170 Comments on “How many Americans have died from handgun violence since Newtown?”

  1. knuckleheadedliberal says:

    And how many have been shot and wounded but not killed?

    How many of the dead or wounded have been police officers?

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  2. Rancid Crabtree says:

    Go to the source it doesn’t differentiate police shooting bad guys suicide accidental gangs or anything else. Garbage data in garbage data out. And it doesn’t appear to be handgun deaths but gun deaths. How many were from legally owned guns used by their owners? That is the true issue. Anything else is a crime and already illegal.

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  3. Rancid Crabtree says:

    Go to the source it doesn’t differentiate police shooting bad guys suicide accidental gangs or anything else. Garbage data in garbage data out. And it doesn’t appear to be handgun deaths but gun deaths. How many were from legally owned guns used by their owners? That is the true issue. Anything else is a crime and already illegal.

    Mrs R

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  4. The Original Larry says:

    So, despite all the protestations that this “debate” isn’t about banning all guns, we now segue from “assault rifles” and “high capacity magazines” to hand guns. What’s next? Check some of the recently proposed legislation and you will find firearms with unarguable sporting uses included. This isn’t paranoia; it’s the recognition that reality doesn’t match liberal rhetoric.

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  5. The Original Larry says:

    Brian,
    If you’re going to shill for banning guns (and the Governor), at least get some legit data for back-up. I went to your source and clicked on 3 of the “victim” icons. I found a possible hunting accident, an outright accident and an “apparent” homicide and only in the accidental shooting was the firearm positively identified as a handgun. Why try to mislead people into thinking that 643 people were murdered with handguns when it isn’t true?

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  6. Brian Mann says:

    The Original Larry –

    The data is there for people to look at. That’s the kind of information people need to make informed decisions.

    As for shilling, nope. Just hosting a conversation based on data.

    For what it’s worth, I’ve been a firearm owner my entire life, an occasional hunter, my land is used by several hunters each deer and turkey season.

    The fiction — and it is a scurrilous, ludicrous fiction — that an informed debate about gun violence in America must equate to a total gun ban is (I know, I’m repeating myself) a scurrilous, ludicrous fiction.

    People are responding to a legitimate moral and practical problem in the US.

    People are dying. Children are dying. That warrants a serious, informed conversation.

    I’m glad to help facilitate it.

    –Brian, NCPR

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  7. The Original Larry says:

    Brian,
    I agree with most of what you’re saying but I can’t help but question your sincerity. Saying that 643 people died from “handgun violence” is hardly facilitating a serious, informed discussion when a cursory examination of the data you quote shows it to be incomplete and misleading. Slate used the phrase “killed by guns”; you call it “handgun violence”. In fact, Slate qualifies their “data” by explaining that it is anecdotal and incomplete. You didn’t mention that. What’s a person to think?

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  8. Paul says:

    “How many were from legally owned guns used by their owners?”

    A gun owner can commit a crime with his or her legally purchased gun. One example that comes to mind is the movie theater shooting in Colorado last year.

    Maybe I am missing your point?

    KLH we know that there were two firemen killed and two wounded in Webster. Those were purchased illegally by falsifying the documents the buyer had to fill out when they bought them. The shooter could not legally have a gun. If he filled out the form he would have had to have note that he killed his grandmother by bashing her with a hammer! If you check YES in the bashing anyone to death with a hammer box that requires you to fill out additional paperwork.

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  9. The Original Larry says:

    Listening to gun-control advocates (Cuomo, Biden, Giffords, Mann, et al.) identify themselves as “life-long gun owners” reminds me of the “some of my best friends are colored folks” crowd of years ago. Not very convincing in either case.

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  10. JDM says:

    643 deaths from guns since Dec 19th.

    20,460 abortions since Dec 19th.

    I wonder if the governor will ban abortions?

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  11. Paul says:

    Brain of course you could also facilitate the discussion by telling us what our chances are of being involved in a handgun death (or whatever) since that incident. But it wouldn’t be very provocative. It looks like it is a 0.000214333% chance here in the US since that shooting. I only say that since the real crux of the issue is what are our chances of being killed or injured, or the chances of our children being killed or injured. That is what drives people to change their behavior. Right? It is sad but we don’t care that much about what happens to others if it doesn’t really affect us much. This Newtown shooting only affected me because I heard about it in the media. Columbine affected me more since it was right down the road from where I lived in Denver. I support some new gun restrictions but these numbers really have nothing to do with it.

