Sally Robinson's column on the "gun-violence epidemic" was well meaning and from the heart, but was filled with much misinformation ("It's time we demand action on gun-violence epidemic," The Daily News, Aug. 23).

She stated the source of her information was from Everytown for Gun Safety, 2019. This isn't a group that teaches gun safety or has done anything to promote gun safety. All they want to do is ban guns and take guns out of law-abiding citizen’s hands.

There's no such thing as an "assault weapon." The modern sporting rifle isn't the same firearm that the military commonly uses.

According to the FBI and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the number of gun deaths for children are the lowest since it has been tracked. There is, and never has been, a law that would prevent someone to do evil if they wanted to. There is a need for more mental health treatment and law enforcement agencies to be able to stop and identify the individuals before crimes are committed.

If Robinson really wanted to save children's lives, go after drunk drivers or drivers that are texting while driving. That would help save many more children.

Steve Krenek

Texas City


(19) comments

Gary Miller

Loosing a child to a preventable accident is more penalty than needed for any family.

Children, under 18, have no privacy rights over their parents. All parents caring about their children should keep a close watch on their children. Alcohol, drugs, guns or destructive sexual conduct are all things parents could limit with closer observation.

Gary Miller

Gun crimes would not increase if all gun control laws were repealed for the same reason new gun control laws won't reduce gun crimes. Honest law abiding people are the only people who abide to any laws. Laws criminals ignore are useless. Having the most ignored anti gun laws hasn't done anything for Chicago.

Emile Pope

Actually they do go after drunk drivers and people who text while driving. So are you saying that they should stop there?

Dan Freeman

Mr. Krenek states without citation: “According to the FBI and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the number of gun deaths for children are the lowest since it has been tracked.” This is a bald faced lie. For the last year data are available firearm-related injury death rates for children ages 1-4, 5-14 and 15-24 have risen steadily each year since 1999. They are now at their highest levels since 1999 at 0.5, 1.1 and 17.7 per 100,000 persons, respectively.

Carlos Ponce

Actually the last year listed 2017 for gun related injuries for children 1-4 (0.5) is down from the 0.6 listed for 2016. I question the CDC lumping "children" of age 15 - 24 together. Why would they consider 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 22, 23, and 24 year olds "children when by definition the age of maturity is 18? Oh, that's right. Obamacare considered 26 year olds "children". No wonder why many of that age don't act like grown-ups. This group includes "Intentional self-harm (suicide) by discharge of firearms". No wonder why it's high. In 2017 children less than 15 years old had a suicide rate of 1.34, "children" 15-24 had a rate of 14.46.

Gary Miller

Carlos> Correct again. 18 to 25 years were included because most of those are drug and gang war related. Not really accidental. The dates & numbers used are for injuries and deaths. Accidental child gun deaths are rare.

Dan Freeman

Again you are wrong Mr. Miller. The numbers are for deaths from firearm injuries. Please read the source material.

Carlos Ponce

Some may ask what difference does it make whether the deceased pulled the trigger or someone else pulled the trigger. As we see in other countries, no access to a firearm does not prevent suicide.

Emile Pope

Makes it harder...

Carlos Ponce

No, Emile, in reality people in other countries easily find a means of committing suicide without resorting to a firearm.

Jim Forsythe

Young men, 15 to 24 use firearms 53% of the time for suicide. Young women 15 to 24 use firearms 31.2 % of the time for suicide. This is the hardest group too to read the warning signs that they are in trouble. The young man I knew that committed suicide was giving off signals that he was in trouble, but the adults in his life were not able to stop it. Some other facts about suicide is below.

With easier access to guns, more people use guns to kill themselves than any other way in the USA (50.6% of the time). People that have not planned suicide, are the group that will use guns the most.

In the United States, Firearm's are used 50.6% times as the way people kill themselves. The second most used way is Suffocation/hanging at 24.8% and Poisoning is at 16.6%. In men, the number that use Firearm's is 56.4%.The mortality rate among people that attempt suicide by poisoning is around 2 percent. A third of all people who attempt suicide attempt it again within a year. Around 80 percent of people who successfully commit suicide have made a previous attempt.

Elderly people account for more suicides in the US than any other age group. Among white males over 65, the suicide rate is 31.1 per 100,000, more than twice the national average. The elderly attempt suicide using much more effective methods than young people. Teenagers often create situations where it is possible for someone to save them, whereas the elderly usually don’t. Men over 65 use firearms 78% of the time in Suicides.

Suicide rates are higher in rural areas where traditional values are more prevalent. For example, in Wyoming, one of the most rural and traditionalist states in America, the suicide rate is three times the national average. People who frequently contemplate putting themselves out of their misery attempt suicide often.

People who attempt suicide impulsively tend to be vastly more successful. Methods that require the least amount of planning tend to be by far the deadliest. These impulsive methods include self-inflicted gunshots and jumping from a tall height

The only category of homicide that has been increasing over the last ten years is mass murder, specifically mass public shootings.

