...death toll from shootings is nearly double that of alcohol-related auto fatalities


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FRIZ
July 14, 2003, 07:45 AM
Here is a sample of what is fed to the masses.

The New York Daily News
Monday, July 14th, 2003

America's weapon of mass destruction
Editorial

http://www.nydailynews.com/news/ideas_opinions/story/100518p-90888c.html

The annual U.S. death toll from shootings is nearly double that of alcohol-related auto fatalities. Consider: In 2001 (the last year for which stats are available), 28,913 people were killed by guns in the U.S., while 15,778 died in car crashes involving drinking. Outrage over DWI deaths has led to tough new laws, but politicians have done little about the gun slaughter.

It's time for America to get as angry about the firearms bloodbath.

The biggest roadblock is the National Rifle Association, which Fortune magazine ranks as the most influential lobbying group in Washington. In 2000, according to Fortune, the NRA's budget was $200 million. That includes $35 million the organization spent on political campaigns. Which is one large reason Congress is afraid to take on this juggernaut.

The gun-huggers seek both to block new legislation and to emasculate current laws. They want to make it illegal to sue firearms manufacturers and dealers, and they are desperate to dismantle the assault weapons ban. This, for an industry already coated in Teflon.

For example, gun manufacturers are exempt from all consumer safety laws. The Consumer Product Safety Commission cannot order them to recall or retrofit their products or cite product hazards. In contrast, automobiles must be inspected every year. And if a car is built with so much as a malfunctioning windshield wiper, that defect is required to be fixed.

Washington is vigilant about making cars safe and getting drunks off the road. The U.S. Transportation Department is running a campaign called, "You drink & drive. You lose." The crackdown includes sobriety checkpoints in all 50 states. Congress threatened to cut highway funding to states that did not lower the threshold for a driving-while-intoxicated conviction to .08% blood-alcohol content. New York's new threshold took effect July 1.

Even the alcohol industry is running responsible commercials about underage drinking and designated drivers. While DWI deaths are still in the thousands, organizations like the 2 million-member Mothers Against Drunk Driving have raised awareness and fought for more stringent laws. As a result, government is going after drunken drivers as never before.

A similar movement is needed to focus the nation's attention on gun deaths.

If a disease were killing this many people, America would mobilize to fight it. Well, consider gun deaths a disease. Consider it a plague on our nation.

Let's fight it.


You can e-mail the Daily News editors at voicers@edit.nydailynews.com
Be polite.
Please include your full name, address and phone number. The Daily News reserves the right to edit letters. The shorter the letter, the better the chance it will be used.
Be polite.

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Apple a Day
July 14, 2003, 09:05 AM
I sent:
" Dear editors,
I found your editorial contrasting drunk driving deaths versus deaths involving firearms to be completely off the mark. There are real problems in America which should be addressed rather than chasing the absurd notion that inanimate objects are the cause of our problems. Over half of the gun-related deaths every year are suicides, which puts a real problem, namely depression, at the top of the list. The next largest categories of deaths involving guns are those related to domestic violence and drug trafficking. The real causes of domestic violence and drug abuse are the causes of the 'disease' and should be treated rather than slapping a band-aid called "gun control" over the problem and declaring political victory. I am glad the author of the article picked drunk driving for comparison, as legal prohibition of alcohol was a miserable a failure, disproving his own point. Attempting to institute more de facto prohibition of firearms will accomplish nothing more. It's time politicians stopped leading the wild goose chase of gun prohibition and started addressing the real problems: mental health, domestic abuse, and drug abuse. "

Wow, it looked a lot smaller in an email

TallPine
July 14, 2003, 09:57 AM
In contrast, automobiles must be inspected every year.

Uh, where is that ...?

mtnbkr
July 14, 2003, 10:16 AM
Uh, where is that ...?

Virginia.

Chris

BrokenPaw
July 14, 2003, 10:34 AM
Virginia. Whereas, by contrast, some states require less frequent inspections, and some[0] require no inspections at all. There are no uniform car-safety laws across the country.

-BP

[0] Which shall remain nameless but which would otherwise be called "South Carolina"

Oleg Volk
July 14, 2003, 10:34 AM
So they are upset even about the portion of the total which includes dead goblins? Hmmm...

