Lion of the Blogosphere

Covid-19 mortality by race

(Mortality rate means the percent of the total population that dies. This is NOT the case fatality rate which is the chance of dying after being diagnosed with the disease.)

A lot of people lump latinos and blacks together as similarly situated minorities, but that’s certainly NOT the case when it comes to the Covid-19 mortality rate. Blacks are more than twice as likely to die from the virus than whites, but latinos barely so. (And Asians, not at all. Back in February, the comment section was full of alt-right morons insisting that only Asians would die from the virus and there was some vast conspiracy to hide the truth. The alt-right morons are just like liberals, they will never apologize for being wrong, they will just move on to the next conspiracy theory, usually one involving the joos.)

This is pretty mysterious. You would think that latinos would be more like blacks. Latinos are more likely to work in “essential” jobs and more likely to live in crowded households, so they ought to have higher mortality rate like blacks.

One possibility is that latinos are genetically superior (on average) at fighting off the virus than other races, and this counteracts their great likelihood to be exposed to the virus.

Another possibility, and one never discussed by mainstream media, is that blacks are much worse at social distancing than other races. Latinos, or the most part, obey authorities the same way that whites of similar IQ do, but blacks are extremely resistant to doing what they are told to do, even though it’s for their own good. It’s my impression that black communities are flagrantly ignoring social distancing rules, but the mainstream media isn’t reporting it, and the police aren’t doing anything about it because it’s “racist” to enforce laws against blacks.

In addition to being reflexively anti-authority, blacks also have lower IQs, so they don’t understand the rules of social distancing as well, they have lower future-time orientation so they just don’t care as much about dying because that’s something that happens in the future, and they are more extraverted, and extraverted people are less happy staying home and staying safe.


I made the totally horrible mistake of ignoring the age of different demographics. As you know, mortality rate is several times higher in older populations.

Here’s a link:

The Nation’s Latino Population Is Defined by Its Youth

As you can see, Hispanics are disproportionately younger than whites, and there are especially few Hispanics who are Boomers, Silents, or older than that.

Hispanics actually ought to have less than half the mortality of whites given how many fewer older Hispanics there. So in reality, Hispanics are as badly effected by Covid-19 as blacks, and it’s all explained by the usual reasons of Hispanics working at “essential” jobs and living in households with more people in them.

Written by Lion of the Blogosphere

June 22, 2020 at 11:03 AM

56 Responses

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  1. Missing an EXTREMELY important consideration – Vitamin D levels appear to be extremely important w.r.t. BOTH the likelihood of catching AND the severity of the disease after catching.

    Black people, by the very nature of their skin color, absorb less vitamin D for a given duration of sun exposure.


    June 22, 2020 at 11:18 AM

    • Yes, but for Vitamin D absorption, it’s better to be black in Congo than white in Sweden.


      June 22, 2020 at 6:51 PM

  2. You spelled “blacks” with a lower case b. Prepare for a shitstorm.


    June 22, 2020 at 11:22 AM

  3. NYC is an exception to the nationwide patterns as black and Hispanic death rates are around the same. It’s hard to tell, however, if that’s true citywide or is just mainly a consequence of the very hard-hit, largely Hispanic areas in central Queens such as Corona (heh) and Elmhurst.
    From what I’ve been reading, the higher death rate among blacks is largely due to high rates of co-morbidities, especially diabetes and heart disease.



    June 22, 2020 at 11:24 AM

    • You are correct. Corona, Queens is a predominantly Hispanic neighborhood and it was one of the hardest hit with Covid-19 infection rates. blacks are just likely to be infected but their death counts are higher. I would say that diet has a bearing on this. black americans are the consummate consumers of fast food like Burger King, McDonald’s and the likes.

      Ok, what, who's this again?

      June 22, 2020 at 9:05 PM

  4. I’ve been riding out the pandemic in the South. What I noticed is that blacks were slow to take the threat seriously. Even when the breakout was booming, I saw a lot of blacks not wearing masks. Now, I see them being super careful. So, my impression was that they didn’t take it seriously initially but now do. It also seems to me that blacks tend to be in much worse health than whites or Hispanics down here.


    June 22, 2020 at 11:25 AM

    • I’ll second these observations, coming from the South. I feel like blacks in my area are now more consistent than whites when it comes to wearing masks, but they were slow to get to this point.

