Arizona Still One of Few States Where More People Die From Guns Than Car Crashes

Categories: Guns
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Arizona is still one of a handful of states where more people die from being shot than die in motor-vehicle accidents.

Arizona was one of only 10 states with more deaths-by-gun than deaths-by-car in 2009, and is only one of 12 states in 2010, now the most recent data available. As you can imagine, a pro-gun-control group has issued this report.

See also:
-Arizona Had More "Gun Deaths" Than Vehicle Deaths in 2009, Says Anti-Gun Group
-Arizona's Well Above the National Average! (For Middle-Aged Suicide Rates)

In 2010, 931 people in Arizona died from gunshots, whereas 795 people died in motor-vehicle accidents.

Last year, one of our colleagues , Ray Stern, called bullshit on the Violence Policy Center's report, declaring the comparison bogus because 71 percent of the "gun deaths" in Arizona were suicides, as if suicides weren't on the same level of tragedy as homicides. Contrary to his opinion, it might seem that if you think gun control is the answer for lowering the rate of murders, you'd also think it would be good for reducing suicides as well.

Illustrating that point is when Stern also called bull because it wasn't clear if suicides by motor vehicle were included in the count of deaths by motor vehicle, although a quick glance at the suicide stats will show you that firearms are the leading means of suicide in Arizona by far, and suicide by motor vehicle isn't a category that exists (although there were nine suicides by "other" means in 2009, and 40 by gas or vapor poisoning, some of which could possibly be linked to vehicles).

With that out of the way, yes, "gun deaths" includes suicides, which makes states with more suicides (Alaska, Nevada, Arizona) more likely to appear in this comparison of gun deaths and motor-vehicle deaths.

And, as we already mentioned, this report's being touted by a group pushing for more gun control.

Justifying the comparison, the report says, "The health and safety regulation of motor vehicles stands as a public health success story, yet firearms remain the last consumer product manufactured in the United States that is not subject to federal health and safety regulation."

Click here to read the report.

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Follow Matthew Hendley on Twitter at @MatthewHendley.



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39 comments
vicksburg.az
vicksburg.az

close the border and watch that number go down

Phillip Slane
Phillip Slane

I also say the lack of snow, ice, and generally inclement weather voids this statistic nule.

valleynative
valleynative topcommenter

Arizona is one of the top states for suicides, for a number of reasons, including a large percentage of old people in poor health, a large number of foreclosures, and a self-selected population of immigrants from the south and midwest who were on their way to California to find their destiny but couldn't even manage to get there.

cletusobannon
cletusobannon

I would like to know how many were justifiable homicides. That would eliminate some of numbers as well. When you take out suicide and justifiable homicide you end up with a pretty small number of murders.

N0Gh0st
N0Gh0st

When suicide is removed from the equation, deaths related to motor vehicle accidental death and homicide outnumber gun accidental death and homicides by a 4:1 ratio in Arizona.  Violent crime in the US are near 50 year lows based on the FBI's own data, which seems contrary to what the media and various agenda driven politicians would want us to believe.  In the past 22 years the number of states with citizens Right-To-Carry has increased dramatically and during those 22 years, the US has seen its biggest decrease in violent crime.

Wayne Nash
Wayne Nash

Let's ban cars... "For the children..."

Gary Hypes
Gary Hypes

I wonder what percentage involves drugs -- in particular, drug dealing and drug running. 'Cut 'em if they stand, and shoot 'em if they run." -- John Kay, Steppenwolf, "The Pusher."

George Gibson
George Gibson

So I think 3-4 of those that commented actually read the article, which states that a large chunk of the deaths were by suicide. That fact underscores the real problem to me: mental health.

jonnyquest
jonnyquest topcommenter

I'm trying to think of another "consumer product" that is explicitly mentioned in the Constitution. Hmmm...hmmm. Anybody?

