Side-By-Side Comparison Of Life In US And Sweden Proves America Is So, So Behind

by John Haltiwanger

At a campaign rally in Florida on Saturday, President Donald Trump confused a lot of people when he suggested a terror attack occurred in Sweden the night before.

The confusion was tied to the fact there hadn't been a terror attack in Sweden the day prior, and Trump's remarks were based off a report on FOX News that was riddled with inaccuracies.

Trump said,

We've got to keep our country safe... You look at what's happening last night in Sweden. Sweden, who would believe this? Sweden. They took in large numbers. They're having problems like they never thought possible.

Like the Bowling Green Massacre and Atlanta, it seemed as though the Trump administration had once again made up a terror attack.

If Trump wants to talk about what's actually happening in Sweden, though, perhaps he should take a look at this chart, which highlights how far behind the US is compared to Sweden on so many levels.

Maybe you should clean up your own house before you try to slander other countries.


Trump later clarified he'd been referring to a segment he watched on "Tucker Carlson Tonight" on FOX News.


But, that FOX News segment was also full of untruths about Sweden.

The segment in question featured filmmaker Ami Horowitz discussing his recent documentary, "Stockholm Syndrome," which highlights the supposed consequences of Sweden's liberal immigration policies.

But, here's the thing, the documentary misrepresents what's going on in Sweden, and police who were featured in it even said their statements were completely taken out of context and the film is "bad journalism."

Here are the facts:

Like many Western countries struggling to respond to the global refugee crisis, Sweden is currently engaged in an ongoing debate on the issue of immigration.

In 2015, Sweden, which prides itself for its humanitarianism, processed 163,000 asylum applications.

Around 46 percent of Swedes believe the influx of refugees has led to a rise in crime, according to Pew Research Center.

But, like America, the perception of the link between immigrants, refugees and crime does not match reality.

Statistics do not back up the notion immigrants and refugees have led to a crime wave in Sweden. Sweden's crime rate has actually fallen since 2005.

Correspondingly, in the US, statistics show native-born Americans are more likely to commit violent crimes and be incarcerated than immigrants.

America, in general, is a violent place -- not because of immigrants, but because of its inhabitants.

The US ranks number one in the world in firearms per capita, according to the Council on Foreign Relations.

With roughly 5 percent of the world's population, it possesses somewhere between 35 and 50 percent of the world's civilian-owned guns.

The US also has the highest homicide-by-firearm rate in the developed world.

This is linked to why former Swedish Prime Minister Carl Bildt tweeted there was 50 percent more murders in the area Trump gave his speech than in the entirety of Sweden last year.


Trump's speech was actually in Melbourne, Florida, but Bildt still has a point.

When it comes down to it, the US is far behind many other countries in the developed world on a number of levels, especially Sweden (as the chart above shows).

In many respects, America is actually the most dangerous country in the world, and a lot of countries feel that way.

This map of the world shows which country others view as the most dangerous.

Notice a trend?

A lot of countries view America as the biggest threat to world peace.

The data for this map comes from research conducted in 2013 and doesn't account for Trump's presidency.

It could be argued, due to his almost complete lack of diplomacy, anti-immigrant stance and enthusiastic remarks about nuclear weapons, even more likely view America as a threat in the present day.


When you take a moment to think about it, it makes sense much of the world sees the US as the top threat.

America has the most powerful military in the history of the world.

There are roughly 15,000 nuclear weapons worldwide, and the US has around 6,800 of them.

The US has roughly 800 military bases worldwide, and it's essentially the modern-day Roman Empire.

America possesses the capacity to wipe countries off the face of the Earth and has gone to war under dubious circumstances.

Long story short, it seems America could use a healthy dose of perspective.

Americans pose a far greater threat to themselves than immigrants or refugees.

As of approximately 1:30 pm on Tuesday, February 21, there have already been 2,169 deaths from gun violence in the US in 2017 alone.

Meanwhile, no refugees from the Middle East have ever killed Americans in a terror attack on US soil.

Does what we fear make sense? It's a question worth asking.

Citations: Compare the US to Sweden (If It Were My Home)