Real numbers?

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by Guy B. Meredith, Feb 7, 2016.

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  1. Win73

    Win73 Member

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    Remember, figures don't lie, but liars figure!
     
  2. holdencm9

    holdencm9 Member

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    Lol. I noticed that a few hours after I typed it. Then i was like, nah who cares. At a certain point the fraction gets so small, it is basically "negligible" from a statistical standpoint. Or statistical noise as some would put it. But glad you noticed! [emoji3]
     
  3. Warp

    Warp Member

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    I don't know, I think there is a significant difference when talking about a factor of 10.

    That is an entire order of magnitude.
     
  4. Pushrod

    Pushrod Member

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    Then I guess you are being intentionally obtuse as our arguments have been laid out explicitly. No one said 'so what.'
     
  5. TimSr

    TimSr Member

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    When you include suicides, it kind of messes up that Japan comparision they like to go to.
     
  6. holdencm9

    holdencm9 Member

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    Is that what an order of magnitude is? Lol

    My only point was like, if i said your odds of winning the lottery are 1 in 250e6 vs 250e7. Yeah one is 10x more likely to win, but both are basically zero. And just like humans can't comprehend insanely large numbers, most can't fathom ridiculously tiny fractions, but i went ahead and fixed it anyway before anyone else notices.
     
  7. JSH1

    JSH1 Member

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    Actually someone did (as part of a larger argument).

    However the fact remains that the bulk of the discussion on this thread is why suicides should not be grouped with murders. That suicides aren't "real" gun deaths. While the people on this board may follow that logic the broader population will not.
     
  8. jerkface11

    jerkface11 Member

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    If gun control reduces suicides then why don't any of the statistics support that?
     
  9. JSH1

    JSH1 Member

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    I doubt you would find many people that wouldn't swap our suicide rate for Japan's if we also got their violent crime and murder rate.
     
  10. Warp

    Warp Member

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    Population demographics and culture. Boy, do those things ever differ between the US and Japan
     
  11. JSH1

    JSH1 Member

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    Yes they do. However, for some reason Japan is coming up in this discussion even though suicide is viewed very differently in Japan than in the USA.
     
  12. RetiredUSNChief

    RetiredUSNChief Member

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    Hmmm...

    Just did a couple minutes of googling for suicide rates. Seems that there are number games with this, as well.

    In Japan, the suicide rate is about 70 per day, which works out to 25,550 a year. Adjusting for the population difference between Japan and the US, that works out to about 63,875 a year. (The US population is about 2.5 times that of Japan.)

    In the United Kingdom, there were 6,233 suicides in 2015. Adjusted for the population difference with the US (a factor of 5), that works out to 15,582 a year. BUT...the UK only counts suicides in people from age 15 and older in their official statistics...and then only those deaths that fit their definition of "suicide". You can't find any suicide statistics for 0-14 age group in the UK.

    However, Northern Ireland does deep such statistics, and we can ratio that for an overall estimate. Northern Ireland reported 40 suicides between the ages of 0 and 14. The UK's population is about 35 times that of Northern Ireland, which works out to an equivalent UK rate of about 1,440 suicides a year. (1,400 for the rest of the UK, plus the 40 for Northern Ireland)

    This changes the total UK suicides to 7,673 a year. Rationing for the population difference between the UK and the US, that works out to 38,365.


    The US suicide statistics for 2013 was 41,149 from all causes.

    With only a 6.8% difference between the US and UK suicides, I'd have to say that the suicide rates are virtually identical between the US and the UK.


    I can't find equivalent "homicide" statistics for the UK. I can find "murder" statistics...but what is counted as "murder" in the UK is different than for the US. The FBI statistics essentially count any incident with a dead body and any signs of foul play as either murder or non-negligent manslaughter. This means that a significant portion of the FBI statistics aren't legally murder. The UK, however, only counts murder...and that only with convictions. Unsolved crimes involving deaths...simply aren't counted. THAT skews the data significantly, to the point of making any kind of comparison between the US statistics and the UK statistics pointlessly misleading.

    I'd have to do some more serious googling to find any relevant statistics, but if one ONLY figures the actual "convicted murder" rates in the US, I strongly suspect the result would be radically lower than the FBI statistics...and much, much closer to the UK statistics.
     
  13. hso

    hso Moderator Staff Member

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    That's not been my experience. In discussions with people outside of the gun community there's most often a "Ah ha" moment when you parse the numbers and show them the breakdown. It allows the discussion to refine into the still related but separate issues of murder, suicide and accidental deaths. I want to have those discussions since they open up the thoughts of others on what constitutes "violence" and "gun violence" that the antis toss about just like we parse "mass shootings" vs. "mass murders" and debunk the 300+ number that was so frequently tossed around after the San Bernardino terrorist attack. By showing clearly and authoritatively that there is important detail that matters to them hidden in the emotional exaggerated body counts we can get remove some of the negative emotional content or create some of our own as backlash against the exaggerations.
     