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  12. knuckleheadedliberal says:

    Larry, that is, as the phrase goes, a new low, even for you.

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  13. knuckleheadedliberal says:

    Paul, of course you understand the flaw in your analysis. The real danger of being killed by a firearm varies depending on numerous factors. If you live in certain sections of Chicago or Baltimore your chances of being shot are very different than if you live in Saranac Lake. And the chances that you will be shot increase pretty steeply if you live in a home in which there are weapons.

    I feel pretty safe in my home even though I do keep a BB gun handy, but I know a surprising number of people who have been shot.

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  14. Brian Mann says:

    Original Larry and others –

    I understand the concept. 643 people have been killed since Newtown by firearms — the vast, overwhelming majority in acts of deliberate violence.

    You would rather talk about other things. Abortion, the bias of the media, people who hate the US Constitution, people who hate guns, etc.

    I politely decline.

    I want to keep facilitating a conversation about the fact that since Newtown sparked a conversation about gun violence and firearm safety, 643 people have died from guns.

    These are people, not abstractions or statistics. Since Newtown, roughly the population of Long Lake has been killed.

    That is the moral and practical issue at hand.

    –Brian, NCPR

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  15. The Original Larry says:

    Brian,
    I don’t want to talk about other things. I want to talk about people who say one thing and mean another. I want to talk about people who think misleading and anecdotal evidence “facilitates” a legitimate discussion. I want to talk about facts.

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  16. Paul says:

    When I was watching the Newtown coverage they interviewed a school superintendent from somewhere in southern California. He said that his district had about 20 shooting victims last year. What they found to be effective in curbing this kind of problem is the ludicrous idea floated by the NRA that schools improve their security. The tone of this debate is predictable and sad. The gun control ideas are called useless by the NRA types. The security ideas floated by the NRA are called stupid by the ones who said we should focus on gun control. Next the ACLU will attack any idea that tries to curb the freedom of the mentally ill. Same old same old. If you are a politician who is in it for the votes or a legacy to say that you did something, anything the “gun control” angle is the lowest hanging fruit. The media seems to be cooperating, most of what I have seen seems to focus on gun control issues. There are mentions of a “balanced approach”, but they are about as balanced as the fiscal cliff “solution” we just reached to save our 401Ks (till next month).

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  17. JDM says:

    Brian Mann:

    My point in showing the abortion statistic is that saving lives is not the goal.

    Banning guns is the goal.

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  18. The Original Larry says:

    KHL,
    As long as you disapprove I think I’m on the right track.

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  19. Paul says:

    KLH, not really a flaw. I understand that. I spend quite a bit of time in Baltimore, never felt less safe there than in Saranac Lake. I spend a lot of time there also. The reason is that there are places in Baltimore where I would not go. Actually I probably would but I have family there to steer me out of some neighborhoods! Those places, and what goes on there is the problem. That is why we have most of the 643. Hopefully after we spend loads and loads of political capital on some reasonable gun control measures that hopefully will have an effect on the 20 in Newtown then maybe we can re-focus on the problem. But again since most of us don’t live in Baltimore (or parts of Baltimore) or parts of Chicago we tend to look at the “flawed” analysis that affects most of the rest of us. Most of us are very very safe. You can’t ignore that fact.

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  20. Walker says:

    “It is sad but we don’t care that much about what happens to others if it doesn’t really affect us much.”

    If that were true, we wouldn’t be having this discussion.

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  21. Newt says:

    I was wondering how bad the US was compared with the rest of the world. According to this UN agency
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_intentional_homicide_rate, the overall world homicide rate (not weapon-specific) is 7.8./100,000. US rate is 4.8, substantially lower. Rates in most of Europe are between 0.5 and 2.0, but Russia’s is over 10. Canada’s is 1.6. Africa has the highest rates, with some countries over 25. But North African countries are very low, between one and two . South America’s is 20. So, guns and all, we are better than most of the world, worse than the nations where most of our ancestors came from. Of course, data may be more or less accurate from country to country.
    Based on this and other observations I don’t think the US should be considered a culturally “developed” , but rather a developing one.

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  22. JDM says:

    The governor hopes to make a play on the emotions of the “low information” voter.

    Don’t think. Just go with your emotions.

    Well. The adults in the room need to keep things in perspective.

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  23. Peter Hahn says:

    JDM – you keep talking about “low information voters”. You should look at the demographics. They are your guys.

