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Comments about ‘Letters: Are guns part of America's life expectancy numbers?’

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Published: Saturday, Jan. 19 2013 12:00 a.m. MST

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one vote
Salt Lake City, UT

Hey, the gun hobby has its consequences.

Beverly
Eden, UT

The NRA with its powerful political clout has kept the Center from Disease Control from being funded for the study this issue. Each year, over the past five years, 30,000 people in the United States are killed with a gun. Most of these deaths are suicides and accidental shootings. Young men are most often the victims. When you add in 30,000 deaths to our national statistics, it will have an impact and possibly identify guns as part of the problem. Approaching the gun death issue from a disease control standpoint, might find some traction. We quick accept and go after drugs as a serious disease issue, and as a former DEA agent, I know we do all we can to stop the number of overdose deaths in America. Hopefully, with good research, we can start looking at gun death prevention through the same lens we look at drug overdose prevention. Don't expect this to be easy. The NRA will do all it can to keep guns sales flowing.

cjb
Bountiful, UT

This is cherry picking of statistics. Why not point out that in states and countries where guns have been made harder or impossible to get, that the overall murder rate has gone up. This is because law abiding people were made less able to defend themselves and the criminals who didn't abide by the newly enacted gun laws knew that.

The fact is, the governments militias (the Police and National Guard) can't always be counted on to be there when they are needed and on time. This is why our founders ensured that the people would have and keep the right to have to form up into armed militias. So that they could protect themselves, their families, and when necessary, help protect their communities such as after an earth quake or hurricane from looters or even worse.

Mike in Cedar City
Cedar City, Utah

Well, statistics aside, guns were a big part of shortening the satistical life expectancy for 28 people at Sandy Hook elementary, in Aurora Colorado, Columbine High ,and Tucson Arizona. Not to mention all those young people killed on the streets of a major cities. The common demoninator - Assualt Wepons. Oh, I forgot Virgina Tech. How could that horror have slipped from my mind?

pragmatistferlife
salt lake city, utah

You know folks what we've done as Americans is given ourselves (I certainly don't think this was the intent of the founding fathers) a constitutional right to violence, mayhem, and destruction and then constructed completely circular arguments to justify the idiocy. A country that has 300 million guns and a gun ownership rate magnitudes higher than any other civilized country has killed more of it citizens with guns in the last 40 years than in all of its wars, skirmishes or military actions of any kind. It's inevitable who cares if the guns were legal, if the person shot themselves or were murdered.

What starts off as a perfectly reasonable action to assure a military is available for a new country without a formal military or tradition of a military. A country that relied on the volunteerism of it's citizens for it's freedom. Evolves into a country with the strongest military and the most violent and armed society in the world killing itself at unheard of rates and in unspeakable ways. Was that the founding fathers vision?

Another Perspective
Bountiful, UT

As long as we focus on particular tools instead of the root of the problem of violence we will never solve the problem. We need to ensure that all of the mentally ill get the help they need.

If we got rid of all guns but didn't ensure that all mentally I'll people get the help they need, they would find some other tool to kill others.

Cars can be run into crowds, bombs can easily be made from fertilizer. Getting rid of guns will not solve the problem and diverts us from focusing on and doing that which would really help.

Truthseeker
SLO, CA

Re:cjb

"Why not point out out that in states and countries where guns have been made harder to get, the overall murder rate has gone up."

Because that just isn't true.

Examples:

Chicago's 28yr handgun ban was overturned in 2010. Homicides were 19% higher in 2012.

Australian crime statistics show a marked decrease in homicides since the gun law change.

one old man
Ogden, UT

Another Perspective has provided another perspective of the need for stiffer regulation of guns. He (or she) says, "Cars can be run into crowds, bombs can easily be made from fertilizer." Which is true. And that is exactly why they are both regulated in an attempt to keep them from being used to harm others.

It doesn't always succeed, but at least it makes it more difficult for people who would misuse them.

I do, however, fully agree with the first part of his comment about ensuring help for those with mental problems.