  14. jerkface11

    jerkface11 Member

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    So you're the one who doesn't care about suicides.
     
  15. Warp

    Warp Member

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    lol

    I think he is saying that most people would take a little bit higher suicide rate (people killing themselves) vs violent crime and murder (people killing other people)

    But there simply isn't a straight comparison or option or trade or anything, the two countries are far too different in culture and demographics
     
  16. Sam1911

    Sam1911 Moderator Emeritus

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    Ahh, yes, that would be me. If, of course, you didn't really bother to read or consider anything I wrote in that whole post except for those two words.

    The broader population will not: True, given that the broader population is being spoon-fed a conflated and misleading set of information that doesn't mean what they're being pressed to believe it means.

    If, as hso says, we get folks to parse that data down into meaningful, discrete chunks and actually think about what each chunk represents, then the picture changes completely.
     
  17. Librarian

    Librarian Member

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    True.

    See http://bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov/index.cfm?ty=pbdetail&iid=4845

    In the 75 largest counties, in 2009, 374 people were arrested for murder. (Table 1)

    70 were convicted. (Table 21)

    What I seem to be missing in the document is the aggregate population of the 75 counties; 39 of them together have about 69 million. (Table 29)

    For 2009, FBI https://www2.fbi.gov/ucr/cius2009/offenses/violent_crime/murder_homicide.html reported 15,241 murders.

    In the crudest numerical comparison, making the entirely false assumptions that murders and arrests and convictions all are evenly distributed, ...

    69 million is 22.4% of the 2009 population of about 307 million.

    If 70 were 22.4% of the convictions, about 312 would be 100%

    (Adding the other 36 counties' population to the 69 million would make the 70 a larger percentage, thus lowering the 312 total conviction number.)

    Gee, I wonder why a government might prefer "312" to "15,241"?
     
  18. JSH1

    JSH1 Member

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    Why would we only look at the number of people convicted for murder?
     
  19. Warp

    Warp Member

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    Who is we, and as opposed to what different number?

    If I can read your mind, I completely agree, there is no reason to eve look at the number of times somebody uses a gun to commit a crime without also looking at the number of times a person uses a gun, even merely displaying it or making its presence known, to deter prevent o stop a crime.
     
  20. RetiredUSNChief

    RetiredUSNChief Member

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    "We" don't. The FBI doesn't record statistics that way. The FBI documents any incident with a dead body under suspicious conditions as either "murder" or "non-negligent homicide".

    The UK, however, doesn't do that at all. Here's a link explaining it:

    http://rboatright.blogspot.com/2013/03/comparing-england-or-uk-murder-rates.html

    A couple paragraphs from this link:


    I fell into a definitions trap you may not be aware of. The shortest version is this. We count and report crimes based on initial data. The Brits count and report crimes based on the outcome of the investigation and trial. Yep, that says what I meant it to say.

    In the US, the count of people murdered kept by the FBI is pretty darned straightforward. Got a body, not natural causes, not suicide? Must be murder of one sort or another. Count it.


    In the UK, if the crime wasn't solved, then it's not counted as murder. If there is no conviction, there is no murder. Coroner's don't clearly record the cause of death as murder, accident, or neglect. And even if they do, it can't be counted as a murder unless there's been a conviction.


    While a more direct comparison of the homicide rates in the UK to those of the US while using our own definitions may not have a UK homicide rate as high, or as higher, than our own, we would most certainly find that their actual homicide rate is SIGNIFICANTLY higher than what their numbers imply. Perhaps two or three times higher, or even more.
     
  21. Librarian

    Librarian Member

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    As already noted,'we' don't do that, but in the law-enforcement world, murder is the Big Enchilada. Proportionally to those that occur, lots of murders get reported; they get a lot of publicity and a lot of resources are devoted to solving murders - and at that, UCR shows only about 65% of murders are cleared by arrest.

    There are some quibbles in some quarters about which homicides might be 'murders', but pretty much everyone agrees that 'murders are bad'.
     
  22. Carl N. Brown

    Carl N. Brown Member

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    Suicide and homicide are categorized as intentional deaths and you can find statistical rankings of countries by intentional death rate.

