Did Removing Lead from Petrol Spark a Decline in Crime?

Dominic Casciani, BBC News, April 20, 2014

Many Western nations have experienced significant declines in crime in recent decades, but could the removal of lead from petrol explain that?

Working away in his laboratory in 1921, Thomas Midgley wanted to fuel a brighter tomorrow. He created tetraethyl lead–a compound that would make car engines more efficient than ever.

But did the lead that we added to our petrol do something so much worse? Was it the cause of a decades-long crime wave that is only now abating as the poisonous element is removed from our environment?

For most of the 20th Century crime rose and rose and rose. Every time a new home secretary took office in the UK–or their equivalents in justice and interior ministries elsewhere–officials would show them graphs and mumble apologetically that there was nothing they could do to stop crime rising.

Then, about 20 years ago, the trend reversed–and all the broad measures of key crimes have been falling ever since.

Offending has fallen in nations whose governments have implemented completely different policies to their neighbours.

If your nation locks up more criminals than the average, crime has fallen. If it locks up fewer . . . crime has fallen. Nobody seems to know for sure why.

But there are some people that believe the removal of lead from petrol was a key factor.

Lead can be absorbed into bones, teeth and blood. It causes kidney damage, inhibits body growth, causes abdominal pain, anaemia and can damage the nervous system. More than a century ago, a royal commission recommended to British ministers that women shouldn’t work in lead-related industry because of damage to their reproductive organs.

By the 1970s, studies showed that children could even be poisoned by chewing fingernails harbouring tiny flecks of old leaded paint from their homes and schools.

Studies have shown that exposure to lead during pregnancy reduces the head circumference of infants. In children and adults, it causes headaches, inhibits IQ and can lead to aggressive or dysfunctional behaviour.

If you want to understand the causes of crime–and be tough on them–you need to start with lead, says Dr Bernard Gesch, a physiologist at Oxford University who has studied the effect of diet and other environmental factors on criminals.

“Lead is a very potent neurotoxin,” says Gesch. “It has a range of effects on the brain that have been demonstrated through hundreds of different biological studies. Lead alters the formation of the brain. It reduces the grey matter in areas responsible for things such as impulse control and executive functioning–meaning thinking and planning.”

In other words–lead poisoning leads to bad decisions. The lead theorists say the poison has a time-lag effect which could not be understood until recently.

In the early 1990s, economist and housing consultant Rick Nevin was pondering whether it would be worth the US spending vast sums cleaning leaded paint out of old housing in American cities. By then, everyone knew that lead did bad stuff to the brain and took years to leave the body.

And that got Nevin thinking. Would the accumulation of lead over time play a role in behaviour that would ultimately become criminal? Nevin calculated the rise and fall of the presence of lead from petrol and he compared that curve to the modern history of violent crime. What he came up with was rather startling.

When the amount of lead in the environment increased, Nevin showed a corresponding rise in violent crime two decades later. And when the amount of lead in the environment fell, violent crime also tracked down–again about 20 years later.

Was this a one-off, freak statistical result? Where was the proof that lead had actually caused crime?

Fourteen years ago, Prof Jessica Wolpaw-Reyes, an economist at Amherst College Massachusetts, was pregnant and doing what many expectant mothers do–learning about the risks to her unborn child’s health. She started to read up on lead in the environment and, like Nevin before her, began pondering its link to crime.

“Everyone was trying to understand why crime was going down,” she recalls. “So I wanted to test if there was a causal link between lead and violent crime and the way I did that was to look at the removal of leaded petrol from US states in the 1970s, to see if that could be linked to patterns of crime reduction in the 1990s.”

Wolpaw-Reyes gathered lead data from each state, including figures for gasoline sales. She plotted the crime rates in each area and then used common statistical techniques to exclude other factors that could cause crime. Her results backed the lead-crime hypothesis.

“There is a substantial causal relationship,” she says. “I can see it in the state-to-state variations. States that experienced particularly early or particularly sharp declines in lead experienced particularly early or particularly sharp declines in violent crime 20 years later.”

She says her research also established different levels of crime in states with high and low lead rates.

Nevin’s original research pointed to lead poisoning in childhood increasing the likelihood of offending by the time someone had reached their teens or early twenties. Wolpaw-Reyes’ data appeared to show that anti-pollution legislation in the US then reversed that trend on a state-by-state basis.

