Gregg Easterbrook, in his book, The Progress Paradox, says this about the murder rate. Read it carefully because it does fit with prevalent stereotypes.
"In fact, by 2001 the Big Apple had a lower murder rate than most rural states. Despite the stereotype that big Northeastern cities are the dangerous places, since the onset of crime decline, the Northeast has become the safest region in the nation from the standpoint of homicide. Today the South has the highest murder rate, one per 12,500 people per annum, compared to one per 16,667 people west of the Rockies and one per 25,000 in the Northeast. Note that the regions with more murder tend to vote conservative, those with less murder tend to vote liberal." p.39
It is also interesting to note that states with the death penalty have higher homicide rates than states without it.
Easterbrook offers an interpretation of the data.
"Rural men and women who vote conservative may be responding to the perceived lawlessness of their regions, while urban voters who favor liberalism may be responding to the perceived stability of their local social order. Who would have guessed that the liberal regions would suffer less crime than the conservative ones? That has been the American pattern the last decade."
I would have guessed it, because I know that, in general, liberal policies, in most instances, are more humane and work better to foster the public good.
It has become increasingly clear to me in this polarization of conservative/liberal, red state/blue state, that the issues is not about who is right and who is wrong, but what works.
It appears, if you analyze the data, that it is less likely you, a loved one, and/or a neighbor will be killed if you live in a moral, liberal, humane blue state than if you live in a judgmental, fundamentalist, right wing, red state. You are safer in New York City, Boston, and/or Los Angeles than in Dismal Seepage, Texas, Tobacco Road, South Carolina, or Gooseberry Gap, Kentucky.