Sunday, October 4, 2015

The Truth About Gun Violence

Oregon mass shooting is 294th this year, and more data on gun violence

Getty Images
A gun shop in Roseburg, Oregon.

In the aftermath of the shooting at an Oregon community college Thursday that left 10 dead, including the shooter, America once again faces questions over what can be done to address gun violence.
Here are the data, charts and maps seeking to put the issue in perspective.

Mass shootings have become routine in the U.S.

President Obama delivered an emotional statement to the press Thursday lamenting that the U.S. is the only developed country in the world where mass shootings have become commonplace.
There’s data to show that he’s right.
As of Friday, there have been more mass shootings in 2015 than days of the year. That data comes from the Mass Shooting Tracker, which defines a mass shooting as one in which “four or more people are shot in an event, or related series of events, likely without a cooling off period.” It’s been visualized a few different ways from Quartz’s simple bar chart:

Embedded image permalink

To the Washington Post’s calendar tracker, which shows we’ve gone no more than eight days without one of these incidents this year.

Embedded image permalink

Embedded image permalink

Embedded image permalink

Embedded image permalink

The United States has nearly twice as many guns per 100 people as the next closest country.
Embedded image permalink

Somehow this has become routine,” Obama said. “The reporting is routine. My response here at this podium ends up being routine, the conversation in the aftermath of it ... We have become numb to this,” he said.

Gun violence vs. terrorism

In his statement on Thursday, Obama also had a request of the media: “Tally up the number of Americans who’ve been killed through terrorist attacks in the last decade and the number of Americans who’ve been killed by gun violence, and post those side by side on your news reports,” he asked.
Vox did so:

Embedded image permalink

So did The Washington Post:

Embedded image permalink

How politicians are framing the issue

On Friday, Obama said his primary strategy going forward on gun control legislation would be to mount a public campaign. He again called on Americans to change the politics and elect lawmakers who are willing to take steps to curb gun violence.
“You have to make sure that anybody who you are voting for is on the right of this issue,” Obama said.
Quorum visualized the congressional response to major shootings over the past several years:

Embedded image permalink

That data show that congressional mentions of mass shootings in the context of gun control and mental health issues peaked after the late-2012 massacre in Newtown, Conn., when the White House unsuccessfully pushed for increased background checks for gun purchases.
Republicans and Democrats do differ on the issue of guns, at least, in how they talk about it:

Democrats and Republicans use very different words when talking about guns

Meanwhile, a National Journal article looked at the congressional response by tallying up the number of bills addressing gun usage and access passed in the wake of school shootings:

What about state legislation?

The death rate in Oregon is 11.8 per 100,000 people, which puts it right in the middle of the range for all U.S. states, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and National Center for Health Statistics.
Among the states with the lowest death rates from firearms are Massachusetts, New York, Connecticut, and Hawaii.
A graphic in the National Journal explains why that might be: those same states have the most gun laws.

Embedded image permalink

The states with the most gun laws see the fewest gun-related deaths


  1. The illustrations, charts and side notes published in your post are useful only to illustrate the facts. Unfortunately, as everyone except US citizens can see. the problem is set within the psyche of the American people. William once said in a discussion here that “America is a revolutionary nation living the American dream”.

    It is understandable that what to the rest of the world, is excessive fanfare and egocentric glorification of nationhood, is simply being “American”. There must be as many American flags on display in your nation than there are guns within your community. This overt display of patriotism is of course nothing to be ashamed of, taken to extremes however it may perhaps have undesirable connotations.

    Imagine if you will, the words of William repeated in schools across the nation. The second amendment thrust into the minds of immature students who then find a way to obtain a firearm. This leads to two problems. Firstly it encourages the child to grow up venerating the second and in so doing, it perpetuates the American worship of the ideal of the revolutionaries.

    The second problem, in my opinion, is that once the firearm is owned, the myth is perpetuated and the words Tyrant, Oppression by government and so many others become the norm when speaking of the elected government. We see it here on a daily basis.Louman constantly posts critiques of the present government and his views on the alternative are also often scathing. William and Louman are not alone, in fact frank discussion is good for all concerned. Where the problem exists is in not being able to see the problem and to understand that the problem is not one for government to solve but for the people. A plebiscite, or better still, a referendum on gun ownership would surely bring forth a result in favour of gun control.
    Obama is correct, these mass shootings are simply routine and the reactions to them have become routine also. God help America if the situation is allowed to continue.
    Please note and completely off topic. TS in a late post on another thread contended Alexander Hamilton was in all ways qualified for election to the Presidency of the United States. This was my view until I was shot down on the old MW board. If anyone can offer a view I would be most grateful. I am stumbling over the phrase “or a Citizen of the United States, >>> at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution <<<<, I can find no reference to Hamilton becoming a citizen.
    Cheers from Aussie.