Carlos Ponce

Jeffery Epstein had no access to firearms and killed himself by hanging in a jail. Robin Williams, no firearm, hung himself. Some people jump in front of cars, some jump from buildings. Remove firearms and the rate of suicide will not decrease. The means of suicide is not the reason for suicide.

Dan Freeman

Mr. Ponce, while the examples you give are consistent with your point of view, they do not prove your point. The reasons for suicide are complex and many who attempt and survive do not attempt again. The use of a gun removes that option about 80% of the time. Plausibly, one reason for lower suicide death rates by women is they are less likely to use a gun.

Extending the waiting time for a gun purchase and an extensive background check will not eliminate suicides, but it is worth adding to the methods for reducing the rates.

Carlos Ponce

"The use of a gun removes that option about 80% of the time. Plausibly, one reason for lower suicide death rates by women is they are less likely to use a gun."

So you contend no guns = no suicides? Wrong. Look at the suicides in countries where there is little chance of obtaining a gun. The higher rate of male suicide has nothing to do with gun availability.

Men commit suicide by: Firearms, Hanging, Asphyxiation, or suffocation, Jumping, Moving objects, Sharp objects, Vehicle Exhaust Gas.

Women commit suicide by:Self-poisoning (women four times as likely as men to die from drug poisoning), Exsanguination (bleeding out from a cut such as a "slit" wrist), Drowning, Hanging (one study found that men and women are both just as likely to die by hanging), Firearms.

Men and women are different and select different means for committing suicide.

Married men ten to use firearms in suicide attempts. Unmarried men try hanging.

"Over half of women who die by suicide have a previous attempt, whereas less than half of men who commit suicide have a prior attempt."

The means of suicide is not the reason for suicide.

Jim Forsythe

If a person wants to kill themselves, they will do so unless they get the help they need. Impulsive attempts can be reduced by waiting periods. Most impulsive acts are by guns, as other ways take more planning.

Over the three-year period from 2000 to 2002, the 15 states with the highest household firearm ownership (47 percent) had almost twice as many suicides (14,809) as the six states with the lowest firearm ownership (15 percent, 8,052). This difference in overall suicides is largely accounted for by the difference in firearm suicides (9,749 compared with 2,606). Non-firearm suicides (5,060 compared with 5,446) and the total populations of the two sets of states were comparable.

Most people who make the final decision to end their lives attempt suicide shortly after. When you have a gun readily available, the decision is swifter and more reliable than those who wait or plan. Tactics like gun licensing laws, background checks and gun-suicide awareness campaigns can help slow down the process and save lives.

What group would be helped the most by gun purchase waiting periods ?

24% of people who attempt suicide make the decision in less than five minutes, while 70% make the decision in less than an hour. If suicide is an impulsive act, then forced delays in the form of gun purchase waiting periods might allow people time to rethink their decision.

the National Academy of Sciences.:

The study spanned 45 years, looking at gun death rates from 1970-2014. The study analyzed state policy changes in gun rules, comparing how each legislative change altered gun death rates over time.

Dan Freeman

Mr. Ponce wrote: “So you contend no guns = no suicides?” No, I did not say or imply this. I wrote: “Extending the waiting time for a gun purchase and an extensive background checks will not eliminate suicides, but it is worth adding to the methods for reducing the rates.” It is not possible to eliminate suicide deaths. But we can reduce the relative number of suicides.

Just as stronger DWI laws and set belts did not eliminate auto deaths, tighter gun regulation can reduce the lethality as measured by rates. This is why Justice Scalia made it clear that just as one has the right to own a gun, the state has the right to regulate the ownership for safety purposes.

Carlos Ponce

"Extending the waiting time for a gun purchase and an extensive background checks will not eliminate suicides, but it is worth adding to the methods for reducing the rates.” Contradictory statements.

Wayne Holt

There is an underlying context here that should be brought to light. Do law-abiding, non-suicidally inclined individuals have a moral or legal responsibility to abridge their rights to gun ownership because some of their fellow citizens are so inclined?

This is fundamental to the ethics of the question. If I cannot control a person's desire to harm themselves, does that suggest that I must do everything short of that to help avoid that outcome even if it means giving up something that is my means of self-defense and is recognized as a God-given right by the founders of the republic?

Much of the resistance to agreeing to so-called "common sense" solutions is because they have been seen as a prelude to "no common sense" restrictions on gun ownership by the law abiding. Thre always seems to be agitation for yet more control for the law abiding, oblivious to the lack of interest by the criminal class to go along for the ride.

Maybe it is hard-hearted on my part but I don't see how it makes sense to base the restriction of a God-given freedom like self-defense on the behavior of those who are so disturbed they would take their own life. If that is the standard, there is no human action that may not be restricted because there will always be individuals who abuse their free will to do it.

I already have to sign a log book at the pharmacy to get a simple box of sinus tablets. Is it really necessary that the 2nd Amendment give way so that we may head off those who seek to harm themselves in only one of myriad ways to do it?

Gary Miller

The fact that all gun control laws target honest citizens but not criminal citizens should inform all citizens that it is the rights of honest citizens being attacked. Propose a anti gun law criminals can't ignore and it will be supported.

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