Chicago Tribune editorial board member Steve Chapman observes that gun control is not the solution to American firearm deaths because no amount of gun control will stop suicide, which is the driving force behind such deaths.
Chapman’s appraisal comes amid Everytown for Gun Safety’s best efforts to hype Centers for Disease Control and Prevention firearm death numbers for 2017. CDC reported 39,773 firearm related deaths, which gun control groups then presented as “gun violence” deaths or, in the case of CNN, reported that “U.S. gun deaths reach highest level in nearly 40 years.”
But as CNN viewers gasp at the headlines the reality is that nearly two-thirds of the deaths were firearm-related suicides. And the Tribune’s Steven Chapman notes that “the increase was actually greater for the non-firearm suicide rate than for the firearm suicide rate.”
In other words, the vast majority of the increase in firearm-related deaths was suicidal, but even that majority was outpaced by non-firearm-related suicides.
And while Everytown for Gun Safety and others push the CDC numbers in hopes of securing gun control, Chapman notes that no conceivable gun control will have an effect on suicides. He observed, “The sort of gun control measures that are politically conceivable in the United States would be irrelevant. We could ban semi-automatic “assault weapons” or 15-round magazines, but neither is needed by those who want to shoot themselves.”
Additionally, he pointed to Japan, which is much most stringent gun control laws on the planet yet also has a suicide rate that is much higher than the rate in the U.S. And he noted that the predominate mode of suicide in Japan is by hanging.
AWR Hawkins is an award-winning Second Amendment columnist for Breitbart News, the host of the Breitbart podcast Bullets with AWR Hawkins, and the writer/curator of Down Range with AWR Hawkins, a weekly newsletter focused on all things Second Amendment, also for Breitbart News. He is the political analyst for Armed American Radio. Follow him on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at firstname.lastname@example.org. Sign up to get Down Range at breitbart.com/downrange.