Middle-aged white Americans are dying at increasing rates and half a million people are dead who should not be, according to a new report published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
The study, co-authored by Anne Case and Angus Deaton, analyzed death rates for men and women aged 45 to 54 in the United States, a range often categorized as "middle-age." The duo, both economics professors at Princeton, then compared the data to those death rates found within other domestic racial categories and those seen in similarly wealthy nations.
Black, Hispanic and older Americans (65 and up) have continued to see longer lives, as have those in Sweden, Australia, Germany and other rich nations, but middle-aged white Americans have not. The results represented a "marked increase" in mortality between 1999 and 2013, and the trends seem to "reverse decades of progress in mortality and was unique to the United States."
Well isn't that inter......hey wait a minute I'M a middle aged white American!
So what the hell are they dying from?
The study links the increase in mortality to a slew of problematic issues seen throughout American society, including an increase in drug and alcohol abuse and an increase in suicide rates. White men had the highest suicide rate of any demographic in 2013, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The authors also draw a stark link between a rise in opioid availability, including the growing problem of cheap heroin. They theorize that an uptick in "the epidemic of pain, suicide and drug overdoses" may be tied to 2008's financial crisis, and say many baby-boomers are among the first to live a harsher life than their parents.
Phew! Okay well I should be fine more or less, because I am not much of a drinker, and I am much too poor to support a heroin addiction.
Besides right before typing this I finished the second of the three workouts I have planned for today and am currently sucking down a blueberry and coconut milk protein shake. So I am doing what I can to keep the grim reaper at bay.
As for suicide, yeah that's not my thing.
I have always considered my life to be a gift, and I have no plans on shuffling off this moral coil until they drag me kicking and screaming into the void.
On the bright side, and yes I know there is not much of a bright side, this is doing nothing to help the GOP demographic.