Sunday, January 06, 2013

Crime: real causes can get overlooked. Think lead.

Stephen Harper has made crime a key legislative and political priority.

No need to review that fact that crime rates are dropping and his solutions, which are all variants of "get tough" (with the exception of getting rid of the gun registry) are stupid, irrelevant, and a product of the over-reporting of crime by local TV news causing people to be unduly fearful of becoming victims (see here and here and here).

However, the other day I saw this tweet from blogger Matt Yglesias, which told me to stop what I was doing and read this Mother Jones article by Kevin Drum.  Titled "America's Real Criminal Element: Lead" it is about the links between lead in the environment and crime rates over time, but a lot of other bad stuff too. Yglesias was right: read it now.