Acceptable risk

I have two really good friends that live far away, but I still keep in touch with them both. 

KA is a school teacher in
California; he lives in the bay area in what could be called a rough neighborhood. 

KS is a firefighter in Reno Nevada.


KA hears the sound of gun fire from drive by shootings, has had cars stolen, but won’t move.  KS says he should move his family because it’s dangerous there.  My first inclination is to agree with my firefighter friend, KA should move his family out of the area, and find a nice quiet place to live. 

But first inclinations are often based on selfish reasons.

I called KA the other night and we talked about crime and crime rates.  He suggested that Nevada and California were comparable in violent crime.  This didn’t ring true to me so I just had to do some research.


Well the numbers are quite interesting.  If you take the state as a whole you get the following

Violent crimes per 100,000 people:

CA                   523.6

Nevada            606.8

Colorado          396.5


So it seams that Nevada is more violent over all than California.  I tossed in Colorado for my own benefit. 

However it became quite another thing to look at when you concider where in the state you live. 


Here are the crime rates in Cities.


Violent crime per 100,000 people

Oakland CA     1423

Reno  NV        532.3

Windsor  CO   108     


Wow that makes a difference, but does it mean that everyone in Oakland has a 1423 in 100,000 chance of being a victim of violent crime?

I don’t believe so; a person who works at a liquor store at 2am has a different chance of being robbed than an owner of a pet food store at noon. 

A school teacher doesn’t seek out confrontations, deal in drugs, or frequent liquor stores at 2am.  Well at least I can speak for KA in this regard 

However a firefighter’s job is to go into dangerous situations, not just fires but domestic disputes, car accidents, road rage, and even the occasional suicide.


Who is in more danger?

Both KA and KS evaluate both their choices and decided to live with the risk they voluntarily assumed.


Is it worth it?

KA is performing good works, and as a high school teacher he really makes a difference in the lives of teenagers.  

KS is a firefighter and risks his life to rescue others.


In my humble opinion they are both heroes.


They belong just where they are.


On a selfish note, I would rather they both live in Colorado.

There are teenagers and fires here as well.




One thought on “Acceptable risk

  1. Layman Pong says:

    Actually, I deal drugs and frequent liquor stores at 2PM

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