Thursday, September 6, 2007

How many guns does it take to kill a man?

It started out as looking for patterns in firearm ownership crossed over with murder rates, it ended in an analysis of a gun control dogma: a lot of guns means a lot of murders.
Now, I did indeed find a correlation between firearm ownership and the murder rate when limiting myself to a limited amount of nations, namely the US, Canada, Norway, Denmark and Finland. Unfortunately the issue is not so simple as to say more guns mean more/less murder, there are also a great deal of countries with far less guns and waaay more murder (Mexico, Colombia, South Africa, ...) which leads me to believe that Economic factors are more important than gun ownership when zeroing on on the reason why people slay one another..

While playing around with MS excel, I calculated how many guns it takes to kill a man in the US.
It takes a little bit over 21000 functional firearms to kill someone.
This information is -of course-nonsense. It takes one gun, and provided the trigger man is calm and controlled, only one shot. But it's never an issue that there are a few guns in the US, no, the control side of this argument loves to wave around the fact that the United states are the most heavily armed nation on the face of this earth. This is true, according to the small arms survey of 2007, as found here:, in THIS FILE.
So, with 90 firearms for every 100 residents (or 900 per 1000 for ease of comparison), we are in fact the most well armed civilian population.

However, according to nationmaster, our murder rate is far from number one, with under 0.043 murders per 1000 residents, we're not even in the top 20, we occupy number 24 . So do the math, 1 murder relates to (9000/0.043) just over 21000 guns if you use the exact numbers* (I try to always round down against my positions favor)

Clearly, the cause of our murder epidemic is not that people own a large amount of firearms, the problem lies with the small minority willing to abuse them.

*0.042802 per 1000 res.

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