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Old Sep 18, 2013, 02:25 PM   #1
lannister80
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Around The World, Gun Ownership And Firearms Deaths Go Together

http://www.npr.org/blogs/health/2013...hs-go-together

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A study on guns, violence and mental health, long scheduled to be published this week, finds that gun ownership is a bigger factor than mental illness when it comes to firearms deaths. But the data suggest that both play roles.

The countries with more civilian guns also had the highest rates of firearms deaths, with the United States leading the list at 10 deaths per 100,000, based on an international mortality database.

Gun ownership was strongly associated with firearms deaths. The only outlier was South Africa, which had 13 guns per 100 people, but a firearms death rate almost as high as in the U.S.

The study was published online in the American Journal of Medicine.
http://www.amjmed.com/webfiles/image...m/AJM12080.pdf
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Old Sep 18, 2013, 02:39 PM   #2
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I found a study which seems to debunk the claim that gun ownership and firearms deaths go together.

According to these statistics, the US is far and away the leader in gun ownership, with nearly double the rate of any other nation; but is only 28th in gun deaths.

Source
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Old Sep 18, 2013, 02:50 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Tomorrow View Post
I found a study which seems to debunk the claim that gun ownership and firearms deaths go together.

According to these statistics, the US is far and away the leader in gun ownership, with nearly double the rate of any other nation; but is only 28th in gun deaths.

Source
You know your country has a gun problem when you live in a supposed "first world country" yet your firearm death rates are so much higher than other first world countries you have to resort to comparing to third world countries to try to excuse the ridiculous amount of gun violence that's prevalent in this country.

Seriously.. your article is comparing the US to places like Somalia, Haiti, Jamaica, Sierra Leone, etc.

That's just pathetic. Is that what we want the US to turn into? Or do we want to be a civilized country like Canada, UK, France, Japan, Australia, etc?
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Old Sep 18, 2013, 02:54 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tomorrow View Post
I found a study which seems to debunk the claim that gun ownership and firearms deaths go together.

According to these statistics, the US is far and away the leader in gun ownership, with nearly double the rate of any other nation; but is only 28th in gun deaths.

Source
From the linked article:
• But the US does not have the worst firearm murder rate - that prize belongs to Honduras, El Salvador and Jamaica. In fact, the US is number 28, with a rate of 2.97 per 100,000 people
I've hilited your incorrect terms in red.

The article you linked to has a table showing homicides, i.e. death of another person by a gun. "Deaths" is a larger category that will include suicides. I see nothing in your linked article about suicides.

It's also unclear whether your linked article uses the terms "murder" and "homicide" interchangeably, which would be a mistake. Every murder is a homicide, but not all homicides are murders. For example, accidental homicide is not a murder, even though there is a human death.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homicide
Note the multiple disctinctions for various classes of homicide.


I haven't read the amjmed artcile yet, but I suspect they count suicides as "deaths".

EDIT
From the AMJ article, "Methods", "Definition and Data Sources":
Data on firearm-related deaths per 100,000 population per country were obtained from a European detailed mortality database (World Health Or- ganization)4 based on the following International Classi- fication of Diseases-10th Revision codes: unintentional handgun discharge (W32); unintentional rifle, shotgun, and larger firearm discharge (W33); unintentional discharge from other and unspecified firearms (W34); intentional self-harm by handgun discharge (X72); intentional self- harm by rifle, shotgun, and larger firearm discharge (X73); intentional self-harm by other and unspecified firearm discharge (X74); assault by handgun discharge (X93); as- sault by rifle, shotgun, and larger firearm discharge (X94); assault by other and unspecified firearm discharge (X95); handgun discharge, undetermined intent (Y22); rifle, shotgun, and larger firearm discharge, undetermined intent (Y23); other and unspecified firearm discharge, undeter- mined intent (Y24); and from other sources.
So yes, the AMJ study is including suicides, accidental discharges, and undetermined intent. In short, all deaths.

The AMJ article also limits its study to 27 developed countries:
All data were restricted to the 27 developed countries lis- ted, not currently in civil war and with data available on gun ownership, as outlined in the Table. [See the paper for actual table.]
while your article covers 178:
The Small Arms Survey is also useful - although it is from 2007, it collates civilian gun ownership rates for 178 countries around the world, and has 'normalised' the data to include a rate per 100,000 population.

