How murderous is the USA anyway? or Piers Morgan really is racist!

Miguel points out that the USA is listed 108th in intentional homicide rate. He points out that for Piers Morgan to say

“And you have by far the worst rate of gun murder and gun crime of any of the civilized countries in this world.”

It’s both disingenuous AND racist. Let’s look at the Wiki page “List of Countries by Intentional Homicide Rate.” Taking that data, organizing it and turning it into a bar graph we get this.

Murder Rate Overall

See that little red circle? That’s “murderous” USA compared to everyone else. We barely beat out Turkmenistan for 108th place.

That graph is hard to see, so here’s all the graphs.

Countries with homicide rates 20 or above per 100K

 Murder Rate above 20

Countries with homicide rates 10 to <20 per 100K

Murder Rate 10 to 20

Countries with homicide rates 5 to <10 per 100K

Murder Rate 5 to 10

Countries with homicide rates 2 to <5 per 100K

Murder Rate 2 to 5

Countries with homicide rates 1 to <2 per 100K

Murder Rate 1 to 2

Countries with homicide rates <1 per 100K

Murder Rate 0 to 1

I’ve helpfully colored in the USA at 4.2 murders per 100K. You should also bear in mind that our rate of 4.2 is not just murder, but murder and non-negligent homicide. It’s an entirely different discussion when we start comparing how different countries report their data. (TL/DR version: Japan lies as a matter of police procedure)

Piers Morgan is being disingenuous when he points solely to “gun murder” and “gun crime.” We as Americans don’t care if a murder is committed with a gun or a knife, or with “personal weapons.” Dead is dead. I’ll be happy to accept 4.2 per 100K rather than worse in 107 other countries.

Piers Morgan is also a racist when he says that any country with worse murder rates is not civilized. Like Miguel says, perhaps Piers longs for the days of British Imperialism, where Englishmen went abroad to force other “uncivilized” nations to be more like (Formerly Great) Britain.

Let’s take Piers Morgan EXACTLY at his word. He only wants to talk about GUN murder. Here’s a graph of the Wiki data from “List of Countries by Firearm Death Rates.” I’ve organized it by firearm homicide rate, highest to lowest.

Murder Rate Guns

For those of you who can’t read tiny print, let me make a list of all the “Uncivilized” countries that Piers Morgan dismisses.

  1. El Salvador
  2.  Jamaica
  3.  Honduras
  4.  Guatemala
  5.  Swaziland
  6.  Colombia
  7.  Brazil
  8.  Panama
  9.  Mexico
  10.  Philippines
  11.  Paraguay
  12.  Nicaragua
  13.  Zimbabwe
  14.  Costa Rica
  15.  Uruguay
  16.  Argentina
  17.  Barbados
  18.  United States

Hell, some of those places are so civilized that rich white folks go there on vacation.

Near as I can tell, the majority of these countries they are modern representative democracies.There are a few hell holes on the list, but taken as a whole, the only difference between most of these countries and the USA is the fact that the USA is majority white. So when he says we have the worst “Gun Murder” and worst “Gun Crime” rates of any “Civilized” nation, what he’s really saying is that we’re the worst in that category for “white” nations. He sees civilization strictly in terms of race. If that’s not racist, I don’t know what is.

I dare Piers Morgan to go to each of these countries embassies and tell them that he thinks that they are “uncivilized.” If he’d film it, his network would be able to make Super Bowl level advertising rates on his program. Everyone would tune in to watch an annoying racist prick get his ass kicked.

4 responses to “How murderous is the USA anyway? or Piers Morgan really is racist!

  1. “Japan lies as a matter of police procedure”

    I would also say the UK and Australia have played some funny games with their numbers.

    But excellent destruction of Pier’s argument.

    “We as Americans don’t care if a murder is committed with a gun or a knife, or with “personal weapons.” Dead is dead”

    Bingo. Every time a gun control proponent starts arguing its always about the gun rate, the gun rate the GUN rate. Who cares how they died? Look at overall violent crime.

  2. Thanks for the great information!

    I also have been looking into the murder rate in the UK over the last few decades to see how things have gone there. They banned hand guns in 1997. According to this graph on a BBC site of trend in murder rate from 1967 to 2002, murder rates have gone up continuously, despite gun ban (I find UK data harder to find than U.S. data).

    You can see the graph here:
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markeaston/2008/12/teen_homicide.html

    Murder rates went up after the gun ban, and from what I see of the numbers after 2012, the murder rate is still higher than it was pre gun ban. Certainly it was much better in 1967. They are trending up over decades! We are trending down over decades time span!

    Their violent crime rate is higher than ours.

    This is site also has some great graphs on U.S. trends. This takes the big picture approach, even going back to 1700. The U.S. has never been safer!

    http://www.krusekronicle.com/kruse_kronicle/2012/12/a-historical-perspective-on-violence-in-the-united-states.html#.UO7gZ29E6Y0

  3. Thanks for your blog. It’s nice to see the stats rather than emotions in the debate.

    The stats prove that owning a gun does not make a country more dangerous. Poverty, lack of education etc leads to higher murder rates by guns or any means.

    Also the stats say poverty and access to guns increase the homoside rate.
    That’s why the USA is much higher than other rich countries like candada, the uk, Australia, Japan etc.

    So ur stats show piers was kinda right. Not uncivilised, but poorer countries.

  4. I don’t believe that “poverty” or “lack of education” have anything at all to do with murder. You are confusing correlation with causation. There are far too many poor uneducated people in the world who would never murder anyone. You insult honest poor and uneducated people by saying that they are potential criminals.

    The real problem is that far too many people in the world are incapable of relating to the pain of other people. There are psychopaths free among us who basically don’t care how you feel. If you have something they want, they take it. Your rights are irrelevant to them as is your life. That’s not caused by poverty or lack of education. That’s a basic fundamental flaw in their emotional makeup.

    The large majority of our murders occur as a result of drug activity. Drug dealers and users kill each other. Drug dealers kill rivals and those who owe them money. Drug users kill dealers to steal drugs and they kill other people while stealing money to get drugs. If anyone actually wanted to reduce the murder rate, they’d decriminalize drugs and sell them cheaply. That would get the criminals out of drug dealing and would reduce the number of drug users who got into crime to feed their habit.