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The Most Sinful States in America

The Seven Deadly Sins


Morality is a slippery concept that changes through the years, but one measure that has survived the test of time is the seven deadly sins of Christian lore. Also known as the "cardinal sins", they purport to draw a line between acceptable and unacceptable behavior for anyone interested in spending their post-living years in the kingdom of heaven.

Adhering as closely as we can to that framework, MainStreet took a look at several categories of data, ranked the states on each metric, and combined those rankings to get an idea of which states are the most sinful. Whether that makes them more attractive to people or less attractive depends on a person's tolerance for vice, but the results paint a picture of the diversity of lifestyles at work in this great nation.

Photo Credit: Getty Images

Methodology




  1. Lust: States are ranked according to how often their residents conduct a Google search for the word "prostitute".


  2. Gluttony: States are ranked according to their obesity rate, determined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.


  3. Sloth: Using the percentage of residents who report little or no leisure-time physical activity to the CDC, states are ranked by laziness.


  4. Wrath: Using Census numbers for violent crimes per 100,000 population, states are ranked from most to least violent.


  5. Pride: A more difficult concept to quantify, we use Census data on the percentage of residents born in-state to determine the states whose residents like their state enough to stay put.


  6. Greed: Greed is a tricky one, as it is not simply the amount of wealth that indicates a greedy population. MainStreet considered using data on charitable giving by state, but while that points to stinginess, it doesn't quite describe greed. For that reason this category is left out.


  7. Envy: An even trickier concept, quantifying envy is a challenge that numbers don't really meet. Envy was also left out of the ranking.




The result? The 10 most sinful states in the union. Read on to see where your state ranks.

Photo Credit: Dwonderwall

10. West Virginia (tie)


Lust rank: 26/50

Gluttony rank: 2/50

Sloth rank: 3/50

Wrath rank: 38/50

Pride rank: 14/50

COMBINED SCORE: 83

Photo Credit: bradwicklund

10. Pennsylvania (tie)


Lust rank: 17/50

Gluttony rank: 17/50

Sloth rank: 22/50

Wrath rank: 23/50

Pride rank: 4/50

COMBINED SCORE: 83

Photo Credit: Getty Images

8. South Carolina


Lust rank: 26/50

Gluttony rank: 4/50

Sloth rank: 14/50

Wrath rank: 1/50

Pride rank: 32/50

COMBINED SCORE: 77

Photo Credit: Shoshanah

7. Oklahoma


Lust rank: 17/50

Gluttony rank: 11/50

Sloth rank: 2/50

Wrath rank: 16/50

Pride rank: 28/50

COMBINED SCORE: 74

Photo Credit: Getty Images

6. Alabama


Lust rank: 29/50

Gluttony rank: 3/50

Sloth rank: 6/50

Wrath rank: 21/50

Pride rank: 13/50

COMBINED SCORE: 72

Photo Credit: southernpixel

5. Kentucky


Lust rank: 20/50

Gluttony rank: 5/50

Sloth rank: 4/50

Wrath rank: 31/50

Pride rank: 11/50

COMBINED SCORE: 71

Photo Credit: jeremiah.andrick

4. Michigan


Lust rank: 22/50

Gluttony rank: 8/50

Sloth rank: 22/50

Wrath rank: 10/50

Pride rank: 3/50

COMBINED SCORE: 65

Photo Credit: mrt77

3. Illinois


Lust rank: 12/50

Gluttony rank: 19/50

Sloth rank: 9/50

Wrath rank: 11/50

Pride rank: 6/50

COMBINED SCORE: 57

Photo Credit: Getty Images

2. Texas


Lust rank: 12/50

Gluttony rank: 6/50

Sloth rank: 8/50

Wrath rank: 14/50

Pride rank: 15/50

COMBINED SCORE: 55

Photo Credit: Getty Images

1. Louisiana


Lust rank: 10/50

Gluttony rank: 6/50

Sloth rank: 5/50

Wrath rank: 4/50

Pride rank: 2/50

COMBINED SCORE: 27

Photo Credit: WoodysWorld1778

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