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Despite a moderately impressive array of credentials (MD, FAAP, board certified pediatrician and, according to her bio blurb at HuffPo, Attending Physician, Assistant Medical Director of the Pediatric Hospitalist Program, and Director of Pediatric Medical Education at a Fort Lauderdale children’s hospital) I must conclude that Doctor Kristie Rivers is utterly incompetent. I mean really, incredibly, breathtakingly, mind-bogglingly uninformed. Unlike our friends in the gun-grabber community, though, I’m not going to just toss out some ad hominem attacks and call it a day. I am going to lay out in painstaking detail just exactly what brought me to this conclusion. . . .

What brought Dr. Rivers to my attention was her HuffPo piece, The Questions I Can’t Ask About Guns and what she said in this piece led me to my conclusions vis-à-vis her intelligence. She opens with an anecdote about her five-year-old son “shooting” her with a plastic water bottle and the ensuing conversation:

… it was clear we needed to have a little talk. “Guns sure can be dangerous,” I began tentatively. “What do you think you would do if there was a real gun in front of you, like at a friend’s house?”

“Well, Mom, I would probably look at it and maybe even touch it… but I definitely wouldn’t pull the trigger.”

You see, I had never really talked to my son about guns before. I never thought I had a need to. We don’t have guns in our house, and he doesn’t play with toy guns, watch violent movies or play video games, so I naïvely thought we were safe. I thought he would not be interested in guns or would just KNOW they are dangerous and not to be touched. To be honest, his answer shocked some sense into me.

Well, doc, I would certainly hope so. Is that how you handled fire safety, too? Did you just assume he would know that matches and lighters are dangerous and not to be touched? That he would “not be interested” in the stove or pots of boiling water? Tolkien said that “the burned hand teaches best,” but I don’t think he meant that literally (and I’m pretty sure Child Protective Services gets really cranky about third degree burns on preschoolers).

This hardly qualifies as epic-level stupidity, though. I would have classified it under ‘ostrich effect’ and moved on, but then Dr. Rivers drops this one:

Would you believe that as a pediatrician, it is against the law in my state to ask my patients if they have a gun in their home? I am allowed to ask teens intimate details of their sex lives … if they have ever been raped… but not if they have access to a gun. I can ask parents if they have ever had a sexually transmitted infection, if they smoke pot or shoot heroin or snort cocaine… but I cannot ask if they have a weapon that could potentially kill their child if not properly secured.

Why no, Kristie, no I wouldn’t, but that’s because, even though I am not an M.D., nor am I an attending physician, an assistant medical director of the pediatric hospitalist program, nor even a director of pediatric medical education, I have actually read Florida’s Firearm Owners’ Privacy Act. That’s how I know that it clearly states that, if you believe that the information is relevant to the safety of the patient or another then you certainly can ask about guns in the home. And since in the very next paragraph you state that:

In the United States, approximately 500 children die each year from accidental gunshot wounds, with another 7,500 children hospitalized for non-fatal wounds, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics. That’s more than one innocent child every day who is tragically taken from their family.

you obviously do believe that such information is relevant to the patient’s medical care or safety, or the safety of others. But those numbers bother me a bit; they seem grossly exaggerated a tad high. A little digging led me to this abstract of a paper presented at the AAP’s 2013 National Conference.

Unfortunately, despite having been presented almost 11 months ago I can’t find the actual paper anywhere on the web. In addition, the source database seems to be proprietary making it impossible to verify their results. Furthermore, the abstract cites raw numbers rather than rates. Finally the abstract fails to identify what age range the authors used in defining “children”.

Fortunately a little Bing-Fu turned up this article at which explicitly (and repeatedly) states that the study includes children and teens. Since I would never accuse an esteemed pediatrician and writer of deliberately lying, Dr. Rivers’ failure to mention the and teens part of the number and her characterization of these victims as ‘innocent children’ is more evidence of her utter ineptitude. Certainly she would agree that 18-year-old gang-bangers have no place in any definition of ‘innocent children.’

