10 Unknown Facts about United States of America

In this post I will share 10 Unknown Facts about United States of America.

I have been to US once. Way back in 2007 for 6 months or so. And honestly, my impression was not  that good and I made a promise to myself that I would never go to US again.

And I never did.

Yet I have always found US to be a fascinating country - a country of extreme contrasts:
  • tall buildings but no housing for the homeless, 
  • colossal wastage of food while many scavenge the waste-bin for left-overs (I saw this is New York) 
  • selling Arms to Pakistan and then supporting a War against terror of Pakistani terrorists and so on.

On the one hand they pretend to be fair, but when push comes to shove the American guy always "wins" with the systems help.

In one life-defining moment, I discovered the deep-seated prejudices of Americans. I found the local people very paranoid - we were visiting a lake somewhere as tourists in Whippany/ Parsipanny (can't recall) and some locals complained to the police [911 call] of "suspicious" people near the lake. The police came and questioned us - asked for our passports, what we were doing here and so on and so forth. It was a good lesson on American racism.

I have spent 7 years in Africa (Nigeria and Kenya) and 1 year in Zurich (and other European cities) and found them much more friendly and hospitable.

So yes I am a bit biased against the wastage, crony capitalism, consumerism, racism and pseudo-socialism prevalent in USA.

Anyway here are some unknown and amazing facts about USA.

1. 44 million Americans live in poverty.
Unknown Facts about America Poverty
Source: addictinginfo

2. US has among the HIGHEST rapes per capita rates in the world (273 rapes per million). India which is much maligned is 10x lesser compared to US (40 rapes per million)

Source: Unodc, 2012

Please note that the above numbers are only reported numbers. RAINN asserts that from 2000 to 2005, 59% of rapes were not reported to law enforcement. For college students, the figure was 95% in 2000.

Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rape_statistics

3. Three million more US children in poverty since onset of Great Recession.
Unknown Facts about America Children Poverty
Source: aljazeera

4. US has among the highest child abuse in the world, comparable only to Saudi Arabia, Pakistan and Afghanistan.

Unknown Facts about America Child Abuse

A variety of risk factors have been associated with child maltreatment, including child health and disability status, caregiver substance abuse, intimate partner or domestic violence, and poverty.

Image Source: mchb.hrsa.gov

5. Poverty rates have nearly doubled among African-Americans and American Indians since 2008.

Unknown Facts about America Poor Native Americans
Source: http://mendotadakota.com/mn/video-native-american-poverty-in-the-us-2/

6. 47% of patients with dementia (mostly old people) had been mistreated by caregivers

Unknown Facts about America Dementia
Source: http://www.beckerlaw.com/legal-services/nursing-home-abuse-lawyer/

7. 1 in 9 Americans over 60 has experienced abuse [Senior Citizen Abuse]

Unknown Facts about America Elder Abuse
Source: http://ageinplace.com/elder-abuse-2/elder-abuse-statistics-silent-epidemic-infographic/

8. Drug Abuse - 5% of US population consumes 75% of world's drugs
Unknown Facts about America Prescription Drug Abuse

Source [Link Not Available Now]: www.drugabuse.gov

Other resource: Prescription Drug Abuse in America

9. If smoking continues at the current rate among U.S. youth, 5.6 million of today’s Americans younger than 18 years of age are expected to die prematurely from a smoking-related illness. This represents about one in every 13 Americans aged 17 years or younger who are alive today.
Source: www.cdc.gov

Unknown Facts about America Teen Smoking
Image Source: http://www.foxnews.com/health/2015/01/27/why-do-teens-still-smoke-on-addiction-advertising-and-rise-e-cigarettes.html

India has amongst the lowest smoking rates per capita especially among teenagers. Yet India  has the strictest anti-smoking laws and the Indian government is systematically killing cigarette manufacturers like ITC and VST.

10. Divorce Rates - US has among the highest divorce rates world wide (3.6 crude divorce rate) which is the number of divorces per 1,000 population. India does not feature in the list because of very low number of divorces of account of traditional value systems which US doesn't have.

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  1. True indeed..it is never a land of milk and honey as imagined by many...

  2. Very interesting facts, didn't know most of them. Thanks for sharing! :)


  3. And people have to choose their president from a Donkey or a Elephant :) { Logo of Democratic & the Republican Party }


  4. Thanks for such interesting and lesser known facts.. Any Indian would not prefer turning to westernization after reading it.

  5. I have lived in the US for about 15 years. I think we can't really generalise any nation or society though some broad observations/trends about their social-cultural way of life can be clearly discerned. Perhaps my experiences were more positive than yours (doesn't mean that I can't point negative experiences there - but that I can point to about my life here in India also, before and after my US experience), but one thing I also learned there is that American govt's policies aren't really the views of many American people. And this too is true that if I had really felt 'at home' there, I wouldn't have returned to India :)

    1. Very well said.

      I very much like and agree to your comment: " I think we can't really generalise any nation or society though some broad observations/trends about their social-cultural way of life can be clearly discerned."

      That's why what I have done is to "reverse the gaze" [using a Rajiv Malhotra phrase] on US. American's have a habit of sterotyping Indians based on sweeping generalizations, I have done the same in the reverse direction. :)


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