Last edited by chown33; Sep 18, 2013 at 03:06 PM.
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Old Sep 18, 2013, 03:11 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chown33 View Post
From the linked article:
But the US does not have the worst firearm murder rate - that prize belongs to Honduras, El Salvador and Jamaica. In fact, the US is number 28, with a rate of 2.97 per 100,000 people
Great, the USA is safer than Honduras, El Salvador and Jamaica
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Old Sep 18, 2013, 03:19 PM   #6
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Great, the USA is safer than Honduras, El Salvador and Jamaica
I understand the intended sarcasm, but this is still incorrect. The statement was:
But the US does not have the worst firearm murder rate - that prize belongs to Honduras, El Salvador and Jamaica. In fact, the US is number 28, with a rate of 2.97 per 100,000 people
The qualifier firearm before murder rate means the rank only refers to murders by firearm, not all murders. So a country could have a low murder-by-firearm rate yet still be #1 in all murders. No data was presented on all murders.
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Old Sep 18, 2013, 04:21 PM   #7
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To me the whole American Gun "Culture" seems more and more bizarre every day. I've been raised in Germany and lived in Canada for the past 8 or 9 years and I'm glad that people here and in Germany just shake their heads at the need of Americans to own guns. Honestly, when I see "show your guns!" threads in forums like these I just want to throw up, I find it utterly disgusting, but as this is a very American board, I respect that and keep it to myself (maybe with one exception here right now). Also I haven't been raised with weapons being a household staple item which caused a lack of understanding on my side. Either way, it's pretty sad to see how much the debate is damaging (or clarifying?) the image of the US worldwide.
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Old Sep 18, 2013, 04:33 PM   #8
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Never mind, I think I got your point wrong
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Old Sep 18, 2013, 09:00 PM   #9
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Not really a true title for your post. Gun deaths per capita in the US are not the highest in the world even though gun ownership is the highest.

Switzerland is the model for gun ownership and gun control. You can own more gun types in Switzerland than in CA, NY, and MD. They have many controls in place such as mental health restrictions and others.

As an avid hunter and sport shooter I see no problems with controls. I just see a problem with stripping my rights.
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Old Sep 18, 2013, 10:32 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by dec. View Post
To me the whole American Gun "Culture" seems more and more bizarre every day.
It's a socially and politically backward country. For various reasons, including which side we were on in the Cold War, we had to pretend the opposite for a long time. Now not so much.

The US has a modern economy, but has the social and political system of a third world country. Once you accept this, weird US politics make more sense. Case in point: the ridiculous degree to which religion invades public political life in the US and its attendant social conservatism. Also, the widespread corruption in which candidates are bought and paid for by vested interests. It's also a torture state and still has the death penalty.

I don't know why we should be any more surprised at the murder rate in the US than we are at the murder rate in other third world societies. If they want to shoot themselves, it's really their business.
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Old Sep 18, 2013, 10:35 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by tunerX View Post
Not really a true title for your post. Gun deaths per capita in the US are not the highest in the world even though gun ownership is the highest.
I guess you are proud to beat South Africa in having fewer gun deaths!

Quote:
As an avid hunter and sport shooter I see no problems with controls. I just see a problem with stripping my rights.
Hunting with guns is perfectly legal in the UK - even though we have strict gun laws...
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Old Sep 18, 2013, 10:47 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by tunerX View Post

As an avid hunter and sport shooter I see no problems with controls.
Here in New Zealand we have a huge number of hunters and sport shooters. We also have proper gun control. The result is that gun owners are one of the most respected sectors of New Zealand society, and are those primarily responsible for gun education and gun safety.

We leave our gun owners alone, and don't blame them for the few gun related crimes that occur because NZ has stringent firearms licensing in order to heighten public confidence in firearm ownership.

What we don't have is the ridiculous idea that firearms are to be used for personal defence. Our police don't even carry personal firearms.

When it's like that, legitimate gun owners can enjoy their hobby unmolested and the public can walk the streets without fear of being shot.
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Old Sep 19, 2013, 06:34 AM   #13
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Everybody is missing the point, and seems to be tiptoeing around the real issue.

The number of violent deaths and shootings in America has nothing to do with guns or gun laws.

The relative safety people chime in about in other countries has nothing to do with those countries' gun laws.