Now that we’ve gotten that bit out of the way, just how many of these (actual) innocent children are ripped from the loving bosom of their families each year, and how has that number/rate changed over the past couple of decades? Unlike some agenda-driven “researchers” I will use the generally accepted definition of children as pre-pubescent and semi-arbitrarily declare that childhood ends on the 13th birthday. Now using the non-proprietary, non-obscure (and decidedly not pro-gun) CDC’s numbers for accidental firearm related deaths I came up with:

Screen Shot 2014-09-19 at 7.22.40 AM
But that table really doesn’t tell us anything (other than that Kristie needs to fact-check better), so let’s add some context here. Let’s look at accidental gun deaths, residential fires, drowning and suffocation:Okay,  so we’re talking one-tenth the numbers cited by the good doctor, and rates which have stayed relatively constant for the past decade-and-a-half or so. And yes, those aren’t her numbers per se, but since I’ve started blogging, I make it a point to check my facts and my sources instead of uncritically accepting numbers because they agree with my worldview. Crazy, huh?

Screen Shot 2014-09-19 at 7.22.35 AM

For the graphically minded, the data look like this:


See that blue line below all the others? That’s the firearm-related accidental death rate for children 0 – 12 years old (inclusive). Now that I am done tap-dancing all over the unverified numbers Dr. Rivers presented as facts, let’s look at what more she has to say:

And yet if you walked into my office tomorrow, I could not ask if you have a gun in your home.

See above; since you firmly (even if mistakenly) believe that asking about guns in the home is relevant to the patient’s medical care or safety, or the safety of others then yes you can ask. Again, read the law before you start pontificating.

I could not provide safety tips on how to secure a gun to keep your child safe. I could not teach you how to talk to your child about firearm safety.

SCREEECH! Back the truck up, Kristie. Nowhere in the law does it limit what you can tell a patient. The closest it comes to that is in Section (6) where it states that a physician “should refrain from unnecessarily harassing a patient about firearm ownership during an examination.” But Kristie isn’t done with her hysterical misrepresentations:

And if I do ask, I could lose my medical license, face thousands of dollars in fines, or even go to jail.

Yeah, sort of for the first two; as for the going to jail part, a picture is worth 1,000 words . . .

Under the penalties prescribed in 456.072(2)(a-h), for a ‘substantial violation’ of the Protection Act “the board or department if there is no board” can limit, suspend, or revoke your license, issue a letter of reprimand, administratively fine you up to $10,000 for each offense and/or require remedial education. There is no ‘jail’ option.

That being said, doctor, just how harshly do you think your fellow ignorant hoplophobes on “the board, or the department when there is no board” are going to treat you when you stand in front of them and claim that you really, truly sincerely believed that the questions you asked and the “gun safety” information you presented were relevant to the patient’s medical care or safety, or the safety of others?

I can see someone at the back of the room waving a hand … You agree that Dr. Rivers may be impaired, but you want to know why I said she’s incompetent to boot? Excellent question. Let’s just pop ahead to her final two paragraphs, shall we?

I keep my nose out of politics and do not even pretend to understand the intricacies of the laws regarding gun control. But I am quite passionate about protecting innocent children. …

I want to instill in my son a healthy respect for firearms. My son hopefully walked away from our conversation with a very different view of guns. Not because I am an expert on gun control and have all the answers, but simply because I educated him on the potential dangers. …

She admits that she had never previously thought about having ‘that talk’ with her son, that she and her family don’t own real guns, don’t own toy guns, don’t watch violent movies or even play video games. Given this level of avoidance I have to assume an equal level of ignorance on the topic. I doubt very much that Kristie has a permit to carry or shoots three-gun on the weekends. Indeed, the last two paragraphs of her piece explicitly state that she is ignorant about firearm laws and gun control, yet she seems to think that she’s still qualified to give advice to patients on safe storage of guns.

On her site she says:

If you have a gun in your home, you can keep your child safe by always keeping the gun unloaded and locked up. Be sure to store and lock the bullets in a separate location from the gun itself. Also, hide the keys to the locks …

A number of years ago I ran across this form which asked physicians to either list the training and accreditations which qualified them to give gun safety advice or else certify that their malpractice insurance and personal assets would be sufficient to cover damages should a patient take their uninformed advice and suffer a loss as a result.

I wonder if Kristie would be willing to sign that form.

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  1. Not all pediatricians subscribe to anti-gun horse-puckey.

    The AAP national leadership tries to sound like they are a unified voice on this issue and represent all pediatricians. They do not.

    I guess that’s a small consolation, though.

    I have encouraged ones I know that have talked to me on the topic to change the national leadership…to not allow the organization leaders to speak for them like that.

