Out-of-town journalists compile the stats without the full story. (File photo).

HAMILTON: Lies, damned lies and statistics

Out-of-towners get Prince Rupert wrong again

Once again out-of-town journalists got it wrong.

Last week, Maclean’s Magazine released its annual Crime Severity Index (CSI), which attempts to quantify the statistics compiled by StatsCan into some sort of worst places list.

According to Maclean’s, Prince Rupert jumped from 223rd on the infamous list to No. 11.

Despite the fact there were no homicides and no youth crimes reported, sexual assaults were up a staggering three year-over-year and cocaine trafficking was up from one count in 2018 to — wait for it — 12 this year.

READ MORE: Prince Rupert ranks in top 20 of magazine’s ‘Canada’s Most Dangerous Places’ list

As Mark Twain famously wrote, “ “There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics.”

Anyone walking the streets of Prince Rupert knows that this is not a Top 20 most dangerous city. But of

course, the writers of this drivel, most likely can’t even find Prince Rupert on a map, let alone what the numbers don’t tell you.

If they wanted to include our crosswalks, then they might have had a leg to stand on.

But this isn’t the first, nor will it be the last.

The Toronto Star made headlines across the world with the lead in Prince Rupert water worse than Flint, Michigan story.

A story, which since publication, the authors of the report have publicly and personally apologized to The Northern View for stating the issue had gone unreported.

While they did walk the street, the story had inaccuracies, suspect methodology and confirmation bias.

READ MORE: Elevated levels of lead found in homes after City of Prince Rupert tests first flushing

READ MORE: Unacceptable levels of lead found in water at four schools

It was most interesting to read that Leona Peterson, who was the centrepiece of the world-wide story, was surprised to learn about lead in our water.

Surprised? This is the same person who told The Dominion in 2016:

“I just got a link about the sorry prospects of the City because I’ve been told my son is going to a school with lead pipes and the contamination levels are high. Our poor infrastructure within the community is just like every other Native community in Canada and I just feel like the rape culture of the Canadian government has to be stopped.”

Amazing how, of the 12,000-plus souls in Rupert, those out-of-town journalists unknowingly landed on the doorstep of a surprised Paterson to be their key interview.

This is exactly why local matters.

We live here. We work here. We are accountable here.

READ MORE HAMILTON: This is why shopping Rupert First matters

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