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.