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home : opinion : opinion November 20, 2014


12/30/2012 6:00:00 AM
Guest Column: Talking statistics on guns and other stuff
Alexander James
Kingman Resident

This is in response to "Guns make America a battlefield," which appeared in the Dec. 20 Miner.

It reads, in part: "Statistically, 32 people a day are killed by firearms in America. This equates to nearly 1,000 people's deaths per month. One thousand deaths on a battlefield would be considered with great alarm."

You want to talk statistics? Let's talk statistics.

Heart Disease (preventable): 599,413 deaths per year, 1,642 deaths a day.

Tobacco (preventable): 443,000 deaths per year, 1,213 per day.

Poisoning (preventable): 41,592 deaths per year, 113 deaths a day.

Motor vehicle accidents (preventable): 34,485 deaths per year, 94 deaths a day.

Firearm homicide (is evil preventable?): 11,493 deaths per year, 31 deaths per day.

Statistics obtained from CDC FASTSTATS.

Yes, America is a battlefield, but it sure isn't from guns. This is a quote from the Bureau of Justice summary of homicide trends in U.S., "In the last decade (since 2000) the homicide rate declined to levels last seen in the mid-1960s" (Cooper & Smith, 2011). Further, according to the CDC and Bureau statistics, the homicide rate and firearm related homicide rate has been steadily declining since the early-mid 1990s, despite what media outlets will have you believe (BoJ, n.d.).

Secondly, "mass shootings" have not been increasing - they have stayed consistent since the '80s - it's media coverage that is clearly increasing. I feel that you can logically make the connections, but if not, please, all I ask is that you find an unbiased source of information, as neither Fox, ABC, the Washington Post nor Mother Jones tell a complete and accurate story.

Folks, I am not here to tell you that I, as a law abiding American citizen, need to have a semi-auto rifle that cosmetically appears military in nature, nor do I need 30 round magazines. There are lots of things Americans don't need, and many of those things cause far more deaths per year than a gun, which, in case you forgot, is a tool, an inanimate object. I am not here to blame some other item or organization for the shooting in Connecticut, but I would like to remind everyone that making hasty, emotionally charged decisions has never lead to good long-term results, nor am I saying that nothing needs to change.

What if, after the next mass shooting that takes place in a "No Gun" free-fire zone, politicians call for censorship of the Internet and media outlets? How would you feel about that? You might say that violates your First Amendment rights! Yet the Internet and TV were not around when the Founding Fathers made our constitution, so why should free speech apply to those outlets?

Just as you now tell me that I can't have a semi-automatic rifle because the Founding Fathers obviously didn't intend for that, I ask you; did the Founding Fathers intend for Facebook, Twitter, TV, video games, and mass media coverage that constantly promote/perpetuate gun violence and evil in general? Did they intend for motor vehicles that take more lives per year than firearm homicides? Did they intend for the populace to literally eat themselves to death with processed foods?

When does it become OK to censor one amendment for "the greater good," and not OK to censor another? You might say that I don't need that sort of gun, but I say that irrational freedoms are just the thing that makes this country the country that it is.

All I ask is that you keep an open mind on this issue and please consider my viewpoint, which is one of a sane, law abiding citizen who takes the right to own and safely use firearms seriously, as do millions of others.


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Reader Comments

Posted: Saturday, January 19, 2013
Article comment by: Survival Statistic

@ Nice Chuckle, "so at a bare minimum, the chance of a crime being stopped in the US via gun is 1/400".

Regardless the chance of a gun crime being stopped with another gun is only 1 in 400, or even 1 in 1,000, wouldn't it be grand if that "1" statistic is you, your mother, your wife, or your child?


Posted: Monday, January 14, 2013
Article comment by: Nice Chuckle

"Chuckles, how is blatantly posting misinformation sarcasm at all?"

I guess you have never really understood sarcasm. Oh well, your issue not mine. I would caution you about making statements about people and blatant false information, since you yourself are guilty of it.


Posted: Saturday, January 12, 2013
Article comment by: Anson's Nephew

“… i undertand though, anson does the same thing.”

Really, another unsubstantiated attack on me? Okay, provide proof of that ridiculous assertion. Thank you (hevy sigh).


Posted: Friday, January 11, 2013
Article comment by: Michael Betts

Dr Kleck,s study and final numbers are based on the supposition that only a small number of gun crimes are reported. His numbers are more then likely greatly over stated.

