Five of the World’s Most Violent Cities are in the United States
When you think of the most dangerous, violent cities in the world, do you picture slums in Third World countries with vicious drug cartels or arrogant warlords?
Maybe the kind of violence where enemies are decapitated and whole families are murdered seem like things that happen far away in some terrifying, exotic locale.
Some of this is true – but FIVE of the world’s most violent cities are right here on the American mainland and another is in an American territory.
The list was created by researchers of anti-violence think-tank Seguridad, Justicia Y Paz (Security, Justice, and Peace), who made their rankings based on statistics of homicides per 100,000 residents.
The vast majority of the cities on the list were in Central and South America.
Interestingly, the violence in Venezuela appears to have dropped in violence this year, but not because it’s suddenly become a mecca of safety. The official situation there has devolved so much that they simply can’t track all the homicides.
But back to America
We pride ourselves on our first world status and civilized societies, and yet four of our cities ended up on the list of the most dangerous and violent locales on the planet.
#13 St. Louis
#32 San Juan
#41 New Orleans
How did these cities make the list?
St. Louis, Missouri: Since the Ferguson riots, the entire state of Missouri has seen a sharp increase in violence. This has culminated in the city of St. Louis, which had a 2017 murder rate of 65.83 per hundred thousand people. There are thousands of violent crimes each year in the city, which only has a population of about 320,000 people.
Baltimore, Maryland: The city of Baltimore has an astounding murder rate of 55.48 people per hundred thousand. Last year’s murder rate was nearly as high as the year that the riots erupted over the killing of Freddie Gray by city police officers. There’s a murder nearly every day of the year in Baltimore and the police force there is widely considered to be one of the most corrupt – if not the most corrupt – in the nation.
San Juan, Puerto Rico: Many will think that San Juan earned its place on the list due to the devastation wrought by two back to back hurricanes, but it was already bad for years before. DHS ties this to drug trafficking. The island territory had begun to see signs of improvement in 2015 after a massive spike in 2011 that brought murders to an all-time high. The homicide numbers didn’t immediately escalate after Hurricane Maria, but as the unrelenting darkness continued, violent crime began to increase until it reached 48.70 murders per hundred thousand residents.
New Orleans, Louisiana: Murders in New Orleans, Louisiana fell last year but armed robberies and non-fatal shootings have risen by a whopping 30% since 2010. The city is renowned for its food, music, and festivals, making it a popular destination for tourists. Yet, the 40.10 murders per hundred thousand people rank The Big Easy as more dangerous than some of the most notorious cities in Brazil and Columbia.
Detroit, Michigan: Detroit is the fourth American city to be featured on the list of places you’re most likely to be murdered. With a homicide rate of 39.69 per one hundred thousand people, Detroit was the 42 most dangerous city in the world according to these statistics. The city used to be an American hub of industry, but when the automotive manufacturers left, it fell into disrepair and poverty. Residents have a whopping unemployment rate of almost 11%, the population has plummeted, and since it is one of the poorest cities in the nation, perhaps the residents who remain simply can’t afford to get out.
For those who are interested in preparedness, the collapse of these cities is something to watch. Note how the increase of violence in many cases ties in with a lack of confidence in local law enforcement officers. A failing economy is another factor, as increased desperation leads to increased crime.
What other cities made the list?
Here’s the list of the 50 most violent cities in the world in its entirety:
Los Cabos, Mexico
La Paz, Mexico
Vitória da Conquista, Brazil
St. Louis, Missouri, USA
Cape Town, South Africa
San Salvador, El Salvador
Feira de Santana, Brazil
Baltimore, Maryland, USA
Guatemala City, Guatemala
San Pedro Sula, Honduras
João Pessoa, Brazil
San Juan, Puerto Rico
Distrito Central, Honduras
Porto Alegre. Brazil
New Orleans, Louisiana, USA
Detroit, Michican, USA
Durban, South Africa
Campos dos Goytacazes, Brazil
Nelson Mandela Bay, South Africa
Campina Grande, Brazil
Seguridad, Justicia Y Paz blames much of the violence on drug cartel turf wars, economic crises, and violence perpetrated by gangs like MS-13.
Do you have any doubt that violence will be abundant when the SHTF?
All you need to do is look at this list and study these cities to see how violence escalates when the rule of law collapses, when economies crash and people starve, when police officers go dirty, and when criminal gangs turn into the ruling class.
This is just further evidence to support my belief that preppers must be armed. If you are prepping to survive a long-term event, make sure that you plan to survive the escalation of violence, too.