The Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) has released a tally of alleged hate crimes and “hate incidents” in the wake of Donald Trump’s electoral victory, and revealed a notable trend: The wave of alleged hate crimes after Trump’s victory are concentrated in liberal states that voted for former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
SPLC’s “Ten Days After” report chronicles the supposed surge in hateful activities allegedly prompted by Trump’s upset presidential win over Clinton. There were 867 “hate incidents” in the 10 days after Trump’s victory, with only 25 of them said to be anti-Trump in nature, according to the group.
SPLC’s report includes a map showing the distribution of incidents by state.
— David Beard (@dabeard) November 29, 2016
A close look at the map, though, quickly reveals the distribution of supposed hate incidents doesn’t even come close to matching the overall population distribution, or the distribution of Trump voters. While Trump ran strongest in the South and in the Midwest, in SPLC’s chart, alleged Trump-related hate is concentrated in coastal states, along with a handful of middle American states that remained in Clinton’s column.
Overall, Trump won 30 states in the 2016 election, representing a substantial majority of the U.S. population. Out of 867 hate incidents in SPLC’s database, 478 (55 percent) occurred in the 20 states Clinton won, plus D.C.
In many cases, supposed hate crimes were especially numerous in places where Trump voters were particularly few. In Washington, just 37 percent of people voted Trump, yet there were supposedly 48 Trump-related hate crimes. The state had less than twice as many Trump voters as Mississippi (1.2 million vs. 700,000), yet it had 24 times as many reported hate crimes. Massachusetts, with a million Trump voters, managed to rack up 42 reported hate crimes, beating out Pennsylvania, which had three times as many Trump voters but just 36 supposed offenses. Colorado nearly tied Ohio in hate incidents, despite having fewer than half as many Trump voters.
There may be several possible explanations for the distribution of incidents SPLC reports. One is that states with more immigrants and minorities are more likely to have hate incidents despite also being more likely to vote for Clinton. Left-leaning states may also be more aggressive in reporting and investigating hate crimes.
But another possibility may be that some post-election hate incidents are false flags, hoaxes, or based on exaggerations. There have already been multiple instances of high-profile “hate crimes” being exposed as frauds. These hoaxes, presumably, are more likely in states with a high population of Clinton supporters.
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