Why is Latin America So Violent?

Top 10 National Homicide Rates per Million Persons

It is important to look at national homicides both as a rate — see above — and in total — see below. By either measure, Latin American nations have significant representation in top 10 murder-by-nation statistics. Looking at rates per million or rates per hundred thousand allows a fair comparison of nations with small populations against nations with large populations.

Top 10 Homicide Raw Count by Nation

Global Homicide Rate Map

Portraying national homicide rates on a global map allows for a more visual comparison, which is sometimes easier to understand on a visceral level.

Global Murder Rate

Violent Crime Rates by City

Finally, looking at violent crime in general — on the city level — allows one to pinpoint foci of violence, and places that might best be avoided.

Why is Latin America so Violent?

Genetics of Violence Plus Environmental Factors

Genetics of violence

According to a meta-analysis on data from 24 genetically informative studies, up to 50% of the total variance in aggressive behavior is explained by genetic influences.

… Both our genotype and the environmental factors to which we are exposed to throughout life contribute to shaping our brain functions. Changes in the expression of specific genes in the brain -such as MAOA, DAT1 and DRS2- can affect neurotransmitter levels, which, in turn, influences complex functions such as intelligence, mood and memory. __ The Genetics of Violent Behavior


When the Spanish and Portuguese moved into Latin America, they came to plunder and enslave. The conquistadors represented some of the most rapacious and unscrupulous qualities within the Spanish culture of the time. Their genes, which helped support those character traits, were mixed with the genes of indigenous peoples — themselves not always the most placid of tribal people. In fact, the most dangerous period of the Americas was the time before the Europeans arrived.

Mixing the violent genes of the conquistadors and other early Spanish plunderers with the violent genes of indigenous American peoples would certainly have provided descendants with an abundance of violent genes from diverse sources.

Environmental Factors of Violence

In Latin America, violent crime is spurred by a multitude of environmental factors — including poverty, a macho culture of violence, high rates of illegitimacy, etc. But we should not overlook the drug trade, which channels large flows of cash to violent drug cartels and gangs from Colombia into Central America and the Caribbean, to Mexico and the US.

Consider the combined effects of violent genes with the many environmental factors predisposing to violence. Seen in that broader sense, perhaps it is not so difficult to understand why Latin America is so violent.

Sub Saharan Africa is not Chopped Liver

In the global violence sweepstakes, sub Saharan Africa has nothing to be ashamed of. In fact, if black African nations kept better crime statistics, it is likely that they would hold their own with Latin American nations. And we should not overlook the impact of the violent African genes that made their way to Latin America on slave ships of Spain and Portugal. Those genes are now firmly ensconced within populations of Brazil, Venezuela, Colombia, and many nations of Central America and the Caribbean — nations that coincidentally have high rates of violent crime.

A quick glance at visual and tabular comparisons of national violent crime rates reveals the parallels between Latin America and black Africa in that regard.

What Should Be Done About High Crime Nations?

At the very least, immigration from such countries should be severely limited, by more advanced nations. All civilised methods for making life within the nations of origin more humane should be pursued — as long as such methods do not lead to population surges. In the end, every population must find its own level, which it is capable of sustaining on its own.

More extreme measures such as building walls around the most violent cities, or screening for violent genes and then attempting to limit procreation among such individuals, are unacceptable for many reasons.

Hope for the Best… Prepare for the Worst

Dangerous Children and Dangerous Communities will provide robust resilience and anti-fragility inside more advanced nations — and inside protected enclaves within emerging and less advanced nations. Ultimately, as the chaos unleashed by post-modern multicultural immigration policies unfolds, existing nations will collapse and divide, with significant areas of the world undergoing rapid and long-term change of control — or lacking significant control or rule of law altogether.

Eventually off-planet settlements and colonies are likely to spread out, and even more niches of the planet Earth will be settled by free people. Change is inevitable, but not doom.

Remember, it is never too late to have a Dangerous Childhood © .

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2 Responses to Why is Latin America So Violent?

  1. Abelard Lindsey says:

    What about Lead as an environmental factor for violence. The Mexicans removed Leaded gasoline only around 2000 or so. Do the other countries (Brazil, Columbia, Venezuela) still use Leaded gasoline? The two major sources of Lead are Leaded gasoline and Leaded paints.

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