    • 100% correct! Although I think they will be unified soon as they have “nannyed” their way into many of us unwashed pro2A masses deep sixing our membership (like I did with the AMA 5 years ago for similar idiocy in their pro gun control b.s.)

    • Notice that she gives the gun volition and motivation:

      “I cannot ask if they have a weapon that could potentially kill their child if not properly secured.”

      At least she did not say children are killed “by” guns.

      Most accidents involving small children occur with adult shooting the gun and hitting the child. Older children often do the shooting themselves. Accidents that happen with a small child (five years old or less) accessing a gun are very, very rare, in the single digits a year.

  2. I don’t need you to protect my “innocent child” for non-medical reasons. Keep your nose out of mine and my family’s private business.

  3. You don’t need to know what I don’t tell you. You can ask all the questions you want I still won’t answer what I don’t want you to know. You don’t ask about my table saw?

  4. You don’t have to be bright to be a doctor , just parents with deep pockets and a huge desire to get the moron out of the house .

  5. I’m not seeing the chart with the blue line below all the others.

    My computer says the URL that points to it is: “webkit-fake-url://ADDA9165-B216-4166-BC8E-67D80AB9E451/application.pdf.”

  6. How can a doctor that is supposed to specialize in children not realize that kids are curious, inquisitive, and need to learn pretty much everything other than suckling as they grow? I have a baby, and he’s pretty much a blank slate. He is an organic computer, with a changing, growing and evolving hardware, and nothing but basic software on board. As parents, we know we have to teach him everything, and I mean everything. Nap time, bed time, how to eat solid foods, how to hold the sippy cup, don’t touch the hot stove, ABC’s, how to tie his shoes, and yes even gun safety. It’s disturbing that she is that checked out on raising her own child that she just assumed he would know what to do.

    • “It’s disturbing that she is that checked out on raising her own child that she just assumed he would know what to do.”

      And believes she is qualified to give others advice on the subject. Disturbing indeed.

      • It’s like all the other CPS jobs. Social worker = welfare case. “Guardian ad lietum” = failed lawyer.

        There’s plenty of third rate talent out there who become teachers, social workers, guardians ad lietum, pareting coordinators et. al. because they don’t have the ability to get a degree in math or one of the sciences.

        Generally speaking, those who can, do. Those who can’t, teach, consult, etc. etc.

        “It’s for the…” insert underdog here.

        No, it’s for you. You can’t do a real day’s work so you pretend to represent those who, conveniently “can’t represent themselves.” Thanks. I’m not buying.

        • Before you start making nasty comments, perhaps you should learn to spell “guardian ad litem” and learn what it actually means. Most guardians ad litem are not attorneys, but instead they are the parents of children (who lack legal capacity as a matter of law) or a relative appointed to represent the interests of an adult who for some reason lack capacity and are appointed by the court. The guardian ad litem stands in the stead of the incapacitated person, but is not the lawyer, and cannot appear in court without an attorney.

        • Actually, many attorneys are appointed “ad litems” for children or incompetent adults, particularly in family law disputes. But they are then known as “attorney ad litem” rather than “guardian ad litem”. But I’m still unclear as to how a pediatrician became a “CPS” job.

        • “But I’m still unclear as to how a pediatrician became a “CPS” job.”

          Parens Patriae run amok.

          Sprinkle in a little Statism.

          Now it will get worse with doctors becoming, essentially, government agents.

          And again, while I think it fair to say most pediatricians see themselves as ‘child advocates,’ not all see that extending to the degree of being CPS workers.

    • Boys learn to aim at aim early age. Girls squat. As for the good doctor, she is of a generation who feels a strong opinion beats a body of knowledge.

    • Kind of evolution. Guys evolved with the mindset of protecting females. Some species (like lions) are actually reversed; the females are stronger.

      For example, most boys automatically know to tuck their thumb in front of their fingers when making a fist (rather than over the index finger, which some girls will do without thinking). It doesn’t say anything about the character of the person, but it’s true regardless.

