Gun-Control Advocates Bump Up Against Hard-Facts

Funny how “Putting politics aside” means “Advancing the Democrat Left Agenda.”

| GAY PATRIOT |

I would be remiss to NOT add this by BEN SHAPIRO (for the transcript read THE DAILY WIRE):

Some must read articles and stats — the first is an article by GAY PATRIOT, who quotes a WAPO article (which I will include in full, below). Here is GP referencing about the Washington Post article:

In a rare moment of honesty on the left, a left-wing statistician went through the evidence scientifically and without bias and came to the conclusion that none of the left-wing’s favored policies would put a dent in gun deaths.

Before I started researching gun deaths, gun-control policy used to frustrate me. I wished the National Rifle Association would stop blocking common-sense gun-control reforms such as banning assault weapons, restricting silencers, shrinking magazine sizes and all the other measures that could make guns less deadly.

Then, my colleagues and I at FiveThirtyEight spent three months analyzing all 33,000 lives ended by guns each year in the United States, and I wound up frustrated in a whole new way. We looked at what interventions might have saved those people, and the case for the policies I’d lobbied for crumbled when I examined the evidence. The best ideas left standing were narrowly tailored interventions to protect subtypes of potential victims, not broad attempts to limit the lethality of guns.

It’s like us Right-Wing Nut Jobs were saying all along. The policies of the left will fail, and may perhaps even be designed to fail so that their failure will make the case for ever increasing levels of gun control leading ultimately to what the left actually wants: to outlaw the private ownership of firearms.

By the way, the correlation between gun ownership and homicides is actually inverse.

There are actually two policies that would make a difference, but they are politically unpalatable to the Progressive Left.

The majority of gun deaths in the USA are suicides – about two-thirds of all of them….

I want to pause here and break down the suicide numbers a bit… and this is really for all the people that support assisted suicide. Why does it have to be assisted? The biggest demographic that shoots themselves are the geriatric. Many of whom are in the throes or chronic pain or were diagnosed with a life threatening disease with no hope of overcoming. Here are the suicide by gun numbers:

It is sad, but using the Left’s argument FOR suicide… why is this bad? CONTINUING with Gay Patriot

…The great majority of the gun homicides in the USA are committed by young male criminals in urban areas. The Democrats who run these urban areas are loathe to crack down on this violence for fear of riling “community activists” who claim that stopping young urban males from committing crimes is a conspiracy to re-enact slavery via the “Prison Industrial Complex.”

So, for whatever reason, the only “politically palatable” solutions involve restricting the rights of non-criminal people to possess lawful means of self-defense…..

Mmmm… that brings up a different stat. I wouldn’t know where to look for such a study, but, I bet if one were to quantify those who are Democrat and those who are Republican using guns in homicide activity… I wonder what the comparative percentages would be.

For instance, one can see many more Republicans own guns, but more inner-city gang members use them illegally.

Last I remember from being in jail myself, most minority criminals are Democrats in regard to who they support.

Also, as people buy more guns, the death rate has dropped. If one were to believe the rhetoric of the Left… this should be the exact opposite:

Dennis Prager is right… this and other arguments from the Left are driven by emotions:

Here is the promised article… Leah Libresco is a statistician and former newswriter at FiveThirtyEight, and a Leftist!

I Used To Think Gun Control Was The Answer My Research Told Me Otherwise

Before I started researching gun deaths, gun-control policy used to frustrate me. I wished the National Rifle Association would stop blocking common-sense gun-control reforms such as banning assault weapons, restricting silencers, shrinking magazine sizes and all the other measures that could make guns less deadly.

Then, my colleagues and I at FiveThirtyEight spent three months analyzing all 33,000 lives ended by guns each year in the United States, and I wound up frustrated in a whole new way. We looked at what interventions might have saved those people, and the case for the policies I’d lobbied for crumbled when I examined the evidence. The best ideas left standing were narrowly tailored interventions to protect subtypes of potential victims, not broad attempts to limit the lethality of guns.

researched the strictly tightened gun laws in Britain and Australia and concluded that they didn’t prove much about what America’s policy should be. Neither nation experienced drops in mass shootings or other gun related-crime that could be attributed to their buybacks and bans. Mass shootings were too rare in Australia for their absence after the buyback program to be clear evidence of progress. And in both Australia and Britain, the gun restrictions had an ambiguous effect on other gun-related crimes or deaths.

