Suicide (courtesy theimmoralminority.com)

“When people talk about preventing suicide, the conversation usually centers on detecting and treating suicidal behavior,” boston.com asserts, “but a growing body of evidence points to a far simpler and more effective way to save thousands of lives: simply remove the means by which people commit suicide. In the United States, that means firearms; half of all suicides are committed with a gun.” Specifically, a new study produced by Harvard egghead Dr. Matthew Miller, linking gun ownership with high(er) suicide rates. That said . . .

Far from advocating for the abolition of gun ownership or even gun control, researchers such as Miller argue that lives could be saved by removing guns from the home when a family member is depressed or angry or at risk of self-harm. That’s because suicide attempts with other means are often unsuccessful.

See what they did there? They’re not against gun control but [noun redacted] should remove guns from potential suicides. I call smoke screen. But the question remains: how do The People of the Gun deal with the thorny issue of mental illness within the home vis a vis firearms?

124 Responses to Question of the Day: Should “We” Take Guns Away from Potential Suicides?

    • It is even more insidious. Look at the notes on how they determine gun ownership rates in a jurisdiction. The 2004 ownership rate estimate they use estimates gun ownership based mostly on suicide rates! In other words it is logical circle jerk.

      It also makes NO attempt to parse criminal “gun owners” (who already have double the suicide risk) from legal gun owners. We know person on bail have triple the suicide rate of the general public. There is ZERO attempt by the researchers to control for criminals who are on bail but facing long jail terms killing themselves.

      The only important number is elevated youth suicides. A 70-year-old diagnosed with stage 5 cancer, and facing months of extreme pain and facing incurring medical bills that may leave their family nothing should be allowed to commit suicide without destroying the second amendment rights of others.

      The important number is elevated suicide among 15 to 30 year olds with transient depression who have access to guns. That number looks to be about 100 per year in our country of 330 million. Many times that number in that age group commit suicide by binge drinking alone

  1. Well the question is where is the line between stopping someone from committing suicide and taking someone’s rights because you THINK they might hurt themselves.

    • These cultists are trying to kill themselves! Quick, burn down their compound. Can’t have people dying without the governments permission or decision.

      • This is key.

        Ownership and control of your body is the primary liberty required in any successful society. Who are we to tell someone else when and how they are allowed to die?

        This shouldn’t even be an issue, let alone a thorny one. It’s another place laws have no business being.

    • Why should we stop someone from committing suicide? If someone has decided that their life is not worth living, who are you to force them to stay alive because you think you know better?

  2. This again? Suicide is independent of method. Sure, in the US guns are used (mostly by males) to attempt or commit suicide, but the US is still far behind other anti-gun Utopias like Japan, South Korea, France and Taiwan to name a few of the 32 countries ahead of the US in this category. Bottom line is, if you don’t like life enough that you decide to remove yourself from the gene pool, then you will probably find a way.
    Interesting side note; one of the most used ways to kill one self in Japan for males was to jump in front of trains. Only after the rail authorities started billing the deceased’s family for the cost of lost revenue (equivalent to a cultural shame on their family), did this method of suicide decline.

  3. Suicide is a victimless crime. Same as smoking dope, concealed carry without a govt. permit, and possession of “banned” arms.

    So the question is, do we want to prosecute victimless crime in general?

    • Depends on the chosen method. Some folks drive the wrong way on the freeway and take others out with them. Or jump from a building, bridge or overpass and hit others. A lot of suicide by cop endangers bystanders.

      • ?? Driving on the wrong side of the freeway and taking others out with you is not a victimless crime. Mr. Paine was talking about victimless crime (where there are no victims).

        I agree with Mr. Paine, a crime should not be prosecuted if there is no victim. If a crime is being prosecuted without a victim, then the government has crossed the line into a realm titled “none of your business.”

        However, that’s how our gov is… they like to know everyone’s business and they don’t like anyone knowing their business.

    • Having lost my father and a close friend to suicide I would argue that suicide is hardly a victimless crime. It is certainly harder to cope with than the natural and traumatic deaths that I have been effected by.