    As far as guns being the most lethal method of suicide, the right-to-suicide advocates use suicide attempts in their stats as opposed to suicidal gestures which are more a call-for-help than a serious suicide attempt.
    Methods of Suicide
    Rank / Lethality / Method
    1. 99.0% Shotgun to head
    2. 97.0% Cyanide
    3. 97.0% Gunshot of head
    4. 96.4% Shotgun to chest
    5. 96.4% Explosives
    6. 96.2% Hit by train
    7. 93.4% Jump from height
    8. 89.5% Gunshot of chest
    9. 89.5% Hanging
    10. 78.5% Auto crash
    11. 77.5% Household toxins
    12. 76.5% Set fire to self
    13. 73.0% Structure fire
    14. 71.0% Carbon Monoxide
    15. 70.0% Hit by truck/auto
    16. 65.5% Electrocution
    17. 65.0% Gunshot of abdomen
    18. 63.0% Drowning ocean/lake
    19. 58.5% Stab of chest
    20. 51.5% Cut throat
    21. 49.4% Overdose illegal drugs
    22. 23.0% Plastic bag over head
    23. 21.5% Drowning bathtub
    24. 21.5% Drowning swimming pool
    25. 12.5% Stab of abdomen
    26. 12.3% Overdose prescription drugs
    27. 6.0% Overdose non-prescription drugs
    28. 6.0% Cut wrists/arms/legs

    General suicide studies from different sources do give different results. JJ Card gave suicide by gun as 91.6% effective. Farberow and Shneidman had it 84.7%. Hawaii Dept of Health had it 73%. Those studies gave suicide by hanging as 77% to 88% effective.

    The decision to commit suicide precedes the choice of means. As the experience in Japan illustrates, their suicide rate is extremely higher than that of the United States in a culture where very few people ever owned guns, no tradition of owning or using guns and the current laws are extremely strict. Some of the Japanese suicide methods, including combinations of household poisons, are hazardous to people other than the person choosing suicide. So restrictive gun laws don't mean no suicide since there are other equally effective means, or if the person is seriously willing to try multiple times.

    National Academy of Sciences, National Research Council, "Firearms and Violence: A Critical Review" (2004) Chapter 7 Firearms and Suicide
    http://www.nap.edu/openbook.php?record_id=10881&page=169
    (How does the number of suicides or effectiveness of shooting as a means prove any effectiveness of gun control? Suicide advocates list "Overdose by illegal drugs" as 49% lethal. How can that be? We not only have drug control laws, we are in the midst of a War on Drugs. If legal control on things controlled bad behavior by people, how could there be enough suicides by overdose on illegal drugs to get a percentile of effectiveness?)
     
  23. Sheepdog1968

    Sheepdog1968 Member

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    The author who wrote More Guns Less Crime (brain cramp at the moment) has a website that contains lots of gun facts that link back to official sources of data. Take a look as there is much that would be useful for you.
     
  24. Guy B. Meredith

    Guy B. Meredith Member

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    Well, quite a conversation.

    I have been using the numbers thrown around by the antis in order to show that even with their numbers--inflated or not--the number of people involved in homicides is a very tiny number compared to the number of people who own firearms. I would like to at least use updated numbers. I'd like to expand beyond homicides or murders but by then it really is necessary to know how many of those incidents are by repeat offenders.

    The next step is to point out that the stats about firearms violence--bogus or not--are based on the actions of that tiny number of people and that they are easily identifiable: gangs, drug involvement, mentally ill, career criminals, persons known for violence and domestic violence. That the 80 million or so responsible firearms owners are not part of it, not guilty of being violent.

    My intent is to push very hard on accusing those behind many of the firearms restrictions with bigotry. Painting the general population of firearms owners as being part of the violence is irrational and the belief is a prejudice->bigotry. Irrational fear of firearms and assumption that every firearms owner will someday become violent (so why are there not 80 million firearms homicides or even just a few million?) is a prejudice -> bigotry.

    This is defining bigotry as the (irrational / hateful) intolerance of a group based on a common characteristic such as race, religon, ethnicity, physical type--or firearms ownership.

    So everyone is talking about "common sense" gun laws. Need to make it clear that bigotry is not common sense, but it is bigotry the laws are built on. Not all the laws, but banning specific firearms or features, "violence" taxes so firearms owners pay their "fair share" (bigotry of assumption they are involved in violence), "gun free zones", fees and taxes which have no purpose other than to prevent the less well off from owning firearms and the like.
     
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2016
  25. Guy B. Meredith

    Guy B. Meredith Member

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    By the way, suicides do seem like a special case as they generally do not threaten the public and are private affairs. It seems like mass shootings are often intended to be suicides as well but they are a very small part of the whole number of suicides.
     
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