When I looked at the other oft-praised policies, I found out that no gun owner walks into the store to buy an “assault weapon.” It’s an invented classification that includes any semi-automatic that has two or more features, such as a bayonet mount, a rocket-propelled grenade-launcher mount, a folding stock or a pistol grip. But guns are modular, and any hobbyist can easily add these features at home, just as if they were snapping together Legos.

As for silencers — they deserve that name only in movies, where they reduce gunfire to a soft puick puick. In real life, silencers limit hearing damage for shooters but don’t make gunfire dangerously quiet. An AR-15 with a silencer is about as loud as a jackhammer. Magazine limits were a little more promising, but a practiced shooter could still change magazines so fast as to make the limit meaningless.

As my co-workers and I kept looking at the data, it seemed less and less clear that one broad gun-control restriction could make a big difference. Two-thirds of gun deaths in the United States every year are suicides. Almost no proposed restriction would make it meaningfully harder for people with guns on hand to use them. I couldn’t even answer my most desperate question: If I had a friend who had guns in his home and a history of suicide attempts, was there anything I could do that would help?

However, the next-largest set of gun deaths — 1 in 5 — were young men aged 15 to 34, killed in homicides. These men were most likely to die at the hands of other young men, often related to gang loyalties or other street violence. And the last notable group of similar deaths was the 1,700 women murdered per year, usually as the result of domestic violence. Far more people were killed in these ways than in mass-shooting incidents, but few of the popularly floated policies were tailored to serve them.

By the time we published our project, I didn’t believe in many of the interventions I’d heard politicians tout. I was still anti-gun, at least from the point of view of most gun owners, and I don’t want a gun in my home, as I think the risk outweighs the benefits. But I can’t endorse policies whose only selling point is that gun owners hate them. Policies that often seem as if they were drafted by people who have encountered guns only as a figure in a briefing book or an image on the news.

Instead, I found the most hope in more narrowly tailored interventions. Potential suicide victims, women menaced by their abusive partners and kids swept up in street vendettas are all in danger from guns, but they each require different protections.

Older men, who make up the largest share of gun suicides, need better access to people who could care for them and get them help. Women endangered by specific men need to be prioritized by police, who can enforce restraining orders prohibiting these men from buying and owning guns. Younger men at risk of violence need to be identified before they take a life or lose theirs and to be connected to mentors who can help them de-escalate conflicts.

Even the most data-driven practices, such as New Orleans’ plan to identify gang members for intervention based on previous arrests and weapons seizures, wind up more personal than most policies floated. The young men at risk can be identified by an algorithm, but they have to be disarmed one by one, personally — not en masse as though they were all interchangeable. A reduction in gun deaths is most likely to come from finding smaller chances for victories and expanding those solutions as much as possible. We save lives by focusing on a range of tactics to protect the different kinds of potential victims and reforming potential killers, not from sweeping bans focused on the guns themselves.

In this meme a point is made that I think is worthy… and that is…. there are already laws on the books to make murder illegal. What law can you pass that will stop a person from really committing this horrible act? If laws like this work, why haven’t they?

More than 64,000 Americans died from drug overdoses in 2016. Over 11,500 deaths by homicide are gun related each year [+/-]. Has the war one drugs and all the regulations and laws (local, county, state, and federal) stopped this? No. The answer is no. NEITHER would any law have helped less people die in Vegas. The next media presentation is prefaced by POLITISTICK:

Democrat Congressman Henry Cuellar from Texas admitted something tonight on FOX News’ Tucker Carlson Tonight that you will rarely — if ever — hear from a modern-day Democrat that has taken a hard-left turn the past eight years under Obama, funded by anti-American globalist billionaire George Soros.