“Lead changes who we are,” she says. “If you wanted to say, Jessica, I don’t believe that story, then my answer is that you need to come up with another story that would explain why we have found this particular pattern to lead in the 1970s and 80s and then crime in the 1990s and 2000s.

“Moreover you need to be able to show why this relationship is now coming up in other work on bullying, child behaviour problems, teenage delinquency, suicide and substance abuse. You need to tell a story about why those would be linked by chance.”

Since then, the data for the lead theorists has become more and more detailed. Nevin and his supporters predicted that crime would fall in other nations 20 years after the banning of leaded petrol–and their theory appears to have played out in Europe.

Leaded petrol was removed from British engines later than in North America–and the crime rate in the UK began to fall later than in the US and Canada.

Lead theorists say that data they’ve collated and calculated from each nation shows the same 20-year trend–the sooner lead is removed from the environment, the sooner crime will begin to fall.

Dr Bernard Gesch says the data now suggests that lead could account for as much as 90% of the changing crime rate during the 20th Century across all of the world.

“A lot of people would say that correlation isn’t cause,” he says. “But it seems that the more the exposure, the more extreme the behaviour. I’m certainly not saying that lead is the only explanation why crime is falling–but it is certainly the most persuasive. Unless someone is telling us that the brain is not involved in decision-making then lead has to be relevant to crime.”

So why isn’t this theory universally accepted?

Well, it remains a theory because nobody could ever deliberately poison thousands of children to see whether they became criminals later in life.

Lead theorists say that doesn’t matter because the big problem is mainstream criminologists and policymakers who can’t think outside the box.

But Roger Matthews, professor of criminology at the University of Kent, rejects that. He says biological criminologists completely miss the point.

“I don’t see the link,” he says. “If this causes some sort of effect, why should those effects be criminal?

“The things that push people into crime are very different kinds of phenomena, not in the nature of their brain tissue. The problem about the theory is that a lot of these [researchers] are not remotely interested or cued into the kinds of things in the mainstream.

“There has been a long history of people trying to link biology to crime–that some people have their eyes too close together, or an extra chromosome, or whatever.

“This stuff gets disproved and disproved. But it keeps popping up. It’s like a bad penny.”

Gesch disagrees and says the debate among biologists is now moving further, to look at how improving nutrition could affect antisocial behaviour.

“One of the problems with criminal justice data is that very few of the factors are good at predicting rates of crime. But lead is.”

Wolpaw-Reyes says the data is now so good that she is finding that police and policymakers in the US are taking it more seriously.

“I don’t think lead is the whole story but given the broad worldwide exposure and the evidence that we have of how adversely lead can affect behaviour, it makes sense that lead is an important part of the story. All of us born in the 60s and 70s were exposed to high levels of lead–but we are not all violent criminals.

“But if you had to guess if someone was going to commit a crime I would think that their childhood lead exposure would be helpful to me in making a guess. But it is not going to be a certainty.”‘

LeadCrime

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  • sbuffalonative

    The Romans used lead to line their pipes for drinking water. They added lead to sweeten wine and food. They bathed in pool of ‘lead’ saturated water. And they built an empire.

    Did lead make Romans aggressive and formidable warriors? Could be.

    In 20th century America, blacks have blamed lead for many of their problems. The issue still pops up in Buffalo when an old school that now has majority black students has failing pupils.

    Maybe lead plays a role but the question is does the absence of lead raise non-whites to the standards of whites or does everyone rise the same amount leaving the same racial gap.

    • IstvanIN

      Lead leaching from Roman pipes certainly didn’t make Rome better, and probably was a negative. Remember the old saying mad as a hatter? Lead.

      • Alexandra1973

        I thought that was mercury (quicksilver).

        • IstvanIN

          Sorry, you are correct!

        • It was mercury, and this was used in processing felt. Mercury is dense, but it has a rather high vapor pressure at room temperature, so anyone working with it in the open is inhaling the vapor. Mercury was also used for separating gold, and both this process and the original refining of the mercury from the native cinnabar ore poisoned people.

          • BonV.Vant

            Check out “Cilantro Chelation”

          • Alexandra1973

            That’s what I’ve done with my son, cilantro, since I suspect the vaccines he’d had contained mercury (he was born in December 2001 and I did look up the ingredients list on the CDC web site years later). That and chlorella. He had just started head start in fall of 2006 and he wasn’t talking, I started cilantro/chlorella, and a couple of weeks later, bam! He was starting to talk. He’s been improving ever since.

