A new study finds that much of the research conducted on President Trump’s voters is marred by prejudicial designs, distorted data, and outright misrepresentation of Trump’s words.
Led by Musa al-Gharbi, a Columbia University sociologist, “On Social Research in the Age of Trump” analyzes three case studies of academic research on Trump to illustrate the various ways that academics have misrepresented the president and his voter base to the public.
One example of this phenomena can be seen in the April 2017 Washington Post article “Racism motivated Trump voters more than authoritarianism,” by Thomas Wood, who teaches political science classes at Ohio State University.
While Wood cites survey data to claim that Trump voters were especially motivated by racism, a closer analysis by al-Gharbi reveals that Wood’s arguments about Trump voters can’t be substantiated from the data cited in the article.
“According to Wood’s own data, whites who voted for Trump are perhaps less racist than those who voted for Romney,” al-Gharbi explains, adding that “not only were they less authoritarian than Romney voters, but less racist too!”
“Unfortunately, Wood declined to consider how Trump voters differed from Romney voters…instead focusing on the gap between Democrats and Republicans in 2016, in the service of a conclusion his data do not support,” he adds.
This uncharitable misrepresentation of data is one of many ways that Trump voters are marred by researchers, al-Gharbi says, asserting that the “evidence suggests that the role of race has been widely overblown and misunderstood with respect to Trump’s victory.”
In an interview with Campus Reform, al-Gharbi admitted that he was motivated to research this topic “in part to help Trump’s opposition do better next round.”
“But I also take umbrage at the villainization of Trump supporters,” he added, noting that he “grew up in a conservative, religious, military community in Arizona along the United States and Mexico Border.”
“Trump voters aren’t some mysterious exotic demonic force for me. They are my family, childhood friends, former co-workers, etc,” he said. “Given this background, I strongly suspected that the cartoonish version of these voters [promulgated by academics in the media] was likely not going to be well-supported by any kind of more even-handed analysis of the available data.”
Still, while al-Gharbi has found that many scholars misrepresent Trump’s voter base, he doesn’t ascribe malice to their intentions. Instead, he worries that even academics who strive to be impartial can fall into a “confirmation bias” trap, unintentionally allowing their personal biases to influence research results, oftentimes without realizing it.
To fix this “very widespread” issue, al-Gharbi suggests that research on politically divisive issues could be fact-checked by an editor with an opposing viewpoint. Unfortunately, these types of checks and balances are extremely rare in academia, he says.
“Basically everyone in these institutions hates the president and are willing—eager even—to believe the worst about his supporters,” he maintained.
Musa al-Gharbi’s research was published in the latest issue of The American Sociologist, a peer-reviewed journal that also recently published an article revealing that only two percent of sociology professors self-identify as conservative.
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What will the racist race-baiters do? Two studies released this year have proven beyond any shadow of doubt, that their narrative of police committing genocide against black Americans is completely wrong.
What it does prove, is that groups like Black Lives Matter have declared a war on police, based on a complete and despicable lie.
Researchers asked in the study, “Is There Evidence of Racial Disparity in Police Use of Deadly Force? Analyses of Officer-Involved Fatal Shootings in 2015–2016”.
The researchers, dug into the numbers and had this to say:
Is there evidence of a Black–White disparity in death by police gunfire in the United States? This is commonly answered by comparing the odds of being fatally shot for Blacks and Whites, with odds benchmarked against each group’s population proportion.
However, adjusting for population values has questionable assumptions given the context of deadly force decisions.
We benchmark 2 years of fatal shooting data on 16 crime rate estimates. When adjusting for crime, we find no systematic evidence of anti-Black disparities in fatal shootings, fatal shootings of unarmed citizens, or fatal shootings involving misidentification of harmless objects.
Multiverse analyses showed only one significant anti-Black disparity of 144 possible tests. Exposure to police given crime rate differences likely accounts for the higher per capita rate of fatal police shootings for Blacks, at least when analyzing all shootings. For unarmed shootings or misidentification shootings, data are too uncertain to be conclusive.
In a separate study, “Exploring Bias in Police Shooting Decisions With Real Shoot/Don’t Shoot Cases”, they found.
The controversy surrounding recent high-profile police shootings (e.g., Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri; Laquan McDonald in Chicago) has prompted inquiry into the possible existence of bias in officers’ use-of-force decisions.
Using a balanced mix of shoot/don’t shoot cases from a large municipal police department in the Southwestern United States, this study analyzed the effect of suspect race on officers’ decisions to shoot—while accounting for other theoretically relevant factors.
Findings suggest that Black suspects were not disproportionately the target of police shootings; Black suspects were approximately one third as likely to be shot as other suspects.
This finding challenges the current bias narrative and is consistent with the other race-related findings in recently published research.
What has been make crystal clear by these studies is that the narrative by groups such as Black Lives Matter, NFL kneelers, is based on a false, and racist premise designed to perpetuate the victim mentality and hatred of the police, ingrained into minority communities by Democrats to create division in America.
Now the only questions that remains are this. Will these minorities see they are being used as cannon fodder by Democrats and flee the plantation, or will they simply dismiss these studies by calling them racist?
James E Windsor, Overpasses News Desk
August 3rd, 2018