      • Some species (like lions) are actually reversed; the females are stronger.
        Female lions are not nearly as strong and male lions. I used to wonder what male lions did, other than provide sperm and eat, since the females did all the hunting.
        There was a documentary about a pride of lions. The male went off to check on territory for a number of days. Quickly a pack of hyena came in and were terrorizing the female lions. Taking their kills, and even treeing the female lions.
        The females simply couldn’t come close to catching any hyena’s and would be attacked from behind by the superior numbers.
        The male returned. laid down, the hyena pack came up to harass the pride as they have been doing nightly.
        Then, that lazy Male Lion turned into an attacking frenzy machine, swatting hyena away, chased to the Queen hyena, and instead of just killing her outright, snapped her back in two with one blow, then he lazily walked back and went to sleep.
        Really, that male lion could have taken on 10 female lions. The difference in speed, power and aggression was unbelievable.

        • I’m thinking the only place where the female is more powerful than the male would be in the Obuma Whitehouse.

          Perhaps the female hyena should be the symbol of the current progressive demtard party. The jackass is rather dated.

        • I love stories like this. This is an excellent model for the modern progressive (or even mainstream..becoming mainstream) “views” on maleness in our society.

          There is a LOT of hot air expended trying to convince us that “male” is bad, wrong, evil, useless, second rate. Until those saying that need a male characteristic for something. That can be as simple as making a %$# decision about something vs talking about it for 10 hours.

          I almost laughed recently when a situation came up where someone (female) was wishing for me to have been present to handle a situation she was in…handle it via exhibiting the exact personality traits she has criticized in me in the past.

          I am particularly sensitive to this issue as I have a son. I am doing what I can to stand in front of him on this issue and not let “them” take his maleness / masculinity away.

          Loving the image of the lion cleaning his house and going back for a nap. Very Homeric. In my mind, I’m naming the lion in your story Odysseus.

  7. And what’s even more revolting is the “violent” movie/video game BS. You are a danger to yourself, your Children and to society itself when you/your parenting is so hollow that a movie or a game can so wholly pivot the mindset of someone who literally spent all his/her life with you.

  8. The graph is broken…
    I guess playing with cap guns when I was younger makes me evil in her eyes. You know, the ones that use glue and real gunpowder to make a noise? If she shelters her kid that much from anything gun shaped, I wonder how he’s going to be in 10 years…

  9. Of course she keeps her nose out of politics. That’s why she’s submitting an article to a hopelessly, mindlessly partisan left-wing digital equivalent of a “rag”. And the fact that she cheerfully admits and otherwise demonstrates that she knows next to nothing about the subject matter (guns and the laws pertaining to same) makes her eminently qualified to so comment.

    • Yep, that is what jumped out at me too.

      “I keep my nose out of politics and do not even pretend to understand the intricacies of the laws regarding gun control.”

      Notice how she said “keep” in the present tense instead of the accurate past tense “kept”?

    • She is simply a victim-in-waiting. People like her will be the first to go. The survivors will be the gun owners who refused to register their politically named “assault weapons, or their hi-cap magazines. A pity, really.

  10. She opens with an anecdote about her five-year-old son “using common sense” and the ensuing conversation:

    … it was clear we needed to have a little talk. “Common sense sure can be dangerous,” I began tentatively. “What do you think you would do if there was a real common sense in front of you, like at a friend’s house?”

    “Well, Mom, I would probably look at it and maybe even think about it… but I definitely wouldn’t use it”!

    You see, I had never really talked to my son about common sense before. I never thought I had a need to. We don’t have common sense in our house, and he doesn’t play with common sense, watch violent movies or play video games, so I naïvely thought we were safe. I thought he would not be interested in common sense or would just KNOW it is dangerous and not to be used. To be honest, his answer shocked some sense into me.

    There. Fixed it for her.

  11. This sounds like it was ghost-written by Shannon Watts and the MDA spinners.

    The fact that it was riddled with inaccuracies, easily checked, and platformed on HuffPo confirms it is indeed “political”. Just another example of how once trusted role models in science and medicine are becoming un-credible, to their everlasting shame, and reflecting badly on the organizations and once honored professions they represent.

    Yes, Dr, you do need some common sense. Physician, heal thyself, first. And first, do no harm.

  12. My oldest is 14. I have yet to see him go into the exam room by himself. All of his Doctors pretty much limit their questions to “Where does it hurt,” and other on topic issues.

    Early on I had a Pediatrician inform me that patient confidentiality would prohibit her from disclosing medical information of a minor child to his parent (me). I not so politely informed her that as long as I was paying for the appointment, she would damn well disclose everything, then I fired her and moved on.