            I hear malic acid (in apples) chelates aluminum. Never cook with aluminum cookware, BTW. I’m hearing that there’s a link between that and autism and Alzheimer’s.

          • Thimerosal was abandoned as a vaccine preservative in the summer of 2000. Thimerosal is metabolized into ethylmercury and not methylmercury. Ethylmercury is excreted far faster than methylmercury. Since your son was born about 18 months after vaccines ceased to contain thimerosal, that can not be the problem.

            Alzheimer’s Syndrome has an unknown cause, but retention of aluminum in the brain is a symptom. Correlation and causation are not always the same, but I don’t use aluminum cookware, either.

      • sbuffalonative

        Believe me, I’m not advocating a metallic neurotoxin as a dietary supplement.

        The point I was trying to make was that lead has been blamed on for a myriad of problems from neurological (true) to social (speculative). Blacks have been quick to use lead as a boogie man blaming it for poor school performance to violence in their communities.

        Lead is bad and should be avoided but the Romans somehow accomplished a great deal and had a long and successful run.

        Imagine what they might have accomplished without lead.

        • BonV.Vant

          “It bees da Laid”

        • superlloyd3 coon

          How much lead poisoning is there in Africa? Genetics explains their pathetically low IQs and violent, chimping out behaviour whenever a basic impulse is not immediately satisfied.

    • Zimriel

      They built an empire but couldn’t keep it.

      Besides that, locally, if the Roman Emperor stayed in Rome too long HE couldn’t keep it. The usual pattern starting as early as the Republic was that a general in the field – who wasn’t drinking from lead pipes – would march on Rome and take it. Then his heirs would get fat and happy until another general out in the field would march on Rome and take it.

      Urban life in Rome was enervating.

      • sbuffalonative

        Yes, the troops on the edge of empire would have had less contact with lead.

        Apparently the Romans knew the about the affects of lead but kept using it.

        Too bad.

        • IstvanIN

          We know the effect of Third World Immigration but keep allowing it.

    • The sweetener Romans made from lead was lead acetate. They made this by letting vinegar (dilute acetic acid) stand in a lead bowl until a white crust formed. They would then scrape off this crust – lead acetate – and use it as a sweetener.

      Lead acetate is very sweet, and the only other sweetener the Romans had was honey. Cane sugar was an Asian crop, and sugar from beets – which grow well in Europe – was unknown at the time.

  • Alexandra1973

    Lead would probably just make them dumber than normal.

    On that note, I read something a long time ago about how lead-based paint prevents someone from using gamma rays or whatever to spy on people. Think Superman and lead. I don’t know if that’s true or not, but lies and deceit are so pervasive in society today that I’m not going to discount that notion out of hand.

    • Adolf Verloc

      And the dumber you get, the more violent and criminally inclined you become, at least until you reach a level of intellectual disability where you can barely function. Certainly eliminating lead from the environment is a prudent thing to do.

    • Bill Moore

      Hello Alexandra 1973,

      I have heard that the tool that police (and firemen) use to spot people through the walls of their house is blocked by layers of leaded paint. And that was the real reason that leaded paint was outlawed.

      The propaganda photo of an African child sitting by a window sill eating paint was only a propaganda photo.

      Thank you,
      Bill Moore

      • Alexandra1973

        That’s what I’ve heard too.

  • Luca

    Lead must be the most abundant element found on the plains of Africa.

    • So CAL Snowman

      Lenin, Trotsky, Stalin, and Mao must have been eating lead for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

      • Bunky

        No, they ate their countrymen.

    • Zimriel

      Lead shrinks the brain and makes it more African, is the takeaway I got.

  • People with balanced diets and proper nutrition really don’t suffer lead poisoning even if they consume lead.

    On the other hand, back when gas had lead, gas pumps had more and higher octane options, and leaded gas engines were more fuel efficient than unleaded. If we would have never gotten rid of leaded gas, considering the increased efficiency of ICE engines and the reduced weight of automobiles since then, gas mileages today would be significantly higher.

    • IstvanIN

      Catalytic convertors clog when exposed to lead.