      There’s a certain conservative white contingent who have viewed this as a scaremongering conspiracy from the start. As far as I can tell, this contingent does not exist among blacks, who are more inclined to think that whites are downplaying a disease that disproportionately affects blacks.


      June 22, 2020 at 12:15 PM

      • The blacks are actually right. The disease does disproportionately affect blacks, and white Trump-supporters are downplaying it (although not BECAUSE it disproportionately affects blacks).

      • “… coming from the South. I feel like blacks in my area are now more consistent than whites when it comes to wearing masks, but they were slow to get to this point.”

        I think they were slow to get to this point because back in March they thought they were immune.

        Mike Street Station

        June 23, 2020 at 7:04 AM

  5. Probably obesity is a big factor.


    June 22, 2020 at 11:32 AM

    • Yes, BMI of blacks is the highest of any race in the US. They also have higher rates of morbid obesity.

      I’m skeptical about the lack of social distancing. I live in between two black neighborhoods and blacks were the first I saw wearing masks well before it was recommended. I also drive past a mostly black housing projects at least once a day and it’s been a ghost town. Maybe it’s different elsewhere.


      June 22, 2020 at 2:59 PM

      • I live in between two black neighborhoods… I also drive past a mostly black housing projects at least once a day

        Have you considered moving?

        Some of my best friends are black

        June 23, 2020 at 11:08 AM

    • This is my thought as well. Obesity is linked to diabetes, heart disease and probably other factors as well.
      The difference between white and black men isn’t that big (~1% point), but black women are 50% more likely to be obese than white women.

      Half Canadian

      June 22, 2020 at 4:21 PM

  6. Yeah, that’s all true, Lion. Solid post.


    June 22, 2020 at 11:47 AM

    • He’s right and this article proves it.

      East New York which is like 100% black has the most deaths in NYC. It’s that little section in southeastern Queens with the dark blue, right next to a guidoville of Howard Beach. Then comes Far Rockaway, also in Queens, which is 45% black.

      Now, the black caribbeans (Jamaicans and Haitians) of Flatbush, Brooklyn did not suffer nearly as much, perhaps given their middle class status as suburban dwellers vs black americans who are cooped up in the public housing projects. Density + black = Covid-19 death sentence

      Ok, what, who's this again?

      June 22, 2020 at 2:36 PM

      • Could the black caribbeans be younger on average?


        June 22, 2020 at 6:53 PM

      • black carribeans tend to have a better diet than their black american counterparts:

        “African Americans had less favorable dietary patterns than Haitian Americans. This finding strengthens the need to consider ethnicity in health studies, despite the fact that ethnic differences have been commonly overlooked for the Black populations living in the United States”

        Ok, what, who's this again?

        June 22, 2020 at 9:16 PM

  7. Much of the difference between blacks and Latinos is because of age distribution. Brookings shows the data by race and age.


    June 22, 2020 at 11:47 AM

    • “The parts of the country hit hardest so far by COVID-19 have larger Black and Hispanic/Latino populations. ”

      But no matter what logical explanations there are the MSM and some politicians and activists will use the data to flog white people for being racist.

      “Racism in the Gaps”
      View at


      June 22, 2020 at 3:43 PM

    • I wonder if the rates for blacks factor in their lower lifespans? In other words, is an 65 year old black equivalent to an 74 year old Asian?

      Based on race, life expectancies in 2014 were as follows:

      Native Americans: 75.06 years
      African Americans: 75.54 years
      White Americans: 79.12 years
      Hispanic Americans: 82.89 years
      Asian Americans: 86.67 years

      There is a racial gap in life expectancy in 2014 with Asian Americans living over 11 years as long as Native Americans and African Americans.


      June 22, 2020 at 11:58 PM

  8. Lower rates of mask-wearing and social distancing (assuming they are true) might explain why blacks are more likely to catch This Disease Thing, but not why they’re more likely to die from it. Co-morbidities are almost certainly the answer.



    June 22, 2020 at 1:57 PM

  9. Middletown, NY was an epicenter of Covid-19 cases in the less desirable areas of the Hudson Valley. Peekskill, NY which is slightly better was not. The former “city” has a lot more blacks than Latinos and the latter vice versa. So yes, blacks are more affected by the pandemic than Hispanics.

    Ok, what, who's this again?

