We never get tired of Unhappiness Surveys, especially if we live somewhere that’s relatively happier than the states that always turn up on these lists. No matter how bad things are in New York or Los Angeles or whatever thriving urban hellhole you call home, it’s nothing like the misery of the “10 most unhappy states in the U.S.,” right? Consider Mississippi, America’s broken toilet in a vacant lot with waist-high weeds:
Mississippi ranked lower than any other state in Gallup’s basic access to necessities category. Nearly 25% of state residents indicated they did not have enough money to buy food for themselves or their family at some point in the past 12 months, the highest percentage of all states. Such problems are likely due to the state’s high-poverty rate and overall low incomes. The state’s median household income of $36,919 was the lowest of all 50 states, and the poverty rate of 22.6% was the highest.
With 38% of residents suffering high blood pressure (second only to West Virginia) and a diabetes rate of 15.4% (second to none!), Mississippi is also blessed with the third-lowest high school graduation rate in the nation and the world’s worst politicians. On the good side, real estate is quite affordable!
Despite being best known for a 10-year-old local news segment mocking the drug addiction, poverty and desperation for gold common to its poorest communities, Mississippi has also produced such notable people as Elvis Presley, the Depression-era country legend Jimmie Rodgers, Jim Henson, Morgan Freeman, Oprah Winfrey, Mose Allison, Bo Diddley, William Faulkner and my mom.