I bet we could cut down on the number of people shot if police were armed with Super Soakers instead of guns. Wonder if they'd support that idea...

TallPine
July 14, 2003, 10:36 AM
Washington is vigilant about making cars safe and getting drunks off the road.

But there is NO federal law to inspect private vehicles annually. Some states do, but many do not. Some used to, and quit because it was too big of a nuisance.

So this idiot is using an non-existent federal law to call for more federal gun control laws. He can't even get his (her?) facts straight about non-gun facts.

If the comparison is going to be made with auto deaths, then ALL auto deaths should be included, the number of which is significantly more than firearm related deaths. Or else only count firearm deaths in which alcohol is a factor. Maybe we should just ban cars - do it for the children.

Oh, and he (she) didn't mention that the firearm death total includes civilians killed by law enforcement ... :rolleyes:

Intune
July 14, 2003, 10:50 AM
"For example, gun manufacturers are exempt from all consumer safety laws. The Consumer Product Safety Commission cannot order them to recall or retrofit their products or cite product hazards. In contrast, automobiles must be inspected every year. And if a car is built with so much as a malfunctioning windshield wiper, that defect is required to be fixed."

First the article seems to be complaining about the number of deaths attributed to firearms and then in this para urges inspections to make them work better??? Thanks NY Daily News. That IS what they meant, yes? There are a few models that I would run by the tester! :D

thorazine
July 14, 2003, 11:27 AM
Am I the only one that noticed the erroneous numbers?

Where did they get the "28,913 people were killed by guns" figure from? I can't figure that one out!

Consider: In 2001 (the last year for which stats are available), 28,913 people were killed by guns in the U.S., while 15,778 died in car crashes involving drinking. FBI figures put it a lot lower. They report gun homicides were 8,719 in 2001, 8,661 in 2000, 8,480 in 1999. (2001 UCR, p. 23).

see for yourself http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/01cius.htm

I found your editorial contrasting drunk driving deaths versus deaths involving firearms to be completely off the mark. No kidding they are off mark! Next time do some homework before you compose your email and show them how off mark they really are!!!

thorazine
July 14, 2003, 11:32 AM
Even if you ignore the FBI and use Nat'l Center for Health Statistics figures. These firgures are based on doctors' death certificates (including firearm accidents and suicides) rather than police investigation, and give figures about 2,000 higher than FBI. Which also include justifiable homicides self-defense and police use against criminals! You still don't get any where near the The New York Daily News 28,913 figures!

DigitalWarrior
July 14, 2003, 11:35 AM
Their list is "people killed by guns" your list is "Homicides". "People killed with guns" = "Homicide" + "Suicide" + "Negligence/Accidents"

mephisto
July 14, 2003, 11:36 AM
Good stuff Thorazine.

DigitalWarrior
July 14, 2003, 11:42 AM
found the source

http://www.helpnetwork.org/frames/guns_in_wartime.pdf

The best part is that it is listed as preliminary data. As in not complete.:scrutiny:

Dave R
July 14, 2003, 11:43 AM
I think the FBI number is Homicides, only. The NYTimes is cincluding suicides? Just a guess. They're not real precise in their definition.

thorazine
July 14, 2003, 11:44 AM
From my understanding the Nat'l Center for Health Statistics figures include homicides, suicides and accidental deaths from firearms. Which put the figures for 2001 around 11,000.

DigitalWarrior
July 14, 2003, 11:47 AM
http://www.helpnetwork.org/frames/resources_factsheets_homicide2.pdf
:barf:

cordex
July 14, 2003, 11:53 AM
Thorazine,
They're going by total gun deaths (accidents, suicides, lawful intervention, murder, etc, etc).
They're limiting the vehicular deaths to those with evidence of alcohol involvement. If they didn't, they'd have to admit that deaths with cars as the primary instrument generally kill about twice as many people as deaths with guns as the primary instrument.

Apples.
Oranges.

Felonious Monk
July 14, 2003, 11:53 AM
I would encourage you Thorazine, and anyone else who has the time and the motivation, to REPLY to that crap, USING the correct, linked statistics and DEMAND they publish a rebuttal.

Good on ya, mon! ;) :D

cuchulainn
July 14, 2003, 12:31 PM
Non sequitur: What do either drunk driving or homicide/suicide have to do with manufacturing standards? While the 28K figure is correct (*), the vast majority of gun deaths have nothing to do with product quality. In fact, most gun accidents cannot be attributed to product defects. <sarcasm>Maybe we can improve choking homicides with product standards for gloves</sarcasm>.