      Don’t get the wrong idea. I am not one of those who relishes and wallows in victim hood and wears it on my sleeve, nor do I believe that any government intervention should have been made or would have been successful. I just disagree with the sentiment that suicide is a victimless crime.

      -bsd

      • Then the only option is to deny these people their freedom. If you can’t convince them otherwise.

        The natural right of self-ownership ultimately means we can do with our bodies as we see fit. If my actions (or your loved ones’ actions) don’t infringe upon your rights, then personally that wouldn’t fall into my definition of “victim.”

        • “don’t infringe upon your rights,”

          There is it. Better than I could have worded it.

          I agree.

      • I’m sorry for your loss. However, their bodies are their own and belong to no one else. They can and will do with it/to it what they please. Ultimately, in the end, we all die. Some of us want to fast forward to that part and that is their right and it’s prevention cannot be controlled or enforced in any way. In a legal sense, I believe it is a victimless crime – but just because it is victimless, doesn’t mean others are unaffected.

  4. My mother recently was quite ill and was certain she would die. She didn’t want to continue suffering and asked me several times if I could “leave” a pistol lying around. I declined and kept all my pistols in a gun safe where I knew she could never get at them. I explained to her that the decision whether or not to keep living is a personal right belonging to everyone, but that if she did it with one of my guns the government would take ALL of my guns away and ask me a lot of difficult questions. Shortly thereafter she got a pacemaker and that seems to have resolved the problem, but I still keep my guns locked up.

    • Cliff, please don’t take offense. I’m very happy for you and your Mother that her depression is resolved. I went through much of the same with my Mother. But the first time I read your post I thought you said she got a “Peacemaker” and that resolved the problem. I had a “what the” moment and re-read it.

      • Not to worry, Rev, after I wrote it I was proofreading and I also stumbled on that work – had that moment of pacemaker/peacemaker confusion and wondered if I should explain more carefully, but decided to let it stand. Suffice to say she got a PACE maker and her health has improved considerably over the last 6 weeks.

    • My mother told me if she gets too old and can’t take care of herself to take her out back and shoot her in the head (She used to work in a nursing home). I wouldn’t do that of course, but if one of my parents were suffering greatly and if they and I had no means to end that suffering, I would provide an easy way for them. I feel it would be selfish for me to continue their agony so that I wouldn’t have to face the fear of losing them. I would hope my children do the same for me.

  5. While I recall the word depression actually being used in my family, growing up I did notice a lot of symptoms of it. One thing that always struck me about my family was how easily anyone would bring up how they were feeling and everyone would be willing to talk about it.

  6. At the risk of bein called un-pc and just a big meanie, I believe that folks who want to commit suicide should be allowed to do so. They don’t want to be here anymore and keeping them here has life-long costs. IE: mental anguish to themselves and their loved ones and possibly huge taxpayer costs.

    Suicide is Darwinism at it’s finest.

    • You have it exactly right. They should be given chances to treat their issues and then, if nothing works, allow them to end their life. Preferably in a method that doesn’t require a public work to clean up.

    • As a mental health professional (clinical psychologist) with 40+ years of experience, I’m pretty much with you on this issue, Hobbez, though if someone comes to me and talks of thoughts of killing him/herself that he/she finds troubling, or, in psych-speak, “ego-dystonic,” I am committed to helping the person deal with the thoughts in some way that does not involve the person’s acting them out. Of course, the folks who don’t experience such thoughts as being ego-dystonic tend to be the ones who don’t seek out help but simply up and self-terminate.

  7. It’s sad when someone wants to end their own life, and we should do what we can to get to the root of their issues to actually help them, but society also has to acknowledge that at the end of the day it is their right to end their own life. If you take away methods where they might(key word) be able to fo so relatively privately, then they will end up jumping in front of trains, like in japan, throwing a wrench into the operation of everybody else’s day. It’s much more of a cost to society as a whole to have to send the port authority or whoever to collect the body of somebody who jumped off a bridge, or have people scrape remains off the train tracks.

    • Suicide booths. The idea has been around for a while. This is from a short story called “The Repairer of Reputations”, published in 1895.

      “The Government has seen fit to acknowledge the right of man to end an existence which may have become intolerable to him, through physical suffering or mental despair.” […] He paused, and turned to the white Lethal Chamber. The silence in the street was absolute. “There a painless death awaits him who can no longer bear the sorrows of this life.”

