Did BLM actions save Black lives?

AP Photo/Markus Schreiber

Statistics show that one of the many effects the BLM protests and the accompanying “Defund the Police” movement had was a reduction in the number of people shot by police.


BLM got going about 10 years ago, and since that time about 200 fewer people have been killed by police.

Can BLM claim to have saved 200 lives? It certainly can, as long as the only question is “Have fewer people died in police custody or pursuits?”

Of course in the real world we look for net effects. We could stop every death from getting hit by ambulances speeding to the hospital by eliminating ambulances. Think of the lives saved! (I have no idea how many, but you get the point). As long as you ignore the fact that eliminating ambulances would cost countless lives you can point to all the accidents prevented.

The same principle obtains here. What have the knock-on effects been in reducing police activity? After all, the reduction in police shootings is almost entirely due to the reduction in policing. Contrary to the absurd claims of the most radical activists, police don’t go out hunting for people to shoot every day.

Since BLM got momentum crime rates have changed quite dramatically, particularly since the George Floyd protests of 2020. As policing activity has dropped, crime rates have skyrocketed, including murders.


The findings of the event study suggest that the BLM protests led police departments to pull back from interactions with the public and obtain body cameras, leading to increased crime and decreased police killings. Specifically, over the five years after local BLM protests, property crime arrests decreased by approximately 12%, while reported murders increased by roughly 11.5%, which is over 3000 additional homicides. Moreover, the property crime clearance rate experienced a sharp decline of around 8%. These statistics are not only alarming but also offer compelling evidence of a substantial decrease in police activity.

In other words, leaving aside the huge drop in quality of life for everybody, the number of people killed has increased dramatically.

For every life “saved”–and let’s be clear, almost all of the people “saved” were criminals who were engaging in life-threatening crimes–15 people died who would not have if BLM hadn’t destroyed our policing system.

That’s quite an exchange rate. For every life saved by reducing policing 15 extra people were murdered by a non-police criminal. Most of these people were not engaged in activity that was threatening the lives of others.


Nobody should be surprised by this fact. No sane person was surprised by this fact.

The truth is that the BLM/Defund the Police activists were able to have such a dramatic impact on policing for 2 reasons: they themselves engaged in violent behavior to intimidate people into making criminal activity easier (riots, which largely unpunished), and most people were too weak-kneed to push back.

Being accused of racism is a social death sentence. Few people can or are willing to endure it. So when activists scream “Racism” and throw violent tantrums the powers that be melt like candles to a flame.

People die as a result. Thousands of people.

Politicians virtue signal on these issues because they get rewarded for doing so, and refuse to do the right thing because they are punished for it.

The result is societal decline and thousands of unnecessary deaths.

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