Showing posts with label Crime Rate. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Crime Rate. Show all posts

Wednesday, February 08, 2017

Besieged by Crime?

Yesterday, President Trump said our nation has been besieged by crime. Meeting with a group of our nation's sheriffs,Trump told them, “the murder rate in our country is the highest it’s been in 47 years.” He blamed the news media for not publicizing this development, then added, “But the murder rate is the highest it’s been in, I guess, 45 to 47 years.”

This is, of course, not true. How do I know this? Well, gun rights activists on the inter webs remind me of this fact all the time. Here are the facts.

The murder rate is defined as the number of murders and non-negligent homicides per 100,000 residents. Beginning in 1957, when the rate was 4.0 murders per 100,000 residents, the rate rose steadily to a high of 10.2 in 1980. It then steadily dropped, to 7.4 in 1996, to 6.1 in 2006, to 4.4 in 2014. It went up in 2015 to 4.9. But that is less than half the murder rate of 1980. The raw number of homicides in America has actually declined from 19,645 in 1996 to 15,696 in 2015, even while the population has risen from 265 million in 1996 to 321 million in 2015.

The violent crime rate in America also has plummeted over the years. Defined as murder, rape, robbery and aggravated assault, violent crimes peaked at a rate of 758 per 100,000 residents in 1991, and the rate was about 373 violent crimes per 100,000 in 2015, again a decline of more than half. The statistics for 2016 are not yet available. Here is the FBI’s violent crime table for the years 1996 to 2015.

Today, Trump doubled down on these claims in what has become yet another example of this administration's cognitive dissonance. Like the right wing bloggers and commenters that religiously follow him, they create their own reality in which their anger, hate and fear are more justified.

Alternative facts indeed.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Our Violent Nation

We hear an awful lot these days about how the violent crime rate has dropped in this country. Yet, in looking at the numbers, the "drop" is really from an insanely high number to just a high number. Our murder rate is higher than nearly all other developed countries. So, what is it about culture that makes it such a violent place?

I'm sure it has to do with a combination of several phenomena but what are those key ingredients? I think the numbers in my first link illustrate that we haven't really done a very good job identifying our addressing what these key ingredients are that make us so violent. Obviously, there have been multitude of studies but perhaps it's time to erase the entire board and start over.

Thursday, January 01, 2015

Kicking Off The New Year With Positivity

I'd like to kick off the new year with some positivity. Check this out.

The rate of violent crimes in the United States has been cut in half during the past 20 years. That’s according to statistics released in November by the FBI. What surprises some criminologists is that the decline has persisted against the backdrop of two other trends long believed to lead to an increase in crime: The US prison population is dropping and the number of young adults, who are considered more likely to commit a crime, has risen.

But why is this happening?

Criminologists say the latest gains against violent crime appear rooted especially in improved law enforcement, rather than a drop in the number of teenagers and 20-somethings. The “community policing” movement has brought beat cops into closer ties with the neighborhoods they serve, for one thing, and a data-driven focus on crime “hotspots” has led to successful prevention efforts in high-risk areas.

Isn't this exactly how the United States is supposed to work? I find it very interesting that this flies in the face of what I see in the mainstream media...