      • They get poisoned because the high-temperature lead vapor winds up alloyed with the platinum in the catalytic converter.

    • r j p

      My father’s gas station got shut down for a week in the 70s because he was caught charging $0.001 too much for gasoline.

    • There are other octane-boosters, but these tend to be aromatic benzene derivatives, and those are quite often carcinogenic. Ethyl alcohol is an octane-booster. It also has the advantage of helping dissolve moisture that has condensed inside a partly empty gas tank in cold weather so this does not freeze inside fuel lines. There’s a down-side to ethanol. With a modern car, you will actually get worse gas mileage with it, because since alcohols already contain oxygen the vehicle’s oxygen sensor reads a false-positive and has the electronic fuel injection system lean out the fuel mixture. If you have an older vehicle with carbureted induction, ethanol in gasoline is great. With EFI, it isn’t quite so nice.

  • IstvanIN

    Certainly reducing lead in the environment is a good thing, especially lead that is inhaled or ingested. And no doubt helped some children grow up brighter and less inclined towards violence. But was the reduction in violent crime crime mostly to the reduction of lead in the environment or was it due to more incarceration and “cooking the books”?

    • Rhialto

      True, but sometimes megadoses of lead, when appropriately targeted, can also cause great improvements in your environment.

      • IstvanIN

        Which is why we have the 2nd amendment.

  • APaige

    University of Chicago economist Steve Levitt examined many factors that were thought to have reduced the violent crime rates in the U.S. The four factors that he concluded reduced crime were more police, less crack, more and longer incarcerations, and abortion. Put more police by blacks, take away hard drugs from blacks, put more blacks in prison and for longer sentences, and more black abortions. The violent crime rate decreased in high abortion rate states by 25%, but increase 4% in states with low abortion. Legalized abortion was in 1974 (?) and the decrease in crime happened when those aborted would have been in their late teens.

    • Alexandra1973

      The pro-abortion crowd likes to point that out…but if you point out that it makes a difference in the black population, watch their heads explode.

      • Einsatzgrenadier

        One of the best ways to fight black crime is to encourage more black women to abort black babies. I have no problem with the state fully subsidizing abortions for blacks, even offering them free KFC chicken meals as an incentive. It saves a lot of money in the long run.

        • Alexandra1973

          I’d rather just ship them back to Africa. I’m 100% anti-abortion. Send them back, criminalize abortion (at the same time), win win.

          But I see where you’re coming from.

        • Urbane Neanderthal

          The abortion rate for blacks is around 480 per 1,000 live births.

          I’m mostly against homo sapiens abortion but objectively subsidizing all abortions would have a net benefit on the gene pool.

        • Cannot Tell

          If I had the money I’d open up free abortion clinics in the inner cities. I’d instruct my staff to turn away pregnant white women, though.

        • PvtCharlieSlate

          Throw in a case of 40 oz malt liquor for a sterilization,

          • Whitetrashgang

            Free KFC for a year and a new car. Saw the peoples court one woman was on section ape, cost of rent 850 and she had to pay 10 dollars or something like that.Some of these things get so much you really have to start with 50,000 because of what they can get from welfare just for 1 kid.

          • Stan D Mute

            In a rational nation, receipt of welfare benefits would be contingent on long term birth control like depo provera or outright sterilization. It is insane to pay women incapable of supporting themselves to spawn more dependents. Then again, if your goal is to destroy a nation, paying to increase the size of a permanent underclass is a good long term strategy.

        • BonV.Vant

          Lets include McD’s in the mix, how about a bucket of mcnuggets for each aborted n**let. I’m McLovin THAT!

      • APaige

        I should have pointed out that Blacks have the most abortions. I think it was last year that more Blacks were aborted in New York than were born. I am not really that good in math, but I think that is a wonderful difference.

    • HKopp

      You stole my thunder. I was going to mention that at the same time lead was being phased out of gasoline, abortion was becoming very popular with black women. The book “Freakonomics” by Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner touch on this idea, although they don’t mention race.

    • refocus

      The chemicals in the water are sedating the population.

      Flouride and a thousand other things…

  • So CAL Snowman

    This “research” still doesn’t explain WHY lead made the black race so much more violent than all of the other races in the US. I know the answer though, lead is racist.

    • Alexandra1973

      Heavy metals can really mess with your mind. I have a relative who works in a metal shop, and his wife has to chelate him (get the metals out) or he’s out there.

