Falling Crime Rate in America

Falling Crime Rate in America


The crime rate in America has exhibited a decline over the pastcouple of decades. The justice department is punishing fewer peoplethan it did ten years ago, and there are prospects of the trendcontinuing. There are obvious reasons for this social trend like thegovernment increased spending on training and equipping of lawenforcers as well as using technology to curb crime (Farrell, 2013).Others include a decentralized security system in the country and theintensified policing that makes citizens important participants inthe security system. Criminologists and social scientists try tounderstand this unusual trend by employing different theories.

Researchers believe that crime rate in America begun showing anegative trend in the early 90s. The most observable decreasehappened between 1993 and 2011. Total violent crime rate experienceda decline by seventy percent during the period. The cases of burglaryand break-ins continued to drop since 1970 trough the 1990s. Thenegative pattern is attributable to increased security and use oftechnology-based anti-burglary methods in homes. Murder and robberydropped by half in the period between the year 1991-1998, and thissaved many potential victims of the two atrocities (Geoghegan, 2011). However, crime has not dropped across the board since the newtechnology comes with inflating cases of cyber crime. As peoplebecome interact with computers, they identify loopholes in otherpeople`s websites and online accounts.

The Obama effect theory is a premise used by many criminologists toexplain the fall in crime cases. Criminologists term the election ofa black president as a major turnaround for many youngAfrican-American youths who used to find themselves on the wrong sideof the law. According to Geoghegan (2011) the black dominated statesincluding Arizona and Phoenix recorded a negative trend inatrocities.

Secondly, the fall in demand for the crack theory is a premise formany social scientists. From the early 1990s, aggressing policing andtightened grips against the use and sale of crack aborted many gunviolence cases associated with its supply (Geoghegan, 2011).

In his book, The Crime Drop in America, Blumstein &amp Wallman(2006) gives the example of the intensified incarcerations of thedealers in 1985 when the young and violent youths dominated themarkets. He contrasts this with the suppressed dealing in 1990 whenthe gangs went underground and had their violence curtailed by theauthorities (Blumstein &amp Wallman, 2006).

Some scientists also incline to the theory of smart policing wherebythe security agents involve the citizens by educating them on theroles they can play to enhance their safety. A distinct case ofpolicing in Texas helped to cut down car theft case by 40%(Geoghegan, 2011). They also acquaint citizens with the rapidactions that they can engage in the event of crime for a faster andefficient response to the local security agents. As Blumstein &ampWallman (2006) put it, since its inception, citizens have changedtheir attitude towards their safety, and they now see it as part oftheir social responsibility,

Although smart policing cannot bear desirable results in alienationof other security procedures, it stands out among the rest for itsapproach to devolving safety responsibility to the citizens.Blumstein is of the take that criminals exists among the people andthe idea of behind watched from every side dissuades people fromdeviant behavior (Blumstein &amp Wallman, 2006).

Sometimes, people feel like there is so much crime in the societyeven after the drastic falls in atrocities (Farrell, 2013). Thereason behind this is that access to information from various mediamarks the state of the current society. Some of the crimes like drugdealing and murder tend to be amplified since they do not occur sooften for people to consider them as a norm. When they are aired tothe public, the notation nothing the society is still deep in crimebuilds in individuals. Each of the theories used by social scientistscannot singly purport to be the sole answer to the changing crimetrends in America. However, when used together, they are a crediblereference to the current situation in the society.


Blumstein, A., &ampWallman, J. (2006). The Crime Drop in America. New York N.Y.:Cambridge University Press.

Farrell, G. (2013).Five tests for a theory of the crime drop. Crime Science,2(1), 1-8.

Geoghegan,T.(2011, 21 June). U.S Crime Figures: Why the Drop? BBC. Retrieved on 28 Sept. fromhttp://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-13799616