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Do These Odds Still Hold True? #7

In 1996, multiple claims were made regarding adult behavior. For example, consider the claim that "men are 2.3 times as likely to die in a car crash, 3.3 times as likely to poison themselves, and 7.4 times as likely to die from AIDS as women."

Also, consider these activities and associated decreases in life expectancy:

  • loss of 6 seconds: Driving without a seatbelt (per trip)
  • loss of 9 seconds: Drinking a diet soft drink
  • loss of 12 minutes: Smoking one cigarette
  • loss of 2,700 days: Being born male

Your Task: Do you think these "risk" odds remain true today? If they are not true, what odds do you think are true? How are these statistics determined? And, why can't they be taken as literal facts?

Source: "A Fistful of Risks," Discover, May 1996, p. 83