Armes à feu: Attention, un massacre peut en cacher un autre ! (As guns could soon overtake cars as America’s number one killer, Harvard econonomist confirms that in developed countries it’s the number of handguns and not assault rifles that kill the most people and children)

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Il faut toujours dire ce que l’on voit. Surtout, il faut toujours, ce qui est plus difficile, voir ce que l’on voit. Charles Péguy
Nous ne pouvons accepter ni un monde politiquement unipolaire, ni un monde culturellement uniforme, ni l’unilatéralisme de la seule hyperpuissance. Hubert Védrine (1999)
La situation est riche en ironies. Le rejet par l’Europe de la Machtpolitik, son hostilité à l’usage des armes en politique internationale, dépendent de la présence de troupes américaines sur son sol. Le nouvel ordre kantien dont elle jouit ne pouvait fleurir que sous le parapluie protecteur de la puissance américaine exercée selon les règles du vieil ordre hobbésien. (…) Les dirigeants américains sont convaincus que la sécurité mondiale et l’ordre libéral, tout comme le paradis « postmoderne » qu’est l’Europe, ne sauraient survivre longtemps si l’Amérique n’utilisait pas sa puissance dans ce monde dangereux, hobbésien, qui est toujours la règle hors d’Europe. (…) Ainsi, bien que les Etats-Unis aient eu naguère le rôle décisif dans l’accès de l’Europe au paradis kantien, et le jouent toujours pour en assurer la survie, ils ne sauraient eux-mêmes entrer dans cet éden. Ils en gardent la muraille, mais ne peuvent en franchir la porte. Les Etats-Unis, en dépit de leur puissance considérable, demeurent englués dans l’histoire, contraints d’affronter les Saddam Hussein, les ayatollahs, les Kim Jong-iI et les Jiang Zemin, laissant à d’autres la chance d’en toucher les dividendes. Robert Kagan (2002)
N’importe qui peut jouer les gentils quand les mauvais garçons ont été abattus et le train a sifflé trois fois. Alors les habitants de la ville qui jusque là tremblaient comme une feuille peuvent ressortir dans la grand’ rue et féliciter le shérif à coups de grandes claques dans le dos, se réjouissant que son pistolet soit à nouveau tranquillement rangé dans son étui – et que tous ces cadavres de méchants hors-la-loi soient commodément hors de vue chez le croque-morts. Victor Davis Hanson
Les Européens disent maintenant au revoir à M. Bush, et espèrent l’élection d’un président américain qui partage, le croient-ils, leurs attitudes sophistiquées de postnationalisme, post-modernisme et multiculturalisme. Mais ne soyez pas étonné si, afin de protéger la liberté et la démocratie chez eux dans les années à venir, les dirigeants européens commencent à ressembler de plus en plus au cowboy à la gâchette facile de l’étranger qu’ils se délectent aujourd’hui à fustiger. Natan Sharansky
Si vous pouvez tuer un incroyant américain ou européen – en particulier les méchants et sales Français – ou un Australien ou un Canadien, ou tout […] citoyen des pays qui sont entrés dans une coalition contre l’État islamique, alors comptez sur Allah et tuez-le de n’importe quelle manière. (…) Tuez le mécréant qu’il soit civil ou militaire. (…) Frappez sa tête avec une pierre, égorgez-le avec un couteau, écrasez-le avec votre voiture, jetez-le d’un lieu en hauteur, étranglez-le ou empoisonnez-le. Abou Mohammed al-Adnani (porte-parole de l’EI)
Nous vous bénissons, nous bénissons les Mourabitoun (hommes) et les Mourabitat (femmes). Nous saluons toutes gouttes de sang versées à Jérusalem. C’est du sang pur, du sang propre, du sang qui mène à Dieu. Avec l’aide de Dieu, chaque djihadiste (shaheed) sera au paradis, et chaque blessé sera récompensé. Nous ne leur permettrons aucune avancée. Dans toutes ses divisions, Al-Aqsa est à nous et l’église du Saint Sépulcre est notre, tout est à nous. Ils n’ont pas le droit de les profaner avec leurs pieds sales, et on ne leur permettra pas non plus. Mahmoud Abbas
Je ne peux qu’imaginer ce qu’endurent ses parents. Et quand je pense à ce garçon, je pense à mes propres enfants. Si j’avais un fils, il ressemblerait à Trayvon. Obama
Et, bien sûr, ce qui est également la routine est que quelqu’un, quelque part, va commenter et dire, Obama a politisé cette question. Eh bien, cela est quelque chose que nous devrions politiser. Il est pertinent de notre vie commune ensemble, le corps politique. Obama
There is nothing more painful to me at this stage in my life than to walk down the street and hear footsteps and start thinking about robbery. Then look around and see somebody white and feel relieved. . . . After all we have been through. Just to think we can’t walk down our own streets, how humiliating. Jesse Jackson
How do we turn pain into power? How do we go from a moment to a movement that curries favor? (…) The blood of the innocent has power.  Jesse Jackson
Ce que je voulais dire, c’est que lorsque des tyrannies s’instaurent, elles essaient de désarmer le peuple d’abord, et c’est exactement ce qui s’est passé en Allemagne dans les années 1930. C’est pourquoi cela n’arrivera jamais aux Etats-Unis : parce que les (Américains) sont armés. Ben Carson
Savez-vous que les Noirs sont 10 pour cent de la population de Saint-Louis et sont responsables de 58% de ses crimes? Nous avons à faire face à cela. Et nous devons faire quelque chose au sujet de nos normes morales. Nous savons qu’il y a beaucoup de mauvaises choses dans le monde blanc, mais il y a aussi beaucoup de mauvaises choses dans le monde noir. Nous ne pouvons pas continuer à blâmer l’homme blanc. Il y a des choses que nous devons faire pour nous-mêmes. Martin Luther King (St Louis, 1961)
But what about all the other young black murder victims? Nationally, nearly half of all murder victims are black. And the overwhelming majority of those black people are killed by other black people. Where is the march for them? Where is the march against the drug dealers who prey on young black people? Where is the march against bad schools, with their 50% dropout rate for black teenaged boys? Those failed schools are certainly guilty of creating the shameful 40% unemployment rate for black teens? How about marching against the cable television shows constantly offering minstrel-show images of black youth as rappers and comedians who don’t value education, dismiss the importance of marriage, and celebrate killing people, drug money and jailhouse fashion—the pants falling down because the jail guard has taken away the belt, the shoes untied because the warden removed the shoe laces, and accessories such as the drug dealer’s pit bull. (…) There is no fashion, no thug attitude that should be an invitation to murder. But these are the real murderous forces surrounding the Martin death—and yet they never stir protests. The race-baiters argue this case deserves special attention because it fits the mold of white-on-black violence that fills the history books. Some have drawn a comparison to the murder of Emmett Till, a black boy who was killed in 1955 by white racists for whistling at a white woman. (…) While civil rights leaders have raised their voices to speak out against this one tragedy, few if any will do the same about the larger tragedy of daily carnage that is black-on-black crime in America. (…) Almost one half of the nation’s murder victims that year were black and a majority of them were between the ages of 17 and 29. Black people accounted for 13% of the total U.S. population in 2005. Yet they were the victims of 49% of all the nation’s murders. And 93% of black murder victims were killed by other black people, according to the same report. (…) The killing of any child is a tragedy. But where are the protests regarding the larger problems facing black America? Juan Williams
« More whites are killed by the police than blacks primarily because whites outnumber blacks in the general population by more than five to one, » Forst said. The country is about 63 percent white and 12 percent black. (…) A 2002 study in the American Journal of Public Health found that the death rate due to legal intervention was more than three times higher for blacks than for whites in the period from 1988 to 1997. (…) Candace McCoy is a criminologist at the John Jay College of Criminal Justice at the City University of New York. McCoy said blacks might be more likely to have a violent encounter with police because they are convicted of felonies at a higher rate than whites. Felonies include everything from violent crimes like murder and rape, to property crimes like burglary and embezzlement, to drug trafficking and gun offenses. The Bureau of Justice Statistics reported that in 2004, state courts had over 1 million felony convictions. Of those, 59 percent were committed by whites and 38 percent by blacks. But when you factor in the population of whites and blacks, the felony rates stand at 330 per 100,000 for whites and 1,178 per 100,000 for blacks. That’s more than a three-fold difference. McCoy noted that this has more to do with income than race. The felony rates for poor whites are similar to those of poor blacks. « Felony crime is highly correlated with poverty, and race continues to be highly correlated with poverty in the USA, » McCoy said. « It is the most difficult and searing problem in this whole mess. » PunditFact
