The peace of New England

My top three states have always been Maine, Vermont, and New Hampshire. (Number four is Colorado because of its ample sun without 500 degree southwest temperatures.) Now my list has been solidified even more:

The rural New England states of Maine, Vermont and New Hampshire are the most peaceful U.S. states, a distinction that gives them an economic advantage over the most violent, including Louisiana, Tennessee and Nevada.

Violence and its aftermath cost the entire U.S. economy some $460 billion last year, according to the Institute for Economics and Peace’s second annual United States Peace Index, which was released on Tuesday.

News of a homicide in these areas is treated like the national media treats news of a pretty white girl who has gone missing. It’s a really big deal and it gets a lot of attention. (The difference, of course, is that it gets attention because someone has been murdered, not because the victim is white and relatively affluent.)

The study found that the United States has become a less violent place over the past two decades, based on an analysis of historic data on homicides and other violent crime, the number of people incarcerated, police employment and the prevalence of small arms.

Now, if I was to argue like I see Christians argue about atheists, I would say that our high rate of incarcerating Christians – they make up an overwhelming majority of our prison population – is what has contributed to this drop. Of course, correlation does not equal causation.

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