Arm yourself

With knowledge – access to facts and statistics from reliable sources is often our best weapon when debating anti-gun people, or when trying to win over converts to the pro-gun argument.  With that in mind, I wanted to share this website at the CDC (Centers for Disease Control) with you.

It’s actually quite useful, as it can sort death statistics by type, whether they’re accidental or intentional, you can sort by age, ethnicity, or even gender.  As I said, a quite useful resource, especially when presented with one of the Brady Bunch’s favorite canards: Kids and guns.

For example, this quote is on the Brady Campaign’s website.

In 1998, 3,792 American children and teens (19 and under) died by gunfire in murders, suicides and unintentional shootings.[7] That’s more than 10 young people a day.

Now, if you’re like me then that statistic (aside from being old) smells like fish.  Including 16, 17, 18, and 19 year olds that have been murdered is a great way to skew  your “statistic”.  The problem is that 16-19 year olds are often killed during various violent activities; and while at times the teenager may be an innocent victim, there are plenty of times when they are a participant in the violence.  So, using the handy tool I linked to earlier, I want to see how much that “statistic” is padded by homicides.  So, I’ll set my search parameters to first “unintentional”, age 0-19, and the year as 1999 (you can’t search earlier) I get the following number:

Number of
Deaths
Population Crude
Rate
214 80,039,972 0.27

Now, that’s just for accidental deaths.  Let’s add in suicides from the same age group for 1999.  Here’s the number for suicides:

Number of
Deaths
Population Crude
Rate
1,078 80,039,972 1.35

If you add them up, it comes to  1,292 suicides and accidental deaths from firearms in 1999.  Running the homicide numbers for 1999 gives me this result.

Number of
Deaths
Population Crude
Rate
2,010 80,039,972 2.51

As you can see for yourself, by including murders in their statistic, the Brady’s can pad their stats by almost double the number of accidental deaths and suicides combined.

I think that any death (firearms related or otherwise) is a tragedy, which is why I find especially repugnant that the Brady Campaign would inflate statistics in such a manner.  Contrary to what they would have you believe, the one group of people in the country that is doing the most to prevent accidental deaths from firearms is gun owners.

You can’t prevent accidental deaths by closing your eyes and pretending that guns don’t exist – even worse than that is that many parents unintentionally endanger their children by not teaching them anything about guns.  Think about it for a minute – say your kid finds a gun that someone dumped, or something silly like that.  If everything they’ve ever learned about firearms they learned from TV, there is going to be a significant amount of curiosity; curiosity is dangerous because it could lead them to handle the firearm.

Now, take the kid and give him basic firearms safety instruction.  Now, firearms are no longer a mysterious symbol of power, but rather just another object, not unlike a car that the child has been taught to respect the danger involved.

Telling your children “never touch guns” and not actually teaching them anything about firearms is a surefire way to ensure that the first time your kid sees a gun and you’re not around, they’re going to start messing with it.  Magical thinking never works.

2 thoughts on “Arm yourself”

  1. Even better, by teaching your child gun safety and having them attend a class, they also pass on better habits and advice to their friends who may handle a firearm without any training. Since that’s how some of the accidental shootings in young people happen – a young person who knows very little about guns and safety mishandles a weapon in the home and shoots his friend.

    If your kid understood gun safety in that same situation, they’d know to tell their friend not to handle the gun without parental supervision or some sort of registered training.

    More education is always a good thing.

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