How To Die In America

I am fascinated with this CDC study about “distinctive causes of death” around the country. It’s not the main cause of death, but rather the cause of death that stands out relative to the national average. In Tennessee, the most distinctive cause of death is gun accidents — no shocker there. But I have to wonder about some other states. Hey Utah Nevada, “legal intervention”? Really? Are we talking death by cop and capital punishment here? North Carolina’s is “nutritional deficiencies” and if you think it’s repugnant that anyone would die of malnutrition in modern America, especially a good “Christian” Southern state like North Carolina, then please raise your hand.

cause of death


Filed under weird stuff

9 responses to “How To Die In America

  1. Prup (aka Jim Benton)

    Actually, Beale, I’d really like to know more of what this chart means before commenting. You point out that NC lists ‘nutritional deficiencies’ — but so do Vermont (the least religious state of all) and NH. And while LA lists “Syphilis” without a better understanding of what is meant by the listing, I can’t even tease some of my favorite LA bloggers about it.

    I sounds like ‘fun weird stuff’ but does it actually mean anything?

    • OK so it doesn’t mean the #1 cause of death in your state (I think that’s heart disease and cancer pretty much everywhere). I took it to mean the #1 cause of death that’s beyond national norms.

      I noticed Hawaii also had nutritional deficiencies, which I found interesting. I could understand Vermont and NH, which have short growing seasons and whatnot so maybe certain nutrients are hard to come by over large parts of the year but Hawaii has a year-round growing season so it’s not like a Vitamin C deficiency would be an issue. People out there have lemon trees growing in their yards, it’s like honeysuckle here.

  2. Actually, it’s Arizona, Nevada, and Oregon that have “legal intervention” as their distinctive cause of death. Utah is in the “unspecified” category. Somehow, I don’t find it too surprising that Idaho and Alaska have vehicular accidents as the most distinctive cause of death.

  3. Don’t know what criteria were used for the report. This:

    puts TN in a non-enviable grouping with TX, AZ and some other gunzloony places for homicides and homicides by gun.

    This one:

    paints an unflattering portrait of the South in general. Thank GOD they got so many gunz–otherwise it’d be worser!

  4. CB

    I have to wonder, when my state’s *distinctive* cause(s) of death is “symptoms, signs and clinical and laboratory findings, not elsewhere classified.” Hmmmmmm. Also, it made me snort, just a little. Does that mean Georgia gets the diversity award, for having stuff happen to us that just doesn’t happen anywhere else?

    • democommie

      Don’t you folks lead the country in lightning strikes and spontaneous combustions? I know it’s one of the states that luvs em some JESUS!

  5. CB

    “New Mexico’s most distinctive cause of death was “legal intervention.” This means New Mexico’s most distinctive cause of death from 2001 to 2010 came through interactions from law enforcement officers, using data from the CDC and the website of Wide-ranging Online Data for Epidemiologic Research.”

  6. Wow – Florida – HIV …. not CA – land of fruits and nuts, or NY – capital of libruls, but Floriduh. Hmmmm ….
    Not surprised to see what is probably “black lung” cited for my state of Ky. The other two big deep mine coal states – PA and WV – listed too.