Blacks who commit homicide do so at a rate about 7.5 times larger than whites who commit homicide. The trend in black homicide correlates well with the change in overall homicide.
Going on a suggestion made by JH when we first examined the homicide statistics1, I put both races together on one plot to make comparisons fair.
First is the homicide rate for Blacks and Whites, over-plotted with the homicide victim rate for both groups, finally over-plotted with the overall homicide rate (taken from the post on guns and homicides).
Note that the blue line is scaled to the right vertical axis, and is the overall homicide rate (as estimated by the FBI and Census). The black lines are killers, and the red victims. The dashed are Blacks, the solid Whites. (See this post for separate pictures of each race, where the general decline of White homicide rates, and its slight upward bump in 1990 is more visible.)
Obviously, the overall homicide rate correlates nicely with the Black rates. In an odd coincidence, according to the FBI the number of Black victims is almost identical to the number of White victims.
Whatever is happening in Black populations is largely responsible for the decline in homicide rates.
One thing appears more or less constant: the rates for Black killers are much higher than for White killers, as this picture which shows the ratio of rates demonstrates:
Rates bob around, but average out to about 7.5 times higher.
Perhaps the difference lies in who is killing whom. Lumping all the Black and White homicides together, here are the percentages of Blacks killing Whites and White killing Blacks:
Racial animosity is on the rise, homicidally speaking. This comes as no surprise to anybody who isn’t an NPR listener.
Lastly, here’s the percentages for the races killing each other:
Update Fig. 2 with new axes limits.