THE HAZARDS OF GUNS
IN THE HOME

rev. 5/2/03

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The media and gun control organization literature and web sites are full of statements or implications that murders and suicides of family members and other loved ones just like our own occur because normal, "people just like us" grab a gun in a moment of rage or deep depression. And, that many--especially children--are accidentally killed or injured in the home just because a gun is there.

Media and other gun control literature and web sites are also full of variations of statements that "a gun in the home is 43 times as likely to kill a family member as to kill an intruder" "a gun in the home triples the risk of homicide in the home" (or increases the risk by 2.7 or 3 times); and "a gun in the home raises the risk of suicide by a factor of five."

Sometimes the "43" and "triple" or "2.7 times" claims seem like they are saying the same thing but with differing numerical results, although the studies involved were of very different things.  The "43 times" study only determined the ratios of different kinds of homicide in an area.  This is the same info one could obtain from FBI crime data and similar data on accidental deaths and suicides, which is why the study that produced the number was worthless.  The "2.7 (or 3) times" study compared frequency of gun ownership in homicide homes with frequency of gun ownership in a supposedly random, typical bunch of homes in the same area.

The studies from which these claims arose, along with a number of equally faulty ones by medical doctors, have been paid for by taxpayers via the federal Centers for Disease Control (and Prevention) (CDC) and have been gleefully reported by the journal of the American medical assn (jAma) and (especially) the new england journal of medicine (nejm). These three claim themes and the "studies" from which they arose are addressed separately:

43 TIMES       FIVE TIMES       TRIPLE

Look here for info about the anti-gun bias of the CDC, medical "researchers," the jAma, the nejm and, consequently, many medical professionals.

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