    • Why is “Pediatrician” treating a teenager? You 19yr old gangbanger still an infant?

      Pediatrician is a sillyass newage progressive medical “specialty” in any case. Take your kids to a real doctor.

      • “Pediatrician is a sillyass newage progressive medical “specialty” in any case. Take your kids to a real doctor.”

        Not exactly. Pediatricians are “real doctors;” exact same medical school program and three years of residency working with child patients usually in big hospitals dealing with really bad stuff. Believe it or not, child anatomy and physiology is different from adults.

        There are many specialties in health care that fit your description. Pediatrics is not one of them. They are no more “not real doctor” than a cardiologist or thoracic surgeon. A pediatrician is a medical doctor with specific expertise working with children’s medical issues.

        That specific expertise in medicine does not itself qualify a pediatrician to comment on ‘gun control,’ especially after admitting not understanding the issue. The attempt here by the anti’s to use her MD as an Appeal to Authority is as transparent as it is foolish.

      • Dose the term “early on” not mean anything to you ? If not I think I will be getting my advice elsewhere thank you.

  13. I work around dozens of people with multiple doctorates every day. If you talk about anything outside their area of expertise, they are as dumb as rocks. Heck, one of them is learning to drive for the first time, and he is 40. See, they have spent many years in academia barely lifting their noses above the tops of their books. They have often been sheltered from the world. If they had mom and pop pay for school, it is a fair bet they went to private school. It is fascinating to see them respond when life deviates from their world view.

    • This is a very common stereotype, but I too know many PhD’s and MD’s that that statement does not apply to at all. Though I have known people with advanced degrees that fit your description, no part applies to several people I know.

      I know some PhD’s that can handily “school” people in other fields … that is, outside their own field schooling people in THEIR fields. A few of the most avid hunters / outdoorsmen I know have advanced degrees.

      I know one PhD in a ‘hard science’ field that could teach graduate level classes on Civil War history, Roman Empire history, WW II history. This same guy does all his own welding, has owned an ammunition manufacturing business (and in his niche, was very well known in the benchrest community during that time), has shot competitively…successfully, I mean, not like me…and has run a farm. I’m sure I’m leaving a few things out.

      That’s just one example. I could list others, but one is sufficient to crack an overgeneralization.

  14. I would rather have my son play at the home of a gun owner than the home of a trampoline owner.

    When did these doctors start sticking their noses into non-medical issues?

    • From my observation of history, since the 60’s, when some lefty MD’s started running their yaps about the Vietnam war.

      Then it started spreading out to lots of domestic issues.

  15. Years ago, my son’s pediatrician hunted deer and bear with me. My present physician laments that he does not have the time to hunt and fish as he once did, but carries with a CCP, to work, to the hospital, to the clinic, and back home. He said he carries when he is golfing (he chose golfing, rather than hunting, so I think his cognitive abilities are in question).

    I would think there are legitimate statistics, so that exaggerations or fabrications do not need to be made. Parents do need to act wisely with their guns and other items. When my son was a wee one, he wanted to know so much, such as “Is it hot?” “Is it sharp?” etc. I let him experience it, just a little so he would know and would remember. From that point on, he would say, “That IS hot!” “That is sharp, Daddy!” Now much older, he teaches his children the same “show and tell” without fear or hesitation.

  16. This is an issue of glass houses. At one time an esteemed medical group proclaimed that there were over 200,000 deaths by medical ACCIDENTS in the US per year. They must have caught hell as they lowered the number to 100,000 then lower to 80,000.

    Spend some time correcting those accidents which included children.

    Can you believe Doc I can’t as a patient find out how well my doctor performs, can’t find out what disciplinary action is ever taken against them and can’t find out how many medical mal practice claims were filed or paid off for ANY doctor. Do you believe that Bulls%%t!

    Spend some time asking patients if they have swimming pools, more than 5 times as many kids 14 and under die in them than from gunshots. So…………..up yours.

