10 Leading causes of death (courtesy medicalnewstoday.com)
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First and foremost, my heart goes out to the families of victims of gun violence. I am in no way trying to belittle their deaths. That said, I notice something and I am sure you do as well. Every time we have a shooting in the U.S. . . .

Celebrities, politicians and crusading Moms scream for gun control in the mainstream media and on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and various other outlets. They call for an end of gun violence through what they call “common sense measures.” Gun control.

In their quest to enact legislation restricting or removing Americans’ gun rights, gun control advocates cite “gun violence” statistics, sometimes accurately, mostly inaccurately. They trumpet the number of “gun deaths” per day, month and year. They conflate teenage gangbangers’ firearms-related death with negligent discharges(one a week!) and suicides.

Regardless of gun control advocates’ deceitful and misleading tactics, I think any rational person would agree that we should do what we can to reduce the injury and death toll related to firearms. But those who cherish their gun rights do something that those who seek to degrade and destroy them do not: they see firearms-related injuries and fatalities in perspective.

Americans who understand the [clear] meaning of the Second Amendment see regrettable, tragic and sometimes horrific firearms-related injury and death as the price that free citizens must pay to keep a tyrannical government at bay. Equally important, they see it against a backdrop of other types of injury and death.

The Center for Disease Control reports that about the 480k Americans die each year from illness related to tobacco products. That’s 1,315 people a day, more than ten times as many as from firearms.

Where is the call for banning tobacco? Where are the celebrities on this is issue? When I ask my anti-gun rights friends about this issue they say, “well it’s their choice to smoke.” So what about the estimated 41k people who do not choose to smoke but die from secondhand smoke. These are innocent people. Where is the outcry for them?

Consider that again: 1,315 Americans die per day from smoking-related illness, vs. 104 a day from firearm-related injuries. Never mind the fact that there is no Constitutional protection for the ingestion of tobacco products, while the right to keep and bear arms is specifically exempted from government “infringement” (i.e. regulation.

If gun control advocates are so worried about saving innocent lives from “unnecessary” dangers, they’d focus their attention on second hand smoke, drunk driving and one of the biggest killers of all: medical malpractice.

In the post-Parkland hue and cry for gun control, a central fact is missing: people die all the time; from all sorts of diseases, accidents, regrettable choices and criminal acts.

While we should do what we can to reduce firearms-related injuries and deaths, these actions should be bounded by an understanding that restricting or eliminating civilian firearms ownership invokes the law of unintended consequences.

You don’t have to be a native American, Holocaust victim or defenseless child listening to the sound of your classmates being murdered to know that disarming Americans doesn’t prevent wholesale injury and death. It invites it.

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  1. Notice they don’t include abortions…600,000+ in the USA every year.
    Would be leading cause of death. Conveniently call it a mass of cells.
    If we found them on another planet they would call it LIFE.
    BTW…I am pro 2A and pro-choice. Just not a huge hypocrite.

    • Abortion is the leading cause of death. That being said the establishments hatred of God and guns goes back to the fact that it reminds them that “we the people” are in charge and not rich socialist coastal elites. Buy a membership for a friend to the NRA. I will not shop at the corrupt businesses that dropped the NRA and we can hurt them. Just look at the NFL this year.

    • Mix the two to squeeze in the whole story.

      F all the stupid satanic MFs in “gov’t” selling this sh_t worldwide.

    • The opioid “crisis” myth is another campaign to destroy liberty. I’ve never seen a gun run out and shoot people on their own. Someone has to pull the trigger. Drugs can’t run and jump down people’s throats or inject themselves either. Someone has to WANT to swallow or inject. That is clearly as much an individual choice as anything else.

      But when the gun prohibitionists get their way, people are less able to defend themselves. When the drug warriors get their way, people die from the “enforcement” and many die at their own hands because they can’t live in excruciating pain.

      Being “for” one right, and against others is hypocritical at best.

      • The opiod “crisis”, is far more mythological than that. The overwhelming majority of deaths are either accidental overdose (widely varying purity of street drugs), or the new reality, overdose because the heroin was laced with fentynal – that’s it.

