Friday, March 28, 2014

Evidence Mounts on Gun-Suicide Relationship

Gun suicides: Not inevitable.
Gun advocates rarely talk about the relationship between gun ownership and suicide, but it is significant, as a number of studies in recent years have demonstrated.

Columnist Evan DeFilippis of says in an article today here, "The latest available data on suicide rates, published by the Centers for Disease Control, shows that 38,364 suicides occurred in the United States in 2010 -- an average of 105 each day. This made suicide the 10th leading cause of death for all age groups.

"More people kill themselves with guns than all other methods combined. Males are at particularly high risk of firearm suicide, given that guns account for 56 percent of male suicides, but 32 percent of female suicides. Firearms tend to be the weapon of choice for a suicide given their lethality factor -- for example, one study from Dallas found that, of those attempting suicide with a gun, 76 percent died."

As usual, the National Rifle Association, which has devolved from an organization centered on gun safety and training to a manufacturers' lobbying organization with gun sales as its primary goal, says the studies are nonsense. DeFilippis writes, "Despite this fact, the same bad arguments forwarded by politicians against suicide barriers are being used by the National Rifle Association to challenge gun regulation. This insistence by gun advocates that suicide is a foregone conclusion is not only factually incorrect, but incredibly dangerous because it impedes the most useful strategy for preventing suicide -- means reduction."

Not a lot new here, except for the overwhelming number of studies with the same conclusion. This is the Climate Change of the gun world. The deniers are obviously focused on self-interest (gun sales) only.


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