America Makes You Violent

Wednesday, August 13th, 2014

Using the data collected by the National Epidemiologic Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions interviews, researchers uncovered the Immigrant Paradox — immigrants are less antisocial than native-born Americans:

Immigrant Antisocial

Immigrant Antisocial by Origin

The most intriguing aspect of this study, however, barely made the press reports, T. Greer notes — America makes you violent:

In these analyses, we wanted to examine whether the age of immigration altered the relationship between immigrant status and nonviolent and violent antisocial behavior. We contrasted these relationships among individuals who had immigrated before the age of 13 and after the age of 13.

Controlling for all the same factors presented in our main findings, immigrants who came to the United States at the age of 12 or younger were significantly more likely to report involvement in at least one of the violent (AOR=2.01, 95 % CI=1.87–2.15) or nonviolent (AOR=1.80, 95 % CI=1.71–1.89) antisocial behaviors as compared with immigrants who arrived at the age of 13 or older.

However, when compared to native-born Americans, immigrants who arrived as children or arrived at the age of 13 or older are still significantly less likely to take part in violent and nonviolent antisocial behavior than Native-born Americans, though the latter group begins to somewhat resemble the native-born behaviorally.

Finally, for all immigrants regardless of age, we estimated what each year in the US translates to with respect to an increased probability of reporting an antisocial act. Results showed that each additional year an immigrant has lived in the United States is associated with a 1.9 % increase in the likelihood of violence and a 0.9 % increase in the likelihood of nonviolent antisociality.


  1. Cassander says:

    Rates of mental illness of all varieties in the US are one or two orders of higher than anywhere else. A lot of that is overdiagnosis, but the difference is too large to be just that. People who choose to emigrate to a different country are, by definition, weird.

    During the famine, Irish clans would get together and, if there wasn’t enough of a harvest to go around, literally vote families off the island and send them to America. The population of the US is descended from people like that. We should expect considerably higher levels of anti-social behavior.

  2. Barnabas says:

    This seems to contradict all crime data broken down by race that I’ve seen in quoted in NRx circles.

  3. Isegoria says:

    First-generation immigrants behave differently from their Americanized offspring.

  4. Barnabas says:

    Like this

  5. Barnabas says:

    It’s not the before and after of Americanization that is odd. That is probably to be expected if you accept the theory that immigration skims a relative elite from various contries and then the kids revert to the mean and learn antisocial behavior from their peers. The odd thing is the racial distribution of the violent and antisocial behavior. Chinatown should be a lot more scary than it is.

  6. Isegoria says:

    “Forget it, Jake. It’s Chinatown.”

  7. Tim says:

    MS-13 not withstanding.

  8. Alrenous says:

    Apparently Asians are non-violently antisocial far out of proportion to their IQ and criminality. That might be kind of relevant.

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