I can't help it. I have to vent a little. Now that I'll be leaving soon. Here's a list to illustrate how St. Louis wins many national contests:
1. unsafest city
St. Louis was #1 for the most unsafe city (city with the most crime) in the nation for 2002. It's been competing with Detroit in subsequent years, and it was a close game, but it seems the Detroit criminals won by a hair. St. Louis has 150.2 crimes/1000 capita in a city of only 350,336 people. This includes murders, rapes, assaults, and muggings. Fun, fun.
2. worst in health and fitness
Two independent publications ranked St. Louis as the worst for a) men's health and fitness (Men's Health) out of 101 cities and b) women's health (Self) out of 200 cities. These studies were based on number of people that exercise, availability of parks and health clubs, safety, health insurance, pollution, and obesity rates. Yea! Go us! We're the most unfit!
3. Along the lines of health and fitness, St. Louis is one of the fattest cities in the nation, in the top 5.
4. Also, St. Louis has a reputation for being known as the "syphilis capital of the nation." It also leads the U.S. in gonnorrhea. Now that's a hard competition to win.
St. Louis also ranks among the nation's top 25 worst cities for pollen (Multidate/SDI) and the nation's top 20 for worst air quality due to pollution (Environmental Defense). It's also one of the nation's worst for environmental toxicity. In addition, it ranks number 13 in the nation for worst diesel emissions (Clean Air Task Force). Because of this, it is one of the nation's worst places to live for asthmatics.
6. The local jurisdiction of St. Louis ranks among the worst in the nation for legal fairness.
7. Finally, (no surprise here) St. Louis ranks among the nation's worst rates for population loss among large U.S. cities (12%) as evidenced by the many abandoned, falling down buildings littering the streets of the city. Hey, I want to leave too!
Viva St. Louis!