In the aftermath of the Las Vegas massacre in which dozens of people were murdered and hundreds more injured by a madman shooting from a high-rise hotel — at a time when most progressive leftist’s knee-jerk reaction was to blame Second Amendment rights — Henry Cuellar admitted that gun control doesn’t work…..

The following is from an family friend-of-a-friend who was in law enforcement for 35-years:

Here are some very interesting statistics on gun violence, gun deaths, and lots of other causes of death that we deal with every day. Yet no one gets too concerned unless the cause of death is by a firearm. And yes the math is correct. 

There are 30,000 gun related deaths per year by firearms, and this number is not disputed. The U.S. population is 324,059,091 as of June 22, 2016. Do the math: 0.000000925% of the population dies from gun related actions each year. Statistically speaking, this is insignificant! What is never told, however, is a breakdown of those 30,000 deaths, to put them in perspective as compared to other causes of death:

  • 65% of those deaths are by suicide, which would never be prevented by gun laws.
  • 15% are by law enforcement in the line of duty and justified.
  • 17% are through criminal activity, gang and drug related or mentally ill persons – better known as gun violence.
  • 3% are accidental discharge deaths.

So technically, “gun violence” is not 30,000 annually, but drops to 5,100. Still too many? Now lets look at how those deaths spanned across the nation.

  • 480 homicides (9.4%) were in Chicago
  • 344 homicides (6.7%) were in Baltimore
  • 333 homicides (6.5%) were in Detroit
  • 119 homicides (2.3%) were in Washington D.C. (a 54% increase over prior years)

Basically, 25% of all gun crime happens in just 4 cities. All 4 of those cities have strict gun laws, so it is not the lack of law that is the root cause. This leaves 3,825 for the entire rest of the nation, or about 75 deaths per state. That is an average because some States have much higher rates than others. For example, California had 1,169 and Alabama had 1. Now, who has the strictest gun laws by far? California, of course, but understand, it is not guns causing this. It is a crime rate spawned by the number of criminal persons residing in those cities and states. So if all cities and states are not created equal, then there must be something other than the tool causing the gun deaths.

Are 5,100 deaths per year horrific? How about in comparison to other deaths? All death is sad and especially so when it is in the commission of a crime but that is the nature of crime. Robbery, death, rape, assault are all done by criminals. It is ludicrous to think that criminals will obey laws. That is why they are called criminals. But what about other deaths each year?

  • 40,000+ die from a drug overdose–THERE IS NO EXCUSE FOR THAT!
  • 36,000 people die per year from the flu, far exceeding the criminal gun deaths
  • 34,000 people die per year in traffic fatalities(exceeding gun deaths even if you include suicide).

Now it gets good:

  • 200,000+ people die each year (and growing) from preventable medical errors. You are safer walking in the worst areas of Chicago than you are when you are in a hospital!
  • 710,000 people die per year from heart disease. It’s time to stop the double cheeseburgers! So what is the point? If the liberal loons and the anti-gun movement focused their attention on heart disease, even a 10% decrease in cardiac deaths would save twice the number of lives annually of all gun-related deaths (including suicide, law enforcement, etc). A 10% reduction in medical errors would be 66% of the total number of gun deaths or 4 times the number of criminal homicides, simple, easily preventable 10% reductions! So you have to ask yourself, in the grand scheme of things, why the focus on guns? It’s pretty simple: Taking away guns gives control to governments. The founders of this nation knew that regardless of the form of government, those in power may become corrupt and seek to rule as the British did by trying to disarm the populace of the colonies. It is not difficult to understand that a disarmed populace is a controlled populace. Thus, the second amendment was proudly and boldly included in the U.S. Constitution. It must be preserved at all costs. So the next time someone tries to tell you that gun control is about saving lives, look at these facts and remember these words from Noah Webster: “Before a standing army can rule, the people must be disarmed.”

