I know I talk about this all the time, but indulge me for a minute. Why do people insist that the United States has become more violent over the past 30 years or so? Here’s yet another example. SI writer Peter King wrote in favor of gun control (obviously I agree with him) and got this as a response from some winger reader:
The fact is, in the past 30 years, these laws have increased exponentially, but so has gun violence…
(King didn’t challenge him on this claim about gun violence.)
In fact, the CDC reports that gun deaths fell from 14.8 per 100,000 in 1981 to 10.3 in 2007 (the most recent year for which statistics are available). That’s about a 30% drop. It’s disproportionately gun-related homicides that fell — from 6.58 to 4.19, about a 36% drop.
Sometimes I feel that this kind of ignorance dooms our society.