Thursday, February 22, 2018

Human Capital Development, Not More Guns

Today at CPAC, Wayne LaPierre, NRA EVP, doubled down on the gun lobby’s vision for America, more guns.  He did so by advocating for additional security at schools.

If he truly believes that schools need more security then he and the gun lobby should pay for it.

I do not like nor respect Mr. LaPierre and others in the gun lobby seeking to spend my tax dollars on items that do not contribute to human capital development and will more than likely lead to more deaths. We have limited resources and I prefer that we focus on the development of human capital, which should result in improved thinking so we can, for instance, resolve conflicts without force.

I am not na├»ve.  Force may be needed, but for all intents and purposes, is it not the last resort?

Folks like Wayne LaPierre wrap themselves in the red, white and blue; they talk the talk of supporting our Constitution the Second Amendment, but never truly walked the walked by having signed their name on a piece of paper to defend our Constitution with their own life.  I did.  I served our country as a US Naval Officer when such service was frowned upon. I took my oath seriously and still do.  As such, I feel obligated to invest my time to overcome the rhetoric of those that pimp out the Second Amendment so they can sell more guns, which will most likely result statistically in more deaths, please see Guns = Death.

Guns = Death

What is the primary function of a gun?  If you answered something other than kill, you are delusional. Guns may perform other functions, such as – fill in as a paperweight, a prop in a piece of art, used to fire a bullet to hit a target, etc, but the intended function is to kill, that simple.

Guns as they relate to America form a dichotomy. Without guns we could not have life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, yet today guns are literally killing us, please see chart below.  

America has a problem and it is more than just guns. Our country is kind of like Imelda Marcos.  Instead of shoes, we have a gun obsession, arguably fueled by the gun lobby.  As such, America has 3x as many guns per 100 people than the median and 10x the number of homicides-by-gun per 100,000 people than the median resulting in approximately 4 homicides-by-gun per 100,000 guns or approximately 3x the median. We have more and kill more! Just like Imelda, unfortunately some of us must have some form of psychosis to ignore the facts.

In 2015 slightly more than 10 million guns were manufactured and distributed in the US.  If the ratios I just provided remained constant then there would have been 360 more homicides-by-gun in 2016, yet per CDC data, the total increase in deaths by firearm was 2406.  Assuming the ratio of 2 suicides-per-gun for every homicide-by-gun holds true then there was an increase of approximately 900 homicides-by-gun over the prior year, an acceleration in deaths.

Some of you may be jumping out of your seat yelling that is why we need guns for self-defense. First, less than 300 deaths by firearm were attributed to self-defense last year; translation, guns used for self-defense is immaterial.  More importantly, that thinking is in-line with those who believe that only more government policies can solve poverty.  Think of it this way, the more right you go, the more left you become.

Since some people may have a hard time wrapping their mind around these facts, please let me state the obvious, less guns will mean less deaths.