Dr. Eric W. Fleegler, an attending physician in pediatric emergency medicine at Boston Children’s Hospital and an assistant professor of pediatrics at Harvard Medical School, declares that the states with the most gun laws have fewer gun deaths.
Fleegler, the lead author in the study published online in JAMA Internal Medicine, reached that conclusion by analyzing data reported to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention from 2007 through 2010 and then correlating those figures with state-level firearm legislation aggregated by the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence.
The study used data from states specifying which types of gun laws had been enacted, whether the laws were in regards to back ground checks, gun sales, or restriction of weapon types. Based on the accumulated data, each state was given a “legislative strength score,” which they compared with firearm-related mortality rates in all 50 states. The legislative strength scores ranged from 0 in Utah to 24 out of a possible 28 in Massachusetts. States with stronger gun laws recorded both fewer murders and suicides.
Mark Kelly, former Space Shuttle Commander, aviator, and wife of Gabrielle Giffords, said in an interview with CNN: “I’m a numbers guy, a statistics guy — and what I’ve learned has shocked me. Almost 100 people a day die from a gun, 33 are murdered. We’ve got 20 times the murder rate of similar countries.”
In a CNN poll most NRA members favor some changes in the gun laws, principally extensive background checks. As one member said: “With the right to bear arms comes responsibility. If a small inconvenience such as waiting for a background check is necessary, then we must endure it.”
So, if this is all true, why is the NRA so adamantly opposed to any change in the gun laws? What was once a modest gun rights and gun safety organization is long gone. Today, as New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg has said, it is principally a marketing organization, and its flagship product is fear.
A bigger question is ‘why do Republicans support the NRA instead of doing the right thing for the people they represent’? It’s simply a case of “following the money”.
The NRA lobby gives millions of dollars to Republican Congressmen and Senators in the form of campaign contributions and “perks” such as free golf trips, free vacations, etc.. So, why should they represent the electorate?
Freedom isn’t limited to special interest groups. The Constitution dictates freedom for all. An insignificant gun lobby should not dictate policy to the majority.
The time is now for sensible, responsible gun laws.
Columnist-The Guardian Express