    June 22, 2020 at 2:12 PM

  10. OT, but Joel Schumacher died. I believe you were a fan of St Elmo’s Fire


    June 22, 2020 at 2:46 PM

  11. Note that the Hispanic age distribution provides reason to be less pessimistic about their effect on American politics than the unstratified ethnicity-average stats would seem to warrant.


    June 22, 2020 at 3:18 PM

  12. If Fairfax County Viginia over 61% of the Covid cases have been listed as Hispanic. The County Health Department has had many drive through testing sites in the Hispanic neighborhoods and if you look at the zip code data, the latino neighborhoods have had massive community spread. I suspect that Latinos just do not follow any distancing rules when they are at home versus being at work. As a ratio, whites are least likely to be infected followed by Asians.

    i suspect that Covid-19 will almost always spread from superspreaders to blacks but only sometimes does it spread to Hispanics. Los Angeles has had low spread to Latinos whereas NYC has very high spread to Latinos.


    June 22, 2020 at 3:46 PM

  13. There’s a massive vitamin D connection that’s not explored at all. Black people need more exposure to sun to get the same vitamin D level. Most people are vitamin D deficient in NYC in the winter, but black more so. Vitamin D levels are linked to developing covid-19 and dying of it. 96% of people who died of covid-19 were vitamin D deficient.


    June 22, 2020 at 5:19 PM

    • Also, the fact that latinos have about the same rate as whites and asians, invalidates Cuomo’s (and democrats’) point that it’s a social-economic effect. If there is such effect, it’s minor.


      June 22, 2020 at 5:23 PM

      • The update, is that Hispanics should have a much lower mortality rate given that there are much fewer Hispanics who are Boomers or Silents.

        So Cuomo is right. Hispanics in NYC are more likely to do “essential” jobs while white office workers are safely working from home. Plus Hispanics are more likely to live in households with more people.

        Lion of the Blogosphere

        June 22, 2020 at 5:37 PM

      • Here’s a breakdown on how much time you need to get 1000 IU of vit D based on skin type and time of year. The spread is 6 times more for the darkest skin vs the fairest skin.

        Basically if you have really dark skin, you need 3h 39 minutes to generate 1000 IU in the winter (which is not enough, but reasonable). It’s very hard to get enough vitamin D in the winter time if you’re white, and basically impossible if you’re black.


        June 22, 2020 at 5:40 PM

    • The vitamin D theory goes against “race is a social construct”. It suggest white people evolved lighter skin. This is scary for the progressive creationists to think about. What else might people have evolved since they left Africa? The woke don’t want to know about any of this.


      June 22, 2020 at 7:02 PM

      • White people didn’t evolve light skin, dark-skinned people evolved dark skin. Think about it–hairy animals have unpigmented skin under their fur coats.


        June 23, 2020 at 12:02 AM

    • Most people are vitamin D deficient in NYC in the winter

      The CVS daily multivitamin I take offers 400 i.u. vitamin D.

      E. Rekshun

      June 24, 2020 at 10:10 AM

  14. Tangentially-related:

    The Tampa Bay Times effective today will no longer publish the mugshot galleries of those arrested around parts of Tampa Bay.

    The galleries, which had been accessible on the homepage, included photos of every person arrested in Hillsborough, Pinellas, Pasco and Manatee counties.

    Several news organizations have discontinued such galleries amid criticism that they disproportionately show black and brown faces. The arrest information is publicly available on law enforcement websites.

    “The galleries lack context and further negative stereotypes,” said Mark Katches, executive editor of the Times. “We think the data is an important resource that our newsroom will continue to analyze and watch carefully, but the galleries alone serve little journalistic purpose.”

    My own city’s newspaper has done the same, and apparently it is happening across the county. What a manipulative reason to stop doing this. The plausibly correct reasons would have been ideals of presumption of innocence or citing the voyeuristic nature of the practice, but apparently that’s all acceptable to news editors until it becomes a cause of racial concern, then access to this information should be restricted.

    The wider media landscape sure is doing a great job living up to the once-hyperbolic critiques conservatives have been saying for years, and proving them right. “Sorry, can’t publish that, it MIGHT cause somebody somewhere to think something racist.”


    June 22, 2020 at 5:32 PM

  15. High infection and death rates on the Navajo reservation seem strange at first. After all, with its extremely low population density the it should be the ultimate example of social distancing. As things turn out, however, while much of the reservation is vacant land many of the residents live in overcroweded multigenerational housing.



    June 22, 2020 at 5:46 PM

    • Plus the Navajo are very fat.