        The bottom line is we can stop these deaths immediately by simply re-legalizing heroin, or at least make scrip opioids available OTC. People are going to be addicts, prohibition has never worked, how many times do we have to prove this?

        Unlike alcohol, one can be an opioid addict for decades with inconsequential damage to the body – when they decide to quit, they’re essentially as good as they can be for that age. What runs people down the drain, is the cost of illicit drugs. Heroin, oxy, whatever, they’re all incredibly cheap, and people could get their buzz on for the price of a six-pack.

      • You show your ignorance of the opioid issue. The problem does not revolve around worthless druggies choosing to get high and OD’ing.

        The issue is that opioids were pushed by the drug companies as a cure-all for every possible chronic pain without bothering to deal with the side effects, specifically dependency. Doctors got their patients hooked and when they got cut off they would obtain it illegally. Many eventually moved to heroin as is offers a similar effect at a lower cost (and significantly higher risk).

        Meanwhile, big pharma is funneling millions of pills into small pharmacies who couldn’t have any legitimate use for the quantities they received. It draws many parallels to tobacco.

        • Hokey smokes, I never thought of that

          Unless you’re retarded, that’s common knowledge and isn’t worth stating. Sort of… When there aren’t abject ‘tards in the discussion.

          Opiods work. Period, full stop. What happens when people in pain are cut off from their legal supply is moron-level predictable.

        • Opiods cause death, guns knives and other implements do not.

          Guns don’t make you addicted, make you lose your job, your health, create massive depression. Opioids do. They supply a reason for people killing themselves and a means to do so.

          It is a much much bigger issue than guns

  2. Should we as gun owners really be calling for any action on tobacco?

    Look before we go demanding action we better realize:
    1. We will be pissing off a lot of our own people.
    2. Perhaps we ought not actively seek to annoy a fairly sizable chunk of the population (have you ever seen a gas station that doesn’t sell smokes? I haven’t) who makes a natural allies because both sides tend to dislike crusading morons.

    • I am not calling for a ban on cigarettes. I am not a smoker and personally think the market for them will continue to decline.

      I had no intention of annoying anyone, if facts like theses and opinions like this annoy you the internet might not be the best place for you.

    • It’s the hypocrisy that’s being called out, not the lack of regulations.
      Hypocrisy is described as “the practice of claiming to have moral standards or beliefs to which one’s own behavior does not conform; pretense.”
      You know, like claiming guns should be banned because innocent people are killed by them (illegally), but at the same time claiming Planned Parenthood performs a great service to society by killing innocent people.
      Or ignoring the harm tobacco does, while focusing on the lessor amount of harm caused by guns. (Not to mention that guns are used far, far more times in peaceful, legal pursuits with no damage to anyone, than tobacco is used without causing harm to anyone. Tobacco being one of the extremely few products that, when used as directed, causes death.)
      Am I saying tobacco should be more heavily regulated? No, even though I recognize the harm it causes to society. I do think, though, that we should make sure that everyone understands the danger done to society by tobacco. And alcohol. And religion. And, yes, even guns. An informed society is, IMHO, far better able to last a long time than an uninformed one.

  3. It isn’t about the deaths. It’s about the agency.

    They object, not to someone getting killed, but to anyone knowingly grasping the power to influence their own life. People die in cars, but that’s not what they’re *for*. (And, look! Why do you need a car? Take transit, which we’ll decide what’s available, and where you *need* to go. Apparently, it’s not your life. No agency for you!)

    A defensive firearm is so you can have a say what happens to you after all the arguing and angling has failed. A defensive arm is an equalizer – agency in a gizmo, so a child, a tiny woman, someone old, or injured, or slow, can still have a say about what happens to them, when thugs n goblins are around. A defensive firearm is a bet that net, net you’ll do the right thing with that power, only if you need to.

    Banning all arms is not a bet, but a declaration that people in general can’t be trusted with that kind of agency. Do you really want to be “protected” by people who think so little of you?

    They think you’re stupid, and not worth protecting. They don’t want you having a say, even just to choose to not get killed yourself, right now, even less choosing to have a say.

