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You know, for a state that loves to let the "good times roll," Louisiana sure does love to fight.  Sure, I've been paying attention to the many brawls that happen here in Shreveport on a daily basis, but according to the U.N.-sponsored Vision of Humanity project's United States Peace Index (USPI), we have the data to really back that up.

Louisiana is the undisputed champion of the U.S. for un-peacefulness

The USPI grades the amount of "peace" in each and every state in our nation.  The number-crunchers arrive at this conclusion by measuring these 5 key indicators:

  1. Number of homicides per 100,000 people
  2. Number of violent crimes per 100,000 people
  3. Incarceration rate per 100,000 people
  4. Number of police employees per 100,000 people
  5. Availability of small arms

After reading the criteria, it's really pretty obvious how we got the distinction of "Least Peaceful State."  Especially when you consider that we come in dead last when it comes to murder, and we are tied for last place in regards to how full our jails are.  Not only are we in last place, the distance between us and #49 (Tennessee) is the biggest between two states in the entire study.

Louisiana's aversion to peace has earned us a 20-year streak at last place

While Maine has enjoyed 11-straight years as the most peaceful, that's nothing compared to Louisiana's unbroken, 20-year run as the last place in the U.S. you are likely to find peace.  Not only is that bad for our collective mental health, it's costly.  According to the report, the violence and measures to bring it under control cost the average taxpayer $3,257 per year.  If we were able to calm down to Maine-levels of peacefulness, the study claims it would save $274 billion.

You can see the data, details, and the entire U.S. peacefulness ranking

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