Saturday, April 5, 2014
More guns do not make people safer.
After the tragic shooting at Ft. Hood, the national conversation again turned to the relationship between guns and gun deaths. It doesn't take a genius to see the correlation between the number of guns a country tolerates and the number of deaths that country sustains from those guns.
The United States has more guns and gun deaths than any other developed country in the world, researchers found.
A study by two New York City cardiologists found that the U.S. has 88 guns per 100 people and 10 gun-related deaths per 100,000 people — more than any of the other 27 developed countries they studied.
Japan, on the other hand, had only .6 guns per 100 people and .06 gun-related deaths per 100,000 people, making it the country with both the fewest guns per capita and the fewest gun-related deaths.
Drs. Sripal Bangalore, who works at NYU Langone Medical Center, and Dr. Franz Messerli of St. Luke’s Medical Center studied the statistics of guns per capita and gun deaths. They used firearm injury data from the World Health Organization and guns per capita data from the Small Arms Survey to put together a list of 27 developed countries.
They said they carried out their study because of what they said are seemingly baseless claims on either side of the gun control debate. “I think we need more of what I would call evidence-based discussion and not merely people pulling things out of their hats,” Bangalore said.
“We hear time and time again about these shootings, especially in the last year or so. A lot of claims are made…so we wanted to look at the data and see if any of this holds water.”
They concluded that more guns do not make people safer.
GO HERE TO SEE THE CHART ON GUNS PER CAPITA IN OTHER COUNTRIES AND GUNS DEATHS.
Even in countries where there are lots of firearms in circulation, the stats show the U.S.A. still leads those countries in gun deaths, suggesting that perhaps Americans don't know enough about gun safety or perhaps they're too dumb to be allowed to own those extremely dangerous weapons. Almost every day we read somewhere that some irresponsible gun owner has left his loaded firearm where children can get hold of it and kill either themselves or others. Almost every day we read of some irresponsible gun owner accidentally shooting himself or someone else as he cleans his gun or demonstrates its use to someone.
Because of the widespread availability of firearms, this country has high rates of suicide by firearms as well.
US Child Gun Deaths Rose 60 Percent In 10 Years
If there were a childhood disease that increased at that rate, parents would demand research into what was the cause of that increase. The criminals who run the NRA and its lackeys in Congress were successful in getting legislation passed that would make it unlawful to study such statistics.
Prior to 1996, the Center for Disease Control funded research into the causes of firearm-related deaths. After a series of articles finding that increased prevalence of guns lead to increased incidents of gun violence, Republicans sought to remove all federal funding for research into gun deaths.
In 1996, Republican Rep. Jay Dickey removed $2.6 million from the CDC budget — the precise amount the CDC spent on gun research in 1995 — at a time when the center was conducting more studies into gun-related deaths as a "public health phenomenon," according to The New York Times.
The NRA and some pro-gun Congressmen perceived this as more of an attack. Here's an excerpt of a 1997 article in Reason about the fight to kill gun science:
Since 1985 the CDC has funded scores of firearm studies, all reaching conclusions that favor stricter gun control. But CDC officials insist they are not pursuing an anti-gun agenda. In a 1996 interview with the Times-Picayune, CDC spokeswoman Mary Fenley adamantly denied that the agency is "trying to eliminate guns."
At the behest of the NRA, Congressional Republicans successfully removed all federal funding to the Center for Disease Control that would have gone into researching the effect of guns and the root causes of gun violence.
There's a very good reason the criminals who run the NRA used the US Congress to stop all funding into firearm studies. The results would show that more guns in ciruculation means more gun deaths.