Destroying the myth that urbanization causes high homicide rates

For years now, National Conservative has been documenting South Carolina’s rural homicide problem.

A common excuse given for high Black homicides in the USA is urbanization. Media, politicians, and activists will say that Blacks commit higher homicide rates because they are more likely to live in urban areas. We can easily disprove this myth using state crime data from South Carolina. Race is dramatically more significant than urbanization when it comes to county homicide rates.

The same happens in AL and LA, but those states provided inferior crime data to what South Carolina provides. This makes it harder for us to document the phenomenon as easily. Louisiana publishes state-wide crime reports yearly, but they are missing large amounts of data. Also, large numbers of Louisiana law enforcement agencies are not submitting data to the FBI. For 2022, only 60.2% of Louisiana law enforcement agencies bothered to submit crime data to the FBI. This is down from 76.3% in 2020.

However, the New Orleans daily paper came up with an interesting idea back in 2022. This was just brought to our attention by a reader. They used the CDC’s assault homicide death rate for Louisiana, broken down by urbanization.

So, we used the CDC database to look at Louisiana’s assault homicide death rates by urbanization and race. We looked at Blacks, Whites, and Latinos. However, only partial data was given for Latinos. Some data was omitted due to the small sample size.

CDC Assault Homicide Death Rate per 100k. Average from 2018-2022
Urbanization Ave Black Rate per 100k Ave White Rate per 100k Ave Latino Rate per 100k
Large Central Metro 68.8 5.9
Large Fringe Metro 36.8 4.8 7.2
Medium Metro 41 4.8 7.9
Small Metro 32.2 4.9
Micropolitan (Nonmetro) 36.5 5
NonCore (Nonmetro) 26.5 5.4

Note that CDC assault homicide death rates tend to be higher than official homicide rates because more homicides are counted. For decades, cities and states have been tightening their definitions of what counts as an official homicide. This has been done to keep official homicide rates as low as possible on paper.

Next, we looked at the entire country:

CDC Assault Homicide Death Rate per 100k. Average from 2018-2022. Entire USA.
Urbanization Ave Black Rate per 100k Ave White Rate per 100k Ave Latino Rate per 100k
Large Central Metro 35.6 3 6.8
Large Fringe Metro 20.1 2.1 5
Medium Metro 30 3.2 7
Small Metro 25.8 3.2 6
Micropolitan (Nonmetro) 28.2 3.5 6
NonCore (Nonmetro) 23.7 3.9 5
Ave Asian Rate per 100k Ave American Indian Rate per 100k
Large Central Metro 1.5 9.2
Large Fringe Metro 1.2 7.1
Medium Metro 2 10.1
Small Metro 1.6 15.3
Micropolitan (Nonmetro) 1.3 18.1
NonCore (Nonmetro) 16.3

It was not a surprise that American Indian assault homicide death rates went down with urbanization. This is because many Indian reservations have very high homicide rates despite being rural.

However, the CDC also claims White rates go down with urbanization. We don’t know why.

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