As we grieve the loss at Charleston, South Carolina’s Emanuel AME Church, a new report out from Violence Policy Center retires the Blood-Gargling NRA’s® canard that the only thing to stop a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun. Instead, the report says guns are rarely used for self defense. They are, however, overwhelming used for precisely the kind of crime and bloodshed committed in Charleston and elsewhere. Every day. All the time.
- In 2012, across the nation there were only 259 justifiable homicides involving a private citizen using a firearm. That same year, there were 8,342 criminal gun homicides. In 2012, for every justifiable homicide in the United States involving a gun, guns were used in 32 criminal homicides. The ratio does not take into account the tens of thousands of lives ended in gun suicides or unintentional shootings that year.
- For that same year, just 13 states reported no justifiable homicides (Alabama, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Idaho, Iowa, Montana, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Dakota, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Wyoming)
- In 2012, of the 259 firearm justifiable homicides, 98.1 percent (254) of the persons shot and killed were men and 1.9 percent (five) were women.
The report is worth a read, I promise.