    It’s not about people dying. They hate the agency. They hate the choice, and choosing to have a choice. They don’t want to do what they can, to live. They hate you if you choose to do what you can, because it reminds them of what they did not. And that you are not beholden to them.

    “Banning” guns is about people having agency at all. You can tell because they won’t talk about more or fewer dying, who ends up dead, or doing what.

    “I think we ought to stop whack-jobs like school shooter guy; one way to do that is allowing better tools to people like the kids who died saving their friends. Another would be keeping whack-job guy from ever getting started.”

    “All guns are the same, but how they’re used is not. How about we pay attention to that a little?”

    • The core principle of Liberalism/Progressivism is distrust. They distrust the common man to live his life without being “guided” by rules set for him by people who are smarter and more morally pure.

      The result of this increased control is that we are far less free today than at any point in our history. We pay far higher taxes, have less control over what we can do with our private property, and we have our speech censored in ways that would have been unimaginable in the past. We don’t live in the Country I believe our Founders meant us to have, and we now have at least a plurality of the citizenry that is completely ignorant of our founding principles.

      I agree with you that the current jihad against the 2nd Amendment has nothing to do with guns – it’s all about control. It’s about Liberals sticking it in the eye of the other part of the Country who they detest and distrust. Since Liberals believe we are only good if the government forces us to be good, they can’t imagine that the 2nd Amendment actually means to preserve the right of the common man to threaten revolt against the government as a way of keeping it from tending towards tyranny.

      Make no mistake, what is happening today is the prelude to a push for widespread confiscation of almost all classes of guns. When an “assault weapons” ban has no effect on crime – as happened with the ’94 ban – the push will be on to ban handguns. When crimes committed with guns continues, they’ll ban civilian ownership of all guns. Liberals have a very good chance of making this happen over the next 10-20 years.

      Demographics aren’t on our side. We now have several generations of voters who have been subjected to left wing indoctrination in our schools and an influx of immigrants who don’t come here because they believe in our founding principles, they just want the economic advantage of living here. These immigrants (who eventually become voters) don’t assimilate the way previous immigrants did because they don’t have to. The result is that this Country is moving inexorably to the left.

      It’s a pretty depressing prospect.

  4. 2014, CDC reported that death from shootings were cause 101. Which is totally meaningless because….

    The anti-gun crowd consists of two constituencies: statist/liberal/leftist/Demoncrat autocratic tyrants, and children (regardless of chronological age). The common thread is that both groups fear an independent, self-responsible population demographic. In addition, the children fear bad things coming into their lives. They DO NOT concern themselves with gangs, drive-bys, liquor store stick-ups, or any other crime committed using a gun in places “good” children do not go. (Does anyone pickup on the fact that most of the complaining children are “white”; and most of the school shootings do not occur in “duh ‘hood”?)

    Children cannot reason. Facts and figures are as irrelevant as the number of molecules in the universe. Children expect safe spaces to be inviolate (because that is how children “reason”). Giving children statistics about how safe they actually are does nothing to erase their fear that one day, somehow, something bad will happen because of a crazed individual who is encouraged by the NRA to use a gun to settle a dispute.

    We are in a civil war of the second magnitude (shooting is the first magnitude), a war for the political future of the country. There is no middle ground an longer.

  5. I am just always confused to the logic that many otherwise intelligent people seem to be ok with when it comes to this issue. It seems as though they check their brain at the door and enter. No one wants to see these tragedies occur but unfortunately there is and will always be an element of “evil” out there.

    All we can do as responsible people is to try our best to defend and prevent this where possible. It seems that the people that always scream for change and control are the ones that can never offer any useful or workable advice to make it better. They truly believe that restricting or eliminating an object will solve all the world’s ills and make a rainbow come out.

    I just do not understand that thought process. It’s frustrating to see everyday and it only seems to get worse with every event that occurs. When in fact these tragedies pale in comparison to other statistics. It’s just mind boggling that everything else is ignored.

  6. Perspective.

    I agree it’s *all* about perspective.

    For example, there was a little political earthquake in California this weekend kinda buried in the news that *directly* impacts we POTG.

    What new, you ask?

    Well, it’s the news that the California state Democratic Party opted not to endorse Diane Feinstein as she prepares to start campaigning to defend her seat in the 2018 midterms.

