If you like well-researched and well-written nonfiction on hot-button issues like diversity, police, and the modern political moment, look no further than the books of Heather MacDonald.
The Diversity Delusion: How Race and Gender Pandering Corrupt the University and Undermine Our Culture
America is in crisis, from the university to the workplace. Toxic ideas first spread by higher education have undermined humanistic values, fueled intolerance, and widened divisions in our larger culture. Chaucer, Shakespeare and Milton? Oppressive. American history? Tyranny. Professors correcting grammar and spelling, or employers hiring by merit? Racist and sexist. Students emerge into the working world believing that human beings are defined by their skin color, gender, and sexual preference, and that oppression based on these characteristics is the American experience. Speech that challenges these campus orthodoxies is silenced with brute force.
The Diversity Delusion argues that the root of this problem is the belief in America’s endemic racism and sexism, a belief that has engendered a metastasizing diversity bureaucracy in society and academia. Diversity commissars denounce meritocratic standards as discriminatory, enforce hiring quotas, and teach students and adults alike to think of themselves as perpetual victims. From #MeToo mania that blurs flirtations with criminal acts, to implicit bias and diversity compliance training that sees racism in every interaction, Heather Mac Donald argues that we are creating a nation of narrowed minds, primed for grievance, and that we are putting our competitive edge at risk.
But there is hope in the works of authors, composers, and artists who have long inspired the best in us. Compiling the author’s decades of research and writing on the subject, The Diversity Delusion calls for a return to the classical liberal pursuits of open-minded inquiry and expression, by which everyone can discover a common humanity.
Violent crime has been rising sharply in many American cities after two decades of decline. Homicides jumped nearly 17 percent in 2015 in the largest 50 cities, the biggest one-year increase since 1993. The reason is what Heather Mac Donald first identified nationally as the “Ferguson effect”: Since the 2014 police shooting death of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, officers have been backing off of proactive policing, and criminals are becoming emboldened.
This book expands on Mac Donald’s groundbreaking and controversial reporting on the Ferguson effect and the criminal-justice system. It deconstructs the central narrative of the Black Lives Matter movement: that racist cops are the greatest threat to young black males. On the contrary, it is criminals and gangbangers who are responsible for the high black homicide death rate.
The War on Cops exposes the truth about officer use of force and explodes the conceit of “mass incarceration.” A rigorous analysis of data shows that crime, not race, drives police actions and prison rates. The growth of proactive policing in the 1990s, along with lengthened sentences for violent crime, saved thousands of minority lives. In fact, Mac Donald argues, no government agency is more dedicated to the proposition that “black lives matter” than today’s data-driven, accountable police department.
Mac Donald gives voice to the many residents of high-crime neighborhoods who want proactive policing. She warns that race-based attacks on the criminal-justice system, from the White House on down, are eroding the authority of law and putting lives at risk. This book is a call for a more honest and informed debate about policing, crime, and race.
Undoubtedly the United States needs a liberal and welcoming immigration policy, geared to the needs and interests of the nation. In this urgent new book, three astute observers argue that we have lost control of our southern border, so that the vast majority of our immigrants are now illegal Mexicans. Poor, uneducated, and unskilled, these newcomers add much less to the national wealth than they cost the taxpayers for their health care, the education of their children, and (too often) their incarceration. The Immigration Solution proposes a policy that admits skilled and educated people on the basis of what they can do for the country, not what the country can do for them.
Critics have attacked the foolishness of some of today’s elite thought from many angles, but few have examined the real-world consequences of those ideas. In The Burden of Bad Ideas, Heather Mac Donald reports on their disastrous effects throughout our society. At a Brooklyn high school, students perfect their graffiti skills for academic credit. An Ivy League law professor urges blacks to steal from their employers. Washington bureaucrats regard theft by drug addicts as evidence of disability, thereby justifying benefits. Public health officials argue that racism and sexism cause women to get AIDS. America’s premier monument to knowledge, the Smithsonian Institution, portrays science as white man’s religion. Such absurdities, Ms. Mac Donald argues, grow out of a powerful set of ideas that have governed our public policy for decades, the product of university faculties and a professional elite who are convinced that America is a deeply unjust society. And while these beliefs have damaged the nation as a whole, she observes, they have hit the poor especially hard. Her reports trace the transformation of influential opinion-makers (such as the New York Times) and large philanthropic foundations from confident advocates of individual responsibility, opportunity, and learning into apologists for the welfare state. In a series of closely reported stories from the streets of New York to the seats of intellectual power, The Burden of Bad Ideas reveals an upside-down world and how it got that way.
False charges of racial profiling threaten to obliterate the crime-fighting gains of the last decade, especially in America’s inner cities. This is the message of Heather Mac Donald’s new book, in which she brings her special brand of tough and honest journalism to the current war against the police. The anti-profiling crusade, she charges, thrives on an ignorance of policing and a willful blindness to the demographics of crime. In careful reports from New York and other major cities across the country, Ms. Mac Donald investigates the workings of the police, the controversy over racial profiling, and the anti-profiling lobby’s harmful effects on black Americans. The reduction in urban crime, one of the nation’s signal policy successes of the 1990s, has benefited black communities even more dramatically than white neighborhoods, she shows. By policing inner cities actively after long neglect, cops have allowed business and civil society to flourish there once more. But attacks on police, centering on false charges of police racism and racial profiling, and spearheaded by activists, the press, and even the Justice Department, have slowed the success and threaten to reverse it. Ms. Mac Donald looks at the reality behind the allegations and writes about the black cops you never heard about, the press coverage of policing, and policing strategies across the country. Her iconoclastic findings demolish the prevailing anti-cop orthodoxy.