      Lead could probably make them more violent due to their DNA. I don’t know a whole lot about this subject, but all I’ve heard is lead can lower your IQ.

    • sbuffalonative

      If lead is the problem, the rates should go down evenly across all racial and ethnic lines.

      • That would mean we are really all the same species.

      • r j p

        I remember painting the porch with lead paint when I was 8 or 9 and then using paint thinner to remove the mess I made on myself. By all claims, I should be a maniac killer.

      • Alexandra1973

        Someone here said that calcium chelates lead. Who’s more likely to breastfeed their babies in this country?

        • As another (electropositive) metal, calcium wouldn’t chelate lead. EDTA – ethylenediamine tetraacetic acid is the normal chelating agent used for lead and mercury poisoning, or at least it was when I was current in my old field.

  • I call bull on this theory. If it were true, the biggest crooks of all would have been auto mechanics. I’ve seen those guys in the old days, sucking gas out of tanks with a garden hose, washing their hands in gas, and so forth.

    The research shows a nice correlation, but correlation never proves causation. BTW, academics have a habit of getting carried away by their pet theories.

    • Zimriel

      “The biggest crooks of all would have been auto mechanics” — Er… you might want to rethink this comment

    • sbuffalonative

      A simple test would be to sample the blood of prisoners and compare levels of lead to law abiding people who never went to jail.

      • Jesse_from_Sweden

        Not quite that simple.

        Lead levels in blood would only show how much you’ve been exposed to recently, while the effects on behaviour and crime is a result of long-time exposure, especially in early childhood, which results in changes in the brain.

        That’s why it takes 20 years before you see any change in crime after you add or remove lead pollution.

        And checking prisoners for changes in the brain:
        “Lead alters the formation of the brain. It reduces the grey matter in

        areas responsible for things such as impulse control and executive
        functioning–meaning thinking and planning.”

        Is kinda useless since one could assume that most prisoners have these problems, that’s the reason they are in prison.
        The only way to compare would be to see it in the population at large, and one way of testing that is to see how many have such behavioural problems that they end up in prison.
        IE number of prisoners per capita…..

        • sbuffalonative

          Yes, you’re correct. Blood samples would be largely useless.

          Brain scans would be more helpful. Autopsies of prisoners brains might help find structural damage.

    • PvtCharlieSlate

      How much lead are life insurance salesmen exposed to?

  • “If you want to understand the causes of crime–and be tough on them–you need to start with lead”

    I can’t help but read that in the voice of Jerry Seinfeld. It’s a pretty good one liner.

  • Urbane Neanderthal

    Incarceration rates skyrocketed but the obvious is not the reason crime dropped.

    • sbuffalonative

      This chart can be misleading since it doesn’t compare what the rates of crime were before and after the ‘war on drugs’.

      Drug arrests went up but did crime rates go down?

      Did the ‘war on drugs’ merely incarcerate people or did it also result in lower crime rates?

      • Urbane Neanderthal

        The crime rate rose sharply around the end of segregation through the 70s and into the early 90s.

        The graph shows property and violent crime combined.

        The the incarceration rate of blacks quadrupled during this time while the white rate increased a little more than double.

        It is my opinion that decreasing the number of blacks in society lowers the crime rate.

        The homicide rate has certainly dropped as incarceration rates increased in the black population.

  • Lewis33

    I don’t buy any of this “crime is going down” hokum that our officials are telling us. Criminals are getting better at covering it up and police are (intentionally) getting worse at writing it down.

    • 1stworlder

      Recent article on VDARE shows that even murders are not getting tracked properly in Chicongo to make the numbers look better.

    • sbuffalonative

      I don’t either. They’re cooking the books. A few years back, the Buffalo News did away with their crime section because it highlighted too many black criminals.

      BTW, after they did so, the circulation rate of the BN dropped. No one wants to pay for a newspaper that doesn’t give you the news you need to make real world decisions.

    • evilsandmich

      Or worse (perhaps) yet is that there simply are no police in area to which to report a crime.

      • dcc2379

        Theodore Dalrymple has forcefully shown that because nothing happens to criminals in Great Britain, many citizens don’t even report burglaries any more.

