By The Numbers – A Perspective Look At Gun Violence

I know its been a while and a few broken promises since I’ve been on here to write an article of my own.  I’m sorry for that.  Been a lot going on with work lately and still been trying to get back into a routine with the family after being away for a while.  Lots of changes behind the scenes, but that’s my business unless I feel like opening up to you; which I probably don’t if you don’t already know.

I was going to write an a piece about a special kid named PVT Alam, who managed to wander past an entire company’s worth of Strykers and make it 3 miles to the air strip where he was promptly detained… But that kid has had enough embarrassment.  If you ever hear me say “net call, net call, net call”, lets just say someone just fucked up.

I had considered writing the annals of the truck that was dubbed, “The Battleship Titanic”, or how the longest shot the unit has ever seen with a javelin at night was blue on blue, or how you DON’T go about getting the title the most lethal company in a brigade, but honestly I just spent the last month trying to drink the brain cells out of existence that contain that whole fiasco.  No need to start strolling down that lane.
jadehelm1I could also continue to berate all of the conspiracists into submission on the Jade Helm non-sense, especially since my unit had to participate in a joint action which definitely didn’t include kicking in civilians doors and taking them to internment camps.  But you guys are pretty much on to the next thing already, and beating the dead horse just gets dead horse juices all over the place anyways.
I could also go on about the sweet Sig Sauer P320 that I just picked up, that I was getting some tight groupings with the other day.  Its so purdy and shiny and thoroughly enjoyable to shoot.  (Sig Sauer if you’d like to sponsor me for the product placement here, ahem…).  Or how thanks to state gun laws, a military person of my good standing had to wait 11 days on a background check.  Because that makes a lot of sense that I could do my job still if I was unable to own weapons…
photoIts a really nice gun and I love it.

What I did feel like discussing, since its been a hot topic, since well, fucking forever now, and I’ve seen a bit of a disturbing increase on social media lately due to that racist douche, dylann roof, and that other racist douche, vester flanagan, is gun violence.
ht_dylann_root_profile_kb_150618_16x9_992 article-shooter7-0826

Cleary, these two fall within completely difference universes from the term “normal”.  Seriously, that haircut.  Come on.  Ain’t seen that since mom cut my brother’s hair when he was 8.  And a mesh shirt and cowboy hat?  Bro, you best about to be jumping in the ring for the championship WWE match with that attire.  Jokes aside, its easy to take a picture out of reference and use it to compare a person to our expectation of normal in hindsight.  Its often hard to make the call that a person isn’t right in the head and is about to do something dangerous.  Do you want to be the person to unnecessarily condemn a friend or family member because you don’t think they fit the social construct of normalcy?  How certain are you that they are actually a danger, until it is too late?  A lot of people make boasts when they are upset.  “I’ll kick his ass”. “I’m going to murder that guy”?  How often do you hear those idly put in conversation and would never expect the person to act on it.  What about, “I just want to die”?  I’ve even been having a hard day at work and yelled out, “will someone just shoot me in the fucking face”.  It happens more than we care to admit or even acknowledge.  Mostly we just respond with, “yeah, I know, right?” and go on about our business.  That’s how easy it is to expect that people would never do something atrocious like these two incidents.  And then it happens.

gunman_c0-5-502-297_s561x327As you can see, it surprised the fuck outta her too.  

Earlier, some how I landed upon some “lets take all the guns from people” type page, and the ridiculousness involved there was astounding. I literally read one of their postings where they defended that weak politicians and lack of gun laws is the problem (specifically not the amount of guns in america or mental illness) and then flipped a few pictures to a posting about George Zimmerman, where they blatantly state people like this have a mental illness. Its wall vs head thumping kinda shit. I think I’m going to slam about 3 800mg motrins to make that one go away.

To the ACTUAL point. I went back and read the FBI statistics from 2013 that were quoted on the page. Here is the numbers break down:

84,258 nonfatal injuries

33,169 deaths related to firearms
11,208 deaths by homicide
21,175 by suicide with a firearm
505 deaths due to accidental discharge of a firearm
281 deaths due to firearms with “undetermined intent”

OK, so that’s a lot of numbers on a page.  What that breaks down to is that in 2013, we had a population in America of 316.5 million people.  Of that 316.5 million, 33,169 were killed, 84,258 were injured for a total of 117,427 people shot by guns.  That literally gives you .00037% chance of getting shot, not just killed, but shot.
greys-anatomy-no-chanceThanks for driving the point home Meredith Gray!
piechartHere’s a little additional perspective for you!  You have more chance of being killed by that big mac you ate for lunch.  And more statistics for you pulled straight from the Center for Disease Control page:

  • Heart disease: 611,105
  • Cancer: 584,881
  • Chronic lower respiratory diseases: 149,205
  • Accidents (unintentional injuries): 130,557
  • Stroke (cerebrovascular diseases): 128,978
  • Alzheimer’s disease: 84,767
  • Diabetes: 75,578
  • Influenza and Pneumonia: 56,979
  • Nephritis, nephrotic syndrome, and nephrosis: 47,112
  • Intentional self-harm (suicide): 41,149

Guns didn’t even make the top ten of some shit that will kill you! (noted, yes they play into suicide and accidents, but so do cars and dildos)

I’m not going to sit here and crunch numbers at you all day.  It annoys me too and people likely won’t even pay attention to it anyways.  However, the number I want to point out was very clear to me.  If you haven’t picked up on the overall tone so far, the number that concerns me is that of the 33,169 gun fatalities, 21,175 were suicide.  SUICIDE.  2/3 of the fucking gun fatalities are SUICIDE.  One more motherfucker want to argue with me that we don’t have a mental health issue instead of a gun issue in America?!
6df30fd3Just for good measure and to really drive it home; if we took out all of the suicides in those numbers the total amount of people shot now changes to 96,252 out of 316.5 million people.  That now changes your chance of being shot to .0003% and .000038% chance of actually being shot and killed.

Suicide is completely preventable.  Pinning that one on firearms is ridiculous and sad to say the least.  If you are too busy blaming a gun for killing a person than to admit that the person needed help and you either couldn’t help them or DIDN’T help them then you have bigger issues within yourself that you may want to go talk to a counselor about as well.  Since we’re on the subject, please, if you are feeling like life is so terrible that your only way to fix it is by ending it, find someone to talk to about it.  Don’t let it overwhelm you. I know there is still a stigma out there about getting help for problems.  People think it makes you weak, but it doesn’t.  That’s showing you got the fight to not take the easy way out of shit.  That’s strength!  We all have times when shit gets tough; for many, its more so than others.  Some people are just wired that way.  Its not a bad thing to admit.  Its actually absolutely important to admit.  You need to admit to yourself that you may have a mental health issue.  That’s step one to being able to get help for it.  And there IS help out there, but they can’t come find you, you have to seek them out.

If you are having issues there are people to help you out.

1 (800) 273-8255
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline

Don’t suffer in silence and just be another FBI statistic.  That’s a shitty way to make a name for yourself.



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