Republican Presidential nominee, Donald Trump, likes to paint a dismal picture about crime and public safety in the US. He claims that years of progress made by Republican administrations in bringing down the crime rate have been wiped out, and even reversed, by an erosion of law enforcement under President Obama.
But, as usual, the facts reveal a Trump campaign existing in an alternate reality. Reliable statistics tell a far different story.
The graph below, which charts the U.S. violent crime rate from 1980 to 2014, reveals some interesting trends:
1. A sharp increase in violent crime during the "law and order" Reagan and first Bush years.
2. A sharp and steady improvement during the Clinton administration.
3. A leveling off during the second Bush administration.
4. A return to the Clinton trend toward crime reduction once Obama took office.
In the U.S. there were 365 violent crimes per 100,000 residents in 2014, the lowest in four decades. The trend has been dramatically downward ever since the early 1990's.
Thus, Trump's claim of gross nationwide lawlessness is nothing more that another self-serving fabrication, designed to perpetuate the climate of fear his campaign has shamelessly worked so hard to create.