Approaching 35,000 Incremental Homicides And Traffic Fatalities In 2020-2022 Compared To 2018-19 Baseline Average
09/09/2023
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A friend asked how many incremental deaths have there been due to the Floyd Effect? 3,000?

Nah, it’s more like 36,000, according to a simplistic methodology that takes CDC death counts for homicides and motor vehicle accidents for the years 2020-2022 and compares them them to how many there would have been if the average of 2018-19 had been maintained for the first three years of the 2020s. I come up with 2020 to 2022 having seen 36,042 additional Deaths of Exuberance (killings and car crashes) than if the death toll had stayed at the same annual rate as in 2018-2019.

That’s a pretty big number.

These 36,000 incremental deaths are divided pretty equally into extra homicides and extra traffic fatalities. And they are about equally split into incremental black deaths and incremental all other deaths. (Note that the Totals below include deaths of Pacific Islanders, American Indians, and persons of mixed race in addition to the major categories listed.)

The Floyd Effect            
Homicide Deaths            
Year Period Total Black White Hispanic Asian
2018 Pre 18,830 9,469 5,460 3,045 263
2019 Pre 19,141 9,951 5,176 3,122 292
2020 Post 24,576 13,493 6,143 3,920 289
2021 Post 26,031 14,313 6,215 4,453 313
2022 Post 24,830 13,225 5,975 4,480 310
             
Total 2018-19   37,971 19,420 10,636 6,167 555
Total 2020-22   75,437 41,031 18,333 12,853 912
Avg 2018-19   18,986 9,710 5,318 3,084 278
Avg 2020-22   25,146 13,677 6,111 4,284 304
Incr in Avg Deaths / Year   6,160 3,967 793 1,201 27
% Incr in Avg   32% 41% 15% 39% 10%
Incremental Deaths 2020-22 vs. 2018-19 Avg   18,481 11,901 2,379 3,603 80
Share of Incremental     64% 13% 19% 0%
             

Motor Vehicle Accident Deaths

           
Year Period Total Black White Hispanic Asian
2018 Pre 39,404 6,140 25,095 6,123 837
2019 Pre 39,107 6,196 24,770 6,165 824
2020 Post 42,339 7,882 25,402 7,059 790
2021 Post 46,980 8,583 27,805 8,143 932
2022 Post 46,009 7,815 27,234 8,422 979
             
Total 2018-19   78,511 12,336 49,865 12,288 1,661
Total 2020-22   135,328 24,280 80,441 23,624 2,701
Avg 2018-19   39,256 6,168 24,933 6,144 831
Avg 2020-22   45,109 8,093 26,814 7,875 900
Incr in Avg Deaths / Year   5,854 1,925 1,881 1,731 70
% Incr in Avg   15% 31% 8% 28% 8%
Incremental Deaths 2020-22 vs. 2018-19 Avg   17,562 5,776 5,644 5,192 210
Share of Incremental     33% 32% 30% 1%
             
Homicide + Road Deaths            
Year Period Total Black White Hispanic Asian
2018 Pre 58,234 15,609 30,555 9,168 1,100
2019 Pre 58,248 16,147 29,946 9,287 1,116
2020 Post 66,915 21,375 31,545 10,979 1,079
2021 Post 73,011 22,896 34,020 12,596 1,245
2022 Post 70,839 21,040 33,209 12,902 1,289
             
Total 2018-19   116,482 31,756 60,501 18,455 2,216
Total 2020-22   210,765 65,311 98,774 36,477 3,613
Avg 2018-19   58,241 15,878 30,251 9,228 1,108
Avg 2020-22   70,255 21,770 32,925 12,159 1,204
Incr in Avg Deaths / Year   12,014 5,892 2,674 2,932 96
% Incr in Avg   21% 37% 9% 32% 9%
Incremental Deaths 2020-22 vs. 2018-19 Avg   36,042 17,677 8,023 8,795 289
Share of Incremental     49% 22% 24% 1%
Yes, it would have been simpler to just compare 2020-22 to the three years 2017-19, but the CDC made a methodological change between 2017 and 2018 in going from four races to six races (splitting Pacific Islanders out from Asians and adding “multiracial“). So I just used the CDC’s data from 2018 onward to make an apples to apples comparison of 2020-22 to 2018-19.

Second, I didn’t bother adjusting for the modest population change during these years.

Third, the Floyd Effect didn’t begin on January 1, 2020, like I assume, but on May 25, 2020. Motor vehicle accident deaths weren’t up much in 2020 compared to previous years before Floyd Day. But black homicide deaths, after falling quite a bit in 2018 with the end of the Ferguson Effect under the Sessions Justice Department, began to creep upward again partway through 2019 and were rising in early 2020 before COVID and also during early COVID, before exploding in the last week of May during the first of the Mostly Peaceful Protests.

But graphing weekly data of black deaths, there’s no doubt that the Floyd Effect is closely linked to the demise of George Floyd and the subsequent cultural revolution. As you may recall, the “racial reckoning” was in all the papers at the time.

So, the fairest estimate of incremental deaths due to the Floyd Effect in 2020-2022 might be “approaching 35,000.” The Floyd Effect is no doubt continuing to pile up more incremental deaths in 2023, although homicides appear to be dropping (but are still well above the 2018-2019 rate).

Approaching 35,000 is quite a few deaths, especially among fairly young people with a lot of life expectancy left. It’s very similar to American deaths in the Korean War of 36,516, and more than five times the total deaths in the Iraq and Afghanistan Wars combined.

[Note: In CDC data, “homicides” refer to homicide victimizations, not homicide perpetrations.]

[Comment at Unz.com]

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