Cities vs. Suburbs: Which is Really Safer to Live in?

lani_prunesCities are safer than suburbs.

There, I said it. If you faithful readers are anything like me, then you’ve seen the crime shows that depict Las Vegas, New York, and Tampa as being hell-holes full of scary murderers where innocent people drop like flies.

AND YET! If you have seen Criminal Minds, you see that all the rural places that I didn’t know existed harbor serial killers and sociopaths. So, I began to wonder: Where are you safer, on a sketchy street corner in the South side, or driving your munchkins home from soccer in Bend, Oregon?

The city! That’s the answer!
I know what you’re thinking. Being from Philly, I too have my doubts about where people are safest. I’m immune to sirens and gunshots and police presence on various street corners thanks to home, and most would see this as proof of a dangerous upbringing. So, the facts!

One study with the thesis, “You’re More Likely to Die a Violent Death in Rural America Than in a City,” (http:// jacobs/are-cities-safer-than-suburbs/) stated that the nation-wide rate of unintentional-injury deaths, such as car crashes, drownings, falls, accidents, etc., is about 15 times the rate of homicides.

“Add together all the ways in which you might die prematurely by intentional or unintentional injury (as opposed to illness), and your risk of death is actually about 22 percent higher in the most rural counties in America than in the most urban ones,” the study claims.

Bam. There you have it.

Not convinced? University of Pennsylvania’s Perelman School of Medicine (http://www.nbcphiladelphia. com/news/local/Cities-Safer-Than- Suburbs-Penn-Study-216575231. html) put out a similar study, two days before the one above (Jul. 23, 2013).

“If you consider safety as your risk of injury overall, we found that you’re actually safest in larger cities and get less safe as the areas become more rural,” said lead author Sage Myers, in study published Oct. 22, 2013 in the Annals of Emergency Medicine.

Sure, they say, there are far more murders in urban settings than their suburban counterparts, but those happen less often as a whole than the average incidents that plague the normalcy of the burbs, enough that statistically, you’re more likely to be injured and harmed in a suburb or countryside.

“If you look at everything together, cities actually seem kinda safe,” Myers said.

To be fair, I wonder if they took into account homicides in conjunction with firearms, since those raise homicides stats a significant amount and happen far more in the city.

-Lani Prunés, Managing Editor

Categories: Opinion


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