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Lean to the Left

| Opinion | August 22, 2014

Every time there is yet another tragedy with the use of guns, the right takes the opportunity to defend gun ownership – even when a shooting is unrelated to the argument.

Despite liberal gun control laws, the United States has the highest homicide rate among developed nations. According to a Washington Post article printed just after the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting, 60 percent of U.S. homicides occur with a gun. We also have the highest rate of gun ownership in the world.

Last year, two New York City cardiologists made a study of the gunshot violence they witnessed, in the form of gunshot wounds. In an online article by ABC News, Dr. Sripal Bangalore from NYU Langone Medical Center and Dr. Franz Messerli of St. Luke’s Medical Center studied firearm injury data from the World Health Organization and looked at guns per capita. Their findings confirmed theories that more guns do not make Americans safer.

The study produced a list of 27 developing nations, citing their rank in terms of gun ownership and firearm-related deaths. The statistics quoted in the article claimed the United States has 88.8 guns per 100 people, with a total of 10.2 firearm-related deaths per 100,000. Switzerland had the second highest number of guns per person, with almost half the number of Americans who carry them, and their total firearm deaths were a little over a third of those in America.

Who had the lowest numbers on the list? Japan has the least number of guns per capita, at six per 100 people and only .06 gun-related deaths per 100,000, according to statistics in 2013.

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I agree with Drs. Bangalore and Messerli – more scientific study needs to be done to knock some sense into this argument.

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