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Childhood Lead Poisoning Leads to Life of Violent Crime

Posted Aug 17 2009 11:23pm

childhood exposure to lead leads to violent crimes It is common knowledge that lead is bad for our health, and our government is trying to protect our children from lead poisoning through the Consumer Product Safety Information Act, however misguided this legislation is.

New research from the University of Cincinnati concludes that kids exposed to lead are more likely to become violent criminals as adults.

Scientists studied 250 children that were exposed to lead in utero and found the adults who had the highest levels of lead in their blood as children had the highest arrest rates as adults.  “These findings provide strong evidence that early lead exposure is a risk factor for criminal behavior, including violent crime.”

Most children are exposed to lead through paint in older homes.  Although lead has not been used in homes since 1978, it is still considered the one of the most serious environmental problems facing America’s children.  There has also been a flurry of toy recalls due to lead in paint over the past couple of years.

Such research linking lead exposure and violence makes one rethink crime in general.  I wonder how many people are sitting in US jails when lead is actually to blame for their criminal behavior.  Lead in gas, paint, toys…there was no escape in the 70s.

Image: Halima Ahkdar on Flick r under a Creative Commons License

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