  • 1stworlder

    The Book Freakenomics showed a much higher correlation to the dropping price of crack cocaine. If you only need to commit a robbery once a month to stay as high as when you robbed once a day you get less crime.

    • There are also the bizarre violent crimes crack-heads commit while they are high on the stuff, which are quite unrelated to the price of the drug.

  • willbest

    Then again the Romans sucked lead and went and conquered half the known world.

    • BonV.Vant

      This may be an erroneous belief. Their water pipes in their aqueducts were lead, BUT, those aqueducts quickly built up a layer of mineral deposits that sealed them off from the lead. In some aqueducts, that layer of deposits is a foot thick.

      • willbest

        A lot of the homes in my neighborhood have lead pipes. They are perfectly safe to drink from as long as you don’t let the water stagnate in the pipes too long. You just need to remember to flush the line for 5 minutes or so when you take a long weekend.

  • Urban teacher

    As I remember, lead was phased out of gasoline and paint on the theory that it was responsible for the low intelligence of inner city children. That is, inner city blacks were exposed to more automotive exhaust fumes and lived in old houses that had lead paint.

    Old-time lead miners were aware of the effects of lead and when they felt them, they would take off work and drink gallons of milk–the calcium in milk binds with lead and is excreted, a chelating mechanism as noted by Alexandra1973.

    Blacks are lactose intolerant and can’t drink much milk.
    But lead still doesn’t explain the low intelligence of blacks who live in Africa and are not exposed to fumes and paint.

    • Zimriel

      Depends on the black. The herder-tribes can drink milk (or else why would they bother herding?). Perhaps not the tribes still stuck in the jungle, and definitely not the Bushmen.

    • Alexandra1973

      Wow, I didn’t know calcium chelated lead! Learn something new every day.

    • sbuffalonative

      In Buffalo, blacks still use lead as one of their excuses for their dysfunction. Lead in old schools. Lead in their old houses. Environmental racism for putting factories in minority communities.

      • BonV.Vant

        SO then why do they seem so fond of injecting each other with lead?

      • Lead 2-ethylhexanoate is was once commonly used as a plasticizer in paints. With new paint over the old stuff, nobody would be exposed.

        • sbuffalonative

          For blacks, painting over lead paint is ‘white washing’ the issue. Even if it’s covered by 100 layers of safe, non-toxic paint and sealer, the fact the blacks keep doing poorly in old schools that had lead proves that covering the lead paint doesn’t work.

          You could give them any number of research showing that painting over lead paint renders it safe, and they don’t care. It’s there and it’s the problem.

    • r j p

      My new lease had a long clause I had to initial that said “There could be lead paint in the building”. Last year the lease agreement was one page, this year it was about 20 pages with that and the bedbug stuff. I needed help from the management company to fill this out, thank you City of Chicago.

  • Brian

    It’s certainly more plausible than ‘institutional racism’ as an explanation of crime.

  • sbuffalonative

    There are other factors as well.

    The 20th century saw a rural exodus and a dramatic growth in urban populations.

    It’s follows that larger numbers of people fighting for jobs and basic survival would result in higher rates of crime; not just more people but more people interaction, more problems, more opportunities for trouble and crime.

  • sbuffalonative

    A straightforward explanation for the drop could be that the ‘war on drugs’ took breeding, drug users off the streets resulting in fewer births among the criminal class.

  • Bill Moore

    Hello,

    Crime reports are not mandatory. Each city reports lowered crime rates because the people who run the city order the people who do the crime reports to report lower crime rates. This is to make their city appear as a safe city.

    Los Angeles does it. Pittsburgh PA does it. And most other cities probably do it.

    Thank you,
    Bill Moore

  • PvtCharlieSlate

    Remember the advertising slogan (by du Pont, I think) from the 50’s / 60’s: “Better living through chemistry”?

  • Hallie Eva

    In days of yore, [Roman, English] women’s make up was lead based. QE1 had an inch or so on her face when she died. Was she impaired, other than appropriate for her age?

    What about Roman women?