      Honestly, the only arguments AGAINST suicide are a (1) loss of revenue for the Government (assuming you were a taxpayer and not a welfare leech) and (2) Pain you may cause to others around you.

      There isn’t much of a moral argument unless you want to invoke religious arguments.

      Regardless, there is no reason to blame guns. I knew a person who OD’d on sleeping pills. Let’s ban medication. While we’re at it, lets ban cars too, because people might sit in their garage and off themselves that way.

  8. Also, what many people are basically saying(not here, but in articles like this) is, “let’s not actually help the person, let’s keep them alive but miserable. That way there is no real effort put forth on hour parts I’m just too busy.”

    • I’m trying to recall where I or society in general became burdened with convincing the suicidal to live. There is help available, failing to take advantage of it falls only on those who need it. Not to say I’d turn my back on a friend asking for help, but I hardly feel obligated to walk people to help that screams at them from billboards and the TV. It’s called personal accountability and there are a whole lot of people who would do well to develop some.

  9. Here’s an interesting bit of research on suicide and guns: http://www.politifact.com/rhode-island/statements/2013/apr/21/michael-chippendale/ri-state-rep-michael-chippendale-says-guns-dont-in/

    Some studies have been done comparing states with low gun ownership to states with high gun ownership — a much more relevant comparison than Australia or Japan — and they indicate that access to a handgun is a big factor in American suicide rates. Read the article on Politifact.com; it’s very well put together.

    This doesn’t make or break our case or the anti-gun one. As Jesse Nelson said above, it highlights the question of what’s most important. Where do we draw the line between preventing suicide and taking away someone’s rights because there’s a chance they might hurt themselves?

    Another thing to keep reminding people in this debate is that it’s not just about suicide. Suicide is only one piece of the cost/benefit equation. Gun owners prevent somewhere between 800,000 and 2 million violent crimes every year (depending on where you get your numbers), so you have to balance suicide prevention against the (probably greater) likelihood that someone might need that gun to *save* a life.

    • Except the ownership rates in that study (and millers) are bogus. To establish gun ownership rates, they USE suicide rates. they then use gun ownership rates to establish a relationship to suicide rates! it is a tautology.

      It is also obvious that non gun suicides are easier to mask as accidents. Essentially the first assumptions by the ME or coroner with a self inflicted gun death of an ill person is suicide. Whereas a self inflicted overdose of painkillers is much more likely to be ruled an accident. Same is true for suicide by drowning, “falling” out of an open window etc.

      Access to firearms increases suicide by firearm, and it increase definitive ruling of suicide by Medical examiners, it is a stretch to claim it increases suicide rates overall.

      • Complete agreement Chris, though I might add that when a ‘researcher’ begins with a premise then seeks only the evidence that supports that premise what you have is not a ‘study’ but a hatchet job of bad science and politics being masked with pseudo-academic wrappings.

  10. Similar to what Jesse said way up at the top, I just don’t understand how you’d tell where and how to draw the line between someone who is actually going to try to kill themselves versus someone who is not.

    Here’s what I think: Much like taking driving privileges away from older folks, it’s a decision that has to be made for each family by the members of that family. There is no rule you can follow, there’s barely even a guideline.

    • Now, you can’t go waving the personal responsibility flag!!! Everybody knows that folks can’t control themselves and we need the government laws to make people behave…

    • Yes, excellent point. And this would be a great way to proceed if they actually cared about reducing suicides (as opposed to chipping away at the number of firearms that are not in the hands of the government).

  11. States with better mental health care delivery systems have lower suicide rates than those with worse systems. That’s where the focus should be — on health care. Focusing on the guns is just another Democrat ploy.

    • I spent 16 thousand dollars, cash, for the birth of my baby (I’m self employed). Health care providers want to be millionaires and the system is constructed as such. If I had to pay that much for a family member’s mental healthcare I would blow my own brains out.

      If the US healthcare system were not so expensive there would be fewer suicides due to customers glancing at their health care invoices. I think if all doctors (including Dr. Miller) sought this end, it would be more effective at reducing suicides than trying to eliminate guns in circulation.