Posted: Thursday, January 10, 2013
Article comment by: Tj Denton

Chuckles, how is blatantly posting misinformation sarcasm at all? Its so convenient to say that you were "just kidding" or using "sarcasm" once you get called on it, i undertand though, anson does the same thing. Just admit that you were wrong in posting that and we'll get on with the game.

Posted: Thursday, January 10, 2013
Article comment by: Nice Chuckle

@Teej

"According to Dr. Gary Kleck, criminologist at Florida State University in Tallahassee and author of "Point Blank: Guns and Violence in America," 800,000-2,500,000 crimes are stopped by guns each year. The numbers are from different studies. "

so at a bare minimum, the chance of a crime being stopped in the US via gun is 1/400, thats a long way off there chuckles."

For one, I guess you cannot comprehend sarcasm. For two, I don't believe your numbers anyway.


Posted: Thursday, January 10, 2013
Article comment by: Anson's Nephew

“I give your gun ownership and carrying claims as much credibility as I do Lori's..’

I have already pointed out that your personal animus towards me (including my military service, my corporate and business successes, and now my gun ownership) appears to be based on your personal inadequacies more than anything else and render your comments, at best, sour grapes.


Posted: Thursday, January 10, 2013
Article comment by: Michael Betts

@ LA Where is this tyrannical government you fantasize about. After reading your posts here I have a greater fear of people like you and your outrageous beliefs and statements then any imaginary boogieman coming into my house or tyrannical government. TJ the chances of some one breaking into your home if you are a law abiding citizen are slim. If you feel you need a gun to protect your self that's ok with me what is not ok is the idea that you need a machine gun to protect your self. Please tell what other use then killing does a gun have?

Posted: Wednesday, January 9, 2013
Article comment by: Frank Lee Speaking

@Ansons Nephew

"I will make it easy by posting what the Second Amendment (in its entirety) says, “A well regulated Militia, being necessary of the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.”

Your turn."

I will make it even easier. SCOTUS has already ruled on this. Case closed.

Nice touch saying that you own guns and "and has CWPs for three states...". I give your gun ownership and carrying claims as much credibility as I do Lori's


Posted: Wednesday, January 9, 2013
Article comment by: tj denton

chuckles,let me take a moment to disprove your comment with actual facts

here we go. your chances of getting hit by lightning in one year is 1/700,000.

"According to Dr. Gary Kleck, criminologist at Florida State University in Tallahassee and author of "Point Blank: Guns and Violence in America," 800,000-2,500,000 crimes are stopped by guns each year. The numbers are from different studies. "

so at a bare minimum, the chance of a crime being stopped in the US via gun is 1/400, thats a long way off there chuckles.


Posted: Wednesday, January 9, 2013
Article comment by: Nice Chuckle

@LA

"A gun is used to fight off a tyrannical government (Second Amendment)"

And just where does it say that, please be specific?. Also Linds....how would one use a gun to stop a tyrant? Oh yeah, by killing them.

@Teej

"so when someone tries to come into your home and hurt your family, be sure and get back to me on your anti gun stance."

You are actually more likely to get struck by lightning than you are to use a gun to protect yourself. Get back to me when you start wearing lightning proof clothing.

@Bob

"@ Lori dane @ ansons nephew @nice chuckle You gun control people have lost your mind a gun is just a tool just like a shovel rake, hoe."

You must have me confused with someone else. I am not anti gun, I own them and have no intentions of giving them up. I am against people with no common sense.

And just so you know, a gun is not a tool, a tool fixes broken things. A gun is a weapon and should be treated as such.


Posted: Wednesday, January 9, 2013
Article comment by: Anson's Nephew

“… @ ansons nephew …. You gun control people have lost your mind…”

I would like for you to explain where, exactly, you came to the misguided assumption that I am a “gun control” person?

As an individual who owns multiple firearms, is always armed and has CWPs for three states I am far from being what you allude to.

The position I have taken throughout the wild chest-thumping ravings posted here is that a change in gun laws is coming, period. Nothing else.

So again what do you base your information on?

I will make it easy by posting what the Second Amendment (in its entirety) says, “A well regulated Militia, being necessary of the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.”

Your turn.