22-Military Suicides a Day? ~ No (Military Mantras)

This post is not to diminish a horrible and tragic act of suicide, it is just bringing some sober thoughts to the all too commonly used 22-vets a day commit suicide. If you want the skinny now without the long post to follow, here it is:

A more recent study, which surveyed 1.3 million veterans who were discharged between 2001 and 2007, found that “Between 2001 and 2009, there were 1650 deployed veterans and 7703 non-deployed veteran deaths. Of those, 351 were suicides among deployed veterans and 1517 were suicides among non-deployed veterans. That means over nine years, there was not quite one veteran suicide a day,” according to the Washington Post.

(Task and Purpose)

This stat is spread to merely to promote politicians at the expense of truth… would be my guess.

The things to pull from the above 2011 video are:

  1. Its not deployment (PTSD);
  2. Its not financial reasons;
  3. It is the same age group in the general population that commit suicide.

This post is a combination of a newer report from FOX News (above) and an older post from my old blog in May of 2009. First however, I will deal with the 22-vets commit suicide every day number: The L.A. Times notes the following:

That number comes from a study published in early 2013 by researchers at the federal Department of Veterans Affairs. But the recent wars were not the study’s primary focus. In fact, they play a minor role in veteran suicides overall.

The VA researchers used death records from 21 states to come up with a 2010 national estimate for veterans of all ages. As a group, veterans are old. Military service being far rarer than it was in the days of the draft, more than 91% of the nation’s 22 million veterans are at least 35 years old, and the overwhelming majority did not serve in the post-9/11 era.

About 72% of veterans are at least 50. It is not surprising, then, that the VA found that people in this age group account for 69% of veteran suicides — or more than 15 of the 22 per day.

Many experts believe that the farther a veteran is from military service, the less likely it is that his or her suicide has anything to do with his or her time in uniform. In other words, many older veterans are killing themselves for the same reasons that other civilians in the same age group kill themselves: depression and other mental health problems coupled with difficult life circumstances.

The VA analysis does not attempt to determine rates of veteran suicide or how they compare with rates for people who never served.

[….]

One more step was required to make the comparisons relevant. California veterans under 35 are about 80% male, and nearly half are over 29. A straight comparison to the general population in that age group would be less than ideal, since suicide and accident rates vary significantly by gender and age.

The Times adjusted the non-veteran death rates so they reflected the age and gender mix of the veteran population.

As the story explained, suicide and accident rates were substantially higher for veterans. Over the six years examined by The Times, 329 California veterans under 35 took their own lives. That amounts to an average annual rate of 27 suicides per 100,000 veterans.

If that rate were to hold true across the country, about 530 young veterans are committing suicide each year — roughly 1.5 each day…

In a very recent conversation that has expanded my thinking a bit on this topic… is that… people hear 22-vets commit suicide and then rush to pass political bills that help with:

  • PTSD,
  • physical pain not managed by meds,
  • survivors guilt,
  • and difficult reintegration,
  • etc.

But ~ this mainly deals with the suicides of young vets returning from the recent wars in Iraq and Afghanistan [which AGAIN, are not 22-a-day!].

Since the bulk of the suicides are in the 50-year old range, those “fix-its” are missing most of the veterans that need something else.

What was just pointed out to me as well that fighting cancer or other serious illnesses increase the probability of suicide. For instance:

  • The researchers found that, in all countries combined, the number of suicides observed among the breast cancer patients was 37% higher than expected, on the basis of general population rates. That figure translates into four extra suicides per 100,000 person-years, according to the study’s lead author, Catherine Schairer, Ph.D., of NCI’s division of cancer epidemiology and genetics. In the United States, 245 breast cancer survivors committed suicide, making the risk 50% greater than would be normally expected, she said.

(Journal of the National Cancer Institute)

Just to be clear –veterans– who could be retired for decades, get cancer treatments [even if successful], and for whatever variable of reasons, commits suicide due to depression caused by this serious illness… this is wrapped up in the suicide statistics.

Here is WebMD:

…Although any illness can trigger depressed feelings, the risk of chronic illness and depression gets higher with the severity of the illness and the level of life disruption it causes. The risk of depression is generally 10-25% for women and 5-12% for men. However, people with a chronic illness face a much higher risk — between 25-33%. Risk is especially high in someone who has a history of depression.