The absurdity of Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton is that they want to make a movement out of an anomaly. Black teenagers today are afraid of other black teenagers, not whites. … Trayvon’s sad fate clearly sent a quiver of perverse happiness all across America’s civil rights establishment, and throughout the mainstream media as well. His death was vindication of the ‘poetic truth’ that these establishments live by. Shelby Steele
Before the 1960s the black American identity (though no one ever used the word) was based on our common humanity, on the idea that race was always an artificial and exploitive division between people. After the ’60s—in a society guilty for its long abuse of us—we took our historical victimization as the central theme of our group identity. We could not have made a worse mistake. It has given us a generation of ambulance-chasing leaders, and the illusion that our greatest power lies in the manipulation of white guilt. Shelby Steele
Ms. Harper, who divorced her husband a decade ago, appears to have been by far the most significant figure in her son’s troubled life; neighbors say he rarely left their apartment. Unlike his father, who said on television that he had no idea Mr. Harper-Mercer cared so deeply about guns, his mother was well aware of his fascination. In fact, she shared it: In a series of online postings over a decade, Ms. Harper, a nurse, said she kept numerous firearms in her home and expressed pride in her knowledge about them, as well as in her son’s expertise on the subject. She also opened up about her difficulties raising a son who used to bang his head against the wall, and said that both she and her son struggled with Asperger’s syndrome, an autism spectrum disorder. (…) In an online forum, answering a question about state gun laws several years ago, Ms. Harper took a jab at “lame states” that impose limits on keeping loaded firearms in the home, and noted that she had AR-15 and AK-47 semiautomatic rifles, along with a Glock handgun. She also indicated that her son, who lived with her, was well versed in guns, citing him as her source of information on gun laws, saying he “has much knowledge in this field.” “I keep two full mags in my Glock case. And the ARs & AKs all have loaded mags,” Ms. Harper wrote. “No one will be ‘dropping’ by my house uninvited without acknowledgement.” Law enforcement officials have said they recovered 14 firearms and spare ammunition magazines that were purchased legally either by Mr. Harper-Mercer, 26, or an unnamed relative. Mr. Harper-Mercer had six guns with him when he entered a classroom building on Thursday and started firing on a writing class in which he was enrolled; the rest were found in the second-floor apartment he shared with his mother. (…) Neighbors in Southern California have said that Ms. Harper and her son would go to shooting ranges together, something Ms. Harper seemed to confirm in one of her online posts. She talked about the importance of firearms safety and said she learned a lot through target shooting, expressing little patience with unprepared gun owners: “When I’m at the range, I cringe every time the ‘wannabes’ show up.” NYT
According to data gathered by the Centres for Disease Control (CDC), deaths caused by cars in America are in long-term decline. Improved technology, tougher laws and less driving by young people have all led to safer streets and highways. Deaths by guns, though—the great majority suicides, accidents or domestic violence—have been trending slightly upwards. This year, if the trend continues, they will overtake deaths on the roads. The Centre for American Progress first spotted last February that the lines would intersect. Now, on its reading, new data to the end of 2012 support the view that guns will surpass cars this year as the leading killer of under 25s. Bloomberg Government has gone further. Its compilation of the CDC data in December concluded that guns would be deadlier for all age groups. (…) There are about 320m people in the United States, and nearly as many civilian firearms. And although the actual rate of gun ownership is declining, enthusiasts are keeping up the number in circulation. Black Friday on November 28th kicked off such a shopping spree that the FBI had to carry out 175,000 instant background checks (three checks a second), a record for that day, just for sales covered by the extended Brady Act of 1998, the only serious bit of gun-curbing legislation passed in recent history. Many sales escape that oversight, however. Everytown for Gun Safety, a movement backed by Mike Bloomberg, a former mayor of New York, has investigated loopholes in online gun sales and found that one in 30 users of Armslist classifieds has a criminal record that forbids them to own firearms. Private reselling of guns draws no attention, unless it crosses state lines. William Vizzard, a professor of criminal justice at California State University at Sacramento, points out that guns also don’t wear out as fast as cars. “I compare a gun to a hammer or a crowbar,” he says. “Even if you stopped making guns today, you might not see a real change in the number of guns for decades.”Motor vehicles, because they are operated on government-built roads, have been subject to licensing and registration, in the interests of public safety, for more than a century. But guns are typically kept at home. That private space is shielded by the Fourth Amendment just as “the right to bear arms” is protected by the Second, making government control difficult. Car technologies and road laws are ever-evolving: in 2014, for example, the National Highways Traffic Safety Administration announced its plan to phase in mandatory rear-view cameras on new light vehicles, while New York City lowered its speed limit for local roads. By contrast, safety features on firearms—such as smartguns unlocked by an owner’s thumbprint or a radio-frequency encryption—are opposed by the National Rifle Association, whose allies in Congress also block funding for the sort of public-health research that might show, in even clearer detail, the cost of America’s love affair with guns. The Economist
For the better part of a century, the machine most likely to kill an American has been the automobile. Car crashes killed 33,561 people in 2012, the most recent year for which data is available, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Firearms killed 32,251 people in the United States in 2011, the most recent year for which the Centers for Disease Control has data. But this year gun deaths are expected to surpass car deaths. That’s according to a Center for American Progress report, which cites CDC data that shows guns will kill more Americans under 25 than cars in 2015. Already more than a quarter of the teenagers—15 years old and up—who die of injuries in the United States are killed in gun-related incidents, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics. A similar analysis by Bloomberg three years ago found shooting deaths in 2015 « will probably rise to almost 33,000, and those related to autos will decline to about 32,000, based on the 10-year average trend. »  The Atlantic