(*) source: www.cdc.gov/ncipc/wisqars -- and, yes, it is apples and oranges to compare all gun deaths to a subset of car deaths.

The U.S. Transportation Department is running a campaign called, "You drink & drive. You lose." And the U.S. Justice Department is running a campaign called "Project Safe Neighborhoods" based on Virginia's Project Exile -- although none have anything to do with manufacturing standards.

Bartholomew Roberts
July 14, 2003, 12:33 PM
My response:

I thought perhaps readers of the New York Daily News might care to hear what information had been omitted from your recent July 14th editorial sermonizing on the dangers of illegal and/or irresponsible use of firearms.

Your paper compared alcohol related traffic fatalities to firearm-related fatalities. I think a more fair comparison might be alcohol-related vehicle deaths (15,778) to accidental firearms deaths (776). By including firearms-related suicides and homicides and excluding other accidental vehicle deaths, your paper creates a rather narrow and inaccurate view.

Second, your editorial repeats the tired charge that firearms are exempt from all consumer safety laws and safe from the oversight of the Consumer Product Safety Commission. This is in fact true. Much like the commercial jet industry is regulated by the FAA and not the CPSC, anybody involved in the legal firearms business in any fashion is licensed by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, FIREARMS, and Explosives. Perhaps the News would care to inform its readers of the grave dangers posed to them by airliners built without CSPC approval?

FBI figures put it a lot lower. They report gun homicides were 8,719 in 2001, 8,661 in 2000, 8,480 in 1999. (2001 UCR, p. 23).

As noted, they are combining justifiable homicides, homicides, suicides, and accidents to get their number. They are also using the CDC numbers instead of the FBI numbers. CDC numbers are derived based on death certificates. FBI numbers are based on reports from individual police departments and every year, certain departments fail to report the info in a timely manner.

So there are actually two sets of numbers for homicide in the UCR - an actual reported - which is much lower than the true number of homicides, and an estimated (where the FBI basically guesses what the late reporters would have sent in). CDC has certainly played politics with guns in the past; but from all I can tell their numbers on this issue are better.

You can look up CDC stats here: http://webapp.cdc.gov/sasweb/ncipc/mortrate.html

The numbers used in this story are based on preliminary CDC estimates and are not yet available at the above site.

Another point to bring up, straight from CPSC:

IMPORTANT: CPSC does not have jurisdiction over the following (use the links below to file a complaint with the proper agency):
Automobiles (including tires, trucks and motorcycles)
Car seats protecting children in on-road vehicles
Foods, medicines, cosmetics, and medical devices
(CPSC has authority for child-resistant packaging)
Dissatisfaction with business practices
Certain other products: list of agency jurisdictions

http://www.cpsc.gov/talk.html

O my gosh! Look at all the things not regulated by CPSC! The sky is falling the sky is falling!

thorazine
July 14, 2003, 12:53 PM
Consider: In 2001 (the last year for which stats are available), 28,913 people were killed by guns in the U.S., while 15,778 died in car crashes involving drinking. Well since they are factoring in homicides, suicides and accidental shootings to come up with the "preliminary" 28,913.

It would only be fair if they factored in all aspects of automobile related fatalities, not only crashes involving drinking, also to include, accidents, suicides, homicides, etc.

I wonder then what the numbers would have looked like in comparision!

Responsible comsumption of alcoholic beverages is no different than responisble use and ownership of firearms. It is only when you ignore basic safety guidelines and abandon common sense, bad things can happen.

cuchulainn
July 14, 2003, 01:05 PM
I wonder then what the numbers would have looked like in comparision!

Motor Vehicle deaths, year 2000, all causes = 43,604

source: www.cdc.gov/ncipc/wisqars

Raymond VanDerLinden
July 14, 2003, 03:55 PM
....No one was Killed BY a GUN, or a Car or a Knife< or a blasted pensil for that matter.