Posted: Wednesday, January 9, 2013
Article comment by: Anson's Nephew

@ Ms Athens

“A gun is used to fight off a tyrannical government (Second Amendment)”

This has been asked before and ignored, so I will try again – PLEASE show us exactly where the Second Amendment says anything about a tyrannical government?

I will make it easy by posting what the Second Amendment (in its entirety) says, “A well regulated Militia, being necessary of the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.”

Your turn.


Posted: Wednesday, January 9, 2013
Article comment by: Bob Johnson

@ Lori dane @ ansons nephew @nice chuckle You gun control people have lost your mind a gun is just a tool just like a shovel rake, hoe. Anything can be used to kill if put in the wrong hands. Tim Mcveigh used a truck to kill hundreds of people, no guns were envolved. I have worked in the law enforcement field for over 13 years. Making more gun laws will do nothing to stop the criminal from getting guns. It will hurt the honest man from protecting himself and his family. We have a 7.8% unemployment rate. Lets have the two clowns in office work on that. We killed children in iraq for for 10 years. But, I guess it's ok to kill other children with guns and bombs as long as there not Americans. May God have mercy on this country.

Posted: Wednesday, January 9, 2013
Article comment by: Choose For Yourself

I recently heard, and agree with, that:
"A man with a gun has options.
A man without a gun has no options."


Posted: Tuesday, January 8, 2013
Article comment by: tj denton

exactly right michael betts. good job. so when someone tries to come into your home and hurt your family, be sure and get back to me on your anti gun stance. gun control has never worked and it never will. gun control serves two purposes, complete control of a states people and giving an advantage to criminals. thats a fact and any other way to look at it is simply incorrect and an ignorant opinion bred in some liberal fantasy land.

Posted: Tuesday, January 8, 2013
Article comment by: Linda Athens

Michael Betts:

A gun is used to fight off a tyrannical government (Second Amendment)


Posted: Tuesday, January 8, 2013
Article comment by: Michael Betts

A bat is made to strike a ball. A knife is made to cut my steak. A rock is used to build with. All these items have many uses. A gun is made to kill with no other logical use.

Posted: Tuesday, January 8, 2013
Article comment by: Nice Chuckle

@V Stokes

"Well...I did a quick test with just my clenched fist as if I was grasping a knife. 40 strikes in 15 seconds.

I wasn't going to waste a good roast or pork loin to test it further."

I appreciate the effort, and agree about wasting the piece of meat, but sorry, does not count.


Posted: Tuesday, January 8, 2013
Article comment by: Nice Chuckle

@T J

"and chuckles, a gun, knife or rock cant do anything alone, but in the hands of someone they can be deadly and a knife can in fact be used 35 times in 20 seconds."

Teej, if you really believe that, I have a bridge for sale too.


Posted: Tuesday, January 8, 2013
Article comment by: V Stokes

"show me a rock or a knife that can hit somebody 35 times in 20 seconds. Please, show me!"

Well...I did a quick test with just my clenched fist as if I was grasping a knife. 40 strikes in 15 seconds.

I wasn't going to waste a good roast or pork loin to test it further.


Posted: Monday, January 7, 2013
Article comment by: tj denton

actually anson, i dont call names on here very much at all, just because i call peoples, character, spine and common sense into question, doesnt mean that i am calling them names. so please do reference me blatantly calling names like you do anson, please...ACTUALLY reference it. im not on that level. and chuckles, a gun, knife or rock cant do anything alone, but in the hands of someone they can be deadly and a knife can in fact be used 35 times in 20 seconds.

Posted: Monday, January 7, 2013
Article comment by: Nice Chuckle

@T J

"and my point was chuckles, that guns dont shoot themselves."

And my point was Teej, show me a rock or a knife that can hit somebody 35 times in 20 seconds. Please, show me!


Posted: Monday, January 7, 2013
Article comment by: Anson's Nephew

“… you call names more than any other poster on here..”

Nope and I reference yourself, Linda Athens and FLS as beating me every time.


Posted: Sunday, January 6, 2013
Article comment by: tj denton

and my point was chuckles, that guns dont shoot themselves.

anson. loon, hack, nut job, liar, idiot, criminal...all terms you have used to insult and slander. dont act like you are above calling names because anytime you have anything to say about conservatives, these words usually accompany them. you call names more than any other poster on here. so, dont try and kid us with your oh holier than thou nonsense.



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