... University of Pennsylvania researchers released the results of a study seeking evidence that having a gun protects the holder from peril.
To the contrary, the epidemiologists found in the first-of-its-kind investigation: People with a gun on them were actually 4.5 times more likely to be shot than those who were unarmed.
One fascinating thing is the academics all seem to agree. We've discussed Prof. Wintemute, who put a spotlight on gun shows, Dr. Hemenway, who was the inspiration for my famous "guns are bad news for women," and now we have Charles C. Branas, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Epidemiology at Univ. of Penn., saying that carrying a gun can be bad for your health.
The study investigated shootings in Philadelphia, which number 5 per day, and concluded that carrying a gun makes you 4.5 times more likely to suffer a gunshot yourself.
Now, even I, who struggle with bias and the deep desire to win these arguments, can see that there's a big difference between young gang members who carry guns and your average responsible gun owner. Even allowing for my 10% theory, I can see that in the latter group the numbers would be very different than in the former. Nevertheless, 4.5 times more likely is a compelling statistic, wouldn't you say?
Ms. Yant Kinney described the difference between New Jersey and Pennsylvania.
Carry laws differ greatly between Pennsylvania and New Jersey, mirroring the states' wildly opposing views on gun sales and ownership.
In New Jersey, where I live, 25,753 handguns were purchased last year, but only 580 people received carry permits.
"And the vast majority of those," notes State Police Det. Glenn Ross, "are for employment reasons," such as private detectives, armored car drivers, and security guards.
In Pennsylvania, 208,436 handguns were sold in 2008. And the bulk of those buyers - 150,840 - received licenses to carry.
Where do you think all those guns used in Philadelphia, the ones used in the 5 shootings a day, are coming from? Maybe the gun flow from that incredible number of 208,000 in a single year accounts for them. Maybe, so many guns are flowing from the good guys to the bad guys in PA that there are some left over for Camden and Newark, ah but this is just idle speculation.
What's your opinion?