Depression caused by chronic disease often makes the condition worse, especially if the illness causes pain and fatigue or it limits a person’s ability to interact with others. Depression can intensify pain, as well as fatigue and sluggishness. The combination of chronic illness and depression might lead you to isolate yourself, which is likely to make the depression even worse…

[….]

  • Heart attack: 40%-65% experience depression
  • Coronary artery disease (without heart attack): 18%-20% experience depression
  • Parkinson’s disease: 40% experience depression
  • Multiple sclerosis: 40% experience depression
  • Stroke: 10%-27% experience depression
  • Cancer: 25% experience depression
  • Diabetes: 25% experience depression
  • Chronic pain syndrome:  30%-54% experience depression

So the older members of the veteran community have these same maladies, and these statistics from serious illnesses SURELY play a roll VERSUS merely “being in the military.”

WHAT we can do or HOW we can help the vets is something I cannot answer.

But if all you have is the VA to help in your fight against cancer or heart disease, PTSD, or prompt medical responses to any number of things — getting a more private response versus “government care” is the answer that I think would help the most.

When all the factors of gender, race, age, etc. are plugged into the suicide rate in the military: if your son or daughter join the military their chances of commiting suicide lessen slightly. You combine this with other healthy activities such as marriage, regular church attendance, etc… and the rate drops even lower. There are many factors at play in this post, a person’s predisposition, religiousity, serious illness, etc. — it isn’t “cut’n’dry” in other words. ALL that being said, my main purpose of this post however is to deal with media myths and bad media headlines.


THE FOLLOWING COMES FROM MY OLD BLOG:


Spin Masters: Military * Stats + Bias = Liberal Agenda (MSNBC & NPR) [May 09, 2009]

I have recently come across this wonderful blogger/retired physician. Her name is Nancy Reyes, her catalogued articles can be found at the Blogger News Network, and her blog is not typically about political affairs at all: FinestKind Clinic and Fish Market. (She mainly writes on health issues or food.) How, you may ask did I come across this blogger/physician? Well, I overheard in a conversation someone mention the high suicide rates of our military are higher than the rest of the country. I remember hearing Michael Medved (if memory serves) going through the stats and correcting a caller on this subject. But very similar to other stats used by politicians in the past few elections (just as examples) these stats are easily shown to be misstated or misused. When I hear people make these claims – suicide rates of our military, unequal pay between genders, anthropogenic global warming, and the like — I often think how these people can make decisions and assumptions on statements made by media that has been proven to be biased time-and-time again.

There have been many studies done on where NPR for instance comes down on the side of the abortion controversy with how many stories and experts who give their input on the matter; the amount of “experts” brought in to support the Palestinian view of things versus how many people they bring in to support the Israeli view of the conflict; the amount of pro-2nd Amendment versus how many stories it lines up with “experts” who are for more gun regulation. The graph below is an example of NPR’s use of conservative versus liberal think tanks in the presentation of their stories (see graph below):

Heck, there are whole sites committed to following and exposing NPR’s biased reporting, one is NPR Sucks, for example. Another small article shows why this seems to be the case, a liberal slant to reporting that is, is one entitled, “Few Reporters Describe Themselves as Conservatives.” This isn’t a “big conspiracy,” rather, it is a culture born in the universities about 40 years ago. All this being said, I think the below articles are a must read. The reader should see my already mentioned link to ad to his or her understanding of how stats are misused. While keeping those examples in mind, the crux of the misuse of the below stats is this:

  • By comparing a population that is 90 percent men to the general population, you are comparing apples and oranges.

Suicide attempts are more common in the female population, but the men who try it succeed at a higher rate. Taking this higher rate in men (which the military is primarily composed of) and then comparing this to the population as a whole (men and women in other words) is skewing the results.

