7 Reasons Why No One Is Moving To Oklahoma

Oklahoma is a state in the south-central region of the United States, bordered by Texas, Kansas, Missouri, Arkansas, and New Mexico. It is known for its diverse landscape, rich Native American history, and oil and gas industry. However, despite its attractions, Oklahoma is not a popular destination for people who are looking for a new place to live. Here are some of the reasons why no one is moving to Oklahoma:

1. Extreme Weather

Oklahoma is prone to severe weather events, such as tornadoes, thunderstorms, hail, floods, droughts, and wildfires. The state has the highest frequency of tornadoes in the world, averaging about 62 per year. Oklahoma also experiences temperature extremes, ranging from -31°F to 120°F. The unpredictable and harsh weather can make living in Oklahoma stressful and dangerous.

2. Low Quality of Life

Oklahoma ranks poorly in many indicators of quality of life, such as health, education, income, and happiness. According to the U.S. News & World Report, Oklahoma is the 47th best state to live in, based on various metrics. Oklahoma has the second-highest rate of uninsured people, the fourth-highest rate of obesity, the sixth-highest rate of poverty, and the ninth-lowest rate of high school graduation in the nation. Oklahoma also has the lowest life expectancy and the highest rate of divorce in the country .

3. Lack of Diversity and Culture

Oklahoma is a predominantly white and conservative state, with little diversity in terms of race, ethnicity, religion, and political views. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Oklahoma is 72.2% white, 9.4% Native American, 7.8% black, 4.6% Hispanic, and 2.4% Asian. Oklahoma is also 79% Christian, 18% unaffiliated, and 3% other religions. Oklahoma is also a red state, meaning that it usually votes for the Republican Party in presidential elections. In the 2020 election, Oklahoma gave 65.4% of its votes to Donald Trump, the highest percentage among all states.

Oklahoma also lacks cultural opportunities and attractions, such as museums, theaters, festivals, and nightlife. Oklahoma has only one major city, Oklahoma City, which is the 27th most populous city in the U.S. with about 655,000 residents. The rest of the state is mostly rural and agricultural, with few urban amenities and entertainment options.

4. High Crime Rate

Oklahoma has a high crime rate, especially for violent crimes, such as murder, rape, robbery, and assault. According to the FBI, Oklahoma had 449.3 violent crimes per 100,000 people in 2019, which is higher than the national average of 366.7. Oklahoma also had 6.1 murders per 100,000 people, which is higher than the national average of 5.0. Oklahoma City, the state’s capital and largest city, is also one of the most dangerous cities in the country, ranking 15th in violent crime and 17th in property crime among U.S. cities with more than 250,000 people.

5. Low Wages and High Taxes

Oklahoma has low wages and high taxes, which can make living in the state unaffordable and unattractive for many people. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Oklahoma had a median annual wage of $40,640 in 2019, which is lower than the national median of $51,960. Oklahoma also has a progressive income tax system, with rates ranging from 0.5% to 5% depending on income level. Oklahoma also has a state sales tax of 4.5%, which can be increased by local governments up to 11% in some areas. Oklahoma also has a property tax of 0.87%, which is lower than the national average of 1.07%, but still adds to the cost of living.

6. Environmental Issues

Oklahoma has several environmental issues, such as air pollution, water contamination, and earthquakes. Oklahoma has some of the worst air quality in the nation, ranking 48th in the American Lung Association’s State of the Air report. Oklahoma also has a high level of water pollution, with 40% of its lakes and 30% of its rivers considered impaired by the Environmental Protection Agency. Oklahoma also has a high frequency of earthquakes, which have been linked to the state’s oil and gas industry and its practice of injecting wastewater into underground wells. Oklahoma had 448 earthquakes of magnitude 3.0 or higher in 2020, which is higher than any other state except Alaska.

7. Negative Reputation and Stereotypes

Oklahoma has a negative reputation and stereotypes, which can deter people from moving to the state or visiting it. Oklahoma is often perceived as a boringbackwardignorant, and intolerant place, with little to offer in terms of culture, education, or innovation. Oklahoma is also associated with the Oklahoma City bombing, the Trail of Tears, and the Dust Bowl, which are tragic and shameful events in the state’s history. Oklahoma is also the subject of jokes and insults, such as the musical Oklahoma!, the movie Twister, and the phrase “OK is not OK”.


Oklahoma is a state with many challenges and drawbacks, which make it an unappealing place to live for many people. Oklahoma has extreme weather, low quality of life, lack of diversity and culture, high crime rate, low wages and high taxes, environmental issues, and negative reputation and stereotypes. These are some of the reasons why no one is moving to Oklahoma, and why Oklahoma is one of the least popular states in the U.S.

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