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Monday, December 09, 2019 {{ new Date().getDay() }}

WASHINGTON (AFP) – Violent crime in the United States remained close to two-decade lows last year but the murder rate was higher than in virtually all other developed countries, official figures showed Monday.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) said that violent crime inched up 0.7 percent in 2012 from the previous year, while property crime fell by 0.9 percent.

The figures were broadly in line with a decline in crime since 1993. While the annual report did not assess reasons for the trend, experts point to the end of the country’s epidemic of crack use in the early 1990s.

The survey said 14,827 people were murdered last year in the United States, well down from 24,526 in 1993, when the country’s population was smaller.

But the 2012 murder rate — 4.7 murders per 100,000 people — was significantly higher than in most other wealthy nations.

The comparable rate is 0.4 in Japan, 0.8 in Germany, 1.0 in Australia 1.1 in France and 1.2 in Britain, according to figures compiled by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development.

Among nations assessed by the Paris-based club of market economies, only Brazil, Estonia, Mexico and Russia had higher murder rates.

However, when looking only at the rate of people assaulted or mugged, the United States had a lower rate than any country except Canada and Japan, according to the same OECD index.

The United States is one of the world’s most heavily-armed nations, with between one-third and one-half of Americans owning guns and strong political resistance to regulations on ownership.

The survey showed that violent crime rates tended to be higher in the historic South and lower in the Northeast and Midwest.

However, the Federal Bureau of Investigation cautioned against ranking areas by crime, saying that the rough statistics do not account for variables in communities.

Democratic nominee Joe Biden speaking in Manitowoc, WI

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Today in Manitowoc, Wisconsin, Joe Biden spoke about the toll of coronavirus, which has now officially passed 200,000. "What worries me now is we've been living with this pandemic for so long, I worry we're risking becoming numb to the toll that it's taken on us," the Democratic nominee warned. "We can't let that happen."

How did that happen? How did America lose 200,000 people to a horrendous death, with no end in sight? That tragedy can be traced directly to a vacuum of leadership in the White House, as Biden remarked. But he also saw behind that lack of presidential fortitude to its deeper cause: Donald Trump simply never cared how many of us die and he still doesn't. The evidence is in Trump's own behavior at his "superspreader rallies" – where he always protects himself while leaving his own followers to risk illness and worse.

Watch Biden describe the moral emptiness inside this president.