      Mrs Stitch

      June 23, 2020 at 5:14 PM

  16. You keep demanding people to apologise for thinking it will not affect non Asians but keep doing the same mistakes and assumptions even after it is clear there is no clear data to get to any conclusion about anything. How do you explain Sweden not collapsing even thought they kept on things as almost usual? How do you explain Australia doing very well without using masks or closing schools? How do you explain Latin countries in Europe doing worst than north European countries? How do you explain Israel having same amount of sick people of Belgium but far less deaths while in NY Jews were hit hard? How do you explain Japan doing so well with all their living congestion and trains? How do you explain Arab countries almost not affected but Iran badly affected? There are so many inconsistencies and so many factors to control for that nobody can come with one encompassing theory or even adequately explain differences for any given 2 countries or communities. So no, we will not apologise for mistakes done in the beginning when you keep doing the same mistakes even now when it is much more clear how wrong all those assumptions are.


    June 22, 2020 at 6:26 PM

    • Sweden has NOT kept everything open as usual, there is social distancing happening in Sweden similar to what we are doing in most of the U.S., and they have had similar results.

      Lion of the Blogosphere

      June 22, 2020 at 6:34 PM

      • Right. Essentially Sweden is doing a lot of what Americans are doing but without the government telling them to. Even so, hard to see Sweden as anything but a disaster. They have a much higher rate of death than Denmark or Finland and no economic boost to show for it.

        Peter Akuleyev

        June 22, 2020 at 11:32 PM

    • > How do you explain Australia doing very well without using masks or closing schools?

      Australia is an island

      >How do you explain Latin countries in Europe doing worst than north European countries?

      Bigger family groups living together, more touchy/feely culture, more disregard for rules, slightly lower IQ

      >How do you explain Israel having same amount of sick people of Belgium but far less deaths while in NY Jews were hit hard?

      Israel median age: 30, 11.5% over 65 ; Belgium median age: 40, 19% over 65

      >How do you explain Japan doing so well with all their living congestion and trains?

      Everyone wears masks. Old people don’t go out.

      >How do you explain Arab countries almost not affected but Iran badly affected?

      No one from China goes to Arab countries.


      June 22, 2020 at 9:03 PM

      • One should never forget that data is collected and analyzed differently in every country. A case in point: a husband murdering his wife and then killing himself will be listed as suicide for cause of death for the wife.

        The countries having very different death rates probably shows the countries that are undercounting deaths (See Russia) versus the countries that are not doing a lot of testing (See Mexico).

        future researchers will probably have to settle on total deaths as a percentage of the population to determine which countries were hit the hardest by Covid-19,


        June 23, 2020 at 7:30 AM

      • England is also an Island and Australia got huge Chinese population and much more ties with China than the UK, still the UK had much more cases.
        Italy was affected more in the north where people are more similiar to north Europeans in every aspect than in the south.
        Belgium had 30 times more deaths than Israel, age doesn’t explain it, far more than countries around it with the same culture, average age and genetics
        Chinese visit Arab countries much more than Iran, certainly the Gulf countries which are full of Chinese tourists.


        June 23, 2020 at 9:53 AM

  17. If we really wanted to control for other factor’s we would have to compare albino blacks with normal whites.

    Many of you are blaming blacks for being dumb or extroverted. But what if they are trying as hard as they can to socially distance, and it’s the dark skin + living in Detroit (42 degrees north of the equator) that’s the real culprit?

    Also, Asians are doing really really poorly for a population that is so young and thin. They are probably the most careful folks but have mediocre genes against COVID.

    Also, we need to break down Caucasoids into Northern/Eastern Euros vs Southern Euro/MENA.

    I think we’ll find that controlling for all other factors, Northern/Eastern Euros are genetically doing better than all other groups, and blacks aren’t doing that much worse than other colored folks.


    June 22, 2020 at 6:56 PM

    • “it’s the dark skin + living in Detroit (42 degrees north of the equator) that’s the real culprit?”

      Vitamin D deficiency, or even just less-than-optimal levels of the sunshine vitamin, can spell trouble for your memory and moods. Low levels of vitamin D have been associated with depression, Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias, and cognitive decline, as well as psychosis, autism, heart disease, and about 200 other conditions.

      Makes you wonder if vitamin D differentials explain the happy African vs the surly African American.