  17. She seems so adamant about guns being in the home. It sounds like she assumes she’s the only one in the world with proficient knowledge on how to safely own and store a firearm. What are the stats on physician related drug abuse? What I mean by that is, how many people get or become addicted to medication from doctors prescribing drugs? Should we hold her and her profession responsible for enabling people to abuse drugs then get desperate and become involved in criminal acts involving firearms to feed drug addiction? No, I don’t think that would be right to assume, but it would be interesting to see the numbers on that. Nor is it right to assume that parents that have kids have no idea how to store firearms. Sure, there’s the occasional irresponsible owner who forgets to lock his cigar box, but I just don’t think it’s any of your business to ask unless the kids have GSW or mention incidents. I’m no doctor but this sounds almost like münchausen syndrome by proxy.

    • It sounds like she assumes she’s the only one in the world with proficient knowledge on how to safely own and store a firearm.

      And yet: she doesn’t own guns, and admits, essentially, to complete ignorance where firearms are concerned.

      In other words: she’s a typical progressive.

  18. I have said this once, and I’ll say it a million more times. For all the doctors out there who practice evidence-based medicine, show me the statistics of how many gun accidents have been prevented by the AAP’s preventative guideline teachings on gun safety and if that number is significant (without increasing the risk to the gun owner significantly (storing ammo locked in a separate location)), I’ll start doing it, until then, I’ll mind my own business. Evidence based medicine is just that…

    To be clear: I’m a pediatrician, own my own practice, and have long ago stopped asking about guns unless it is “did you get that new Sig you were talking about last time?” or “did you get that Elk tag this year?” (followed by, can I have a piece when you get it?)

  19. Who the hell cares about facts – we’re trying to push gun-control based purely on emotions!
    Now look at this sick child…

  20. I’m going to go out on a limb here and say she’s never actually read the statute, and is relying totally on AAP propaganda. In a comments section of another article on this HuffPo piece, another female pediatrician at first agreed wholeheartedly with Dr. Kristie Rivers…until I provided her with a link to the actual statute. Thankfully, she was open-minded enough to read it. Her response was that she saw nothing in the statute to which she objected, and was dismayed the AAP had so badly misrepresented its provisions.

    • When you actually find someone open-minded who accepts the truth, and says “Damn, well they lied” instead of going into aggressive’s a good feeling.

      • And an IMPORTANT victory. That person may well resent being lied to like that and become vocal about it.

        Force multiplication is a GOOD thing.

  21. The concept behind that form is brilliant; if actually legally actionable/binding, it completely circumvents any attempts at anti evangelism through the medical vectors. At least until they can create some new creature that is both knowledgeable about firearms and advocates their abolition. Good luck with that, as we’ve seen time and again that knowledge is highly corrosive to the anti’s entire gun control faith, and even a little bit will quickly eat at it and erode its foundations.

  22. I think the best way to avoid swimming pool accidents is to always keep your pool filled with cured concrete, and store the water locked in a separate container. I don’t know much about pools, but that’s just common sense!

    • Just to emphasize your iggorunce, you are criminally disregarding the ensuing spike in diving board accidents!

      My deliberate, determined, and absolute ignorance obviously qualifies me to instruct others.

  23. Well, Doc, as you stated my sexual history, whether or not I’ve had an STD, and whether or not I’ve abused controlled substances all have an impact on my physical health. As a physician, you can appropriately discuss my dietary, sleep, and exercise habits also. However, whether or not I own an inanimate object has no bearing on my physical health.

  24. I want to know what firearms training did she get at medical school that makes her competent enough to give advice on firearm safety?

  25. “I keep my nose out of politics.”

    How nice. Too bad she doesn’t likewise butt out of parents’ private and deeply personal decisions about how to raise their children, especially when she is abundantly and demonstrably incompetent even to speak on this topic, let alone serve in a professional capacity.

    I actually would prefer that she did get involved in politics. Let her spew her inane ideas and propose her discredited policy prescriptions in the open air and light of day, where they can be discussed, assessed and rejected on their own meager merits.

    Do NOT lurk in examination rooms, interrogating patients, intimidating parents, and spreading grossly irresponsible misinformation, all under cover of lab-coated pseudo-professionalism lending a mantle of unearned credibility.

    How dare you, Doc, how DARE you?!

  26. First Dr Rivers is an idiot.

    She admits she knows absolutely nothing about guns but she wants to discuss it with her patients.

    But using CDC gun studies as your facts fails to mention that Republican Congressmen gut all funding for accidental shooting studies. Almost all studies, whether from Cato or Bloomberg use newspaper accounts, which hardly accurate.