      I am having another child soon and we will be flying outside the US of A to a hospital that is every bit as good or better than hospitals here and i’ll be paying 1/5th as much.

  12. Since the societal cost and cost to society of suicide is the prevailing topic, I’d like to channel Stefan Molyneux: “The state doesn’t want people to commit suicide because that represents a net loss of tax payers. Don’t spank your children. Please donate generously”.

  13. As evidenced by countries with higher suicide rates than the US, but extremely strict gun control, suicide prone people will find a way, whether a gun is available or not. They just shift to hanging or poison, both of which are the most prevalent methods in countries with severe gun restrictions.

  14. I’ve heard it argued many times that doctors should be able to deem violent and suicidal people as such and have their guns taken with the stroke of a pen. The problem is that any shrink with a superiority complex would be granted unquestionable power to disqualify anyone who so much as mentions that they like firearms. Of course a system like this wouldn’t even be policed let alone have a recourse option should a sane individual be denied their rights by some quack doctor on a power trip; this would be designed from the ground up by the grabbers themselves and we all know how they feel about civilian gun ownership…

    As sad as it is that people kill themselves, just look at the Japanese. They can’t own guns so people jump in front of trains. The government built fences near the tracks, and people climbed them. Individuals will find a way to off themselves no matter how draconian the laws are. This is a reality of life on planet earth to accept and live with as a human being, not some grand social epidemic that needs to be solved by mass criminalization and legislative enslavement.

  15. Japan is as close to a gun-free utopia as possible. And yet their suicide rate is higher than the U.S. A person who really wants to end their life will succeed, period.

    It is utterly impossible to remove all possible methods of suicide. Anyone can do any of the following:
    — purchase rope and hang themselves from any tree
    — step into the path of a high speed train or semi-truck
    — jump from a tall building
    — grab high-voltage electricity lines
    — poison themselves
    — slice their wrists with box cutters
    — drive their car at high speed into the pillars of a highway overpass

    The only way to prevent a person from killing themselves is to commit them to a mental hospital with a suicide floor. Even then patients have managed to find ways to end their lives.

    Removing guns from a person’s home is a feel good action that will accomplish nothing. In fact I would argue that it is quite dangerous because it gives the friends and family a false sense of security that the person at risk is somehow safe from suicide … and yet all those alternative methods are still easily and readily available.

  16. Too complex a topic to be dealt with here. Race, gender, religion, financial and social factors all are involved. Men in the USA tend to be impulsive and violent. Women tend to plan non violent means such as overdose. For many decades the Chinese, who had suffered greatly and for some time, considered suicide as a reasonably way to end ones mortal suffering. I’m just scratching the surface here, but the real need is awareness and appropriate intervention before a person is depressed enough to be suicidal. OTOH any discussion of suicide enhances awareness and to that extent I support your article.

  17. What really bothers me are the people that kill and harm others before they kill themselves…

    … but even if I were contemplating suicide, as a responsible POTG there’s no way I’d leave behind another sob-story scenario for the gun-grabbers to suck on.

  18. the ownership rates in Miller’s study are bogus. To establish gun ownership rates, they USE suicide rates. they then use gun ownership rates to establish a relationship to suicide rates! it is a tautology.

    Miller: Jurisdiction A has higher gun ownership rates which we prove because it has higher gun suicide rates. Jurisdiction A has higher gun suicide rates, that must be due to access to guns.

    By positing gun ownership rates from suicide rates the second conclusion is forgone and invalid.

    It is also obvious that non gun suicides are easier to mask as accidents. Essentially the first assumptions by the ME or coroner with a self inflicted gun death of an ill person is suicide. Whereas a self inflicted overdose of painkillers is much more likely to be ruled an accident. Same is true for suicide by drowning, “falling” out of an open window etc.

    Access to firearms increases suicide by firearm, and it increase definitive ruling of suicide by Medical examiners, it is a stretch to claim it increases suicide rates overall.

  19. “lives could be saved by removing garage doors and lengths of tubing from the home when a family member is depressed or angry or at risk of self-harm.”