In animate oblects don't spring to life and kill ANYTHING. :cuss: :banghead:

Sergeant Bob
July 14, 2003, 05:21 PM
You can all obfuscate and confuse the issue with all the facts you want.
If this guy had any interest in facts, he wouldn't have written this tripe.

cordex
July 14, 2003, 06:04 PM
My response:

Comparing a subset of vehicular deaths to the whole of firearms related deaths is silly. To be a valid and logical relationship, you'd have to compare alcohol related, unintentional car accidents to alcohol related, unintentional gun accidents.

So how about some more telling (and realistic) comparisons?

In 2000, there were 28,663 total deaths relating to firearms. This includes homicides, suicides, legal intervention (police shooting or lawful self-defense), accidents and undetermined intents. A tragic number, to be sure. However, in the same year, there were 46,509 transportation related deaths.

In 2000, there were 776 unintentional, gun related deaths. There were 43,354 unintentional, car related deaths. That is nearly 56 times more.

The CIA World Factbook places the US population at somewhere around 280,562,489 estimated for July 2002. That means that there were more than 1 fatal car accident for every 6471 people. In contrast, there were only 1 fatal firearm accident per 361,549 people. This with well over 200 million firearms and more being built and sold every year.

(source: CDC reports located on http://www.cdc.gov - please contact me if you're interested in complete citations)

I don't have data for 2001, but I believe it will prove to be similar.

It's harder to further your emotion-fueled agenda without being forthcoming about the real data, isn't it?

Additionally, you might want to look into some other products not under the control of Consumer Product Safety Commission. It is not simply firearms.

Yours,
*** *******

Standing Wolf
July 14, 2003, 08:41 PM
Well, consider gun deaths a disease. Consider it a plague on our nation.
Let's fight it.

On second thought, let's consider the purported "article" another example of leftist extremist propaganda that has no basis in reality nor any respect for rational thought.

Bartholomew Roberts
July 15, 2003, 10:29 AM
cordex - Just for future reference, CDCs legal intervention category does not include justifiable homicide. Since they only classify at the hospital or morgue, the person doing the classification doesn't know what the ultimate outcome of the investigation will be.

Legal intervention shootings are any conducted by law enforcement or military, regardless of whether they are eventually found to be good shoots or not. Likewise, under CDC stats, all justifiable homicides by Joe Citizen are counted as homicides. Here is a copy of my discussion with the CDC on the subject:


I assume you're talking about the difference between Homicides and
Legal Interventions (written as Legal Int. on the reports). Legal
Intervention is defined as the following:

Injuries inflicted by the police or other law-enforcing agents,
including military on duty, in the course of arresting or attemptint to
arrest lawbreakers, suppressing disturbances, maintaining order, and
other legal action. Includes legal exectutions.

Homicides are defined as:

Injuries inflicted by another person with intent to injure or kill,
by any means. Excludes injuries due to legal intervention (defined
above) and operations of war.

I hope that answers your question. Let me know if I can be of further
assistance.

XXXXX

Computer Specialist
Office of Statistics and Programming
National Center for Injury Prevention and Control
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

From the definitions below, there is no distinction between justifiable
homicide and an illegal homicide. The person who's filling out the death
certificate does not wait for the judicial system to rule on the case before
filling out the cause of death. The pertinant detail is who the person
who does the killing is. So justifiable homicide by citizens would fall
under homicides and not legal interventions.

If this is not clear, let me know.

XXXXX

cordex
July 15, 2003, 10:38 AM
Oops! Thanks for the info.

Malone LaVeigh
July 15, 2003, 01:28 PM
Another thing to question is the whole premise of comparing one source of death to another. This country has a screwed up way of looking at mortality. We get bent out of shape by things like SARS that kill less than 1% of infections and ignore much more dangerous things. We accept the highway carnage as the price of doing business. Well, maybe some of us consider the few accidental deaths from firearms an acceptable risk for the greater good of retaining our civil rights.

HankB
July 15, 2003, 01:50 PM
28,913 people were killed by guns in the U.S., while 15,778 died in car crashes involving drinking. I'm alternately amused and annoyed by the usual choice of words when this type of comparison is made. On the one hand, they blame the gun, the inanimate object; on the other hand they either blame a person, the drunk driver, or the person's actions, his drinking and driving.

This isn't even an apples-and-oranges comparison, it's more of a kumquat-and-screwdriver comparison . . . it's just intellectually dishonest and borderline irrational to lump an inanimate object in with people and their actions as if there was some equivalence.

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