The reason there's so much violence in America isn't because of guns or gun laws, it's because of Americans. We have far too many people who feel entitled, lazy, or whatever, and it's because of that we have the amount of violence we have. It wouldn't be substantially different with different gun laws.
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Old Sep 19, 2013, 06:38 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by dec. View Post
To me the whole American Gun "Culture" seems more and more bizarre every day. I've been raised in Germany and lived in Canada for the past 8 or 9 years and I'm glad that people here and in Germany just shake their heads at the need of Americans to own guns. Honestly, when I see "show your guns!" threads in forums like these I just want to throw up, I find it utterly disgusting, but as this is a very American board, I respect that and keep it to myself (maybe with one exception here right now). Also I haven't been raised with weapons being a household staple item which caused a lack of understanding on my side. Either way, it's pretty sad to see how much the debate is damaging (or clarifying?) the image of the US worldwide.
The problem is the current discussions do not cover the historical antecedents of the second amendment. The protection of the right to bear arms in the US Constitution becomes less paradoxical if one examines the history of the US. Early in the US's history, armed militias were often the only defense against European powers (e.g., a militia help protect Baltimore from being burned by the British in the 1812 War). Since that time in many rural areas of the US guns were seen as essential tools for hunting and for self defense. I think now many people who support having guns use them for hunting, target practice etc., some mistrust the government and do not want the people to be unarmed while the government is, and then there are people that fear taking away the right to bear arms opens the door to curtailing other rights once thought to be fundamental. I am not saying that I like guns, but it doesn't take much examination of US history to understand why many people in the US view gun ownership as a right. I personally do not think this will ever change until the state is disarmed.
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Old Sep 19, 2013, 09:24 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by Tomorrow View Post
The number of violent deaths and shootings in America has nothing to do with guns or gun laws.
Nothing to do ... no effect at all?

Seriously, that requires a source.

If it's merely your opinion, then it's one not substantiated by any evidence I've seen.
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Old Sep 19, 2013, 11:20 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tomorrow View Post
Everybody is missing the point, and seems to be tiptoeing around the real issue.

The number of violent deaths and shootings in America has nothing to do with guns or gun laws.

The relative safety people chime in about in other countries has nothing to do with those countries' gun laws.

The reason there's so much violence in America isn't because of guns or gun laws, it's because of Americans. We have far too many people who feel entitled, lazy, or whatever, and it's because of that we have the amount of violence we have. It wouldn't be substantially different with different gun laws.
Source or everything you said is an opinion, very far from fact.
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Old Sep 19, 2013, 11:27 AM   #17
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Nothing to do ... no effect at all?

Seriously, that requires a source.

If it's merely your opinion, then it's one not substantiated by any evidence I've seen.
Quote:
Originally Posted by aerok View Post
Source or everything you said is an opinion, very far from fact.
I've cited it above. If there were a correlation between lax control of guns and violent crime, then the countries with the fewest and least stringent gun laws would have the highest murder rates - but that's not the case. There isn't enough of a correlation, and there's no causal evidence to support it.
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Old Sep 19, 2013, 01:40 PM   #18
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I've cited it above.
You cited a newspaper article that contained a table of data that you interpreted. And from your interpretation, you've concluded that there's no connection at all.

Pardon me if I question your expertise and ability accurately examine and analyze that data. I have no reason to believe you are capable of coming to that conclusion based on that one table you sourced.
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Old Sep 19, 2013, 01:51 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by citizenzen View Post
You cited a newspaper article that contained a table of data that you interpreted. And from your interpretation, you've concluded that there's no connection at all.

Pardon me if I question your expertise and ability accurately examine and analyze that data. I have no reason to believe you are capable of coming to that conclusion based on that one table you sourced.
I do have a background in statistics and I'm able to see where numbers do and do not correlate. If you see something in the data that I don't, won't you kindly share, rather than simply saying you don't like my analysis?
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Old Sep 19, 2013, 02:10 PM   #20
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I wonder what the numbers would be if you eliminated places like Chicago, NYC, and other areas with very strict gun laws and very high gun deaths?
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Old Sep 19, 2013, 02:11 PM   #21
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Tomorrow is pointing out that correlation =/= causation.
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Old Sep 19, 2013, 02:23 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by Tomorrow View Post
I do have a background in statistics and I'm able to see where numbers do and do not correlate. If you see something in the data that I don't, won't you kindly share, rather than simply saying you don't like my analysis?
Your analysis is obviously flawed because it resides in the extreme realm of finding absolutely no connection at all. It flies in the face of studies that have show simply possessing a gun in the home increases one's risk of murder and suicide. Just that alone refutes your notion of gun violence having "nothing to do with guns".

You'd like me to accept your expertise as a statistician, but I have a hard time believing that reputable statisticians would look at one table and declare something to have no effect at all, especially when it comes to something as complex as gun violence and its causes.

Last edited by citizenzen; Sep 19, 2013 at 02:38 PM. Reason: replaced redundant 'homicide' with 'suicide'
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Old Sep 19, 2013, 03:46 PM   #23
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Your analysis is obviously flawed
Obviously.
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Old Sep 19, 2013, 04:33 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by Tomorrow View Post
I do have a background in statistics and I'm able to see where numbers do and do not correlate. If you see something in the data that I don't, won't you kindly share, rather than simply saying you don't like my analysis?
What analysis have you posted? Your earlier link wasn't an analysis, and it didn't link to an analysis.