  20. I’m down two nephews and a daughter, one of whom was an “innocent suicide,” e.g. under-sink chemicals as a toddler (a nephew) and another of whom was an intentional suicide as a young adult (another nephew). The daughter had a genetic problem.

    As to the intentional suicide, he didn’t use his father’s 1911 (the service weapon of his paternal grandfather) but rather a rope. That’s a slow, ugly death, but he chose it over a firearm.

    I’ve long since decided that should I have need to off myself (due to terminal illness or some such) I’d never use — and thus likely condemn — one of my firearms.

    Were a family member walking the wrong side of crazy street, though, everything but my Tok would go in the safe ’til they were back on the path o’ sense.

    Oh, wait — that’s where they are already, and the Tok is on me, next to me if I’m sleeping or bathing, or in the safe.

    As for me, I’m assurred by the Rice Krispies® that there’s nothing wrong with my noggin.

    Next?

  21. As a general principle, yes. Loved ones and family members should help limit the access to firearms of people not fit to use them safely. Obviously, the government should have no place in it, and it should not be forced, but done with the person’s consent.

  22. Hmmm- lets ask the Aussies… as I recall there was a slight drop then an increase slightly above the older average after their gun control kicked in. Seems Aussies wanting to suicide just went and found another way to do themselves in. Arguably, the Aussies are more like Americans in attitude and outlook than any other country in the world so I strongly believe we could use their data as an example. Was a cop for 31 years, seen a few suicides after the fact, talked to more than a few who wanted to- sometimes successfully sometimes not. One thing I’m utterly certain of is when a person finally reaches the point of wanting to die some just cannot be stopped…

  23. The gun grabbers that I’ve come across like to scream that guns make suicide quick and easy, and if we removed them from the possession of everyone on anti-depressants and anti-anxiety medications, it would drastically reduce the number of spur-of-the-moment suicides. Because swallowing a handful of anti-depression meds with rat poison and chasing it down with a bottle of vodka requires advanced planning and premeditation.

    Or injecting yourself with Drano.
    Or flinging yourself out a window.
    Or diving in front of a train.

  24. I’m curious. What is the most favored method of suicide chosen by Harvard associate professors? ER docs? Policeman. I’ve known four people who committed suicide. Three used other methods. Only the cop used his gun. I’ve also known a few people who overdosed on drugs, ruled accidental overdoses or even simply heart attacks, where the likely reality was intentional, suicide. The highest rates of suicide among middle-aged men occur in isolated areas. Loneliness seems to be the ‘trigger,’ not the presence of guns. When gun laws became much more restrictive Canadians began turning to rope as their means, Brits to auto exhaust.

  25. I have a combination of illnesses. Fibro (pain every day), IBS, Diverticulosis, and other GI issues, Asthma, COPD, and I think that’s all – lol. I can’t take aspirin or any NSAIDS because of the GI issues. I can only take Tylenol (IE M&MS) or Narcotics for pain. I take Soma for the muscle spasms.
    I would not wish my conditions on anyone – even my worst enemy. I am in a near constant pain as well as medicated. I will add, I do not medicate before shooting – I hurt and will be in bed the following day, but safety 1st.
    I have NO desire to take my life, however if I did, I believe it is my Right to decide – if I have a Right to Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, then do I not also have the Right to decide my personal death, if I so choose.
    Having said all of that, If I were to choose death, (instead of my wonderful family), my choice would be going to sleep and just not waking up. I certainly wouldn’t want my family being forced to “clean up my mess” or being forced to have a closed casket – instead of choosing.
    For me, I choose life, but I can’t promise it will stay that way. Some may disagree completely, but I so wished I lived in a State and state, which allowed the legal use of Medical MJ -EVERY medical professional I have asked with the exception of 1 (20-30 Dr’s., RN’s, BSN’s, NP,specialists and others) have recommended its use in my condition. Perhaps Liberty will someday return to our country.

  26. No. People have a right to kill themselves. If you take the gun away, they will find and use another means (such as a mixture of toilet bowl cleaner and fungicide, or the old painless carbon monoxide method). These other methods are oftentimes less gruesome, more effective, and do not leave a mess behind.