However, that and gun regulation need to go hand in hand.

Hutterite
American Fork, UT

One thing I've learned in the last few weeks is that statistics are ineffective in these discussions. They're like bible verses; everyone can spin them to their own needs. Having said that, I'm not sure what the true measure of how much regulation we need is. A lot of us aren't happy with the status quo, but are by no means advocating a nanny state.

Curmudgeon
Salt Lake City, UT

Well, look on the bright side. In the immortal words of one of the conservatives' heroes (before his 3-ghost induced epiphany), the gun culture helps "decrease the surplus population."

Another Perspective
Bountiful, UT

One Old Man

The mentally ill are not restricted from driving, or from buying fertilizer, or baseball bats, they can buy all the knives they want and gasoline too. They are even able to get guns even though they are restricted. Unless we give them the treatment they need, them they will always be a threat.

Your logic isn't sound.

ugottabkidn
Sandy, UT

We will never know if common sense regulations can help curb mass murder unless we make an effort to keep weapons from the unfit. Thus far the effort has been minimal due to under the table payments from corporations to washed up musicians, actors and fanatical secret organizations ie, NRA, an organization whose focus was to control gun violence at the genesis of it's existance. Then, we have allowed the distortion of revered documents such as the constitution and the scriptures not to mention history because we distance ourselves from civil history.

Jl
Sandy, UT

I would suggest that the overiding factor of these numbers is the absence of quality healthcare for an affordable price. Factors are indeed numerous but when we are paying a third of our healthcare dollar to an administrator before we see a nurse, let along a doctor, then we cannot prevent most of the examples you site.

one old man
Ogden, UT

Another Perspective, you've twisted what I said. I said cars and fertilizer are regulated. I did not say that people with mental issues are regulated.

But maybe they should be . . . . .

Happy Valley Heretic
Orem, UT

pragmatistferlife
Excellent post and observation.

cjb
Bountiful, UT

Re Truth Seeker

Nice try, but in 2010 the Supreme Court affirmed that ALL Americans have a 2nd Ammendment right to have a gun, this includes Chicago and New York.

Also after Austrialias more restrictive gun laws, their murder rate did go up for 5, then went down, possibly due to demographic reasons, just as our murder rate is going down for demographic reasons.

Truthseeker
SLO, CA

re:cjb
"Nice try, but in 2010 the Supreme Court affirmed that ALL Americans have a 2nd Ammendment right to have a gun,"

Please point out where I said otherwise. But, more accurately, the Supreme Court did not affirm in 2010 that ALL Americans (for example, not mentally ill or felons) have a 2nd Amendment right to have a gun.

"possibly due to demographic reasons,"

...and possibly due to gun control measures. Gun control was enacted in 1996 and then again in 2002.

According to the Australian Institute of Criminology, a government agency, the number of homicides in Australia did increase slightly in 1997 and peaked in 1999, but has since declined to the lowest number on record in 2007. Murders using firearms have declined even more sharply than murders in general since the 1996 gun law. In the seven years prior to 1997, firearms were used in 24 percent of all Australian homicides. But most recently, firearms were used in only 11 percent of Australian homicides, according to figures for the 12 months ending July 1, 2007. That’s a decline of more than half since enactment of the gun law to which this message refers.
(factcheck)

one old man
Ogden, UT

Nice try, cjb. When you said: "Nice try, but in 2010 the Supreme Court affirmed that ALL Americans have a 2nd Ammendment right to have a gun, this includes Chicago and New York." You forgot (conveniently?) that the Court also left open the possibility of a future need for some kind of regulation.

They did NOT leave the gate open entirely as the NRA and others want us to be fooled into believing.

It takes some effort, but you might try reading the actual court decision.

Thinkin\' Man
Rexburg, ID

More people are killed by bare hands, baseball bats, and knives each than by guns. Are those things factors in the homicide rate? Should we ban them?

What a letter.

Jory
payson, utah

Drinking also lowers the life expectancy of people maybe we should get rid of alcohol. Wait we tried that and it didn't work out so well.

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