Op-Ed: Guns and Deaths, a Non-US problem

“America has the highest death by guns rate per capita in the world…..fact.”

That comment – left on a YouTube video – shows the ignorance of people not in America, and those in the Oval Office or the California state legislature. It is a persistent talking point of gun ban activists, and is adopted as fact by people predisposed to believe that (as the same fellow continued) “America is a screwed up society that has an unhealthy obsession with all things violent.”

As a modern Abe Lincoln might warn: “Don’t believe everything you read on the internet.”

Substantial research exists to show that America is not a trigger happy society, and that America is downright peaceful compared to other countries, both industrialized and non-industrialized.

I noted previously that Honduras is the gun crime capital of the world, with a firearm homicide rate 23 times higher than the United States. In their famous Harvard Journal of Law paper, Don Kates and Gary Mauser detailed how firearm availability never correlates with gun deaths. Real data simply doesn’t support the alleged “fact” our YouTube troll stated.

The question that comes immediately to mind is “Where is the most gun violence in the world?” Over at the Gun Facts website they have a separate chapter devoted to guns and violence in other countries, and one of the more interesting images explaining it all. Off on the left of the chart is the United States, which indeed has the largest number of privately owned firearms anywhere (the red line is what frightens uneducated people, which includes a few elected officials). The blue columns are the firearm homicide rates for each country.

Contrary to propagandists, the gun homicide rate in the United States is comparatively meager by international standards.

Click here to read the entire op-ed.

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