Americans remain confused about reality. As Vox ayafsdehee
Nearly two-thirds of Americans think violent crime increased over the past year, even though violent crime has been on a general decline for two decades, according to a new Gallup survey.
The survey teases out different mini-trends, but in the end Gallup concludes on its own site:
For more than a decade, Gallup has found the majority of Americans believing crime is up, although actual crime statistics have largely shown the crime rate continuing to come down from the highs in the 1990s and earlier.
…. Some argue that consumption of news media plays a role….But even in their own localities, sizable portions of the population view crime in their area as having increased over the past year, and at several points over the past few decades, majorities have held these views.
If you check out my new, improved “Reassuring Crime Statistics” page (on the right side of this blog, under “Links”), you’ll have plenty of proof that crime is lower than most people think. But if you read the post below this one, you’ll see why people refuse to believe it: They can’t. It runs contrary to their nearly RELIGIOUS conviction that kids are not safe. This kind of soul-deep terror leads to cruelty. From Vox:
Back in 1980, there were 319,598 people in state or federal prison in the United States. By 2013, that number was 1.57 million. That means the prison population of the US grew 380 percent over the last 30 years.
Free-Range Kids exists to fight the belief that our kids are in constant danger. It also exists to fight the unintended consequences of that belief — including cops, prosecutors and “Good Samaritans” convinced they have to lock up ever more people to keep kids safe.
So it is not just a reality check that Americans need. It is a decency check. We cannot be compassionate or even think straight when we’re afraid. And we are way more afraid today than necessary. Or sane. – L.