I have really tried to keep politics off of this blog. The one time I did post anything political it had a definite connection to economics and the free market. If you didn't see it, I posted something about the Arizona Representative Russell Pearce. I was merely pointing out the fact that he was introducing laws that put artificial constraints on his state's economy and then claiming that, since his state was a "free market", it would adjust. I didn't think he would appreciate the irony I was pointing out.
Well today I received an email from Rep. Pearce. It was long and very strange. Here is how it begins. (Oh, did I mention that the underlying issue is immigration?)
You should understand our "Sovereign" rights as a nation. The Rule of Law. The damage to America and Americans.
26 AMERICANS DIE DAILY AT THE HANDS OF THESE "ILLEGALS" EVERY YEAR. 25 EVERYDAY, 12 BY STABBINGS AND SHOOTINGS AND 13 BY DUI AND OTHER RELATED CRIMES. APPARENTLY YOU AND OTHERS COULD CARE LESS ABOUT....AND OUR GOVERNMENT WILL SHED NOT ONE TEAR OVER THIS..THIS IS FROM A CONGRESSIONAL REPORT. (AZ Officers murdered, Officer Atkins, Officer Erfle, Officer Martin, Officer Eggle, and the list goes on!!!!$2 billion annually in Arizona to educate illegal alien children in K - 12.
The email goes on and on and on. I was absolutely shocked by the ranting and raving of the email. This is a paid Representative of the Arizona State government. Just amazing.
I was obviously sceptical about Pearce's claims (even if they didn't agree from one sentence to the next) and decided to do a little web research and some grade school level arithmetic. The plot below is data from the FBI and gives the murder rate (per 100,000 people) for several states. I chose these because they have experienced the largest increases in migrant workers and illegal immigrants.
I have to say that I was surprised by the falling murder rates across the board. It also seems to say that if illegals are responsible for so many murders, their population must be falling too.
I'm sure the anti-immigration camp doesn't believe that, so I looked up their numbers. According to the Center for Immigration Studies, the illegal population stood at 8 million in 2000 and was 3.5 million in 1990. This is a increase of 500,000 a year. So using the FBI murder rates and a US population of 300 million, I put together a daily murder rate.
You can reproduce the graph on your own. Just divide the total population by 100,000 and then multiply that number by the given murder rate. Finally, take that number an divide by 365 to get the murders per day, which is shown on the chart.
What is obvious is that, although the illegal immigrant population has grown by a rate of almost 1400 per day (according to the census bureau) the murder rate has gone from 61 per day in 1996 to 47 per day in 2006. The data seems pretty obvious, the murders per day have declined while the number of illegals entering the country has increased. Clearly, murders committed by illegal immigrants is a non-issue.
I think the FBI's data is a little more reliable than Rep Pearce's. Using his number, 30% of all murders in the USA are by illegal immigrants. That is insane and so is Rep Pearce.