The law that barred the sale of assault weapons from 1994 to 2004 made little difference. It turns out that big, scary military rifles don’t kill the vast majority of the 11,000 Americans murdered with guns each year. Little handguns do. In 2012, only 322 people were murdered with any kind of rifle, F.B.I. data shows. The continuing focus on assault weapons stems from the media’s obsessive focus on mass shootings, which disproportionately involve weapons like the AR-15, a civilian version of the military M16 rifle. (…) This politically defined category of guns — a selection of rifles, shotguns and handguns with “military-style” features — only figured in about 2 percent of gun crimes nationwide before the ban. Handguns were used in more than 80 percent of gun murders each year, but gun control advocates had failed to interest enough of the public in a handgun ban. Handguns were the weapons most likely to kill you, but they were associated by the public with self-defense. (In 2008, the Supreme Court said there was a constitutional right to keep a loaded handgun at home for self-defense.) (…) Still, the majority of Americans continued to support a ban on assault weapons. One reason: The use of these weapons may be rare over all, but they’re used frequently in the gun violence that gets the most media coverage, mass shootings. The criminologist James Alan Fox at Northeastern University estimates that there have been an average of 100 victims killed each year in mass shootings over the past three decades. That’s less than 1 percent of gun homicide victims. But these acts of violence in schools and movie theaters have come to define the problem of gun violence in America. Most Americans do not know that gun homicides have decreased by 49 percent since 1993 as violent crime also fell, though rates of gun homicide in the United States are still much higher than those in other developed nations. A Pew survey conducted after the mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., found that 56 percent of Americans believed wrongly that the rate of gun crime was higher than it was 20 years ago. NYT
A 2-year-old Kentucky girl was accidentally killed by her 5-year-old brother who fired a rifle he had been given as a gift, officials said Wednesday. Cumberland County Coroner Gary L. White said (…) “Most everybody in town is pretty devastated by this,” White said. “Nobody wants to take anyone’s guns away, but you’ve got to keep them out of harm’s way for the kids. It’s a safety issue.”(…)  The mother had just stepped outside the house for a moment, White said. (…) The rifle used in the accident is a Crickett designed for children and sold under the slogan “My First Rifle,” according to the company’s website. It is a smaller weapon designed for children and comes with a shoulder stock in child-like colors including pink and swirls. “The little Crickett rifle is a single-shot rifle and it has a child safety,” White said. “This was just a tragic accident.” The child safety lock was in place and operational, White said. Officials believe a shell had been left in the weapon from the last use and no one realized it. “In my fifteen years as coroner, this is the first such case,” he said. “It is very, very rare.” It is legal in Kentucky to give a child a rifle as a gift, White said. Nor is it unusual for children to have rifles, often passed down from their parents, he said. Earlier this month, Brandon Holt, 6, was accidentally shot to death by a 4-year-old playmate in New Jersey. LA Times
Un petit Américain de 5 ans qui jouait avec un fusil qu’on lui avait offert a tué mardi sa petite sœur de 2 ans dans leur maison du Kentucky (centre-est). Selon le médecin légiste du comté rural de Cumberland, il s’agit d’un accident. «Ça fait partie de ces accidents insensés», a affirmé Gary White, interrogé par le journal local, The Lexington Herald-Leader. (…) Selon le médecin, la maman des enfants qui faisait le ménage, était momentanément sortie sur le porche de la maison. «Elle a dit que pas plus de 3 minutes s’étaient écoulées puis elle a entendu la détonation. Elle a couru dans la maison et a trouvé la petite fille», a expliqué Gary White à la télévision locale WKYT. Le fusil, un .22 long rifle spécialement conçu pour les enfants, était un cadeau que le petit garçon avait reçu l’année dernière. Il était stocké dans le coin d’une pièce et les parents ne savaient pas qu’il restait une munition à l’intérieur, a affirmé le médecin légiste. «C’est un petit fusil pour enfant, de marque Crickett. Le petit garçon avait l’habitude de tirer avec», a-t-il confié au Lexington Herald-Leader. Libération (01.05.13)
Après la récente fusillade dans une université américaine qui a coûté la vie à 9 étudiants, c’est un nouveau drame qui a endeuillé les Etats-Unis, d’autant plus terrible que l’assassin et sa victime sont des enfants : un jeune garçon âgé de 11 ans, originaire du Tennessee, a été formellement accusé d’avoir tué samedi par balle une fillette de 8 ans avec un fusil de calibre 12 après une dispute au sujet de chiots. Une voisine a dit à la chaine WBIR, affiliée à CBS, que la jeune fille, Makayla Dyer, jouait avec les voisins samedi soir à White Pine, à l’extérieur de Knoxville. Elle a ensuite commencé à discuter avec le garçon, qui n’avait alors pas été identifié, par une fenêtre ouverte de son domicile. « Il a demandé à la petite fille de voir ses chiots », a rapporté la voisine, Chasity Atwood, à WBID. « Elle a dit non et a ri et puis s’est retournée, a regardé son amie et dit ‘Allons chercher les…’. Mais elle n’a pas eu le temps de dire le mot ‘chiots’ ». Le garçon lui avait déjà tiré une balle dans la poitrine. French people daily
Un garçon américain de 11 ans abat une fillette de 8 ans après une dispute. (…) Il s’est servi du fusil calibre 12 de son père. Un garçon de 11 ans a tué par balle sa voisine, une fillette de 8 ans. La ville de White Pine (Tennessee, Etats-Unis), où le drame s’est déroulé, est sous le choc, rapporte la chaîne locale américaine WATE, lundi 5 octobre. Samedi, la petite fille prénommée McKayla jouait dehors. Son jeune voisin lui aurait demandé de voir son chiot. Elle lui aurait répondu « non ». Vers 19h30, il l’a abattue. (…) « Cette arme aurait dû être mise sous clé ou au moins hors de portée », a dénoncé une voisine, interrogée par la chaîne locale WBIR. Le débat sur le contrôle des armes à feu a été relancé aux Etats-Unis après la fusillade du 1er octobre sur un campus universitaire de l’Oregon. Francetvinfo
Un garçon de 11 ans a été inculpé d’assassinat dans l’Etat américain du Tennessee après avoir tué par balle McKayla Dyer, sa voisine, âgée de 8 ans, lors d’une dispute concernant un chiot. (…) Le débat sur le contrôle des armes à feu a été relancé aux Etats-Unis après la fusillade du 2 octobre sur un campus universitaire de l’Oregon, au cours de laquelle un jeune homme de 26 ans a abattu 9 personnes. (…) Selon le site Gun Violence Archive, 559 enfants de moins de 11 ans ont été tués ou blessés depuis le début de l’année aux Etats-Unis. Le Monde
Since 2002, St. Louis Children’s Hospital has cared for 771 children injured or killed by gunfire; 35 percent were younger than 15. These include the recent 12-year-old boy accidentally killed by his friend when playing with his grandfather’s pistol kept under his pillow, the 2-year-old boy paralyzed when his father accidentally discharged his gun during loading, the 5-year-old girl caught in a cross-fire as she sat on her front porch, the 10-year-old boy killed by his mother overwhelmed with mental illness, and the 4-year-old boy who found a handgun in a closet at home, placed the barrel into his mouth and pulled the trigger as he had often done to get a drink from his water-pistol. Many of these children died despite the heroic efforts of our highly trained pre-hospital, emergency, surgical and critical care staff. In 2010, seven American children age 19 and younger were killed every day. This is twice the number of children who die from cancer, five times the number from heart disease, and 15 times the number from infections. This is also the equivalent of 128 Newtown shootings. It has been estimated at least 38 percent of American households have a gun. In homes with children younger than 18, 22 percent store the gun loaded, 32 percent unlocked, and 8 percent unlocked and loaded. The children in these homes know the gun is present, and many handle the gun in the absence of their parents. Children who have received gun safety training are just as likely to play with and fire a real gun as children not trained. In one study, 8-to-12-year-old boys were observed via one-way mirror as they played for 15 minutes in a waiting room with a disabled .38 caliber handgun concealed in a desk drawer. Seventy two percent discovered the gun, and 48 percent pulled the trigger; 90 percent of those who handled the gun and/or pulled the trigger had prior gun safety instruction. Rather than confer protection, careful studies find guns stored in the home are more likely to be involved in an accidental death, homicide by a family member, or suicide than against an intruder. In 2009, suicide was the third leading cause of death for American youth, with firearms the most common method used. The American Academy of Pediatrics has concluded, “The most effective measure to prevent suicide, homicide, and unintentional firearm-related injuries to children and adolescents is the absence of guns from homes and communities.” (…)  It has been done in many other economically advanced countries, and we can do it in the United States. St Louis-Post dispatch
