By Bill Maher
A recent study that appeared in the Annals of Emergency Medicine -- subscribe now for a free stethoscope -- finds that the risk of injury-related death is twenty percent lower in urban areas compared to rural areas. So the next time someone tells you they're moving to the country because it's safer, laugh at them... and then apologize because it could be the last time you see them alive.
The homicide rate is slightly higher in urban areas, but in rural areas the risk of "unintentional injury death" (car crashes, falling into wood chippers and coming out the other end looking like Campbell's Chunky Beef Stew, etc.) is forty percent higher.
As far as gun deaths, in general there's no difference between rural and urban areas, except that in rural areas children and older adults are more likely to be shot (the dreaded "Put that down, that's not a toy!" scenario).
Also, rural areas with lots of black residents are safer than areas with lots of Latinos. Must be something in the hot sauce.
There are a couple of ironies here: The most obvious is that rural inhabitants seem to have an even greater need for health insurance than those in urban areas, given the propensity of country boys to down a gallon of moonshine and then drive through town at 120 mph with the lights off while getting a blow job from Sally Mae. Yet these rural states tend to be the ones where the governor is refusing to implement Obamacare and the House members are trying to repeal it.
And all these open-carry militia-joining gun nuts in rural America are clearly worried about the wrong thing. It's not some illegal alien with a machete they need to worry about; it's falling off the tractor.
But then I've long assumed that the mania for guns in rural America has nothing to do with actual threats and everything to do with white men feeling marginalized and emasculated and needing something to make them feel powerful.