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Thursday, July 20, 2017

What’s killing kids?

Image result for guns killing kidsCourtesy of Ars Technica 

Nearly 1,300 children aged 0 to 17 are killed by gunshots each year in the US, and nearly 5,800 more suffer from non-lethal gunshot wounds, researchers estimate in a study published Monday in Pediatrics.

 In all, about 19 children die or are wounded each day from firearms, either by homicide, suicide, or unintentional shootings. Firearm-related deaths are now the third leading cause of death among US children and the second leading cause of injury-related deaths, behind car crashes. The grim national statistics are even more startling when considered from an international perspective: the US now accounts for 91 percent of all child firearm-related deaths (aged 0 to 14) among high-income countries. 

In addition to the broad figures compiled by researchers at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the study also provides one of the most comprehensive looks yet at the factors surrounding those deaths and injuries. 

For the study, researchers tapped into national databases on firearm deaths and nonfatal injuries, including data on gunshots from handguns, rifles, and shotguns. Information was scraped from death certificates, hospital reports, medical examiner reports, and law enforcement reports. The researchers also collected demographic data, such as sex, race/ethnicity, and age.

The latest annual death estimate breaks down to: 53 percent from homicide, 38 percent from suicide, six percent unintentional, and the remaining three percent were either from unknown intentions or legal intervention. Boys made up 82 percent of those fatally shot, and older children (aged 13 to 17) were 12 times more likely to die from firearms than younger children (0 to 12). 

African American children were the demographic most likely to be killed by firearms, while white and Native American children are the most likely to take their own lives with a gun of some type.

It should also be noted that while firearm homicides and accidental deaths have gone down, that gun suicides have gone up.

It is also worth mentioning that 91% of the children killed by guns in high income countries, have died in the United States of America.

If there were any terrorist organization in the world that was murdering even thirteen of our children every year, we would mobilize our entire military to wipe them out.

But this is 1,300 of our babies, killed by instruments of death that adults bring into their homes to protect them.

When do we pass some laws and spend some money to help keep them safe?