    • If you study on what the “D” in CDC stands for, it becomes clear that ALL funding for firearms research should be removed from them. Further, if you were around at the time, you’ll recall the main reason for that was that, as usual, the CDC was funding studies which came to the conclusions which the CDC told them to. Massive waste and agenda support with zero science but bunches of good ol’ boys. If Republicans get the credit for killing that, remind me to vote for them.

      And I see the graph just fine, Windows 7, IE.

    • But using CDC gun studies as your facts fails to mention that Republican Congressmen gut all funding for accidental shooting studies.

      Why should the federal government spend taxpayer money to fund such studies? Are there no private organizations that can solicit private-sector funding for such studies (if such studies are even needed in the first place)?

  27. I don’t know anything about medicine, but I’m really passionate about its practice, so people really should listen when I give medical advice.

    Well, Dr Rivers, what makes you think your version sounds any less stupid?

  28. I don’t think “See above; since you firmly (even if mistakenly) believe that asking about guns in the home is relevant to the patient’s medical care or safety, or the safety of others then yes you can ask. Again, read the law before you start pontificating.” was supposed to be in italics.

    I also could not see the graph.

  29. As a mental health provider I personally and professionally believe that the only time questions about firearms should be necessary is if there is a potential risk for suicidal or homicidal ideations.

    • And aspirin, alcohol, iron pills, ovens, kitchen knives, sharp utensils, automobiles, access to high locations, toasters, showers, ropes or belts… etc?

      Give me a break, if there is suicidal ideation or planning then the patient needs to be locked up until they can be medicated and given therapy to overcome their depression. There is more than 1 option that these patients have, and saying “guns” just feeds in to the popular hype.

      Alternatively we can decide that as a free country some people have a right to choose their own destiny and if, say, the patient has a terminal debilitating disease that will only lead to a painful, demoralizing, descent into death then that person has a right to choose an alternate exit plan.

  30. I hate to break it to some idealistic feminists, but no one has to teach most boys to be interested in guns. Or fire. Or explosions. Or hijinks of all sorts which could potentially lead to self mutilation, self immolation, or at least a bruise.

    That’s just the residual of the ancient warrior.

    So you better address it head on.

    BTW, I didn’t have to teach my little girl to be interested in baby dolls. She loves babies and she loves pretending to take care of them. I tried to get her interested in tanks, cars, and Army men, but her response is akin to, “meh”.

    • “no one has to teach most boys to be interested in guns. Or fire. Or explosions. Or hijinks of all sorts which could potentially lead to self mutilation, self immolation, or at least a bruise.”

      It is interesting to me how we have allowed them to set the narrative that “interest” or even “proficiency” in these things lead to destruction, injury and death.

      Guns are used to hunt – to procure nourishment. Guns are also used for protection from dangerous animals (including humans). Guns are used to enhance civilization by being a tool to fight oppression.

      Fire is used to cook meat and boil water. No steam engine without fire. The warmth provided by fire allowed us to survive in regions too cold to populate without it. Fire is also used to produce electricity (back to boiling water, but different end use).

      Explosions run our automobiles and excavate roadbeds. Explosions are also used to extract minerals for nutrition and ores for basic raw metals.

      All of the things that males sure seem to be naturally attracted to are the very things that build civilization. For every statement “guns are icky,” there is at least one “but guns are helpful.”

      Think for just a moment where we’d be technologically without guns, fire and explosions. The “New Age” can claim some inferiority with “maleness” if they want, but without it, they’d still be living in burrows eating insects.

      Man, we need to stop letting them set the language of every debate. They are just wrong.

      • What I find interesting is that so many people believe these interests in gender-specific toys or hobbies are rooted in culture and not biology.

  31. In my profession (engineering), we can lose our license if we practice outside of our areas of expertise. I guess doctors aren’t held to as high a standard…..

  32. I could not provide safety tips on how to secure a gun to keep your child safe. I could not teach you how to talk to your child about firearm safety.

    Well, doc: since you started your blog post with an anecdote in which you admit that you utterly failed to “provide safety tips” to your own son, and failed to teach him firearm safety before he actually knew about putting his booger hook on the bang switch, perhaps you should mind your own household first?

    Also: you’d be far more productive giving tips on how not o get in automobile accidents, and inquiring about your patients status as swimming pool owners.

