Friday, January 28, 2011

Arizona the Gun Paradise

This is a fascinating article.

From murders to suicides, Arizona is consistently among the most deadly states in the nation for gun violence, federal records show.

Over a nine-year span, the state's rate of gun deaths of all types ranked seventh in the United States and sixth for gun-involved slayings, according to an Arizona Republic analysis of death reports compiled by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The rankings are based on data from 1999 to 2007, the most recent statistics available from the CDC.

Overall, violent-crime rates in Arizona are not far from rates for the U.S. as a whole, but the rate of deaths specifically tied to guns surprises national experts.
They even brought Prof. Kleck into it.

"You can take very seriously the CDC data," he said, "as long as you keep in mind that there isn't any relationship between gun-ownership rates and the total suicide rate or homicide rate."
That's fair enough, I suppose he's talking about the old "causality" thing. But then it gets really confusing
If Arizona is relatively high in gun deaths, it is likely because the state is one of the leading states in the nation for gun ownership, Kleck said.

One of the best indicators of gun ownership is the level of gun-involved suicide rates, he said. The CDC numbers show Arizona ranked ninth in suicides with guns.
Whose side is he on, anyway?

What's your opinion? Please leave a comment.


  1. What's the inconsistency? He says that there's a link between gun ownership percentages and suicide by gun, but not gun ownership and total suicide (by any method).

    That's pretty consistent with the Washington Post listing the the U.S. as 9th in total suicide rate, while we have the proud distinction of being #1 in per capita firearms (by a fair margin--and one I do my best to increase).

    A very strong causal relationship can be established between gun ownership and being well armed, and using guns for what arms are useful for, in preference to using less effective arms.

    Beyond that, you ain't got much (to put it politely).

  2. Zorroy, You're the mindreader. How about this. What I really want is a country in which we can place an anonmyous phone call to a government agent reporting a suspiciously depressed and dangerous person. After a few questions to determine reliability of the info, beyond a reasonable doubt, they send a SWAT team out to disarm the guy.

    That's what I call real freedom.

    (This comment was facetious. Anyone who wants to copy and paste it must, by law, include this disclaimer.)

  3. (This comment was facetious. Anyone who wants to copy and paste it must, by law, include this disclaimer.)

    Finally! I've asked you for months to make it clear whether you were making a silly joke, or offering an equally silly idea, that you happen to be serious about.

    I have to say, though, that I'm not at all convinced that you wouldn't like something like that anonymous tip line/SWAT team response. Are you saying you would condemn that idea, if it were seriously proposed?