Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Link between lead and criminal behavior

If you haven't seen it already, may I recommend a fascinating -- and disturbing -- article from Mother Jones:

It's a rather convincing exposition of the thesis that the lead in gasoline was a large factor in the rise in crime in the past decades (and its removal the cause of the subsequent fall).  Of course, the connection isn't simply that anyone who ingests lead becomes a criminal -- more that there's a natural variation in intelligence and impulse control, and the lead in gas was enough to shift that curve sufficiently in the unfortunate direction to results in thousands of extra deaths and billions of dollars in costs.

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