    • BonV.Vant

      Some say she was a man. The story goes that the real Elizabeth died while in the care of some handlers at a small town in England. Henry the VIII was scheduled to visit and the death of his daughter would have meant their certain execution. So they searched the whole village for a redheaded girl who could pass for Elizabeth (Kings rarely knew their own children well). No girl could be found but a young male did match the general description and since Elizabeth was young enough that puberty had not been an issue it was possible for this substitution to work. Since lighting was poor in those days, and the king most likely only viewed his “daughter” from a distance in a darkened room, the ruse worked. It then had to be maintained for the remainder of the lives of all involved. Elizabeth kept those two handlers for their entire lives. I think perhaps that they were the only ones that ever bathed or clothed her. She was also “The Virgin” queen for this reason, as any sex was out of the question for obvious reasons. Heavy makeup would have been essential for a man who had to hide stubble.

      • Hallie Eva

        I do not believe Elizabeth 1 was a man, bon. Wearing layers of white makeup with heavily rouged cheeks was the style in those days, even in France.

        • QE I had lost all of her natural hair due to smallpox, so her face – below the makeup – was doubtless a complete ruin.

          • Hallie Eva

            The QE1 bios say she had minimal skin damage post smallpox infection.
            White lead based makeup with layers of rouge was the style.

      • saxonsun

        Only frightened little men would make up such a story. They were terrified and puzzled about a competent, able, gifted and intelligent woman on the throne. She was their superior in all ways–and that’s what scared them because it destroyed their dumb male lies about women being inferior.

        • Alexandra1973

          We anti-feminists don’t claim women are inferior–but rather different. Men just naturally make better leaders.

          I am a gender realist as well as a race realist.

          • Stan D Mute

            Don’t forget that we anti-feminists also praise and glorify women for the fact that they serve the ultimate and indispensable role as mothers to our children. There is absolutely nothing more important for our race than mothers bearing us lots of children. Soldiers and statesmen are important, but they all begin as fetuses in their mothers’ wombs. And arguably the second most important role in our survival is raising those same children which is at *least* 50% the work of our women.

            “Feminists,” just like racial equality idiots, pretend biology does not exist. They are mentally defective like homosexuals. We just desperately need to convince them that physics don’t exist and that they can jump from airplanes without parachutes or breathe underwater without scuba apparatus! Obviously they have some survival instinct that prevents them from living amongst the negroes they claim “are just like us.”

        • Stan D Mute

          “Superior in all ways”? Really? Is it a “dumb male lie” that men are stronger than women? Or that men are better at math? Or that virtually everything in your life was invented, built, and delivered by men – white men specifically?

  • This “study” is another great example of torturing statistics to promote a conclusion previously drawn – the exact opposite of the Scientific Method. Just because “X” happened, placing causality upon your favored reason (while ignoring other potential causal factors) reveals academic: incompetence, laziness, or an incredible desire to PROVE your thesis at any cost? This man should be drummed out of whatever profession he claims. Liar.
    We are asked to believe – LEAD… is the new reason why minorities are dumb!!! Watch! Read! Billions are being slated to “remediate” lead paint – along with monthly subisdies to the intellectually DISABLED – allegedly from lead. One trillion was spent pursuing academic parity – FAIL! The Left needed a new reason to explain away the academic disparity between the races. Genetics is rejected out of hand because genetics are permanent and cannot be remedied simply. Enter lead paint – it’s causal for stupidity. So why did the FDA outlawed the cheap and effective lead chelating agent? The Left must want them stupid – all the better to believe anything they are told. Personal history… I renovated a historic home. My children were exposed to lead dust daily for over a decade – NONE showed any sign of intellectual erosion due to lead. A child must eat the lead paint chips or consume it in large amounts. Lead paint is the next con game to give away more money to the indolent… and buy their votes. COnsider… how was it possible for men to split the atom, send men to the moon, conquer diseases, et al living and working in building coated with Lead Paint????

  • Steven Barr

    The reason crime fell was that in the US you imprisoned enough people to fill a small Baltic country. In England our prison population per head is still less than a quarter of yours but I can see us eventually catching up as “diversity” marches onwards.
    I suppose an enormous prison population is better than an enormous number of criminals on the street but a truly successful society should have neither.

  • DelmarJackson

    I read of a study done in 1910 that showed nearly every murderer in prison had eaten potatoes within 48 hours prior to the murder. That was supposed to prove potatoes caused murderous behavior.
    If a person wanted to prove the lead theory, it would be simple to take blood samples from prisoners born within that time period and a random sample of non criminals from the same time and socio-economic background..

    • r j p

      Correlation does not imply causation .

      • DelmarJackson

        And you are implying that is what I said?

