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A comparison (another gun thread)

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A comparison (another gun thread)

Postby kurt_w » Tue Sep 24, 2013 6:46 am

I apologize for posting this in its own thread, but unfortunately it is going to be a rather long post and I didn't want to mess up any of the existing threads.

Here is the number of people killed in the terrorist attacks on 9-11:

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Here is the number of people killed by guns in the USA -- accidentally and intentionally -- since 9-11. What follows is not an exaggeration; it is based on actual counts of deaths for 2002-2011 plus best estimates for 2001 and 2012-2013, as of today (24 Sept 2013):

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We are killing ourselves at a rate of one 9-11 every 34 days.

Source: Data from here, with estimates for 2012 and 2013 derived using simple linear regression, and estimates for 2001 and 2013 based on fraction of year included in the time period (9/11/2001-12/31/2001 and 1/1/2013-9/24/2013).
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Re: A comparison (another gun thread)

Postby snoqueen » Tue Sep 24, 2013 9:55 am

Unfortunately, Dman has gone silent on this forum so he can't explain for us why all this is right and good and Constitutional.

Your graphic can be taken two different ways: we have failed to focus enough effort and attention on the causes and perpetrators of everyday gun deaths, and/or we have concurrently focused way too much of that finite attention span on the causes and perpetrators of one day's deaths. However you parse it, we are not better off.

A quote comes to mind: "We have seen the enemy, and he is us."
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Re: A comparison (another gun thread)

Postby Ned Flanders » Tue Sep 24, 2013 10:12 am

Let's see a car accident chart.
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Re: A comparison (another gun thread)

Postby Francis Di Domizio » Tue Sep 24, 2013 10:16 am

Ned Flanders wrote:Let's see a car accident chart.

You ride your gun to work often?
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Re: A comparison (another gun thread)

Postby wack wack » Tue Sep 24, 2013 10:22 am

Ned is conservative, he only understands wrecks.
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Re: A comparison (another gun thread)

Postby narcoleptish » Tue Sep 24, 2013 10:38 am

I'm not trying to downplay the issue at all, but if you take away gun suicides (from the link) it comes close to halving the total. We have no idea how many of those people would have just found another way, so it's impossible to factor in the presence of a gun to those cases.

I like the chart though. Even at half the total it makes it's point better than a news story. Similar to driving by all the white crosses along Olbrich Park on Memorial Day. That always gets me, just the way it should.
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Re: A comparison (another gun thread)

Postby baked goods » Tue Sep 24, 2013 11:29 am

Here are the number of people killed by the wrong kind of other people. How they killed one another is hardly relevant.

Kurt's post is mostly about Kurt patting himself on the back narcissistically.


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Re: A comparison (another gun thread)

Postby kurt_w » Tue Sep 24, 2013 11:49 am

narcoleptish, I agree that if all guns spontaneously vanished overnight, some of the people represented by this chart would die anyway -- either at their own hand, or at somebody else's, or from other subsequent non-gun causes (accidents, old age, whatever).

For suicide, I do think that a significant number of people who kill themselves with guns may be influenced by the ease of doing so, and would not necessarily take the same action if a loaded gun weren't at hand. But obviously others still would be determined and would find another way.

Experts on suicide say that for many depressed people, the "window" during which they are actually willing to kill themselves is relatively short ("For 24% of people contemplating suicide, it's about five minutes, research has found"). Reducing access to things that are seen as facilitating suicide can apparently lead to many fewer deaths.

Sri Lanka makes an interesting case. Like many developing countries, it historically had a high suicide rate from ingestion of toxic pesticides. In 1995, the government began imposing strict regulations on access to the most toxic pesticides. Over the following decade, the suicide rate dropped by half. That's a pretty large effect. (source).

Of course, farmers still want to be able to use pesticides. One solution is to keep them in secure containers so they're available when needed but aren't easily accessible to others.

Kind of like a gun safe, I guess.
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Re: A comparison (another gun thread)

Postby kurt_w » Tue Sep 24, 2013 12:02 pm

Ned Flanders wrote:Let's see a car accident chart.


Feel free to make one.

It should be noted that over the past half century, the death rate due to car accidents has dropped by about 80% (per vehicle mile traveled) or 50% (per capita). It is likely that in either 2013 or 2014, the number of car deaths will be lower than the number of firearm deaths, for the first time in modern history.

That is because we consider automobile deaths to be a serious problem, and have adopted a wide range of efforts to reduce them. Auto makers are under intense pressure to make their vehicles safer. Individuals are required to obtain a license to drive a car. In many states they are required to begin with a learner's permit that carries heavy restrictions on the conditions under which they're allowed to drive, and they have to pass a test before being granted a full license. Many states also require drivers to carry insurance and to submit their cars for annual safety inspections. Driving is considered a privilege that can be revoked, e.g. for driving while intoxicated.

If firearms were regulated as strictly as cars, it is likely that there would still be some coffins in the above chart, but fewer than in our present, lightly regulated environment.
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Re: A comparison (another gun thread)

Postby Ned Flanders » Tue Sep 24, 2013 12:07 pm

kurt_w wrote:If firearms were regulated as strictly as cars, it is likely that there would still be some coffins in the above chart, but fewer than in our present, lightly regulated environment.

Unlike driving, gun ownership is a Constitutional right. Pesky, I know, but true.

As someone else pointed out, strip out the suicides and gang bangers and you have a different story.
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Re: A comparison (another gun thread)

Postby Sandi » Tue Sep 24, 2013 12:09 pm

kurt_w wrote:I didn't want to mess up any of the existing threads.


So why mess up your own? It is far from impressive.

This would be a decent topic to debate, but I won't be back to scroll through your mess.
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Re: A comparison (another gun thread)

Postby Henry Vilas » Tue Sep 24, 2013 12:12 pm

Ned Flanders wrote:]
Unlike driving, gun ownership is a Constitutional right. Pesky, I know, but true.

As someone else pointed out, strip out the suicides and gang bangers and you have a different story.

Are you saying that gang banger and those who are potential suicides don't have constitutional rights? Please explain how they can be "stripped out" of their rights.
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Re: A comparison (another gun thread)

Postby Henry Vilas » Tue Sep 24, 2013 12:15 pm

Sandi wrote:
kurt_w wrote:I didn't want to mess up any of the existing threads.


So why mess up your own? It is far from impressive.

This would be a decent topic to debate, but I won't be back to scroll through your mess.

Sandi, quit trolling this thread and get back to the one you started about shutting down the government (if you dare).
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Re: A comparison (another gun thread)

Postby kurt_w » Tue Sep 24, 2013 12:17 pm

Ned Flanders wrote:Unlike driving, gun ownership is a Constitutional right. Pesky, I know, but true.


Right. I'm talking here about the facts of gun deaths, not the political or legal issues.
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Re: A comparison (another gun thread)

Postby wack wack » Tue Sep 24, 2013 12:19 pm

Sandi wrote:
kurt_w wrote:I didn't want to mess up any of the existing threads.


So why mess up your own? It is far from impressive.

This would be a decent topic to debate, but I won't be back to scroll through your mess.


It would be an interesting topic to debate if you were able to debate.
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