    Banning firearms to combat suicide is a ridiculous notion. A notion crafted likely by someone that doesn’t own firearms, doesn’t like firearms, and is completely fine with imposing regulation on a material item within the populace as a “solution.” Reality is, if there were no guns another popular method would surface and what would his solution be then? Ban materials used for that method? Ludicrous solution that was not well thought out.

    I have been depressed before (most people have) and I just talked to family. Family is paramount. Family values and morals make for more mentally healthy people and fewer criminals. However, gov and other ridiculous people think that a quick solution is better than a slower more effective one – so lets go after guns, ropes, sharp objects, almost any chemical, vehicle tailpipes, etc.

  27. As someone who has had a friend, a teacher and a family member take their own lives, I can assure you, that in all cases, taking a gun away did nothing. Two had chosen a rope around the neck and the other a high speed crash (over 100mph) into some very large trees with high amounts of drugs and alcohol before taking the wheel. No amount of counseling would have helped these three because everything had been tried and they were damn and determined to go.

    I have no doubt that a gun is the most efficient, but all over the world, nothing is stopping people from committing suicide and often those whom are saved, try and try again until they get it right.

    You cannot save everyone. You should try and save everyone, but you can only save the ones who wanted to be saved and you should not violate the rights of millions to possibly save one life.

    • Guns are in fact not the most efficient.

      Go to your local walmart and buy some sulfur based fungicide.
      Go to the local hardware store or maybe even the same walmart and buy some toilet bowl cleaner.
      Mix plenty of the two together in a bucket and put in a sealed car. When you are ready just step into the car, close the door, and take just one… (just one) deep breath. Its all over. You’re going to die (painlessly) and no bloody mess involved.

      • Um. . . how do you KNOW it’s just one breath, and that it’s painless? Give it a try, and let us know how it works out for you.

        Seriously, as no one has done a first-hand after-action report on any of the chemical suicide methods, I hesitate to recommend one as ‘painless.’ I have this nasty feeling that there ain’t no such animal. Cyanide burns and tastes horrible, at least according to survivors. CO turns people a hideous grey-blue from anoxia, not a pretty ‘red’ in most cases–plus, there’s the bulging eyes and distorted faces that might be a clue to the final discomfort, as it were. Even sophisticated nerve agents cause convulsions and cyanosis and muscular paroxysms and respiratory paralysis, ohMY! Homemade poison gases are worse–they cause burning and gasping and retching and the coughing up of little bits of lung and other unpleasantries before actual death by suffocation.

        None of this sounds like any fun to me.

        • An incident from the exposure:

          Also from the same Wikipedia article:

          “Three members of one family were killed in a slurry tank in Northern Ireland in September 2012 after one member entered the tank in an attempt to rescue a dog. He was quickly rendered unconscious by the gas (and other toxic gasses), at which point his younger brother entered the tank in an effort to rescue him. He too succumbed to the fumes, and in an attempt to save both sons, the father then entered the tank, and also perished”

  28. Razor blades, kitchen knives, rope, household chemicals, cliffs, bridges, tall buildings, suicide by cop, asphyxiation, self immolation, etc. Where there’s a will there’s a way to commit suicide without turning a gun on yourself.

  29. “how do The People of the Gun deal with the thorny issue of mental illness within the home vis a vis firearms?”

    are you deaf or stupid, or just pretending to be?

    they pretend that the presence of guns has no effect on the outcomes, and mindlessly parrot “if someone really wants to commit suicide they will find a way”

    • “They pretend that the presence of guns has no effect on the outcomes, and mindlessly parrot “if someone really wants to commit suicide they will find a way”

      So … you disagree? You believe that if the gun was not there, then the suicide would not happen? Maybe you can elaborate and enlighten us how someone determined to commit suicide would be spared if a gun is not handy. Please do so. I would enjoy reading this. Maybe you can also explain and reveal to us why the life of individuals trying to end theirs lives is more important than the rights of the many. More important than the lives lost of all those that died trying to secure those rights?

      BTW This was intelligent: “are you deaf or stupid, or just pretending to be?” Very high up there on the debate pyramid.