  • Puggg

    My father cried when they took lead paint off the market.

    “Now the paint won’t be worth a damn and you’ll have to do it more often.”

    • Alexandra1973

      I just don’t get it…if lead really causes low IQ and everything…you’d think there would have been a LOT of low-IQ people roaming around, and that the collective IQ has gone up since, what, the 70s?

      • dcc2379

        You’d think all lead was manufactured in Africa and transported on clothe used to make blacks diapers. Yet, that is not the case.

    • As I said above, the lead in lead-based paint was lead 2-ethylhexanoate. I used lots of metal 2-ethylhexanoates as precursors for the corresponding metal oxides in liquid-phase spin-on deposition and chemical mist deposition when I worked in the microelectronics industry. I suspect that zinc 2-ethylhexanoate would work just as well as a paint plasticizer.

  • saxonsun

    Same here–no one and I mean no one, has any right to tell a woman what she can or can’t do with her body or its contents. Women are not glorified incubators no matter what these women-haters believe.

    • Alexandra1973

      So being pregnant is a form of misogyny? That’s a pretty wacky idea IMO.

      A woman’s body is *designed* to carry a baby. I’m a mother. I could never imagine wanting to harm my child.

      At any rate, I don’t believe in killing anyone that hasn’t committed any crimes. That’s why I say send blacks back to Africa while at the same time recognizing an unborn child’s Fifth Amendment rights. (One of those rights enumerated–not granted–is the right not to be deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process.)

      • LovelyNordicHeidi

        Do not expect anything from the pro-abortionists. They would not have cared if people like me were not born at all. They only care about so-called “women’s rights.”

        Speaking of rights, pro-abortionists just put “the right to choose to kill your own unborn baby” above “the right of the unborn baby to be born and live.” Life of others has no meaning to pro-abortionists.

        They do not care about the life of others, and often truly despise life. They put their own temporary pleasures above the life of others.

        I think some activist group should do something about the pro-abortion sentiments in society. As pro-Whites we cannot fight against everything at a time.

        It would be nice if another group, without being linked to any religion or certain marginalised groups, fought for the rights of unborn babies.

  • Alexandra1973

    Yep, I replied to another of your posts concerning that.

  • Roninf9

    Three things caused the decrease in crime. –
    1.) Huge numbers of potential victims of black crime became out of reach due to White flight.
    2.) Faulty crime reporting. Big city crime in not reported or under reported. Most so-called minority victims of crime don’t bother going to the police.
    3.) Proliferation of conceal carry.

  • dcc2379

    Actually, in my neighbor, the increase in lead decreased crime. Someone breaking into a house getting a piece of lead at 800-2000 feet per second, depending on the dispenser, causes criminals to rethink their behavior.

    • Alexandra1973

      “I see you need your lead supplementation, homeboy!”

  • r j p

    Often used paint thinner as starting fluid.

  • dcc2379

    All he wants is an educamashun!

  • Who’s “medium IQ” here?

    • Stan D Mute

      I find that commenters here are the brightest in the race realist sphere. Certainly there is more intelligence displayed than on sites like Stormfront or CofCC where I often think that potential converts may be scared off by the stupidity on display. I do wish that there was more cross-pollination with sites like TakiMag which is less overtly realist than Amren, but has outstanding contributors like Sailer, Goad, Derbyshire, etc. I’ve more or less given up on any sites other than Amren, Taki, Vdare, and Stix.

      • I think the Steve Sailer commentariat is even smarter on average than AR’s, but Sailer’s is unreadable because a lot of them are also bull-headed obsessive cranks. I comment over at Sailer pretty often, but I just write my piece and then don’t come back. However, since I think Sailer is about a half-step short of out and outright racialism, that doesn’t mean you’re not right in that AR is the best and brightest in the overtly racialist sphere.

      • Stormfront and the American Nationalist Union had some really good posters as well, but to my mind they seem to want an American racila purity that has been biologically impossible since nine months after Columbus arrived in 1492.

  • DudeWheresMyCountry?

    Medium IQ group, nice micro aggression. You are going to have to try harder here.

  • Bunky

    Correlation is not causation.

  • That “medium IQ” group you’re smearing invented the very computer and internet you’re using to spout such nonsense, among countless other wonders that the rest of the world couldn’t dream of even for their gods.

    You’re welcome.