Drs. Kennedy, Jaffe & Keller (…) quote statistics that would lead the reader to believe that child gun deaths are a national public health crisis. They suggest that there is an epidemic of gun violence that threatens the safety, health and well-being of our children and devote considerable print to listing the number of children killed or treated for gunshot injuries at St. Louis Children’s Hospital. However, most of the individual cases they report suggest that accidental shootings are the main culprit for these injuries, and that inadequate gun storage at home is to blame. In reality, as is obvious from the daily reporting by the Post-Dispatch of area gun violence, most of the victims of these gun-related deaths and injuries are inner-city residents and their injuries are not accidental. According to reliable statistical data reported in 2009 covering the years 1904-2006, from the National Center for Health Statistics (1981 on) and the National Safety Council (prior to 1981), while the number of privately owned guns in the U.S. is at an all-time high, and rises by about 4.5 million per year, the firearm accident death rate is at an all-time annual low, 0.2 per 100,000 population, down 94 percent since the all-time high in 1904. Since 1930, the annual number of such deaths has decreased 80 percent, to an all-time low, while the U.S. population has more than doubled and the number of firearms has quintupled. Among children, such deaths have decreased 90 percent since 1975. Today, the odds are more than a million to one against a child in the U.S. dying in a firearm accident. According to the 2009 data, in reality among all child accidental deaths nationally, firearms were involved in 1.1 percent, compared to motor vehicles (41 percent), suffocation (21 percent), drowning (15 percent), fires (8 percent), pedal cycles (2 percent), poisoning (2 percent), falls (1.9 percent), environmental factors (1.5 percent), and medical mistakes (1 percent). Since the difference between accidental deaths due to medical mistakes (1 percent) and accidental deaths due to firearms (1.1 percent) is only 0.1 percentage points, perhaps we should consider a ban on pediatricians along with the ban they propose on firearms and large-capacity magazines. F.A. Ruecker
411 children (age 14 and under) died from gunfire in all of 2012 or slightly more than one per day. This includes homicides, accidents, and suicides combined. Gun facts
Il est en effet essentiel de mettre les choses en perspective : les tueries de masse, bien que tragiques, restent statistiquement extrêmement rares. Moins de 0,2% des homicides sont liés à des tueries de masse. De manière plus large et malgré la perception générale du contraire, le taux de crime aux États-Unis est en baisse constante depuis plus de 20 ans. Même le taux d’homicides par armes à feu est en baisse, de 49% depuis 1993. Ainsi, depuis plus de 20 ans aux États-Unis, le taux de crime diminue, et ce malgré un nombre record d’armes à feu détenus par des Américains. Dans le même temps, le nombre de permis de port d’arme en public (« concealed carry permit ») a lui aussi augmenté. « Plus d’armes = plus de crimes », vraiment ? Mais au-delà des crimes demeure un fait peu rappelé dans les débats qui suivent les tueries aux États-Unis : avec plus de 300 millions d’armes à feu en circulation, les citoyens américains utilisent massivement leurs armes pour des motifs légitimes. Parmi ceux-ci, on retrouve la collection, la chasse, le tir sportif ou encore la défense de soi et de son prochain. Ainsi, plus de 99,9% des Américains propriétaires légaux d’armes n’ont jamais utilisé celles-ci pour causer du tort à autrui. De quel droit viendrait-on restreindre leurs libertés parce qu’un dément a utilisé ses propres armes à feu pour nuire à autrui ? Non seulement l’immense majorité de ces détenteurs légaux d’armes à feu ne cause pas de tort à autrui, mais elle empêche des crimes et sauvent des vies. Combien de crimes n’ont jamais eu lieu parce que des criminels violents, de peur de se faire abattre, ont été dissuadés d’agresser autrui ? (…)  Par définition, un criminel ne respecte pas la loi. Un fou souhaitant commettre une tuerie trouvera toujours les outils nécessaires. Les seules personnes concernées par les lois sur les armes à feu sont les citoyens honnêtes et pacifiques. Toutefois malgré ces efforts, il paraît vain de souhaiter en finir avec la violence. Certaines personnes seront toujours promptes à agresser autrui. Et face à ces personnes-là, les citoyens honnêtes doivent pouvoir s’armer pour leur défense. Cela n’a pas été le cas sur le campus de l’université dans l’Oregon qui était une « gun free zone », une zone où les citoyens honnêtes en possession de permis de port d’arme ne peuvent la porter. Le tueur avait ainsi le champ libre, sachant que ses victimes seraient incapables de se défendre avant l’arrivée de la police.L’État américain doit en finir avec cette politique de « gun free zones » qui n’empêchent pas les tueurs de commettre leurs crimes, mais empêche une réponse rapide de citoyens qui pourraient stopper l’attaque. Edouard H.
Now, quick: Name the mass shooters at the Chattanooga military recruitment center; the Washington Navy Yard; the high school in Washington state; Fort Hood (the second time) and the Christian college in California. All those shootings also occurred during the last three years. The answers are: Mohammad Youssuf Abdulazeez, Kuwaiti; Aaron Alexis, black, possibly Barbadian-American; Jaylen Ray Fryberg, Indian; Ivan Antonio Lopez, Hispanic; and One L. Goh, Korean immigrant. Ann Coulter
Our review of the academic literature found that a broad array of evidence indicates that gun availability is a risk factor for homicide, both in the United States and across high-income countries. Case-control studies, ecological time-series and cross-sectional studies indicate that in homes, cities, states and regions in the US, where there are more guns, both men and women are at higher risk for homicide, particularly firearm homicide. (…) Using survey data on rates of household gun ownership, we examined the association between gun availability and homicide across states, 2001-2003. We found that states with higher levels of household gun ownership had higher rates of firearm homicide and overall homicide. This relationship held for both genders and all age groups, after accounting for rates of aggravated assault, robbery, unemployment, urbanization, alcohol consumption, and resource deprivation (e.g., poverty). There was no association between gun prevalence and non-firearm homicide. Harvard Injury Control Research Center
We analyzed data for 50 states over 19 years to investigate the relationship between gun prevalence and accidental gun deaths across different age groups. For every age group, where there are more guns there are more accidental deaths. The mortality rate was 7 times higher in the four states with the most guns compared to the four states with the fewest guns. (…) Across states, both firearm prevalence AND questionable storage practices (i.e. storing firearms loaded and unlocked) were associated with higher rates of unintentional firearm deaths. (…) The majority of people killed in firearm accidents are under age 24, and most of these young people are being shot by someone else, usually someone their own age. The shooter is typically a friend or family member, often an older brother. By contrast, older adults are at far lower risk of accidental firearm death, and most often are shooting themselves. (…)  Harvard Injury Control Research Center
The central insight of the modern study of criminal violence is that all crime—even the horrific violent crimes of assault and rape—is at some level opportunistic. Building a low annoying wall against them is almost as effective as building a high impenetrable one. This is the key concept of Franklin Zimring’s amazing work on crime in New York; everyone said that, given the social pressures, the slum pathologies, the profits to be made in drug dealing, the ascending levels of despair, that there was no hope of changing the ever-growing cycle of violence. The right wing insisted that this generation of predators would give way to a new generation of super-predators. What the New York Police Department found out, through empirical experience and better organization, was that making crime even a little bit harder made it much, much rarer. This is undeniably true of property crime, and common sense and evidence tells you that this is also true even of crimes committed by crazy people (to use the plain English the subject deserves). Those who hold themselves together enough to be capable of killing anyone are subject to the same rules of opportunity as sane people. Even madmen need opportunities to display their madness, and behave in different ways depending on the possibilities at hand. Demand an extraordinary degree of determination