Army desertion rate up 80%? More lying with statistics

Last week, it was CBS jiggling the numbers to bash the war in Iraq by stating Veterans had a suicide rate of 18, much higher than the civilian population’s rate of 11 (ignoring that it was only slightly higher than the suicide rate for men, which was 17, and a heck of a lot lower than the rate for doctors, which is 30/100 000 per year).

This week the headline is “Army Desertion rate up 80%”.

The problem? the number “80%” implies a huge increase. But in statistics, if you start with a small number, it doesn’t take a large number to get a huge increase.

So the actual numbers are an increase from 0.7 % to 0.9%. For those of you who are numerically challenged, both those numbers are less than one percent:

According to the Army, about nine in every 1,000 soldiers deserted in fiscal year 2007, which ended Sept. 30, compared to nearly seven per 1,000 a year earlier.

Many of the desertions are soldiers who don’t want to go back to a war, but many are about soldiers with family problems. Many wives and families are severely stressed by their husband or wife going overseas, and sometimes soldiers just disappear because their families need them more than the Army. Often they report in later, and get an administrative discharge. The article implies the majority are war protesters and says that Canada no longer welcomes them, but the article does not give hard data on this.

Many just don’t like the Army, and it has nothing to do with the war. This NYTimes article notes that the number who actually deserted the wars in Iraq or Afghanistan was 109 (out of the 1 million military who served in these areas since 2003). The real worry is that some of the deserters are not anti war as much as suffering from post traumatic stress syndrome and cannot face staying in the military. Others have family problems, such as spouses theatening child custody or divorce. The military is sensitive to these problems, and tries to work out helping the soldier rather than punishing him or her.

As a comparison, the article admits that during Viet Nam, the desertion rate was 5%, and many were for being against that war.

Finally, if you go down to the end of the article, you find the desertion rates for the Navy, Marines, and Air Force are either stable or have gone down.

Nope, can’t publish good news, folks, let’s just move along…

Yup….just ignore the headline.

The war in Iraq is going well, so we have to find bad news to report…..

But just wait a week. Christmas is coming and the MSM will start their annual deluge of articles explaining why Christ was just a myth and Christians are delusional.

[….]

The Military and Suicides, Part One: Spinning statistics

The US Army is very worried about suicide and injuries in returning veterans. Stress in soldiers, and in returning veterans, is nothing new:

During World War II, PTSD was an even more serious problem. In the European Theater, 25 percent of all casualties were serious PTSD cases, compared to about 20 percent today. In the Pacific Theater, the rate varied widely, depending on the campaign. In some of the most intense fighting, like Okinawa in 1945, PTSD accounted for over a third of all wounded. In Iraq, less than ten percent of the wounded are PTSD, but the more troops serve in a combat zone, in combat jobs, the more likely they are to develop PTSD. This has been known for over a century.

One of the results of this is, alas, suicide.

The annual suicide statistics of the military/VA have been released.

The good news? The suicide rate remains low.

The bad news? The press is spinning the numbers to fit into the “Evil Iraq war is killing soldiers” and “the Military doesn’t care about the soldiers” meme (to fit the ultimate meme: Evil Bush’s war and evil Republicans don’t care).

Well, never mind the politics. I’m a doctor. Suicide is a major public health problem in the US (and in many countries). But there are a lot of myths out there.

So let’s look at myth number one:

CNN article: Headline: Army Suicide rates could top nation’s this year.

The story is not half bad, but you have to dig into the actual statistics to find the details.

As of August, 62 Army soldiers have committed suicide, and 31 cases of possible suicide remain under investigation, according to Army statistics. Last year, the Army recorded 115 suicides among its ranks, which was also higher than the previous year.

Well, one would expect a higher rate of returning veterans, who suffer from Post Traumatic Stress syndrome.

Problem: By not placing it into the context of total number of those who served in the Army, we cannot do a comparison.

But the third paragraph is the real problem:

Army officials said that if the trend continues this year, it will pass the nation’s suicide rate of 19.5 people per 100,000, a 2005 figure considered the most recent by the government.

That, my friends, is spin.

You see, suicide rates vary by age and by sex.

Although women have a higher rate of attempted suicide, men die of suicide at a much higher rate than the general population.

