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The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have just released their report Suicide Trends Among Persons Aged 10–24 Years — United States, 1994–2012. “Suicide is the second leading cause of death among persons aged 10–24 years in the United States and accounted for 5,178 deaths in this age group in 2012,” the report states. “Firearm, suffocation (including hanging), and poisoning (including drug overdose) are the three most common mechanisms of suicide in the United States . . . Among males aged 10–24 years . . .

firearm was the leading mechanism of suicide, whereas, among females, suffocation surpassed firearm in 2001 as the leading mechanism. In general, firearm suicide rates decreased and suffocation suicide rates increased, while rates for suicide by poisoning decreased slightly and rates for suicide by all other mechanisms combined remained relatively unchanged . . .

The report has recommendations to tackle the problem – none of which include gun control.

The National Strategy for Suicide Prevention encourages a comprehensive approach to suicide prevention that includes activities for enhancing social support, problem-solving skills, and other protective factors to prevent suicidal behavior; increasing training in recognizing risk factors and making appropriate referrals; expanding access to social services; reducing stigma and other barriers to seeking help; and providing responsible media reporting to reduce contagion and to enhance awareness that suicide is preventable.

We hope that the various gun control groups – who lump in firearms-related suicides with firearms-related homicides to alert the public to “gun violence” – take note of the recommendations and work to reduce these preventable deaths. After all firearms-related suicides account for more than half of all firearms-related deaths. The same goes for the NRA, NSSF, SAF and other pro-gun rights organizations.

[h/t Pascal]

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  1. And once you join the military, you are more likely to die of suicide than in war. Damn shame.

  2. Suicide by gun down, damn what will the anti’s say about that? Oops I forgot the facts do not matter to them. My bad sorry. 🙂

  3. The NRA, NSSF, SAF and other pro-gun groups should all reach out to the anti-gun groups, and offer to do a campaign together to reduce suicide. That’ll show em who’s responsible and cares about the children.

    • Thats’s brilliant. Those anti gun groups would sooner die than collaborate with pro-gun groups, which our side could then use to highlight that the antis goal has nothing to do with saving lives.

  4. “Suicide is the second leading cause of death among persons aged 10–24 years in the United States and accounted for 5,178 deaths in this age group in 2012 …”

    Quick! We need to pass a law making suicide illegal!

  5. “… among females, suffocation surpassed firearm in 2001 as the leading mechanism [of suicide].”

    We must stop the war on women and immediately ban rope, wire, sheets, pillows, plastic bags, water, and combustion processes which generate carbon dioxide and/or carbon monoxide!


  6. firearms-related suicides account for nearly half of all firearms-related deaths

    Firearms-related suicides account for about 65% of firearms deaths. 21,175 firearms suicides vs 11,208 firearms homicides. There are also a small number of firearms-related one-party accidental deaths.

  7. NRA, SAF, GSL, or some other pro 2A group should offer to work with Moms in a joint venture to reduce suicide in alignment with the recommendations of the CDC. Make a big public point of reaching out as ‘Common Sense’ way to ‘Reduce Gun Violence’.

    Demand some action from the Moms for a change. Very politely give them an opportunity to put up or shut up.

  8. I find it really depressing that suicides actually happen in the 10-14 years of age category. That sucks. (Don’t worry, I’m only a healthy amount depressed by this fact.)

    • I once worked the suicide of an eleven year old boy…hung himself from the ‘play tree’ in the back yard.

      It remains one of the most disturbing memories of my life.

      • Do you think he knew? I mean, really understood what he was doing and what the actual, permanent implications were? I don’t remember being 11, and my oldest is a couple months from turning 3 so I don’t really have a good understanding of the mind of an 11-year-old yet…

        • I truly have no idea if he really understood what he was doing, but he did leave some written materials that pointed to how upset he was. From the outside, it looked like normal 11-year-old school and social life “problems,” but it seriously got inside him.

          I think (not a psychologist, so this is just lay person musing) an eleven year old might lack appreciation of the permanence of suicide while at the same time might lack appreciation of un-permanent their problems are. That’s a pretty harsh combination when you think about it.

  9. What strikes me as most curious is that sales of guns to civilians is soaring while suicide by guns is drifting down. That gives a negative correlation between guns and suicide by gun. What could account for that?

    If guns were positively correlated with male suicide deaths you could look to an increase in suicide by veterans. Is suicide by veterans dropping? I didn’t think so. So, what is happening to the suicide by veterans by method?

    If veterans are committing suicide by gun (the intuitive assumption) then the rate of suicide by males who are NOT veterans must be dropping faster than the chart shows. What would account for that?

    If veterans are committing suicide at increasing rates – but choosing NON-gun methods – that would be interesting. Why would veterans eschew guns, a tool they are familiar with, have ready access to, and know will be effective? Whatever their thought process is, maybe it would inform how to accelerate the decline in use of guns by non-vets.

    • Maybe more parents are taking their kids to the range. Teaching them responsibility and respect for life and death.

  10. “…to reduce contagion…”

    Am I missing something here? Since when is suicide a communicable disease? Or is there another definition of “contagion” I am unaware of? I’m not trying to be sarcastic either. If I’m reading this wrong, please tell me.

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