and organization from someone intent on committing a violent act, and the odds that the violent act will take place are radically reduced, in many cases to zero. Look at the Harvard social scientist David Hemenway’s work on gun violence to see how simple it is; the phrase “more guns = more homicide” tolls through it like a grim bell. The more guns there are in a country, the more gun murders and massacres of children there will be. Even within this gun-crazy country, states with strong gun laws have fewer gun murders (and suicides and accidental killings) than states without them. (…) Summoning the political will to make it happen may be hard. But there’s no doubt or ambiguity about what needs to be done, nor that, if it is done, it will work. One would have to believe that Americans are somehow uniquely evil or depraved to think that the same forces that work on the rest of the planet won’t work here. It’s always hard to summon up political will for change, no matter how beneficial the change may obviously be. Summoning the political will to make automobiles safe was difficult; so was summoning the political will to limit and then effectively ban cigarettes from public places. At some point, we will become a gun-safe, and then a gun-sane, and finally a gun-free society. It’s closer than you think. (…) Gun control is not a panacea, any more than penicillin was. Some violence will always go on. What gun control is good at is controlling guns. Gun control will eliminate gun massacres in America as surely as antibiotics eliminate bacterial infections. As I wrote last week, those who oppose it have made a moral choice: that they would rather have gun massacres of children continue rather than surrender whatever idea of freedom or pleasure they find wrapped up in owning guns or seeing guns owned (…) On gun violence and how to end it, the facts are all in, the evidence is clear, the truth there for all who care to know it—indeed, a global consensus is in place, which, in disbelief and now in disgust, the planet waits for us to join. Those who fight against gun control, actively or passively, with a shrug of helplessness, are dooming more kids to horrible deaths and more parents to unspeakable grief just as surely as are those who fight against pediatric medicine or childhood vaccination. It’s really, and inarguably, just as simple as that. Adam Gopnik
Statistically, the United States is not a particularly violent society. Although gun proponents like to compare this country with hot spots like Colombia, Mexico, and Estonia (making America appear a truly peaceable kingdom), a more relevant comparison is against other high-income, industrialized nations. The percentage of the U.S. population victimized in 2000 by crimes like assault, car theft, burglary, robbery, and sexual incidents is about average for 17 industrialized countries, and lower on many indices than Canada, Australia, or New Zealand. « The only thing that jumps out is lethal violence, » Hemenway says. Violence, pace H. Rap Brown, is not « as American as cherry pie, » but American violence does tend to end in death. The reason, plain and simple, is guns. We own more guns per capita than any other high-income country— maybe even more than one gun for every man, woman, and child in the country. A 1994 survey numbered the U.S. gun supply at more than 200 million in a population then numbered at 262 million, and currently about 35 percent of American households have guns. (These figures count only civilian guns; Switzerland, for example, has plenty of military weapons per capita.) Craig Lambert
Why manufacture guns that go off when you drop them?. Kids play with guns. We put childproof safety caps on aspirin bottles because if kids take too many aspirin, they get sick. You could blame the parents for gun accidents but, as with aspirin, manufacturers could help. It’s very easy to make childproof guns. »The gun-control debate often makes it look like there are only two options: either take away people’s guns, or not. That’s not it at all. This is more like a harm-reduction strategy. Recognize that there are a lot of guns out there, and that reasonable gun policies can minimize the harm that comes from them. (…) It’s not as if a 19-year-old in the United States is more evil than a 19-year-old in Australia— there’s no evidence for that. But a 19-year-old in America can very easily get a pistol. That’s very hard to do in Australia. So when there’s a bar fight in Australia, somebody gets punched out or hit with a beer bottle. Here, they get shot. (…) What guns do is make crimes lethal. They also make suicide attempts lethal: about 60 percent of suicides in America involve guns. If you try to kill yourself with drugs, there’s a 2 to 3 percent chance of dying. With guns, the chance is 90 percent. (…) In Wyoming it’s hard to have big gang fights. Do you call up the other gang and drive 30 miles to meet up? (…) Handguns are the crime guns. They are the ones you can conceal, the guns you take to go rob somebody. You don’t mug people at rifle-point. (…) We have done four surveys on self-defense gun use. And one thing we know for sure is that there’s a lot more criminal gun use than self-defense gun use. And even when people say they pulled their gun in ‘self-defense,’ it usually turns out that there was just an escalating argument —at some point, people feel afraid and draw guns. (…) How often might you appropriately use a gun in self-defense?.  Answer: zero to once in a lifetime. How about inappropriately —because you were tired, afraid, or drunk in a confrontational situation? There are lots and lots of chances. When your anger takes over, it’s nice not to have guns lying around. (…)  « A determined criminal will always get a gun » (…) Yes, but a lot of people aren’t that determined. I’m sure there are some determined yacht buyers out there, but when you raise the price high enough, a lot of them stop buying yachts. (…)  « You can go to a gun show, flea market, the Internet, or classified ads and buy a gun— no questions asked. (…) For decades, there were no plaintiff victories beyond the appellate level » in the tobacco litigation. Reasonable suits might allege things that the manufacturers could do to make guns safer. (…) People say, ‘Teach kids not to pull the trigger,’ but kids will do it. (…)  You could make it hard to remove a serial number. You won’t eliminate the problem, but you can decrease it. (…) You can arrest speeders, but you can also put speed bumps or chicanes [curved, alternating-side curb extensions] into residential areas where children play….Just as…you can revoke the license of bad doctors, but also build [a medical] environment in which it’s harder to make an error, and the mistakes made are not serious or fatal. (…) We know what works. We know that speed kills, so if you raise speed limits, expect to see more highway deaths. Motorcycle helmets work; seat belts work. Car inspections and driver education have no effect. Right-on-red laws mean more pedestrians hit by cars. (…) The goal at home and abroad is to make sure the guns we have are safe, and that people use them properly. We’d like to create a world where it’s hard to make mistakes with guns— and when you do make a mistake, it’s not a terrible thing.  David Hemenway (Harvard)
Qui arrêtera ce nouveau massacre des innocents ?
En ces temps étranges où, brutalisation djihadiste ou victimisation médiatique oblige, le premier imbécile ou damné de la terre venu peut ou se sent obligé d’entrainer dans sa mort, y compris au couteau de boucher, à la voiture-bélier ou à l’avion-missile, des dizaines voire des centaines ou des milliers d’anonymes dans sa mort …
Et où après l’avoir si longtemps dénoncé, l’on se plaint, aujourd’hui que notre rêve de monde multipolaire est enfin exaucé, de l’absence sur la scène mondiale de plus en plus catastrophique du seul pays capable d’en jouer les gendarmes …
Pendant qu’au nom de normes écologiques toujours plus draconiennes, l’on pousse nos constructeurs automobiles à trafiquer nos moteurs …
Et qu’au lendemain, alors que malgré la baisse des dix dernières années les armes à feu pourraient dès cette année dépasser l’automobile comme première cause de décès, d’un énième massacre dans une école américaine (dans une zone interdite aux armes) suivi comme il se doit de deux autres presque simultanés mais heureusement beaucoup moins meurtriers), partisans et opposants se jettent les éternels mêmes arguments à la figure …
Entre un président et ses amis chasseurs d’ambulances incapables de résister à une occasion de récupération politique et un candidat républicain et brillant ex-neurochirurgien qui se sent obligé pour flatter le lobby des armes à feu d’invoquer le génocide juif …
 
