On the same day, April 21, we had two misleading letters on assaults and deaths caused by knives, cars and hammers. Now, the facts.
The figures provided by Thomas Nitcher are incomplete or deliberately misleading. Here are the facts from the 2011 FBI statistics: 496 deaths from clubs, hammers, baseball bats, brass knuckles, etc.; 679 deaths (homicides) caused by rifles and shotguns, and 6,220 caused by handguns! So, only seven percent of deaths from all “blunt” instruments vs. 93 percent from all firearms. Yet, outside of licensed gun dealers, any age may purchase a “long gun” from private individuals, gun shows, etc. More than 100,000 people were shot in 2010, resulting in over 31,000 deaths, including nearly 19,000 suicides. Almost 16,000 children and teens were injured by firearms. No testing, no training.
As to vehicles, the 2010 fatality rate was at an all-time low since records have been kept. We test and license drivers, place restriction on when you can drive, enforce drunk/drug driving laws, mandate airbags, speed limits, etc. Very few vehicles are used as weapons in homicides. That’s why they are described as “accidents.”
Now, Starla Sprague’s “knife phobia”: Knives were involved in 1,694 homicides (24 percent) compared to firearms. And, I submit to her that the 14 people stabbed/slashed with a knife in Texas (none fatal), it would have been much worse if a rifle or handgun had been used.
So, several of the amendments to the Constitution have been limited by the Supreme Court, including the Second. It’s more than time to limit firearms.