    That’s right, DiFi isn’t Leftist *enough* for California Democrats, if at all possible.

    Read *all* about it, it looks like they want known gun rights (dis)respecter Kevin de León to carry their torch :

    “Delegates to the state party convention instead favored progressive state Senate leader Kevin de León, over Feinstein by a 54% to 37% margin, according to results, which were announced early Sunday. And while neither candidate reached the 60% threshold required to receive the party endorsement outright for 2018, de Leon’s camp claimed it as a profound victory.

    “The outcome of today’s endorsement vote is an astounding rejection of politics as usual, and it boosts our campaign’s momentum as we all stand shoulder-to-shoulder against a complacent status quo,” de León said in a prepared statement, quoted by Politico. “California Democrats are hungry for new leadership that will fight for California values from the front lines, not equivocate on the sidelines.”


    If you think we had it bad for gun rights under DiFi, just *wait* for Kev…

    • Feinstein has lost the California Democratic Party endorsement before. She gets reelected because the party is far to the left of the majority of California voters. What’s scary is who will replace her since she’s 84 and can’t last much longer. Will another moderate (California definition) come out of the woodwork to defeat the party’s choice?

      • Except that this time, there’s someone who is even further left than Feinstein.
        We make fun of her because of the absolutely ridiculous stuff she’s been saying lately, wondering how someone that far to the left could possibly retain a position of authority in any political party short of outright nazism, and then the CA Democratic Party shows us just how far left they can go. To them, Feinstein is too moderate.
        The schools in CA have just proven that, indeed, far too many children are being left behind.

  7. In the listing of causes that exceed by orders of magnitude deaths from so-called gun violence, the statement that, ‘… one of the biggest killers of all: medical malpractice.’, must be called out.

    Not because it is correct or incorrect. Rather simply that we do not know. The numbers declared by scholarly studies, including that from Johns Hopkins and the Institute of Medicine are extrapolations. These estimates now enjoy a status of fact by repetition, both in medical journals and echo by the lay press.

    However, even a brief, cursory investigation of the literature list wildly differing estimates. This use of uncertain statistics calls into question what is otherwise a useful post on comparative estimates of risk that are potentially valuable for purposes of public policy debate.

    • As a physician I agree with your comments. “Medical Malpractice” to me and other docs implies doctor errors and shoddy surgeries. While these undoubtably happen, I think the more accurate statement would be “Medicsl Errors” which implicate the entire health system. The Institute of Medicine estimates that as a many as 100,000 deaths a year could be prevented by avoidance of errors in the medical industry. Certainly they exceed the gun death rate by a lot.

      Another non-related comment about gun deaths. Even the biased Washington Post admits that the gun violence toll is substantially less since the 70’s and 80’s https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2015/12/03/weve-had-a-massive-decline-in-gun-violence-in-the-united-states-heres-why/?utm_term=.5105ad4ca06d.
      So the antis talk out of both sides of their mouth-admitting they the gun and violent crime has fallen since mandatory minimums and other law enforcement measures at the same time decrying guns and gun owners.

      • Just to clarify-my avatar is Clint Eastwood in 1968’s “Where Eagles Dare” not some SS nazi trooper!

        • Yes, I got it … saw the movie! Nice avatar.
          Thanks for your reply. Since you have posted a progressive reference, WAPO, I feel less guilty posting one from Snopes as in this case they appear to have done their do diligence on the subject. The medical error estimates (I agree with this more accurate term and the one used in most studies on the subject) span a disparate range to leave me uncertain on the validity of most. For Snopes’ take see http://bit.ly/2Fy6v7w subtitled ‘No, a study didn’t prove doctors are more deadly than guns.’ My own sense of this, also from a physician’s experience, is closer to the short essay, ‘Medical errors are not the third leading cause of death’ found here http://bit.ly/2EU2rl2

  8. Meh…the leftard bunch have ramped it up because TRUMP. THIS BS is just a manifestation of Donnie Derangement Syndrome😩😖😧

  9. – Thomas Jefferson, Virginia Constitution, Draft 1, 1776
    “I prefer dangerous freedom over peaceful slavery.”

