I guess I just find it disdainful to turn the tragedy in Aurora into some sort of a political debate and this goes for both sides To me, It’s not really about guns at this stage, it’s about people and us as a society where the culture of death seems to have triumphed over the culture of life.
But when there’s a presidential election on the horizon I guess politics can’t help but be interjected into pretty much everything even a horrific tragedy like the killing of 12 innocent people and the injuring of dozens of others in a mass shooting attack.
You know the story, I won’t bore you will details. But ever the stickler for facts I feel compelled to interject in the inevitable gun-control debate a few facts.
I want to correct some pretty egregious and flat out wrong statistics that have been floating about. Here are some facts for the fodder instead of the false factoids people have been using to bolster their arguments:
1. There are an estimated 223 million guns in America including handguns, rifles and all manner of firearms. That’s a butt load of weaponry and this does not include illegal guns.
2. In 2010 there were 11, 493 homicides by firearms in the U.S. and 19,000 suicides by firearms according to the CDC. In contrast there were 50,000 murders in Mexico last year. There were not 100,000 gun deaths nor have their ever been in the U.S. In fact there were only 100,000 fire arm deaths/homicides in the entire world last year.
3. The CDC reports from a health survey that there were 79,400 firearm related injures from 1993-1998 which is where I think the 100,000 number came from. Here’s a tip if you’re looking for gun deaths or injuries you need to go to the CDC. If you’re looking for violent crime stats that involve a gun you need to go to the Department of Justice. The two have very different methods of collecting stats on gun violence and they’re not comparative.
4. Interestingly Wyoming which has 59% of all the legal guns owned in the nation had 8 homicides in 2010. Illinois – which has about 20% of the legal guns owned in the nation has so far had 33 homicides this MONTH just in Chicago! You can track Chicago’s homicides here: http://homicides.redeyechicago.com/date/2012/7/
As a person who has lived in Colorado and Chicago two places with VERY different views on gun-control I find the gun-control debate surreal. Owning guns may seem senseless until you are victimized and then it may seem necessary. As a person who has owned a firearm and then not owned one I guess I”m torn on this one. It goes back to me deciding whether to trust the government for my self defense or myself. What happened in Aurora definitely was a tragedy and I’m still trying to wrap my head around one person ordering enough ammunition to take out Pablo Escobar and having it delivered to his APARTMENT and no one catching on. I mean I can’t park illegally without some guy wanting to write me a ticket. And let’s not get into the race issue – my Lord I keep wondering how did this guy get out alive and an unarmed black man is killed, it seems, every day by cops…but I digress.
I think it’s stupid to say Guns don’t kill people, people kill people. Or that Americans are ridiculously violent people. Seriously folks we have more than 223 MILLION GUNS and less than 4 homicides per 100,000 people. One death is definitely all that it takes to make a tragedy especially if that death is in your family. But we’re not talking Pol Pot here or massacres on a daily basis.
What I will say is that we have to come to some logical, sensible comprise that allows someone like myself who has been trained and certified to use a gun to own a gun in my own home for protection but not allow a mentally unstable young man access to hundreds of thousands of rounds of ammunition and military style weaponry within a four month period. We can keep our gun laws without being ridiculously obsessive can’t we?