Poverty and Homicide Essay

1990 Words 8 Pages
In this study, I will examine the relationship between poverty and homicide. I anticipate that there will be a significant association between the increase of poverty rates and the increase of homicide rates. The null hypothesis states that there is no significance relationship between poverty and homicide. The alternative hypothesis states that there will be a significant relationship between poverty and homicide. The two theories I found to explain the increase of poverty and homicide rates in the urban community are Merton’s strain theory and Shaw and McKay’s social disorganization theory. Merton’s strain theory states that social structures limits access to the goal of success through legitimate means (Lilly et al., 1995,
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The sample size is a non probability sampling. The problem with non probability sampling is that an element being drawn is not known, so there is no way to tell if the sample chosen represents the population (Madden & Walker, 2005, p. 333). Although there are slight problems in using a non probability sampling, it is more convenient, less expensive, and easier to collect data than other sampling methods (Madden & Walker, 2005, p. 333).
Data Collection and Measurement
The independent variable is poverty and the dependent variable is homicide. I use Economic Research Service (ERS), U.S. Census Bureau, and The Federal Bureau Investigation’s (FBI) Uniform Crime Report (UCR) for secondary sources.
The units of analysis being studied are States. The data measurements on poverty were taken from the United States Census Bureau. The U.S. Census Bureau uses a set of income thresholds of various family sizes and composition to determine who falls under the poverty guidelines (U.S. Census Bureau, Poverty, 2010). The income used to compute poverty status is money before taxes and does not include capital gains or noncash benefits, such as public assistance and Medicaid (U.S. Census Bureau, Poverty, 2010). If a family’s income total is less than the family’s threshold, then the family or individuals are considered to be in poverty (U.S. Census Bureau, Poverty, 2010). The same poverty thresholds are used throughout the United States

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