Tuesday, June 13, 2017

PolitiFact: Gays (and lesbians!) most frequent victims of hate crimes

Isn't it clear that PolitiFact's behavior is most likely the result of liberal bias?

PolitiFact Bias co-editor Jeff D. caught PolitiFact pimping a flubbed fact check on Twitter, attaching it to the anniversary of the Orlando gay nightclub shooting.
The problem? It's not true.

As we pointed out when PolitiFact first ran its fact check, there's a big difference between claiming a group is the most frequent target of hate crimes and claiming a group is at the greatest risk (on a per-person basis) of hate crimes.

Blacks as a group experience the most targeted hate crimes (about 30 percent of the total), according to the imperfect FBI data. That makes blacks the most frequent targets of hate crimes, not gays and lesbians.

Perhaps LGBT as a group experience a greater individual risk of falling victim to a hate crime, but we do not trust the research on which PolitiFact based its ruling. We doubt the researchers properly considered the bias against various small groups, such as the Sikhs. Don't take our word for it. Use the hyperlinks.

There is reason to suspect the research was politicized. We recommend not drawing any conclusion until the question is adequately researched.

What would we do without fact checkers?

Clarification June 13, 2017: Added "(on a per person basis)" to accentuate the intended distinction. Also changed "greater risk" to "greater individual risk" for the same reason).


  1. I don't trust anyone (media) who relies on whatever the SPLC hate group tells them without question.

    1. In theory, even the SPLC should be able to produce legitimate research. That said, the three papers we've looked at from the SPLC were aptly described as "offal."

      So even if rejecting SPLC research out of hand is a case of the genetic fallacy, the record suggests that the SPLC does not deserve trust.

      Thanks for commenting, Rob.

  2. I'm happy to see you guys writing again. It seemed with all that has been going on the last few months, I would have expected to see a story almost every other day. Instead there has been very little from you compared to the last year. I look forward to your hard (but important) work.

    1. Thanks for visiting, John.

      Rest assured the lull in our output has nothing to do with any uptick in quality at PolitiFact. We've just been a bit more snowed under by real life, and some of my work hasn't been as obvious since it's focused on the International Fact-Checking Network--the organization that ensures that Facebook's battle against "fake news" is of the utmost quality. Their process is reason for concern, in fact.


      Though Jeff isn't posting much these days he gets some good jabs in using PolitiFact Bias twitter account. Worth a follow if you use Twitter.


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