    “Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience. They may be more likely to go to Heaven yet at the same time likelier to make a Hell of earth. This very kindness stings with intolerable insult. To be “cured” against one’s will and cured of states which we may not regard as disease is to be put on a level of those who have not yet reached the age of reason or those who never will; to be classed with infants, imbeciles, and domestic animals.”
    ― C.S. Lewis, God in the Dock: Essays on Theology (Making of Modern Theology)

  10. Here’s a very simple concept that I learned as a child interacting with groups of people in school. It seems that there is a segment of the population that doesn’t understand the following:

    Let’s pretend “X” is a single object that can be used to inflict harm to an average person. And the below scenarios are devoid of religious or political diversity. Let’s just go with standard Christian upbringing to set the stage for a “good” person, since this happens to be stemming from a seemingly “US” problem.

    Scenario 1
    Introduce X to a group of mentally unstable / violent people. What happens? The result is inevitable bloodshed because of a lack of morals coupled with the basest instincts of “survival of the fittest” and greed are the law of the land.

    Scenario 2
    Introduce X to a group of educated and moral people. What happens? Nothing negative. No violence due to the generally accepted social contract of “treat others as you would like to be treated” and if there are disagreements, they are civil.

    Scenario 3
    Introduce X to a group that includes a mix of two categories above, and the result is there may or may not be bloodshed based on the ratio of the two groups. If the “good” people outnumber the “bad”, well the likely hood of violence is lower and vice versa.


    Intelligent people understand that you can’t force the hearts and minds of people to be morally upstanding citizens. That is an individual choice all people make as they are growing up. Hence why parenting and teaching your children right from wrong is paramount.

    What is right and what is wrong anyway? What is good and bad? Well it’s all based on what is socially acceptable performance and behavior. Well, thanks to progressives, that behavior doesn’t exist anymore. Apparently you can do whatever you want and it’s OK.

    I can’t even imagine what it must be like to be a kid and psychologically dealing with “everyone is a winner” BS. How frustrating that must be to everyone that is “above average”. And it’s a huge disservice to anyone “below average” and setting them up for failure.

    There is a correlation between all these young mass shooters and the sudden surprise realization that they are “below average”. And it’s unfortunate that it has to be a surprise, but that’s what happens in the “everyone is special and can be anything” lie progressives have created.

    Oh well, reap what you sow progressives. My only advice to all the good people in the world: home school or send your kids to private school. Public schools are simply progressive garbage and a death trap.

    • Not quite.

      In scenario 3, there will be bloodshed. Either the “good” people will use X to defend themselves against the “bad” drawing their blood in the process or the “bad” will victimize the “good” drawing their blood. In the first case, the amount of blood spilled will depend on the ratio of “good” to “bad”. The more “bad”, the more blood that has to be spilled to defeat them. In the second case, the amount of “good” blood spilled will increase as the “bad” realize no one will stop them.

      Progressives don’t believe it’s ok to do whatever you want. They have their agenda and are willing to use the power of the state to impose it on everyone. In that respect, they are similar to right wing statists. The only differences between them are the details of their respective agendas. The C. S. Lewis quote above applies to both the left and the right wing.

      • These kids, like the buzzcut and the one who was so disrespectful to Rubio, etc., need to have their boogieman, whether it’s the NRA, President Trump, conservatives, THE GUN, whatever. The horrific nature of the incident and the fact that these kids survived it and some of their classmates did not, certainly gives them the right to be heard. But it doesn’t mean they know what the hell they’re talking about, or that they have the answers, or that they don’t need to follow basic societal rules of respect and polite discourse. These kids are right about one thing: “thoughts and prayers” is a lazy person’s response and has become a trite, worn-out cliche (much like “trite, worn-out cliche.”) Also trite and worn-out: #this and #that. Instead of blaming the NRA, Trump, conservatives and/or THE GUN, what all of these kids need to ask themselves is: “why do my peers keep shooting at me?”