Derek J. Baldwin
Derek J. Baldwin

I think we should install gun control like Chicago's. It's really working there! ...smh...stupid liberal rag

Scott Dalton
Scott Dalton

Seems like this reporter has a specific bias, I wonder what it could be...

Scott Dalton
Scott Dalton

We also have great weather in Arizona which would likely lead to less car crash fatalities per capita. Would it not be better co compare the per capita rates of both against other states, than just the numbers?

Joshua Richard
Joshua Richard

Another shock filled misleading title. Intellectual honestly has no place in indie news.

Vinny DiGioacchino
Vinny DiGioacchino

And how many killed are criminals being killed by law abiding citizens during the act of a crime? Let's all the facts before we jump to foolish conclusions!

Lisa Milford
Lisa Milford

Not surprised, these people here in the valley of the heat are very trigger happy. but certainly not all of AZ has this kind of mentality. I think it's the temps here in this area. It's partly cloudy and a beautiful 72 degrees F in Flagstaff, AZ...right now! :)

John Phoenix
John Phoenix

Nope not surprising. So many rednecks and j/os here.

John Jacob Jingleheimer Schmidt
John Jacob Jingleheimer Schmidt

"With that out of the way, yes, "gun deaths" includes suicides, which makes states with more suicides (Alaska, Nevada, Arizona) more likely to appear in this comparison of gun deaths and motor-vehicle deaths." As I suspected.

valleynative
valleynative topcommenter

Suicides, followed by criminals being shot by either other criminals or police, as I recall.

Most, if not all, of those gun suicides would have found another method if a gun hadn't been handy, which is why open-minded people discount the study.


JohnQ.Public
JohnQ.Public

And the words "well regulated" are right there in the Constituion next to the refrence to your "consumer product".

eric.nelson745
eric.nelson745 topcommenter

@donbcivil Well, you know, very different culture. The Japanese are extraordinarily law-abiding. Most of them, with the notable exception of the Yakuza, are scared to death of guns. Sure, there would probably be more suicides if guns were plentiful there, but if you need to off yourself, nothing says you can't be creative. Hanging, poisoning (pills an booze), jumping off a building, hara-kiri!

JohnQ.Public
JohnQ.Public

@valleynative  Yes and no.In the Northeast US, case fatality rates ranged from over 90% for firearms to under 5% for drug overdoses, cutting and piercing (the most common methods of attempted suicide).Miller, Matthew; Azrael, Deborah; Hemenway, David. “The epidemiology of case fatality rates for suicide in the Northeast.” Annals of Emergency Medicine. 2004; 723-30.A different study indicates 5.6% of all suicide attempts are by gun, but firearms account for 55% of all successful suicides. Psychiatrists generally believe that the potential lethality of the modality chosen for the suicide attempt is directly related to how serious the individual is about ending his or her life. Those individuals who are less serious engage in “suicide gestures” which are less likely to be lethal and are considered to be more of a cry for help than a full-fledged suicide attempt.So the modality chosen by the individual is an indicator of the individual’s desire for success.  Also, most people who commit suicide plan that act, so it isn't about what is handy or not handy at the time of the attempt.  A person who is more serious about ending his or her life is more likely to seek out a gun which is, in part, why a higher percentage of successful suicide attempts involve guns.

An open-minded person wouldn’t discount this report – an open-minded person would take it as one data point among many in a balanced understanding the role of firearms in American society.

david_saint01
david_saint01 topcommenter

@valleynative thats not proven though (if they didnt have a gun theyd find another way). would some, sure..but not all. a home with a gun in the house is more likely to have a member commit suicide then a home without one. Just saying. (ill find the source if you like, its a statistic i read a few weeks ago)

cletusobannon
cletusobannon

@JohnQ.Public You fail as so many liberals do. You fail by selecting text out of context and asserting your belief with it. Go back, study history then redact your inane attempt.

jonnyquest
jonnyquest topcommenter

You ARE GOOD! Tell me, counselor, what did that phrase mean in the 18th century?

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