    • As someone who had a very dark period in life where I entertained the thought of seeking release, at no point did I ever consider using a gun. Even though I didn’t own one myself, I knew where my father’s guns were and still wouldn’t have chosen it over a bridge or some other way to make it look like an accident. Now that I actually *own* guns and have long since gotten through that sordid episode, I still feel the same way. I would NEVER do that to my family.

      As to your assertion that guns make self-termination more likely or increase the odds of success, please explain to me why Japan’s suicide rate is much higher than ours despite being one of the most anti-gun countries in the world.

    • You are a selective reader, or lack basic reading comprehension skills.

      The Gun People herein say that having a gun may make suicide more successful, but does not encourage the act. I agree. For example, I have owned many guns since I was a boy, and I have not committed suicide even once. As a matter of fact, all of the people discussing the subject with us here have never committed suicide, either. I do not think that we can chalk all of that impressive non-self-destructive behaviour to luck. I instead suspect that we are not alcoholics, or subject to clinical depression, or drug addicts, or child molesters, or crooked politicans, or weak-minded, or terminally ill, or any of the other things that promote suicidal behaviour.

      Your statement is specious, and unsupported by fact.

  30. To remove guns from the home of a suicidal person, wouldn’t you first have to detect the suicidal tendencies? And if you’ve detected that, shouldn’t they be undergoing treatment as well?

    What is suggested is not an alternative method but an additional step at best and at worst nothing more than a camels nose.

  31. Suicide is the ultimate act of selfishness. With that said, life is a gift to do with as you please, as long as your pursuit of happiness doesn’t infringe on my rights.

    • I don’t know about “selfishness”, but it’s the ultimate act of drama-queenishness. I know; a close friend shot himself through the heart (very cleanly, by the way; very little blood) with a .22. In his ex-wife’s bed, after breaking into the home of her and her new husband. See what I mean about “drama queens”?

      At best, the person contemplating suicide (and I believe, from personal experience, it’s a common urge) should be understood by the prospective suicide clearly (and it’s not easy for potential suicides to think clearly, by definition) as a permanent solution to a temporary problem.

      But I never stooped to condemning him for his “solution”; it was his life, and he had a right to do with it as he wished. But in his ex’s BED? Drama queen!

      Another friend (also now deceased) was very anti-gun because his father used a gun to kill himself. I never could bring myself to explain to him that his father would probably have done it another way if the gun was not available. But it’s true.

  32. Far as I’m concerned, unless you’re family or a *particularly* close friend your life/death choices are none of my business. And even if you fit into those categories I’m still not taking your gun away. I’ll try to talk you out of doing it but in the end it’s still your decision and I won’t use force. We all have our own demons and how we deal with them is entirely personal.

    • I agree. It’s entirely a personal decision; nobody else is experiencing your personal pain and tribulations. No one I know, anyway….

  33. Since every person on this earth could be labeled “suicidal” at some point in their life this is an obvious joke of an idea and is all about disarmament.

    I consider suicide a “retention” issue. It’s just a fact of life just like employers will lose employees the world will lose humans to different things, suicide being one of them. Even though many do commit suicide with guns, obviously because it’s easier and quicker in most cases, taking all guns away probably wouldn’t lower the suicide numbers as if someone wants to die, just like if someone wants to kill, they will find a way.

    Current trend especially with teens and 20 somethings is hanging themselves. What would be the best way to combat that. to ban all things you can hang yourself with? Just plain old stupidity and narcissism.

  34. Is the prevention of suicides a legitimate state interest? Is it better to complete the act instead of making a hash of it when employing alternate methods? In any event, firearm suicides should not be included in the gun use stats.

  35. Confiscating guns from people expressing suicidal thoughts, and as is the case in some of the new laws, from people with anxiety or depression and medication for the same, is likely to REDUCE the number of people seeking treatment.

    These claims will be used for one ends: removing guns generally. To claim the utility of the studies is targeted removal for elevated suicide risk persons is disingenuous. The consensus from mental heath professionals in this area or work, indeed the peer reviewed studies show that fear of stigma, reporting to employers or being put on any lists a known impediment to people seeking treatment.

  36. Guns, trains, rope, and tall buildings, are such a pathetic way to commit suicide.

    Swimming out to sea is much cleaner for everybody. The Sea cleans up after itself.

