Liz Goodwin, Yahoo! News, April 24, 2012
Maine is the most peaceful state in America and Louisiana the least, according to rankings by an Australian think tank called the Institute for Economics and Peace.
The rankings are based on the prevalence of violent crimes, homicides, police employees, size of the prison population and small arms availability.
Maine, Vermont, New Hampshire, Minnesota and Utah were the top five most peaceful states. Louisiana was the least peaceful, followed by Tennessee, Nevada, Florida and Arizona.
The Cambridge-Newton-Framingham area of Massachusetts ranked as the most peaceful metro area, while Detroit-Livonia-Dearborn was ranked the least peaceful.
The report estimates that the average taxpayer pays $3,257 per year on violence and violence containment, while the total economic cost is $460 billion. The cost of violence includes the health costs of victims of violent crimes and homicides, incarceration costs and other factors.