    Cheers from Aussie.

    1. I mostly agree King, and yet, I feel there is a nuance there that isn't quite addressed. The first sentence of your last para is interesting but I'm not sure that acquiring the fire arm is the defining moment. If we saw a person on the street here in America who was disheveled and claiming he was being stalked by someone who always remained just out of sight but ready to pounce on him, we would assign a textbook definition of delusional to him and say he is mentally ill because his belief about reality is not accurate. If that same person is able to hold a job, maintain a residence but spouts endless that Obama and the government are out to get him and this is why he needs to own 10 guns, we do not consider this to be delusional at all.

      Obama, to me, is correct in stating the shootings have become commonplace. Thought I agree, the acceptance of the shootings is not the biggest issue to me. Rather, the bigger problem is that we have come to accept mental illness and delusional thinking as being just another facet of freedom. TS posted a link the other day to troll me that showed liberals unwittingly voicing support for Trump's tax plan. Fairly, that video displayed liberal ignorance. It did not, however, show delusional thinking.

      Rolling Dude, on the MW site, used the word so much that it lost it's meaning, but I think he had a point. William's post below, to me, is a stunning example of what I am talking about. First of all, there is nothing remotely similar to our daily life and what is happening in Syria. Second, even though there are enough weapons in this country for every man woman and child to have one, the vast majority are owned by a relatively much smaller group who own small arsenals. Thinking that this small group will somehow defeat a military that has planes, tanks, and enormously more firepower is patently absurd. Lastly, there is that little epithet at the end that the President of the United States can get on his knees and blow some little person who truly overestimates his sense of importance in the world. Variations of this delusion have become so common, that not only will people NOT openly call out the disgusting vulgarity of Williams comment, or most talk radio hosts, they will instead try to find a way to be even more disgusting and delusional.

      A growing number of people are becoming a third voice in the gun debate, IE there are those in the NRA, the liberals who believe gun laws will change things, and a new voice that talks generically about "mental illness". When that crazy bitch called Obama a Muslim in front of McCain, McCain did the right thing by grabbing the microphone from her hand and dishing out a rebuke to her delusion. When a nutbag upped the ante in the presence of Trump, his delusion was entertained. For the moment, the violence is being perpetrated mostly by those who are pretty clearly out in left field. The problem as I see it is that left field is no longer far away. The easy access to guns might be helping to shorten that distance a bit, but I think a far bigger threat is coming from those making a living on selling delusion rather than on those selling firearms.

    2. King Hamilton could have run for President. He was born on the Island of Nevis near Barbados but he was in the US at the time of the constitution. He came here in 1772 served with distinction in the revolution. Why he didn't run, he was not well liked and he was known as a bastard child and a know it all. Maybe had his life not been shortened by his ill conceived duel with Aaron Burr his turn would have eventually come up. We will of course never know.

    3. It is interesting to me that our vaunted military has lost to rice farmers in Vietnam, goat fuckers in Iraq, and now poppy growers in Afghanistan.

      While I agree that our military is the finest group of men in the world, the weak link will remain the vastly inadequate leaders we currently employ.

      Ask yourself, how many military men split with the North to fight for the South in the Civil War? How many are fed up since Vietnam with our putrid class of so called leaders?

      Don't just regurgitate the leftest pap. Be honest with yourselves.
      For fucking once, be honest with yourselves.

    4. You are not only delusional, you are just plain ignorant of history. And now you are up to bestiality with your sexual references. This likely is lost on you, but in Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan, there is a thread that in all of those conflicts, we jumped into a nation for reasons that we felt benefited ourselves and subsequently believed the locals there would be more than happy to fight amongst themselves on our behalf. Our military tends to win the engagements it actually fights with foes. However, we don't do so well when locals who really have no stomach for endless war are less than thrilled to die protecting some piece of turf we took from someone else. Goatfuckers or rice farmers, whatever you want to call them, would rather be harvesting rice or fucking their goats or harvesting their poppy than they would running around trying to kill people while avoiding being killed.

      That said, you have a point about leadership. By reading historical accounts, I strongly believe that neither Vietnam nor Iraq war conflicts that we needed to involve ourselves in, and we had little to gain from doing so. Further, both were driven by pure cold war mentality. When leaders pull the country into bad wars, IE wars that have no clear objective and no easily discerned reason why we are there, the populus is eventually going to revolt. Your boy Reagan sure got his Tally Whacked in Lebanon didn't he? Credit him on this though, once he realized how fucking stupid that was, he didn't double down.

      Surely, that is all leftist pap to you because you are feeling pretty amped up wearing your leather chaps while watching gay porn. Maybe you can open up a third window on your computer to watch an old Reagan movie while you stream gay porn and best us with your intelligence.

