Despite recession, crime keeps falling
WASHINGTON — High unemployment. More folks on food stamps. Fewer owning their homes. Yet for all the signs of recession, something is missing: More crime.
Experts are scratching their heads over why crime has ebbed so far during this recession, making it different from other economic downturns of the past half-century.
Early guesses include jobless folks at home keeping closer watch for thieves, or the American population just getting older_ and older people commit fewer crimes.
Preliminary FBI crime figures for the first half of 2009 show crime falling across the country, even at a time of high unemployment, foreclosures and layoffs. Most surprisingly, murder and manslaughter fell 10 percent for the first half of the year. "That's a remarkable decline, given the economic conditions," said Richard Rosenfeld, a sociologist at the University of Missouri-St. Louis who has studied crime trends.
Rosenfeld said he did not expect the 10 percent drop in killings to be sustained over the entire year, as more data is reported. But he said the broad declines are exceptional, given that past recessions stretching back to the 1950’s have boosted crime rates.
Why do the “experts” sound so disappointed that crime has failed to rise? They sound like crime cheerleaders – Get out there and mug some old ladies, go, go go! You’re messing up our projections, darn you!