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Surge in Gun Sales After Sandy Hook Led to Spike in Accidental Gun Deaths

In the days after the horrific shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School, gun enthusiasts rushed to buy millions of firearms, driven by fears that the massacre would spark new gun legislation. Those restrictions never became a reality, but a new study concludes that all the additional guns caused a significant jump in accidental firearm deaths.

The study, published Thursday in the journal Science, estimates that the 3 million guns sold in the several months after Sandy Hook caused 60 more accidental gun deaths than would have occurred otherwise. Children were killed in a third of them.

The new paper tackles one of the biggest questions in gun research: how to measure the relationship between prevalence of guns and deaths.
Washington Post
--Anonymous
replies 7Dec 7, 2017 10:10 AM +00:00

The work by two Wellesley College economists tackles one of the biggest questions in gun research: how to measure the relationship between gun prevalence and gun deaths. For decades, hamstrung by lack of funding and the politically charged landscape surrounding gun control, researchers have lacked data to try to answer that question.

With no federal or state databases of gun ownership to work from, for example, researchers have struggled to definitively correlate deaths to the presence of guns in homes. They have grappled with what conditions would best determine the factors — gun sales, different state laws, the type of guns available — that might affect gun violence and death.

By seizing on the surge of firearm purchases after the 2012 tragedy in Newtown, Conn., the Wellesley team essentially set up an experimental model to study what happens after such a sudden increase in gun sales.

Neither of the two statisticians who conducted the research — Phillip Levine and Robin McKnight — had worked on gun violence before. McKnight had mostly looked at health insurance issues, and Levine at such social policies as teen pregnancy. They launched their study after seeing a chart in a newspaper showing the sharp upturn in gun sales after Sandy Hook. “It brought up so many questions,” Levine said.

The two scrutinized weekly search data from Google, which showed that terms like “buy a gun” increased fourfold as President Barack Obama began pushing for new gun restrictions.

--Anonymous
replies 1Dec 7, 2017 10:10 AM +00:00

Using the number of background checks as their proxy, they found an increase in gun sales in the four months afterward. They then compared that number to two databases of deaths nationwide, which showed a 27 percent increase in accidental gun deaths for all ages and a 64 percent increase among children during that period.

--Anonymous
replies 2Dec 7, 2017 10:11 AM +00:00

Isn’t that common sense?

--Anonymous
replies 3Dec 7, 2017 10:14 AM +00:00

More guns around, more gun death. It's very simple.

Owning a gun just increases your odds of getting shot.

--Anonymous
replies 4Dec 7, 2017 10:15 AM +00:00

Do republicants still think Darwin had it wrong?

--Anonymous
replies 5Dec 7, 2017 10:15 AM +00:00

Sure, it's simple for us, but idiot gun fondlers can't put it together that more guns = more gun deaths.

In fact, the NRA spends millions a year trying to get people to think it's the exact opposite.

--Anonymous
replies 6Dec 7, 2017 10:18 AM +00:00

Wouldn't a surge in car sales lead to a spike in accidental crash deaths?

A surge in swimming pool sales to to a spike in accidental drownings?

A surge in skydiving to a spike in accidental splattering?

etc

--So ?
replies 7Dec 7, 2017 11:23 AM +00:00