I don’t know what it is about hearing the President and Vice President talk about gun control that stirs my animal spirit and make me want to go out and buy a gun. I am far more interested in cooking and brewing beer but I find myself distracted by this passion of owning an assault weapon. Obviously I don’t need an assault weapon. My wife owns a pistol and she is a pretty good shot. She has a concealed carry permit and I don’t think she would flinch about shooting someone in self defense. The problem is that the President and Vice President are such good gun salesmen.
The political rhetoric has been pretty fierce over gun deaths. The piece below has links to both the FBI and CDC estimates. At least we have one person in the debate who does their research.
That 30,000 number stood out to me because it seemed very high. According to the FBI, in 2011, there was a total of 8,583 firearm homicides in the U.S. That may well be 8,583 gun murders too many, but it’s nowhere near 30,000 (the total number of murders by all methods came to 12,664). The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) uses a different method and found about 11,000 gun-related murders in 2011 and the total number of homicides to be around 16,000 (see table 2). So How did Stewart get to 30,000? By adding the number of gun-related suicides to the number of homicides. When you add those figures in, you get up toward the 30,000 figure.