“Gun violence” may be the most egregious Fake News notion perpetrated on the American public in modern times; a term that appears to have been invented by the gun prohibition lobby and a national media too willing to adopt the term and believe the number typically associated with it.
In a report published by Elite Daily, this was said: “In 2016 alone, gun violence claimed over 15,000 lives in the U.S.” The story also asserted that, “In total, including the five individuals killed in Orlando, at least 28 people were killed by gun violence across the U.S. on June 5, according to data from Gun Violence Archive.”
In a report from Alternet.org about a multiple-victim shooting in Orlando Monday, this was said: “It is emblematic of the high rates of gun violence in this country, making the U.S. an outlier from the rest of the world with more than 33,000 annual gun deaths, according to FiveThirtyEight.”
At the FiveThirtyEight website, one finds an interesting combination of fatality numbers: from “self-harm and interpersonal violence.”
The American Psychological Association (APA) noted in its online newsletter last year, “The financial cost of gun violence in the United States was an estimated 174 billion dollars in 2010; this amount does not account for the psychological toll on those directly or indirectly affected by firearm violence, such as those who witness or fear firearm violence in their homes or communities.”
By using the term “gun violence,” anti-gunners are able to combine the number of suicides and homicides in any given year under a single umbrella, strictly for dramatically misleading purposes. It creates the impression that tens of thousands of Americans are slain each year in some sort of criminal act when the majority takes their own lives.
In reality, roughly two-thirds of all firearm-related deaths annually are suicides. Only about one-third of those fatalities are the result of a criminal firearm misuse. Data from the Centers for Disease Control bears that out. In 2014, for example, there were 33,594 firearm-related deaths of which 21,386 were suicides and 11,008 were homicides. There were 461 unintentional deaths, 275 deaths of undetermined nature and 464 attributed to legal intervention/war.
The APA, in its May 2016 newsletter also acknowledged, “Firearms are involved in more than half of suicides and more than two-thirds of homicides in the United States.”
The media may be comfortable using the term until someone challenges them to explain why they don’t talk about “knife violence” to describe stabbings, or “vehicle violence” to describe deliberately ramming a car into a crowd in order to inflict injury or death.
But the term “gun violence” remains. Many in the Second Amendment community are convinced that the term was created to demonize guns.
America’s First Freedom, a magazine published by the National Rifle Association, recently noted, “According to the Centers for Disease Control, deaths by criminal firearm use are down from a high of more than 18,253 in 1990 to 10,945 in 2014.”
Last Friday, the gun prohibition lobby celebrated “National Gun Violence Awareness Day,” an observance created during the Obama administration. Socialite Kim Kardashian made lots of press with an open letter declaring that she would join in the observation to push for stronger gun control laws, while admitting that she enjoys armed security.
If suicide by firearm is “gun violence,” what is doctor-assisted suicide? Should that be called “pill violence” or “doctor violence?” Arguing that “it’s different” does not wash because the person is no more or less dead.
Rather than repeat the term “gun violence,” it is up to the public to challenge it. To paraphrase a popular adage, “Gun violence doesn’t kill people, people kill people.”