    Unless of course the Suicide WANTS to make someone else clean it up. Sometimes the case that is.

    Better to join the French Foreign legion and “just disappear” and after 20 years, get a new name, new identity and a new passport. … They’ll take in shape guys to age 40. See your recruiter at the French Embassy.

  37. I believe in the preservation of life and personal responsibility. Even a person that wants to take their own life has the right to defend it and the life of their loved ones. I believe the only one that can take your right to self-defense is a judge. I dont know the stats, but there are people that change their mind. That said if you’re depressed or feeling violent give your guns to a friend to hold before you decide to off yourself or someone else.

    At the end of the day, we should all do what our conscience requires of us. If it is to take the matter to court, so be it. Otherwise you have no right to take their rights.

  38. If anyone besides the driver dies or is injured in a suicide car crash, that is too many. I can cite at least 5 in the last few years in my area of NY/

  39. A person who is depressed and determined to commit suicide will find a way. Period. If these idiots want to prevent suicides, they need to fix our mental health system.

    When did we start worrying so much about preventing suicides, as someone asked above? When the liberals destroyed our mental health system. “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” freaked everyone out and gave the ACLU the ammo to get everyone released from mental institutions. As horrible as they were back then, at least the patients had food, shelter and some treatment. Far better than what the hollow eyed homeless folks living under the bridge. Some people NEED to be in an institution, for their own safety, and sometimes for ours.

    Mental health treatment has come a long way in the past 40 years, but the stigma and ignorance remain. People call others “bipolar”, “schizophrenic” and other terms around with absolutely no idea of what they really mean. The media inaccurately portrays the mentally ill as dangerous, because it makes for a good story. As a result, people who truly need help won’t seek it, or their families won’t do anything because of the “shame”. And doctors can no longer involuntarily commit someone who desperately needs it. Good clinicians are busy making money treating people with “issues” that a little self discipline could resolve.

    Most mental illness can be treated. But the system, and our attitudes, have to be fixed.

    Yes, it is the right of a person to take their own life if they so choose. By whatever means they choose.

    Fix the system, and keep your grimy liberal dick beaters off of my guns.

  40. tin foil hat but please raise hands if you think this Harvard study about handguns increasing risk of suicide has any coincidental timing and conclusion issues with the Harvard study that came out a month ago proving that they do not.

    hhhhmmmmm.

  41. I feel the way about suicide the way most red-blooded Americans feel about most things:
    So long as I don’t make life difficult for anyone else, and I don’t infringe on their rights, then leave me the hell alone.
    There is such a thing as a courteous suicide.

    • “There is such a thing as a courteous suicide.”

      Es verdad. Even if they don’t have relatives who care, somebody’s gotta clean that sh*t up.

  42. So, he’s not arguing for gun control, just the removal of guns from the homes of people who suffer from… emotions. Sounds perfectly logical to me. I’m sure that somewhere out there, there is a population that doesn’t suffer from anger, depression or substance abuse. Unfortunately, I’m not sure it’s on planet Earth.

    Studies such as the ones cited tend to ignore the fact that very many of the firearms used in suicides were acquired shortly before the suicide. In other words, the suicidal individual had already decided upon a course of action and chose the most painless and efficient means of accomplishing their end.

    • Painless, yes. Also messy and downright gruesome. But if they’re determined, they’ll find a way, gun or no gun. I have to support the right to self-obliteration; at least they won’t be moping and bothering others anymore. Not to sound crass or anything, but it’s an option, and they won’t be miserable anymore.

  43. Not to be a dick but the most fundamental human right is the right to live. To me this includes the right to end your life, in the most efficient and successful way possible, should you choose.

    I am not saying that we need to be talking people into suicide, but if they want it where is or right to invade their privacy and stop them?

    • Devil’s Advocate (though I don’t know him personally, and you can’t prove I do): if God created Man, how could it be that we “own” ourselves?

      I’m not saying it’s true or untrue. I’m just asking some questions that nearly ever get a serious discussion.

      • According to the Christian Bible, our bodies are not our own, but temples unto God, and we do not have the freedom to destroy or abuse them. Not everyone is a Christian, however.

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