Janet Lee

Janet Lee
Photo:Janet Lee, injured by a taxi partition.

Sunday, April 06, 2014

What is a deadlier assault risk? US Combat or US Cab Driving?


There has been a long lasting 'war on drugs' in the US... for decades. It is not unfair to call 'cab driving' territory, the 'front line' of that war, or where the most fatal assault occurs.
Are drug addled US addicts more effective at killing than AlQuida?
Here is an answer to the question; "Which is deadlier... war or cab driving?"
The casualty rate in the military has consistently dropped in the US from the Revolutionary war to where we are today. For the latest statistics we have - 2008, there were 1,441 deaths out of 1,683,144 active duty. Of those deaths, however, only 352 were from hostile action, and 43 by homicide - a total of 395 out of 1,683,144, or .023%. The rest were from illness or accident.
By contrast 154,000 active Full Time (I'm including only full time drivers, to match the criteria in the military statistics, but this ALSO includes limo drivers). taxicab and limousine drivers were counted in the 2000 Census and during the same year, an astonishing 49 murders were reported (it is suspected that 49 is lower than the actual number). So the murder rate for full time taxi drivers in the US is .032%.
So for individuals who willingly entered into combat, the death rate is 0.023%, while the murder rate for an individual who signed up to transport people from one place to another so they could support their families is 0.032%.
It is worth noting that combat slain soldiers' loved ones get benefits. Cab drivers do not. Although the honors bestowed on military slain are not enough. My brother suffered from the effects of agent orange. Not enough can be done for these people who sacrificed their health and sometimes their lives.
In the past when a cab driver was killed, newspaper reports often cited a theory that the driver may or may not have angered the passenger prior to the assault. Many assaults were scrutinized by the police to get an understanding of whether or not... the assault was 'provoked'. Often the first question by the police was, "Did the driver do anything to anger the assailant?" There was an unspoken suspicion that some drivers brought it on themselves, by being rude or by overcharging.
I contend that if cab drivers follow the example of New Orleans, the fatal assault rate would be so small, it will be difficult to quantify such small numbers.
In New Orleans, there were 13 killed in 3 years, 94-97. When the newspapers stopped the tear-jerking stories about the poor, witless, vulnerable cab driver who was so easily slain, in a remote area, for a large amount of cash, and only wrote stories where cab drivers PREVAILED in fatal assault attempts, four drivers were shot at, from 97-2003. Three times drivers returned fire. Two attackers were slain. No charges against any drivers for weapon violations. The cab driver murder rate dropped to zero for 13 years, in the deadliest US occupation, in the deadliest US city.