Qui rappelle avec l’économiste de la santé américain et ancien nadérite David Hemenway

Qu’aussi tragiques et médiatiques qu’elles soient, ces tueries de masse ne constituent en fait qu’une infime partie du total des homicides (moins de 1% ) et que les armes de guerre qui  leur sont souvent associées n’entrent en jeu que dans 2% des cas ?

 Qui a l’honnêteté de signaler que l’évidence apparemment mathématique (plus d’armes entrainent plus de victimes) ne tient en fait que pour les pays développés (y compris à  l’intérieur même des Etats-Unis – Wyoming: 17,5 décès pour 60% de  possession vs. Massachussets: 3,18 pour 10,6), le cas des pays en développement démontrant largement qu’on peut faire (beaucoup) plus avec (très) peu (Honduras: about 64,8 décès /100 000 pour seulement 6, 2% de possession,  soit presque six fois plus de décès avec 18 fois moins d’armes que les EU), Venezuela: 50,9 pour 10,7%,  Jamaïque: 39,74 pour 8,1% contre 10,6 pour 112,6% pour les EU mais 3,1 pour  31,2% pour la France – mais des taux d’homicide volontaire de 13.3, 7.9, 2.7 et 1.8  % pour Guyane, Guadeloupe, Martinique et Réunion vs. 1.2 pour la France) ?
Qui osera alors en tirer l’évidente conclusion – éléphant dans la pièce qu’il devient de plus en plus difficile de voir, Hemenway compris – que l’on a en fait affaire à deux Amérique emboitées l’une dans l’autre,  les ghettos noirs, qui pour une population noire totale de 12% de la population totale concentre 41% des auteurs et près de 50% des victimes d’homicides, fonctionnant en fait comme des îlots de sous-développement à l’intérieur d’un pays par ailleurs à la pointe du développement ?
Mais en même temps qui prend la peine d’expliquer que c’est par ailleurs aussi  par effet d’opportunité et d’incitation que ce trop-plein d’armes principalement de poing (près de 113 armes à feu pour 100 habitants !) peut rendre catastrophiques et irréversibles, sans parler des rixes ou des simples vols, les moindres accidents, suicides ou disputes au sein même des familles ?
Qui aura enfin le courage d’exiger face au puissant lobby des fabricants mais aussi des fondamentalistes de la liberté à tout prix …

