You or someone you know may see guns as deadly killing machines that are simply to blame for a large volume of homicides across the nation, but a brief look at the history of gun control actually offers a new perspective into the application of guns on an entirely new level. While normalcy bias (a thinking pattern that causes an individual to underestimate the potential of any event or situation due to currently enjoying a normal and cushy lifestyle) can oftentimes lead individuals away from the reality of history, countless citizens around the world have been highlighting the repetitive history that follows gun control.
In this breakdown, we will be examining a lot of numbers and extracting them to get some real answers. Then, we’ll see the source of these numbers and whether or not gun control regulations are reducing or increasing overall crime rates in heavily controlled areas.
The first thing to touch upon, and perhaps most relevant to our modern society, is how deadly firearms really are. First of all, let us examine the factors that are responsible for deaths within the United States. This will put death counts into perspective and allow us to go deeper into the firearm-related deaths themselves later. Examining data from the CDC for the leading causes of death and including death statistics from the FBI regarding homicides, we find the following numbers:
LEADING US KILLERS
- Annual deaths from heart disease based on CDC data: 597,689
- Cancer deaths from CDC data: 574,743
- Chronic lower respiratory diseases (CDC): 138,080
- Stroke deaths (CDC): 129,476
- Deaths from accidents, unintentional injuries (CDC): 120,859
- Alzheimer’s disease deaths per year (CDC): 83,494
- Diabetes (CDC): 69,071
- Influenza deaths each year (CDC): 50,097
- Suicide deaths (CDC): 38,364
- Overall weapons deaths (2009 FBI): 13,636
- Overall firearm deaths (2009 FBI): 9,146
So there we have the overall death data that comes compiled from the CDC website mixed with the FBI website table that goes as far as 2009. As you can see, the overall firearm deaths are 9,000 per year. If you’ve been following some of the mainstream media rhetoric surrounding guns, you might have thought the number would be at least over 100,000 — perhaps even higher than diabetes or suicide. The reality is that it is quite low overall, despite what you may have been told. But it’s still 9,146, so let’s now break down this figure to get the specific factors.
Of the 9,146 firearm deaths:
- 6,452 were from hanguns
- 348 from rifles
- 418 from shotguns
- 94 from other guns
- 1,834 from unknown guns
This is where the numbers cut through even more false information sent forth by the mainstream media. Rifles have been demonized as powerful tools of homicide that are to blame for a large number of yearly deaths, but as it turns out only 348 per year are actually killed using rifles. Now of that number we must ask “how many are using legal weapons and non-gang related?” And furthermore, how many of these murders occur in ‘gun free’ cities? We’ll get to what we know on that shortly.
First, I want to utilize some further statistics from the overall weapons deaths provided by the FBI for 2009. The number, which totals 13,636, also breaks down into several components that will likely be highly shocking when compared to the broken down gun data. Especially when considering that the apparent ‘epidemic’ levels of rifle deaths actually don’t even compare to stabbings, blunt objects like hammers, or even bare hands and feet.