      June 23, 2020 at 12:07 AM

  18. Most Hispanics have type O blood which seems to be the most resilient against COVID-19

    Nick Mullen (5'6")

    June 22, 2020 at 11:01 PM

  19. The alt-right morons are just like liberals, they will never apologize for being wrong,

    At least liberals are pragmatic. If you remember back in February a lot of liberals were saying masks don’t work, opposed closing schools, opposed travel bans and were saying COVID isn’t worse than the flu.

    As evidence built up they were wrong, they changed their position to fit the facts and adopted positions Lion has . But for some reason a lot of American conservatives decided it was more important to own the libs than be right. We have even have Trump proposing a $4,000 travel credit to get people to take vacations away from home. How idiotic is that? In Central Europe conservatives and nationalists have been follow strict social distancing guidelines since March and those countries (Hungary, Poland, Slovakia, Czechia) are doing much better than liberal Sweden.

    It is also important to remember that while COVID probably isn’t very dangerous to younger healthy white people, sick people still clog up the ICU wards making every trip to the hospital for non-COVID related injuries or illnesses a problem. In a country like the US that is full of unhealthy minorities and a large over 60 population, it is a bad idea, even just for economic reasons, to let the virus rage out of control.

    Peter Akuleyev

    June 22, 2020 at 11:50 PM

    • “The alt-right morons are just like liberals”

      Every single anti-mask person I know is a normie-con. The earliest and most dedicated mask wearer an Alt-Righty.


      June 23, 2020 at 10:21 PM

  20. “It’s my impression that black communities are flagrantly ignoring social distancing rules”

    There’s a poin’t in their favor.


    June 23, 2020 at 9:07 AM

  21. There is an interesting medical phenomenon called the “Hispanic Paradox.” Look it up. Wikipedia has a good summary.

    Basically the Hispanic population in the US has longer life spans than whites or blacks, despite low incomes and lack of medical care. There are many theories as to why this is so, including eating more fruits and vegetables, tighter family networks, inherent biological differences, etc etc., but nobody knows. (Maybe it’s even because they have lower rates of health insurance, since a lot of medical care in the US has dangerous side effects.) Maybe, as suggested here, it’s more Vitamin D from working outside more. At any rate, the numbers are quite striking.

    This has nothing to do with age distribution of the population. Hispanics simply live longer.

    Amused Observer

    June 23, 2020 at 1:54 PM

    • All the reasons you gave. Plus they are less likely to smoke, especially Mexicans.

      Jay Fink

      June 23, 2020 at 8:34 PM

  22. I live in a 50% Hispanic county (Yakima County Washington) and our Covid 19 case rate is shockingly high. #1 per capita on the west coast. It is a huge problem here. Our county of 250K has as many cases as the entire state of Oregon which has a population of 4.3 million. Yet our death rate is not especially high and the majority of Covid deaths have been in nursing homes.

    So how can we have so many cases but relatively few deaths? I have read the highest number of cases here are Hispanics in their 30s and 40s. They are young and can fight this virus off. Age is a huge factor. Being a young population is what keeps Hispanic death rates relatively low.

    Jay Fink

    June 23, 2020 at 5:01 PM

    • “So how can we have so many cases?”

      Farm worker housing? Crowded automobile travel?

      BTW – restaurant recommendation?


      June 23, 2020 at 10:29 PM

      • What kind of food? We are still in phase one and probably will be for a long time. Restaurants are closed, except for take out.

        Jay Fink

        June 24, 2020 at 12:38 AM

      • I mean when we are out.

        What restaurants are known for upscale but casual? What restaurants are local institutions regardless of fare?


        June 24, 2020 at 11:54 AM

  23. >The alt-right morons are just like liberals, they will never apologize for being wrong, they will just move on to the next conspiracy theory, usually one involving the joos.

    This statement is correct, LotB. So why did you formerly identify as alt-right? I’ll never have an IQ as high as yours yet even I figured this out back in 2008 when Richard Spencer first coined the term “alt-right”.


    June 23, 2020 at 6:14 PM

  24. Noah Carl broke the numbers down and came to the conclusion blacks were still overrepresented in mortality when controlled for other variables.

    He suggested vitamin D supplementation as it strengthens the immune system. There’s no downside to supplementing VitD to recommended daily dose, so it wouldn’t hurt; and it certainly protects against other viruses as well.

    Hispanics might have similar VitD deficiency issues.


    June 24, 2020 at 4:32 AM

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