Un minimum, comme cela a été fait pour l’industrie de l’automobile ou du tabac notamment avec les fameuses « class actions », de sécurités et de contrôles pour les produits …

D’une industrie qui continue à tuer …
Entre homicides, accidents et suicides et certes aussi l’imprudence voire l’inconscience de nombreux parents mais aussi la brutalité de certains policiers
Et à l’instar, sans compter le bébé de 5 mois de Cleveland le même jour que la tuerie de l’Oregon, de ce petit garçon de 11 ans du Tennessee qui a tué sa petite voisine de 8 ans quatre jours après pour avoir refusé de lui montrer son petit chien …
Plus de 400 enfants par an et déjà 563 pour les 10 premiers mois de cette année ?
Ce qui ne fait certes, diront les critiques, que 40 fois moins que le bilan des accidents automobiles  pour lesdits enfants et qu’à peine 20 fois celui du massacre de Newtown …

Death by the Barrel
David Hemenway applies scientific method to the gun problem
Craig Lambert
Harvard magazine
September-October 2004
This particular gun story took place, ironically enough, at the 1997 convention of the American Public Health Association in Indianapolis. There, among a group of white-collar professionals and academics, a seemingly minor incident quickly led to mayhem. While eating dinner at the Planet Hollywood restaurant, a patron bent to pick something up from the floor. A small pistol fell from his pocket, hit the floor, and went off. The bullet struck and injured two convention delegates waiting to be seated; both women went to the hospital. »Why manufacture guns that go off when you drop them? » asks professor of health policy David Hemenway ’66, Ph.D. ’74. « Kids play with guns. We put childproof safety caps on aspirin bottles because if kids take too many aspirin, they get sick. You could blame the parents for gun accidents but, as with aspirin, manufacturers could help. It’s very easy to make childproof guns. »

Logic like this pervades Hemenway’s new book, Private Guns, Public Health (University of Michigan Press), which takes an original approach to an old problem by applying a scientific perspective to firearms. Hemenway, who directs the Harvard Injury Control Research Center at the School of Public Health (www.hsph.harvard.edu/hicrc), summarizes and interprets findings from hundreds of surveys and from epidemiological and field studies to deliver on the book’s subtitle: A Dramatic New Plan for Ending America’s Epidemic of Gun Violence. The empirical groundwork enables Hemenway, whose doctorate is in economics, to sidestep decades of political arm-wrestling over gun control. « The gun-control debate often makes it look like there are only two options: either take away people’s guns, or not, » he says. « That’s not it at all. This is more like a harm-reduction strategy. Recognize that there are a lot of guns out there, and that reasonable gun policies can minimize the harm that comes from them. »

Hemenway’s work on guns and violence is a natural evolution of his research on injuries of various kinds, which he has pursued for decades. (In fact, it could be traced as far back as the 1960s, when, working for Ralph Nader, LL.B. ’58, he investigated product safety as one of « Nader’s Raiders. ») Hemenway says he doesn’t have a personal issue with guns; he has shot firearms, but found the experience « loud and dirty—and there’s no exercise »—as opposed to the « paintball » survival games he enjoys, which involve not only shooting but « a lot of running. » He also happens to live in a state with strong gun laws. « It’s nice, » he says, « to have raised my son in Massachusetts, where he is so much safer. »

Statistically, the United States is not a particularly violent society. Although gun proponents like to compare this country with hot spots like Colombia, Mexico, and Estonia (making America appear a truly peaceable kingdom), a more relevant comparison is against other high-income, industrialized nations. The percentage of the U.S. population victimized in 2000 by crimes like assault, car theft, burglary, robbery, and sexual incidents is about average for 17 industrialized countries, and lower on many indices than Canada, Australia, or New Zealand.

« The only thing that jumps out is lethal violence, » Hemenway says. Violence, pace H. Rap Brown, is not « as American as cherry pie, » but American violence does tend to end in death. The reason, plain and simple, is guns. We own more guns per capita than any other high-income country—maybe even more than one gun for every man, woman, and child in the country. A 1994 survey numbered the U.S. gun supply at more than 200 million in a population then numbered at 262 million, and currently about 35 percent of American households have guns. (These figures count only civilian guns; Switzerland, for example, has plenty of military weapons per capita.)