I pointed out that your initial post erroneously used the term "deaths", when the link you cited used different terms that encompass only a subset of deaths ("homicides" and "murders"). I have also pointed out ambiguous usage of the terms "murder" and "homicide" at your cited link, so it's unclear whether that presented data is measuring the same thing as the AMJ paper or not.

I have not yet downloaded and read the underlying data source (2007 Small Arms Survey) to find out what terms they use (homicide or death or murder), where their mortaility information comes from, etc. So I can't yet tell whether the cited article's use of "homicide" and "murder" is in the original data or not.
EDIT #2
According to a link in your cited article, it used homicide data from here:
http://www.unodc.org/unodc/en/data-a.../homicide.html

That site says:
The backbone of the 2011 Global Study on Homicide, UNODC Homicide Statistics is a collection of statistical data on intentional homicide (unlawful death purposefully inflicted on a person by another person). ...[Underlines added.]
So they are clearly using "homicide" as a synonym for "murder". This means that their reported data excludes both firearm suicides and accidental firearm deaths, both of which ARE included in the AMJ paper. So the data sets on deaths are completely different, and any calculation of rates, or conclusions based on those rates, would be completely different.


Did you read the AMJ paper? Please do, it's only 4 pages.

When you read it, you'll see the actual numbers they're using, their sources, and their analysis. From their abstract:
RESULTS: Among the 27 developed countries, there was a significant positive correlation between guns per capita per country and the rate of firearm-related deaths (r 1⁄4 0.80; P <.0001). In addition, there was a positive correlation (r 1⁄4 0.52; P 1⁄4 .005) between mental illness burden in a country and firearm-related deaths. However, there was no significant correlation (P 1⁄4 .10) between guns per capita per country and crime rate (r 1⁄4 .33), or between mental illness and crime rate (r 1⁄4 0.32; P 1⁄4 .11). In a linear regression model with firearm-related deaths as the dependent variable with gun ownership and mental illness as independent covariates, gun ownership was a significant predictor (P <.0001) of firearm-related deaths, whereas mental illness was of borderline significance (P 1⁄4 .05) only.

CONCLUSION: The number of guns per capita per country was a strong and independent predictor of firearm-related death in a given country, whereas the predictive power of the mental illness burden was of borderline significance in a multivariable model. Regardless of exact cause and effect, however, the current study debunks the widely quoted hypothesis that guns make a nation safer. [Underlines added.]
If you'd read the paper, you'd know that it's only presenting a correlation, not causation.


I will also point out the both your cited link and the AMJ paper use the 2007 Small Arms Survey as a data source. One important difference is that the AMJ paper uses additional more detailed sources covering all firearm-related deaths (see paper). Your cited link only contains data on "homicides", which may or may does not include suicides and accidental deaths.

Furthermore, there is a major difference in which countries are used as the data sets. The AMJ paper uses 27 first-world countries. The Small Arms Report uses 178 countries, including third-world countries. If you think those are commensurable, I'd like to see a justification.


Quote:
The reason there's so much violence in America isn't because of guns or gun laws, it's because of Americans.
Citation needed, or clearly label as only being your opinion.

Quote:
We have far too many people who feel entitled, lazy, or whatever, and it's because of that we have the amount of violence we have.
Citation needed, or clearly label as only being your opinion.

Quote:
It wouldn't be substantially different with different gun laws.
Citation needed, or clearly label as only being your opinion.


EDIT
Quote:
I've cited it above. If there were a correlation between lax control of guns and violent crime, then the countries with the fewest and least stringent gun laws would have the highest murder rates - but that's not the case. There isn't enough of a correlation, and there's no causal evidence to support it.
The red-hilited part is simply wrong. The reported data isn't a measure of "lax control" or even "tight control", or any other kind of control. It isn't a measure of gun laws, either. The measured quantity is gun ownership per capita. The actual numbers are gun ownership rates per 100.

So your statement may be true or it may be wrong, but it's about a completely different measured value than either the AMJ paper or your linked article.

Last edited by chown33; Sep 19, 2013 at 06:54 PM. Reason: strikethroughs
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Old Sep 19, 2013, 05:18 PM   #25
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Originally Posted by Tomorrow View Post
The reason there's so much violence in America isn't because of guns or gun laws, it's because of Americans. We have far too many people who feel entitled, lazy, or whatever, and it's because of that we have the amount of violence we have. It wouldn't be substantially different with different gun laws.
I really do not see any logic in this. How does laziness create violence?

I even looked for articles linking laziness and violence and could not find anything.

Does studying statistics make people come up with illogical conclusions from numbers?
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