I’ve always been a fan of the Harper’s Index. The juxtaposition of various stats can create some striking insights. Here are some numbers that caught my attention recently.
37 — The number of lynchings in Ouachita Parish from 1877 to 1950, where Huey Newton (co-founder of the Black Panthers) grew up.
64 — The number of parishes in Louisiana. (Other states refer to their geographic units as counties.)
4 — Number of people lynched in Duluth history. In 1918 Olli Kinkkonen was lynched for renouncing his citizenship because he refused to fight in World War I. (Authorities declared his death a suicide and no one was charged.) In 1920, three African-American circus workers — Elias Clayton, Elmer Jackson, and Isaac McGhie — were lynched. There were arrested along with several others on the basis of a rumor. A mob of more than a thousand broke into the jail, extricated these three, and hung the on a streetlight pole. All four of the deceased are buried in Park Hill Cemetery.
4,743 — Number of people lynched in the U.S. from 1882 to 1968, according to the Tuskegee Institute.
73 — Percentage of these lynchings that were blacks.
3,536 — Number of fatal, unintentional drownings in U.S. per year from 2005–2014. (Source: Center for Disease Control data.)
20 — Percentage of these that are children under age 14, or 707 per year average.
113 — Number of people killed or injured in school shootings in the U.S. in 2018, the worst year on record. (Source: BBC)
62 — Average number of deaths per year from bee, wasp and hornet stings. (Source: CDC)
214 — Number of children killed in a recent year by drunk drivers. (Source:CDC)
1,233 — Number of children killed in car accidents total, same year.
10,497 — Number of people killed in 2016 due to alcohol impairment, 29 per day.
14,000 — Number of troops deployed in Afghanistan still.
5,000 — Troops deployed in Iraq.
1,000 — Total number of troops in Syria.
37,950 — Number of troops deployed in Germany.
28,500 — U.S. troops in South Korea.
53,900 — Number of troops deployed in Japan.
The inspiration for this list came from being struck by the first number cited above. Sometimes number can be quite striking.
The source for the last batch of numbers was an editorial in today’s paper by Marc A. Thiessen.