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Measuring Sin, Statistically


Geographers from Kansas State University took data and derived sin maps for the infamous Seven Deadly Sins.

The darker a county, the more evil it is. What follows is their methodology:

Greed was calculated by comparing average incomes with the total number of inhabitants living beneath the poverty line.

Envy was calculated using the total number of thefts - robbery, burglary, larceny and stolen cars.

Wrath was calculated by comparing the total number of violent crimes - murder, assault and rape - reported to the FBI per capita.

Lust was calculated by compiling the number of sexually transmitted diseases - HIV, AIDS, syphilis, chlamydia and gonorrhea - reported per capita.

Gluttony was calculated by counting the number of fast food restaurants per capita.

Sloth was calculated by comparing expenditures on arts, entertainment and recreation with the rate of employment.

Pride, lastly, is most important. The root of all sins, in this study, is the aggregate of all data. Vought and his Kansas colleagues combined all data from the six other sins and averaged it into an overview of all evil.

Notice how light the midwest is compared to, say, the south. Two lessons to draw from this: don't pick a spouse from Mississippi (see the Lust map and its methodology), and South Carolina is really conflicted.

You might not agree with the reasoning applied, but it's interesting to consider - especially since this is data-driven.

ETC: In the comments, it's suggested that I overlay Indian reservations, so I did that over the pride map, which is the amalgamation of all of the maps.

Yellow marks an Indian reservation. Since there are as many reservations without any correlation to the darker purple as there are with, I'd say the suggestion is a bust.

Some also want to suggest that sin, as measured by the folks in Kansas who assembled the maps, should be indicated by race, but that doesn't explain the darker areas in the upper Midwest or Mountain areas, despite their best efforts in the comments to assert their theory.

I posted this because I thought it was interesting, and while there is a culture in certain parts of the US where danger and crime abound, four of these maps have nothing to do with crime. In short - it's not a race thing. But you can bring your bias toward anything that you do and find some connection if you try hard enough, whether or not the facts merit the connection.


by Brett Rogers, 5/12/2009 3:08:31 PM


The map should be shown relative to race as this has more relevance to these sin measures than geographic location.



Posted by Tim Martin, 4/15/2012 6:22:14 PM

LOL @ Timmy



Posted by Pooby, 4/15/2012 6:31:54 PM

That doesn't pan out, Tim. Explain Lust in South Dakota.

Or Greed in Minnesota as compared to Kentucky.

You should probably think about this a lot more and reconsider your biases. Let facts be your guide, eh?



Posted by Brett Rogers (, 4/15/2012 6:36:26 PM

Brett, I live in Mississippi and be assured if it was calculated on race it would be a drastic difference. If you only figured whites, and I mean true whites, not Latinos or Indians, it would be significantly lower stats on every level. But you know that, don't you.



Posted by Mark, 4/15/2012 7:07:24 PM

Now that I have said that, sin is way too high for all groups, that's why we are being punished much like Sodom and Gomorrah.



Posted by Mark, 4/15/2012 7:11:47 PM

Mark, consider that you, just like every person of every race, is like a filthy rag before God. Were it not for Christ, you wouldn't have anything. I think you're best to leave your racist distinctions at the door, because Jesus certainly is no respecter of persons.

I posted this because I thought it was interesting, and because it suggested that sin wasn't scrubbed up any better in the bible belt. Everyone sins. Live in the grace of God and love like Christ did.



Posted by Brett Rogers (, 4/15/2012 7:17:55 PM

"Pride, lastly, is most important. The root of all sins, in this study, is the aggregate of all data. Vought and his Kansas colleagues combined all data from the six other sins and averaged it into an overview of all evil."

I say that their pride kept them from admitting that they didn't know how to measure pride. They were on a roll and decided to fudge it.

An interesting analysis but as always the devil is in the details. It would nice to be able to zoom in.

Also I notice that record-keeping follows county boundaries. Living, as I do, in far Northern California, I doubt that there is as much difference between the people living in Northwest California and Southwest Oregon as the available statistics suggest - leaving me with some questions about the methodologies.

Having some acquaintance with Arizona I can confirm the explosion of wealth in central Arizona - Scottsdale, mostly - and the aching poverty of the poor Anglos, Latinos and Indios, living in the desert and on the fringes of the cities. Perhaps this explains the increase in theft and conflict on the boundaries of this area.



Posted by Richard Childers, 4/15/2012 8:23:37 PM

Tim is right. As the presidents of France and Germany have stated recently, "Multi-culturism is a failure".



Posted by retiredpara, 4/15/2012 8:50:08 PM

In Australia we have imported millions of blacks and arabs and asians. You used to able to leave your keys in the car at the shopping centre, not anymore! Filth from warzones and ex-slaves? What did people expect.



Posted by bill O'Leary, 4/16/2012 3:36:30 AM

I'll give you a "racist distinction", Brett, and then you can sing Kumbayah at the next Bible study you go to. Half of ALL serious crimes, murder, rape, robbery, and aggravated assault, are committed by blacks, in the US. And your graphics showing each sin on a backdrop of the US lower 48( remember in school, where you heard about "50" states?) mean diddly squat. The Christ you supposedly believe in, "looketh upon the heart". And flash---new bulletin---- Christ died for all, and to take our place for ALL sin debts. The only problem being with sin, is that we have to go to Him and admit our sins, for them to be recognized as such, and for them to fall under the Blood. I could go on, but your routine here is immature, as well as the conclusions. Worried about being racist? Go into East St. Louis, or downtown Detroit, or Dallas, or LA, or any of our inner city heavens with a 60% + population of blacks, after dark, unarmed, and if you live to tell about it, you can report in the morning what a multicultural paradise it is. Know why Christians and Christianity are so loathed and ridiculed by the Left? Because they live in sparkly, everyone-be-nice, and never talk about anything difficult land.



Posted by Sean, 4/16/2012 11:14:10 AM

Do an overlay of Indian Reservations west of the Mississippi.



Posted by Tater, 4/16/2012 11:54:35 AM

Sean, the reason Christians are loathed by the left is not because we live in a sanitized world. We know that evil exists in the world and it doesn't matter what race you are. The left despises Christians because they don't want a God to tell them that the lifestyle they are living is taking them to Hell. People want to do what they want to do and don't want someone telling them that it is wrong. Other than the fact that I don't wish Hell on anyone, I don't care what you do with your life. Just don't try and tell me that same sex marriage is "normal". Or that "truth is relative". I won't try and force my religion on you. Just know that Jesus did die to save EVERYONE from a sinful life. But you have to accept that gift to get it.



Posted by Bruce (, 4/17/2012 3:10:23 PM

That doesn't pan out, Tim. Explain Lust in South Dakota.

Bad methodology. All the bestiality in South Dakota is skewing the STD numbers.



Posted by E.H. Munro (, 7/10/2012 1:19:30 PM

Several maps show a high contrast over state boundaries (one state is markedly different than an adjacent state). This indicates a notable reporting problem rather than a disparity in crime rate, making the map pretty much useless.



Posted by grant, 2/8/2014 10:26:40 AM

Compare the wrath map to the map in support or oppostion to was with ISIS... Some parts correlate and others don't, so what are the factors for those who don't? Is there a way to test those hypotheses?



Posted by tuvoca, 2/3/2015 9:57:18 PM

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