    5. King

      There are a lot of side issues with respect to the words natural born, native, and naturalized. They all come into play when talking about birther arguments with respect to Pres Obama, Cruz etc. That part of Article II, Section 1, Clause 5 has no application here because no one was a natural born citizen under the Constitution until it’s adoption on Sept. 17, 1787. This leaves us with defining peoples of the United States between July 4, 1776 and the adoption of the constitution and what they were before the Declaration of Independence.

      Previous to July 4, 1776 everyone was considered a British subject. The distinction has two points relevant to this discussion... 1. Regardless of where you lived in the British Empire, you were a British subject. So travelling between Nevis and the British colonies of North America (which included holdings in Canada) would be no different than travelling between Los Angeles and Honolulu in the US or Hobart and Sydney in Australia. You need no passport type documents.

      The definition of ‘Subject’ vs ‘Citizen’ often comes up in these discussions so I offer: Ainslie v. Martin, 9 Mass. 454, 456, 457 (1813)

      “And if, at common law, all human beings born within the ligeance of the King, and under the King’s obedience, were natural-born subjects, and not aliens, I do not perceive why this doctrine does not apply to these United States, in all cases in which there is no express constitutional or statute declaration to the contrary. . . . Subject and citizen are, in a degree, convertible terms as applied to natives, and though the term citizen seems to be appropriate to republican freemen, yet we are, equally with the inhabitants of all other countries, subjects, for we are equally bound by allegiance and subjection to the government and law of the land.”

      After the successful conclusion of the revolution all of the 13 colonies wrote state constitutions in which they defined citizenship standards of their residents.... All residents of some duration prior to the end of the revolution were ‘grandfathered’ into state citizenship.

      8 of the original 52 signers of the declaration of independence were born in Britain.

      In the original New York state constitution (Apr 20,1777) as part of its rather lengthy preamble is this comment with respect to the King:
      "He has constrained our fellow-citizens, taken captive on the high seas, to bear arms against their country, to become the executioners of their friends and brethren, or to fall themselves by their Lands.

      Hamilton, a resident of New York and an assemblyman would have been considered a citizen of New York and by extension, a citizen of the United States.

      People were differentiated into two groups.. ‘patriots’ and ‘loyalists’. Approximately 15% of the population were deemed loyalists and many moved either to British Canada or to the Caribbean... the remainder were automatically considered citizens of the United States. As a matter of fact Hamilton worked with the moderate members to forge consensuses with them to create an alliance to unseat the Clinton faction from New York government. Those that assimilated became part of the fabric... those that didn't were either dealt with by the US courts or energetic patriots...

      While I was looking in to this I found a case people might be interested in... Lynch v Clark in 1844. It was the first test of a baby born in the US to foreign parents... It would seem that the anchor baby story was settled some 20 years before the 14th amendment

    6. TS” Hamilton, a resident of New York and an assemblyman would have been considered a citizen of New York and by extension, a citizen of the United States.”
      I returned to the previous thread and stumbled on your post re Hamilton’s eligibility. It has troubled me ever since, hence the request for the readership to assist. I have skimmed through your latest post and here I believe is the kernel to unlock the problem I have fixated on. To my mind, this is one of the best posts ever written for this site. I shall spend a day of so getting to grips with perhaps a new concept re American citizenship and Constitutional INTENT. My very sincere thanks for the post and by extension the assistance to an ancient mind still struggling to learn. Cheers to you. I may (unlikely) have some rebuttal and if so it will be aimed at extracting the last drops of info on the subject.

      From Aussie

  2. I would refer king to photographs of the Syrian refugees heading towards European nations for protection. One notices, if he takes the time to notice at all, the large number of well dressed young men who parade onwards with the woman and children.

    This would never occur here. A despot, even one that is simply a client of Russia or Iran, would be overrun in a matter of weeks by armed militias. Militias made up of men, NRA members, former military members, men young and old that would squash a despot like a bug and not run for cover to a foreign country.

    This is what the second is all about. This will never happen here. Never. Obama can suck my dick.


    2. Nutso. the militias were never used against the government when they were in vogue. But they were used against the people several times. the government has a powerful well trained army. I think they will mop the streets with a bunch of holier than thou misfit, ragtag , baldheaded nincompoops.

    3. ric, you probably also believe that there are only 11 million illegals in the country, the unemployment rate is really 5%, your kids will see their SS checks, and someone won't cum in your mouth in prison.

      good luck polyanna,,,,,when they come and round you up,,,,,

    4. You seem to have a bit of a fixation on male/male oral sex today William. You running gay porn split screen while you type here?

    5. Yeah Max. I''ve been looking at pictures of you all day.

    6. Max William is just an idiot. We deal with them everyday. He's just mad because the Benghazi shit is going to get shut down soon and Hilary was right about her conspiracy theory all along. Sore loser, William is.