Based on historical data just now becoming public, once-Great Britain has been working hard to earn that distinction:
According to the figures released yesterday, 3.6 per cent of the population of England and Wales were victims of violent crime in 1999 – second only to Australia, where the figure was 4.1 per cent.
Scotland had a slightly lower rate of violence, at 3.4 per cent.
In the U.S., only 2 per cent of the population suffered an assault or robbery.
One in 40 people in England and Wales had their cars stolen in 1999, the highest rate in the 17 developed countries examined.
Just one in 200 Americans suffered a car theft while in Japan there was only one per 1,000 of the population.
The study looked at crime rates in 12 western European countries plus Poland, Canada, the U.S., Australia and Japan.
The chances of becoming a victim of any crime in England and Wales were second only to Australia.
Here, 26 per cent suffered from crime against an average across all the countries of just 21 per cent.
England and Wales are among the countries ‘most pressured by crime’, the report concludes.
The two countries had the equal highest number of crimes per head of population of all 17 states.
There were 58 incidents for every 100 inhabitants in England and Wales – the same as Australia.
Just that short blockquote tells us all manner of interesting things… First, Michael Clarke cannot write worth a damn, and his editor is an idiot. In the space of three lines, he states that England and Wales were below Australia in terms of violent crime before saying they are equal, and he somehow manages to say that “58 incidents for every 100 inhabitants” is equal to “26 per cent suffered from crime”. Uhm, no. Now, the 26% bit could be referring to Great Britain as a whole, but due to its placement in the article, that is not immediately obvious.
Second, apparently the statisticians in once-Great Britain quantify “violent crime” as exclusively “assault or robbery”; on the other hand, here in America, pretty much every crime-tracking organization (including the FBI itself) considers assault, robbery, rape, and murder to all be “violent crimes”. Based on that difference alone, it is fair to say that once-Great Britain is underreporting its violent crime rate, possibly by a significant amount, in comparison to America’s, and their crime problem is even worse than they are letting on.
Third, I have no idea where they are getting their “only 2 per cent of the population suffered an assault or robbery” bit. We had a population of 272,690,813 in 1999, with 911,740 assaults and 409,371 robberies. Even if you were assume that each and every one of those crimes happened to a distinct and separate person, that is still a scant 0.48% of the population – less than a quarter of the claimed “2 per cent”. On the other hand, their “one in 200 Americans suffered a car theft” is at least closer to the mark, given that we had 1,152,075 reported car thefts, impacting 0.422% of the population (which is really more like one in 235 or so). (Numbers provided by Disaster Center, since the 1999 FBI UCR is broken.)
Fourth and finally, HOLY FLYING FRAK ON A STICK – 58 incidents for every 100 inhabitants? Goddamn. Even if you were to take all the crimes the FBI tracks here in America (murder, rape, robbery, assault, burglary, theft/larceny, and vehicular theft), we had a scant 4.3 incidents for every 100 inhabitants. Now, sure, the article cites England and Wales as the two worst offenders in once-Great Britain, so how about ours – D.C. and South Carolina? Taken together, their total crime rate per 100 inhabitants is all of 5.6 – almost exactly one tenth that of England and Wales.
Good Lord. I sincerely hope Michael screwed up yet again and forgot a “.” somewhere in that number.
Meanwhile, us uncivilized, rude, crude, and violent Yanks have somehow managed to have a violent crime rate that has decreased every year since 2006, and is currently at its lowest point since 1973, while steadily increasing the firearm ownership rate every year. Why, it is almost like what little correlation firearm ownership has on violent crime, it is negative… but we already knew that, did we not?