As the U.S. economy began to tank, the number of abused kids landing in the hospital with severe brain injuries spiked, a new study shows.Yuck. So just how bad is it? The article continues:
Anecdotes linking child abuse to the recession have surfaced before, but there had been no hard data to back the connection until now.
"It's definitely disturbing," said Elizabeth Gershoff, a psychologist who studies parenting, but was not involved in the study.
From 2004 to 2009, there were 422 children diagnosed with what doctors call "abusive head trauma." The majority ended up in the intensive care unit, and 16 percent died of their injuries.Let’s have a time out for just a moment as I call attention to Rachel Berger’s unfortunate use of the term “excess children” in that article. Given what’s going on in the economy, you should be a bit more careful with your choice of terminology, there Rachel.
The children's average age was nine months.
In the three years leading up to the crash in December 2007, the rate of abusive head injuries was 8.9 per year per 100,000 kids. After the crash, the number jumped to 14.7 per 100,000.
"If what we are seeing is even close to generalizable, that is a lot of excess children," said Dr. Rachel P. Berger, a child abuse expert at Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh who co-authored the study.
She said she noticed a sharp uptick in the number of children who came to her hospital with banged-up heads in 2008. From 17 cases per year, it suddenly jumped to 37 in 2008, and 11 of those kids died -- more than had been killed after accidental head traumas.
"At any given time there was virtually always a baby in our ICU," Berger told Reuters Health.
Anyway, this article plus the one I posted yesterday dramatically illustrate that our society is slowly coming apart at the seams. If this were just the normal cyclical recession, you might be tempted to shrug off this story and say things will get better once the economy improves. But as I’ve demonstrated over and over again on this blog, the economy for most people is NOT going to improve. In fact, it is likely as good as it’s ever going to get right now as I write these words.
Millions of people are growing increasingly desperate as the light at the end of the tunnel increasingly appears to be that of an onrushing freight train. So far, they have suffered in quiet desperation, without taking to the streets in any form of mass protest—which is exactly how they have been conditioned to react by our mainstream media.
Unemployed, but no one will hire you? Defaulting on your mortgage and losing your house? Sick but can’t afford to go to the doctor? Straddled with unpayable student loan debt? Credit card balances driving you into bankruptcy? Sorry, loser, but it’s your own damn fault. Suck it up and stop whining. Just because we conditioned you to engage in the reckless financial behavior that led you to this point does not absolve you of your “personal responsibility.”
Imagine hearing that message over and over again, pounded into your skull while the bill collector won’t stop calling, the roof is leaking but you can’t afford to have it fixed and the baby lies in the next room, screaming in her crib. For far too many folks and their unfortunate children, the American Dream has turning into a waking nightmare.