The rate of suicide of the general population is 19.5

The rate of suicide in men from the ages of 20 to 35 in 1980 was 24.

The rate of suicide in women from the ages of 20 to 35 was 5.

By comparing a population that is 90 percent men to the general population, you are comparing apples and oranges.

Certain groups: older men, alcoholics, minorities, and those with mental health problems, have a higher rate also.

So CNN assures us:

According to the VA, about 46 of 100,000 males between the ages of 18 and 29 utilizing VA services committed suicide in 2006, compared with about 27 the year before.

A very high rate. Except this is not the general population: this is the rate of those using the VA services, including those with mental health problems. By eliminating the healthy from the statistics, it makes the rate look higher than if the numbers included the entire population of military personnel.

The rest of the article goes on to say the VA is going to improve care for those with PTSS and depression.

So it’s not like nothing is being done: they are just trying to improve the care of the veterans.

For example, unmentioned in the article is that a pre 2001 program in the AirForce was credited with lowering it’s suicide rate from 16.4 yo 9.4 per 100 000 in two years.

Ironically, the article citing the Air Force is not about military suicides, but about suicides in physicians.

Eva Schernhammer and Graham Colditz examined the results of 25 studies of physician suicides and concluded that male doctors killed themselves at a rate 41 percent higher than that of other men and women. The more startling finding was that female doctors take their lives at a rate more than twice (2.27 times) that of the general public.

Two People Witnessing the Same Event Ask Two Different Questions if Politically Left or Right

Video description:

Dennis Prager does a great job in showing how both sides start from the same premise… both grieve and sympathize. After that however… we [the is the political left and right] ask different questions and come to separate conclusions.

In anticipating one response which I have heard quite a bit, the challenge of suicide will be brought into the conversation. Mind you, base shootings and suicides were not an issue in 1993 when Bill Clinton for some mysterious reason based this bill making bases strict “gun-free” zones. But the actual claim of guns and suicide are not understood well, below, Larry Elder quickly sorts it out for a caller:

Video description:

While talking to a fine young man who currently serves in the military and is worried about guns and suicide… Larry brings some common sense stats into the equation. What he did is show that no matter what you do, if someone is going to commit suicide — men specifically… women attempt suicide but fail at a much higher rate — they will accomplish it some how. HOWEVER, restricting an enumerated right (the 2nd Amendment) is worse than suicide at the same rate. Freedom over fear tactics in other words.

Guess the REAL Atheist (Mouse Over To See)

There is only one atheist on this poster, Ernest Hemingway. He loaded a double barrel shotgun, put it in his mouth, and pulled the trigger (suicide). THIS is the atheist poster boy (via Evolution vs. God).

Let’s deal with just one name from the above to make the point, Albert Einstein:


Physicist  Paul Davies, though not a theist, says that the right scientific attitude is essentially theological: “Science can proceed only if the scientist adopts an essentially theological worldview.” He points out that “even the most atheistic scientist accepts as an act of faith [italics mine] the existence of a law-like order in nature that is at least in part comprehensible to us”.[58] Albert Einstein famously said:

Science can only be created by those who are thoroughly imbued with the aspiration towards truth and understanding. This source of feeling, however, springs from religion. To this there also belongs the faith in the possibility that the regulations valid for the world of existence are rational, that is, comprehensible to reason. I cannot imagine a scientist without that profound faith [italics mine]. The situation may be expressed by an image: science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind.[59]

Richard Dawkins is allergic to believers in God citing Einstein, as if Einstein belonged to them. He makes a great fuss about it near the beginning of The God Delusion, saying that Einstein “was repeatedly indignant at being called a theist”. Dawkins, although he classifies Einstein as an atheistic scientist,[60] appears to come down on the side of Einstein being a pantheist, because of his sympathy with Spinoza. Yet the very book that Dawkins cites as his source gives a very different impression.[61] Einstein himself explicitly stated: “I’m not an atheist and I don’t think I can call myself a pantheist.”[62] Therefore, though it is true that Einstein said that he did not believe in a personal God, Dawkins is clearly not entitled to claim him as an atheist.