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  24. Paul says:

    “the bias of the media” Brain I assume you are referring to my comment. My comment was that most of the media coverage has focused on gun control issues. I guess that is because most of the focus has been on gun control and that is what they are covering. If I was a journalist I would think a good story might be the current lack of focus on many aspects of gun violence.

    Making the analogy to the population of Long Lake rather than to the US population, which is what the numbers are referring to, is done to make the problem seem larger than it is right? Again saying that a teeny tiny fraction of the population has been affected is not provocative. I have said over and over that I think we have a problem that we should deal with but people don’t need funny analogies they just need the facts to help them make an informed decision about what we are dealing with and what we can expect or not expect if changes are made.

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  25. Paul says:

    Walker I was talking more “globally” not about us. In the end decisions should be made based on the relative facts not on anything else.

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  26. The Original Larry says:

    I think the abortion comparison is particularly apt in that many liberal pro-choicers won’t contemplate ANY limitations on abortion but when it comes to guns those who resist compromise are considered unreasonable. How exactly does that work?

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  27. Peter Hahn says:

    As many people have pointed out, if a gun was a random consumer item involved in that many deaths, there would be a lot more regulations. Someone mentioned ladders and OSHA regulations – ladders are more regulated than guns. I think we can deal with safety issues without talking about “banning guns”. There are many city police officers (and especially the police chiefs) who would very much like to see stronger gun laws. We should take our cues from them, in terms of what kinds of regulations/laws we should be looking at.

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  28. Rancid Crabtree says:

    Huh, come in for a snack and here this is. What Helen was referring to with the question on gun owners is based on the indisputable fact that illegally owned guns are already, in fact, illegal. Since we are trying to affect peoples actions by legislatively limiting their ability to obtain an item legally, then the question of those who are in possession of the item illegally already is germane. IOW, passing new laws is only going to affect those willing to obey the law in the first place. So it would seem obvious that a new law is going to have little effect on MS13 members who already have access to illegal guns.

    This becomes even more apparent when you consider Knuckles reference to Chicago and Baltimore. I don’t know about B-more specifically, but in Chicago guns are effectively outlawed already. Does anyone seriously believe that more laws will affect the high number of gun deaths there? That makes no sense.

    My question is when are we going to go after the root cause of these school or other mass shootings and a good deal of other violence- mental illness and prescription drugs. A recent report shows an alarming number of kids and young adults that commit violent acts are on multiple prescription drugs. The correlation is obvious.

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  29. Rancid Crabtree says:

    Peter I can refer you to a great many police officers who feel just the opposite. City police chiefs are politicians first. Many are appointed with no background in actual police work. However, since they often support your agenda, you would find their opinions helpful. Would you be interested in hearing from those police chiefs that support legal gun ownership and no new gun laws?

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  30. knuckleheadedliberal says:

    Paul, the people who’s job it is to keep our citizens safe are the ones asking for better control of weapons that make their way into those bad neighborhoods in Baltimore and into the hands of people who commit crimes. People who are on here and elsewhere who won’t discuss any reasonable attempt to limit deaths are a problem.

    They make lots of arguments but they provide no solutions. They will give lip service to the idea that we need to enforce the current laws but they will find numerous ways around that.

    If I were to suggest that we enforce every single law strictly and not write any new laws do you think everyone could agree to that? But the laws must be enforced strictly. If you shoot someone in a hunting accident you get a ticket, no if ands or buts. And if you are found guilty you lose your weapons.

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  31. hermit thrush says:

    brian, aren’t the complaints here in the comments that slate’s figures refer to all gun deaths, not just handgun deaths, completely legitimate? i’m 100% for presenting data and facilitating discussions and the like, but shouldn’t you change the title of this post? or are i and others missing something?

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  32. JDM says:

    According this article: http://tinyurl.com/adqyzc3

    Statistically speaking, 23,013 lives were saved by guns since Newtown, while 643 were lost.

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  33. Peter Hahn says:

    Rancid – mayors and police chiefs of big cities are pushing for more laws. I imagine their might be police officers who dont think there should be more gun laws, but I bet those guys arent in the big cities where there is a lot of gun violence.

    What would be helpful is if you pro-gun guys would recognize that there is a gun violence problem – (children get killed accidentally – or on purpose in the case of Newtown and lots of the recent mass murders) and think about what we might do to solve the problem.

    You seem to be spending most of your energy thinking up pseudo-solutions that have the effect of forestalling any meaningful reforms.

