is fess up and account for it. Media wise when it is convenient to build into a narrative that portrays a picture many would like to believe, most won’t do much to dispel that picture. One reason is because quite frankly it might be bad for business. Secondly they honestly may not know they are providing falsehoods. So with all that in mind I bring to you a major pet peeve.
It involves the narrative of the black male in America. In general the liberal media narrative bias portrays us as little orphans who if we just had a hand up we would make it in this world. It’s what I call the “jail to Yale” story of the overachiever from the ‘hood. The conservative media likes the narrative of the chicken-eatin’, drug-sellin’, broken English talkin’, criminal threat to society. Thug life on steroids. So now I have come across a group that is exposing these biased narratives in the area of the state of the black male and education.
Just last night I heard a national news report in the “jail to Yale” mode on Camden, NJ that stated 70% of black males there were high school dropouts in that city. I highly doubt that is the case. For why watch the following video that explains how graduation rates are calculated which typically leads to a false reporting of the true black male graduation rate. Note: if you have never had a stats class this may be a little hard to follow.
By the way grade yourself on the quiz. All the statements are false. Click on the link I provided earlier or you can go to the U.S. Census Bureau to check the stats for yourself.