    • A corollary that is glossed over by the left is that the drug epidemic we are now seeing (after fifty years of a “War on Drugs”) has been building up as a direct result to the left’s “everyone is wonderful” campaign.
      Growing up indoctrinated with the idea that society will always make sure you get a fair chance regardless of your abilities makes for a horrible realization that reality just doesn’t work that way.
      Drugs aren’t called an escape from reality for nothing.
      When the “reality” that our liberal schools, from pre-K to University, is far different from the reality of the real world, many long for an escape they used to get from the approving hugs of teachers who made sure everything was made “all right.” Drugs fill that need.
      Yes, I understand the mistakes made by our all-knowing medical industry, who hooked thousands on opioids, then cut them off cold turkey. But they aren’t even a large minority of recreational drug users. Most of them simply want a respite from reality. They long to go back to the days when they were special. When it felt good to be alive.
      It’s a real shame we don’t teach our children that life isn’t fair.

  11. Suicide is #10, and they always pad their “gun violence” numbers with the 20000 suicides by gun every year, but you could jump off a bridge, step out in front of a bus or train, or get rope to hang yourself a lot easier than getting a gun.

  12. My question is, “Where were all of these Democrats calling for gun control when the left wing crazy shot up Republican Congressmen at a baseball practice this past summer?” Where was the outrage then? Or when that muslim got behind the wheel of a truck and ran over and killed 8 people in New York. Where were the celebrities and leftists then, and why were they not calling for banning of trucks? Do I want schools protected, absolutely. However, banning ARs and trashing the NRA is not going to accomplish that objective.

  13. The 41K of secondhand smoke deaths is pure anti-tobacco bullsheet and toal junk science.

    I don’t smoke and don”t have skin in that game but SHS was just a lie perpetrated by a set of people who believe that the ends justifies the means and truth matters not.

    Gun owners are now the target of the Left’s demonization and it’s quickly metastasizing and growing. It’s now coming from multiple directions (MFM, congress, coward corporate offices, universities, and that fount of wisdom….Tide pod-eating teenagers).

    It’s gonna get real ugly and I hate playing defense.

    • Thanks for clearing that up. I guess the piles scientest, doctors and staticians could have saved a lot of time and money and just asked you.

      • I don’t know what “piles scientests” are, maybe part of that 98% that agree humans are causing climate change, but I agree with Pat.

  14. Chris, gun violence is nearly 2/3 suicide. The rate of that does not change when you remove guns as the Australians found out doing more in depth peer reviewed studies than just counting gun suicide rates. overall suicides there id not change at all even with rapid and very broad reduction in gun access.

    And if lethal violence includes gun suicide, than it includes ALL suicide, and than the US lethal violence of ALL suicide + ALL homicide is higher in Japan, S. Korea and the US is right in the median of highly developed democracies.

    In the US study after study, in dozens of US jurisdictions show that 80% to 90% gun, knife, whatever agency of murder is criminal on criminal,l and the perpetration AND victimization risk factor is being a criminal not currently imprisoned.

    CDC needs to rank CRIMINAL VIOLENCE by mechanism like guns separately and suicide by all means separately.

    Then people will realize why US murder fell 65% as US incarceration rates increased, and understand that the cause of lethal criminal gun violence is criminals on the street

    • Thanks for the info. I used the most common numbers used by the Antis. Even with their manipulated numbers they are still being very hypocritical by not addressing something that kills many more people.

  15. I’d have to disagree, people do focus on the smoking issue.

    In the 80’s you could smoke anywhere. Even in public buildings. Through the 90’s smoking at the workplace became forbidden. Over 10 years ago MN (and i’m Sure several other states) banned smoking in restaurants & bars.

    Now there’s talk of “banning smoking in Private vehicles when children are present “.

    Please note, i’m Very strongly pro-gun, but this track is a non-starter.

    • Just crossed the state line (Tennessee to Kentucky) to eat at a catfish joint, it was pretty jarring to walk in the front door to a room full of people smoking cigs in the restaurant. That’s from a guy who grew up watching people put their cigars out in their plate after they finished eating at the restaurant. That’s a pretty major cultural shift.
      The catfish was incredible, though.

    • I understand the anti smoking groups have a made a large impact in the market by education the public. My point is that the current response is disproportionate. If the deaths are the problem with guns which cause the anti gun rallies why don’t we have anti smoking rallies everyday?

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