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  34. Peter Hahn says:

    there might be

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  35. Mervel says:

    Well if you wanted a discussion you would not misuse data.

    I think it is important to look at, but not from an advocates standpoint. How many were suicides is a big question, how many were accidental, how many involved legally owned and illegally owned.

    If you notice from the map, most of the deaths occurred in states with strict handgun control laws, so I guess the take away would be we need to have less restrictive gun control laws?

    Now we DO have too much gun violence but this “how many have died since Newtown” thing is not relevant it does not show for example that the US is at historically low rates of gun violence right now. We have fewer gun deaths since the repeal of the assault weapons ban than when it was enforce.

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  36. Peter Hahn says:

    People are killed all the time by drunk drivers. But no one is out there trying to justify drunk driving or arguing that more people should drink and drive. Drunk driving is illegal but there are still drunk drivers. No one is saying “well its illegal, so obviously more laws are useless or unnecessary. Lets just enforce the laws we have…” etc.

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  37. Mervel says:

    Here is some more data from the Slate data;

    Number of people killed by handguns in Wyoming since Newtown: 0
    Number of people killed by handguns in Chicago since Newtown 23
    Number of people killed in Dallas by handguns since Newtown 5

    Interesting that Dallas is so much safer than Chicago.

    The data support making hand guns more available not less available.

    I am just pointing out the data to facilitate the discussion.

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  38. PNElba says:

    JDM,

    I clicked your link and could not find the number 23,013 lives saved by guns since Newtown. Did I miss it or is this an example of high information?

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  39. JDM says:

    PNelba:

    Guns save 400,000 lives per year. 1,095 per day. 21 days since Newtown.

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  40. JDM says:

    “I ask, Sir, what is the militia? It is the whole people. To disarm the people is the best and most effectual way to enslave them.”

    George Mason
    Co-author of the Second Amendment

    Cuomo and Obama are obviously speaking to the “low information” voter.

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  41. hermit thrush says:

    you’re selling yourself short jdm! it’s been 26 days! that means 28,493 lives saved!

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  42. JDM says:

    hermit thrush:

    Thanks!

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  43. Peter Hahn says:

    JDM – you are quoting Ice-T from a pro-gun website??? You could try to get some academic statistics.

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  44. hermit thrush says:

    in all fairness, jdm isn’t quoting ice-t. he’s just using this line:

    Criminologist Gary Kleck estimates that 2.5 million Americans use guns to defend themselves each year. Out of that number, 400,000 believe that but for their firearms, they would have been dead.

    note what’s happened: jdm has turned someone’s estimate of the number of people who believe (believe!) they’re saved by their guns into an ironclad fact.

    and this is the same guy who been railing against “low information voters” of late. it really makes your head spin.

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  45. Paul says:

    “Paul, the people who’s job it is to keep our citizens safe are the ones asking for better control of weapons that make their way into those bad neighborhoods in Baltimore and into the hands of people who commit crimes.”

    Knuck, that is why I agree that we need to do more as far as gun control. I also think that it is going to have little effect without many other more important measures. My criticism is the tone of the debate it is silly.

    Like I said when the NRA suggested that most schools should do like Baltimore does (you know they have a specific police force for the schools) it was laughed at in just about every headline I saw.

    “People who are on here and elsewhere who won’t discuss any reasonable attempt to limit deaths are a problem. They make lots of arguments but they provide no solutions.”

    They seem to be providing solutions and some folks are not paying attention and they are getting drown out by the governors shouting speech with his 7 point plan he described in the Sate of the State today. 6 of them were purely gun control related.

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  46. Paul says:

    Peter, you think that things beyond gun control are just “pseudo solutions”?

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  47. PNElba says:

    JDM -
    Do you ever answer the question asked?

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  48. Peter Hahn says:

    Paul – you mean like mental health care for schizophrenics? Or like armed guards in all schools, and movie theaters or anywhere children congregate in large groups? I dont think either of those would be very practical or effective.

    There are guards in schools where violence is a problem, but I doubt they would be very effective against a suicidal mass murderer armed to the teeth.

    Seriously – I think we should listen to the police chiefs in the big cities with the major gun violence problems. But that doesnt deal with the problem of mentally ill people getting grade military weapons.

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  49. Mervel says:

    Number of people killed by gun violence in San Antonio TX, (7th largest city in US) since Newtown: 1

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  50. Mervel says:

    Number of people killed by gun violence in North Dakota since Newtown: 0

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