Furthermore, we certainly don’t find Dawkins urging us, as Einstein did, to recognize that:

Everyone who is seriously involved in the pursuit of science becomes convinced that a spirit is manifest in the laws of the Universe — a spirit vastly superior to that of man, and one in the face of which we with our modest powers must feel humble. In this way the pursuit of science leads to a religious feeling of a special sort, which is indeed quite different from the religiosity of someone more naïve.[63]

The main point I wish to gain from citing Einstein, however, is that he evidently did not suffer from the New Atheist delusion that all faith is blind faith. Einstein speaks of the “profound faith” of the scientist in the rational intelligibility of the universe. He could not imagine a scientist without it. So, while Dawkins may not classify Einstein as a theist, he (Dawkins) must share in that profound faith that Einstein had – otherwise Einstein would probably not classify him (Dawkins) as a scientist.

Excerpt from John C. Lennox, Gunning for God: Why the New Atheists are Missing the Target (Oxford, England: Lion, 2011), 48-49.

Here is a person who is a proud atheist via Debunking Atheists:

RFK Jr.`s wife, Mary Kennedy, Hangs Herself

The New York Post (Pitts Report h/t) has this:

Robert F. Kennedy Jr.’s estranged wife, Mary, who battled her husband’s rumored philandering by turning to alcohol and prescription drugs, hanged herself in a barn on their Westchester estate yesterday, sources told The Post.

The 52-year-old mother of four — the latest victim of a family dynasty cursed with tragedies — may have taken her own life because she was haunted by her broken marriage, her friends lamented.

“She was deeply troubled, abusing alcohol and prescription meds,” a close family friend said. “She had cause. She was used up and tossed away by Bobby. That was awful.”

[….]

After authorities arrived, they cut her down and tried to revive her. She was found by a housekeeper, ABC News reported.

Mary was found “inside an out-building on that property,” police said in a statement.

She left behind a note, and none of her children were home at the time, sources said.

There are several sheds behind the home — some hold garden tools and another is a falcon house — on a slope leading to a lake.

One unidentified source told RadarOnline that Mary “was very depressed and despondent” during a conversation on Monday.

“Mary said she was facing financial ruin, with American Express coming after her hard for an outstanding debt, along with several other creditors. In addition, she was concerned that Robert was about to substantially reduce the amount of financial support he gave her and she was terrified she would have to file for bankruptcy and lose her home.”

The Kennedy family dealt stoically with the latest in the long line of shocking deaths.

Its sad she couldn’t hang in there for the kids. I hope and pray they break the Kennedy spell of adultery, drugs, booze, and chauvinism. Faith is the best way to do this.

Seinfeld Star Daniel von Bargen Shoots Himself in Head ~ and Lives to Call 911 ((Graphic Call Included))

TMZ & DailyFix

The Hollywood actor, Daniel von Burgen, who played Mr. Kruger in Seinfeld, shot himself in the head Monday morning in a failed suicide attempt. He is currently in an Ohio hospital, clinging to life in critical condition. But, not only was von Burgen able to survive, he was able to nonchalantly call 911 for help.

“I’ve shot myself in the head … and I need help,” Daniel told the 911 operator, just as calm as he could be. The calmness of both von Burgen and the operator make the call even more eerily creepy.

When the blase operator asked if the shooting was an accident, von Burgen replied, “I was supposed to go to the hospital and I didn’t want to… They were supposed to amputate at least a few toes.”

So, unwilling to lose a few toes, Daniel decided taking his life with a .38 was a better option. When asked where exactly he shot himself, Daniel answered, ” I shot in my temple.”

Daniel von Burgen even sounds annoyed with the police department when they tell him to stay where he is and to show his hands. The bizarre 911 call was obtained by TMZ, but be warned — it is highly disturbing…

Just a humorously morbid  aside. At one point the 911 operator was asking for a phone number of kin… he then asked Daniel von Bargen if he remembered it “off the top of his head.” Bad choice of words.