Part of the Late Twentieth Century Delusion is an aggressive (but selective) blank-slatism that assumes each ethnic / gender group should show up in prisons, universities, and space shuttle missions in precise proportion to its percentage in the general population. (The U.S.'s billion-dollar sports industry excepted.)
Prisons in particular have vexed affirmative-action policy-makers, as they stubbornly refuse to fill up with 72% Euros, 12% Afros, 12% Hispanics, and 4% Asians (to say nothing of 50% male / 50% female). In more sensible times, social scientists noticed that different groups committed different amounts and types of crimes, and imagined possible reasons why.
"Non-hispanic white", that U.S. Census monolith, is itself a racial stew whose components have long fascinated ethnographers. Dutch sociologist W.A. Bonger combed through a great many studies on ethnic European criminality and presented his findings in the 1943 tome Race and Crime. Clearly ill at ease with the determinist worldview and openly derisive of German race science, Bonger was still a man of his age, allowing himself speculations on ethnicity that would ban him from today's academia. (To say nothing of the title of his book.)
What did he find?