How do we feel when we are watching the news? Listening and reading each national story, do we feel excited to be living during the times that we are? I am assuming that the answer is no.
With each tragic story, one after the other, we feel as though this world is getting worse. We want to hide in the house and never go anywhere. We believe that we are living in the worst times on record. Are we really?
In a time when the media basically controls our lives with the story’s they give I thought I’d do my research, just to see if the fear the media instills in its viewers are warranted. The information that I found was not surprising to me.
The information that I recovered from Info Please, shows that since the 1980’s, homicide rates have dropped dramatically. In 1980 the rate was 10.2 cases per 100,000 people in the US. With 226.5 million people in the US at that time, it makes approximately 23,783 cases in the US in one year. In 1989 (the year I was born) over 21,000 cases that year. That is over 1700 cases per month and over 400 cases a week. In the source shown above, as of 2014, homicides have dropped to 4.5 per 100,000 people in the US.
The so called “Ferguson Effect”
There has been a popular claim circulating called “the Ferguson effect”. This claims that murder has increased since the protests in Ferguson. The claim suggests that the reason for this is because of the police less vigorous enforcement due to fear of backlash. The term gained steam after the term was quoted on May 29th 2015 via Wall Street Journal. There has no data to support these claims and in fact, the murder rates hold steady since 2014. More On The Ferguson Effect can be found here
Protests & Riots Today vs. Yesterday
There is a long list of protests all throughout history varying on topics that people can look up via WIKI:
1925 – Ku Klux Klan march. 50,000 KKK members marched to show support.
1957 – The first large (nonviolent) African American Demonstration three years after the Supreme Court decision against segregation in public schools.
1963 – The famous march where 250,000 people congregated around the Lincoln Memorial. This is where Martin Luther King Jr delivered his “I Had A Dream” speech.
1979 – First LGBT political rally where 75,000-125,000 gay men and woman marched on Washington demanding equal rights. Another would happen in 1987 where 500,000 gay men and women would attend.
1992 – Los Angeles erupts in an riots after the four white officers were acquitted over the videotaped beating of Rodney King.
Between 1863 and 2016 there have been hundreds of protests taking place, most of these protests in favor for equal rights and anti-racism. Some have been nonviolent, others ended in blood, fear and death.
Cases involving “forced rape”
From the stats found Statista, shows the stats of rape cases that have taken place. Up until 1992 there was a steady increase in forced rape in this country. A whopping 42.5 cases per 100,000 people opened regarding rape in the US. Some of these cases listed as violent and even fatal. After this time, the rapes started to decrease. Now the cases have dropped to about 26 cases per 100,000. This is after a slight increase from 2013’s 25 cases. It is a lot higher than it should be, but things are getting better as years progress.
When we think terrorism, we think about what is happening all over the world. From our own US soil to what has happened in France, Germany…etc. We think of the things that we have seen on our TV and Online. What we don’t see is that Terrorism has dramatically decreased since the 1970’s in 1970 we had over 450 attacks each year, with over 25 of them being fatal attacks. This gives a total of 2,608 total attacks and 226 fatal attacks between 1970 & 2011. Now we don’t have nearly that amount. I do know that the amount has climbed since the recent horrible attack of the Orlando Night Club pulse. While this is a set back and we still mourn for the loss, we as a country can figure out a non-racist, non-xenophobic solution to solving these issues so that America can go stronger as a country.
My point is this…
I am not trying to belittle the horrific tragedies that have struck our world. It hurts, we all hurt. My point is; we can constantly live in fear and never feel safe. I get that you want to protect yourself and your family and that’s great. What I am doing, is providing you with another way of looking at life.
When we hear people say “I wish we’d go back to the good ol’ days”, maybe we should think twice about agreeing with them. We live in fear now because the media tells us that it’s worse than ever. I am not against being informed, I love knowing what is going on in our country and throughout the world. Maybe a way we can feel happier living in the times we are is by understanding that things have gotten better.
When we heard about the recent terrorist attacks it caused us all to question our safety. We should all take extra precautions into making sure our family is safe.
I just wanted to provide you with the comfort that every year, through the advances in society, we have gotten better. Things aren’t as bad as they were. Take that comfort and spread more love. Maybe, turn off the TV and news websites and enjoy life with your family. Let’s all live our lives better and love stronger!