  33. I hope she taught her son how to wipe his a$$ properly, wash his hands afterwards thoroughly, and BEFORE brushing his teeth properly…if not, she’s more than “utterly incompetent” as a Mother and he should probably be taken from her by Social Services.

    For those who can see Bruce Kraft’s Charts, compare those numbers and rising trend over the past ten years of so to the CDC’s “Prescription Drug Overdose in the United States: Fact Sheet” on this webpage:

    then ask yourself, where the greater danger lies.

    • Back in the 90’s, when groups of MD’s really started shooting off their mouths about guns and the “epidemic” of gun violence (as tho violence were a disease and guns were the transmission vector), we RKBA types started looking into how many deaths were caused by medical professionals (especially MD’s) in what was then termed “medical misadventure.”

      The number of dead people in the mid-90’s from “medical misadventure” ran about 160K people per year, a staggering number of people who die at the hands of doctors.

      My mother was one such person, killed by doctors who didn’t talk to each other and prescribed counter-indicated batteries of meds. They might have been competent in their own little specialty, but they were utterly incompetent in the “big picture” of the patient’s condition.

      • I absolutely agree, DG. I was trying to find a reputable study to reference, but only came up with the CDC “Fact Sheet”. However, there are a growing number of MDs and reputable studies raising severe concerns about the fact that prescription medications beyond those easily abused (pain killers, sedatives, etc), medical incompetence, a focus on treating symptoms, not causes, of disease and dietary factors are making Americans sick and killing them in unprecedented numbers far more than any kind of gun-involved death.

        We had the same experience with my Mother by Doctors in a Network where they could see everything prescribed for her, yet each one clung to his/her own regimen, ignoring (studiously refusing to question) the effects of the entire range of medications. She spent two and a half years getting worse and worse, suffering terribly until she finally, mercifully, died of congestive heart failure (so they said). Among my Parent’s friend we saw the same type of thing repeatedly. Lots of prescription drugs and no healing or improvement, but a relentless deterioration to death.

        Sorry, MDs who read TTAG regularly, I know there are enlightened MD’s out there, but the mainstream has severe problems and needs to revise its thinking and practices.

  34. Dr. Kristie J. Rivers, MD, may be contacted at PHOENIX PHYSICIANS, 1501 NW 49th St Suite 140, Ft.Lauderdale, FL 33309. If anyone lives in that area, they may want to take her medical group a copy of the “FIREARMS SAFETY COUNSELING REPRESENTATION: PHYSICIAN QUALIFICATIONS AND LIABILITY” form (provided above). Tell them you are considering using them as your primary care physician’s group, and you would very much like their “gun safety expert” – Dr. Rivers – to fill out the form.

    Then prepare to be accused of stalking or being mean …

  35. I’m a nationally certified pistol and rifle instructor. I’m certified as an instructor by the Massachusetts State Police, so I can train certify individuals who are seeking their Massachusetts LTCs. I’m also NRA certified as a Range Safety Officer and as a Chief Range Safety Officer. I hold four state carry licenses.

    With that background, I think I should be able to teach pediatric surgery.

  36. It sounds like she’d do more good for her patients if she asked if they had a swimming pool or lived near a body of water – or ever went to the beach – and knew how to swim.

    • “It sounds like she’d do more good for her patients if”

      She quit practicing medicine completely.

      A doc above mentioned evidence based medicine. Her comments suggest she missed that class in med school.

  37. So I wonder what she would say to her fellow physicians who conceal carry. I read that quite a few practice this. The same holds true for the liberal leftist actors and government officials who will hypocritically condemn the NRA and gun-rights advocates while being issued CCWs basically free because they’re very important and much smarter than the average sheeple. Or they have body guards who either open carry or conceal carry. Wonderful honesty on their part. As if we’re supposed to believe all or most of what they say without questioning their doublespeak and hypocrisy. Often times many professionals appear to be intelligent, but their arrogance clouds up their common sense that they even believe the BS they spew. Most of the people who love guns that I’ve seen online like Tom from Weapons Educaton are anything but the stereotypes that the liberals would have us believe. Heck, even the NRA puts out educational videos with very sharp NRA representatives who intelligently analyze issues, firearms, etc. A former SWAT firearms instructor told me that most LEOs hope that citizens properly know and understand how to protect themselves and their families from potential threats. It’s our responsibility to protect ourselves and our families from potential threats.

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