« It’s not as if a 19-year-old in the United States is more evil than a 19-year-old in Australia—there’s no evidence for that, » Hemenway explains. « But a 19-year-old in America can very easily get a pistol. That’s very hard to do in Australia. So when there’s a bar fight in Australia, somebody gets punched out or hit with a beer bottle. Here, they get shot. »

In general, guns don’t induce people to commit crimes. « What guns do is make crimes lethal, » says Hemenway. They also make suicide attempts lethal: about 60 percent of suicides in America involve guns. « If you try to kill yourself with drugs, there’s a 2 to 3 percent chance of dying, » he explains. « With guns, the chance is 90 percent. »

Gun deaths fall into three categories: homicides, suicides, and accidental killings. In 2001, about 30,000 people died from gunfire in the United States. Set this against the 43,000 annual deaths from motor-vehicle accidents to recognize what startling carnage comes out of a barrel. The comparison is especially telling because cars « are a way of life, » as Hemenway explains. « People use cars all day, every day—and ‘motor vehicles’ include trucks. How many of us use guns? »

Suicides accounted for about 58 percent of gun fatalities, or 17,000 to 18,000 deaths, in 2001; another 11,000 deaths, or 37 percent, were homicides, and the remaining 800 to 900 gun deaths were accidental. For rural areas, the big problem is suicide; in cities, it’s homicide. (« In Wyoming it’s hard to have big gang fights, » Hemenway observes dryly. « Do you call up the other gang and drive 30 miles to meet up? ») Homicides follow a curve similar to that of motor-vehicle fatalities: rising steeply between ages 15 and 21, staying fairly level from there until age 65, then rising again with advanced age. Men between 25 and 55 commit the bulk of suicides, and younger males account for an inflated share of both homicides and unintentional shootings. (Males suffer all injuries, including gunshots, at much higher rates than females.)

Though assault weapons have attracted lots of publicity from Hollywood and Washington, and NRA stands for National Rifle Association, these facts mask the reality of the gun problem, which centers on pistols. « Handguns are the crime guns, » Hemenway says. « They are the ones you can conceal, the guns you take to go rob somebody. You don’t mug people at rifle-point. »

And America is awash in handguns. Canada, for example, has almost as many guns per capita as the United States, but Americans own far more pistols. « Where do Canadian criminals, and Mexican criminals, get their handguns? » asks Hemenway. « From the United States. » Gang members in Boston and New York get their handguns from other states with permissive gun laws; the firearms flow freely across state borders. Interstate 95, which runs from Florida to New England, even has a nickname among gun-runners: « the Iron Pipeline. »

The ways in which people die by guns would not make a good television cop show. Rarely does a suburban homeowner beat a burglar to the draw in his living room at 3 a.m. Few urban pedestrians thwart a mugger by brandishing a pistol. « We have done four surveys on self-defense gun use, » Hemenway says. « And one thing we know for sure is that there’s a lot more criminal gun use than self-defense gun use. And even when people say they pulled their gun in ‘self-defense,’ it usually turns out that there was just an escalating argument—at some point, people feel afraid and draw guns. »

Hemenway has collected stories of self-defense gun use by simply asking those who pulled guns what happened. A typical story might be: « We were in the park drinking. Drinking led to arguing. We ran to our cars and got our guns. » Or: « I was sitting on my porch. A neighbor came up and we got into a fight. He threw a beer at me. I went inside and got my gun. » Hemenway has sent verbatim accounts of such incidents to criminal-court judges, asking if the « self-defense » gun use described was legal. « Most of the time, » he says, « the answer was no. »

Ask criminals why they carried a gun while robbing the convenience store and frequently the answer is, « So I could get the money and not have to hurt anyone. » But as Hemenway explains, « Then something happens. Maybe somebody unexpectedly walks in, or the storeowner draws a gun. Your heart is racing. Next thing you know, somebody is dead. »

Researchers have interviewed adolescents in major urban centers, where many inner-city kids carry guns. When asked why, the reason they most often give is « self-defense, » adding that getting a gun is easy, something one can often do in less than an hour. Yet when researchers asked a group of teenagers, more than half of whom had already carried guns, what kind of world they would like to live in, Hemenway says that almost all of them replied, « One where it’s difficult or impossible to get a gun. »

Most murderers are not hired killers. Instead, killings happen during fights between rival gangs or angry spouses, or even from road rage, and leave deep regret in their wake. « How often might you appropriately use a gun in self-defense? » Hemenway asks rhetorically. « Answer: zero to once in a lifetime. How about inappropriately—because you were tired, afraid, or drunk in a confrontational situation? There are lots and lots of chances. When your anger takes over, it’s nice not to have guns lying around. »

Many suicides, similarly, are impulsive acts. Follow-up interviews with people who survived jumping off the Golden Gate Bridge reveal that few of them tried suicide again. One survivor volunteered this epiphany after jumping: « I realized that all the problems I had in life were solvable—except one: I’m in midair. » In the United States, suicide rates are high in states with an abundance of guns—southern and western mountain states, for example—and lower in places like New Jersey, New England, or Hawaii, where guns are relatively scarce. Nine case-control studies have shown that guns in the house are a risk factor for suicide. Firearms turn the agonizing into the irreversible.

Virtually all industrialized nations have stronger firearms laws than the United States. We have no national law, for example, requiring a license to own a gun (though some states require one). Almost all other countries have licensure laws, and many demand that gun owners undergo training, also not required here. Hemenway scoffs at the rote objection, « A determined criminal will always get a gun, » responding, « Yes, but a lot of people aren’t that determined. I’m sure there are some determined yacht buyers out there, but when you raise the price high enough, a lot of them stop buying yachts. »

In most of these United States, many types of gun sale trigger neither a background check nor a paper trail. « You can go to a gun show, flea market, the Internet, or classified ads and buy a gun—no questions asked, » Hemenway says. It is illegal to sell a firearm to a convicted felon or for criminal purposes, although sting operations have proved that some licensed vendors flout even this proscription. « In 1998, police officers from Chicago (where possessing a new handgun is illegal) posed as local gang members and went firearms shopping in the suburbs, » Hemenway writes. « In store after store, clerks willingly sold powerful handguns to these agents, who made it clear that they intended to use these guns to ‘take care of business’ on the streets of Chicago. »

Some civil lawsuits have targeted gun manufacturers, seeking damages for the death and disability resulting from the use of firearms. In one sense, such plaintiffs are in the bizarre position of suing manufacturers for making products that perform as advertised. Yet there may be parallels to the legal assault on tobacco, another product that can be lethal when used as directed. « For decades, there were no plaintiff victories beyond the appellate level » in the tobacco litigation, Hemenway notes. « Reasonable suits might allege things that the manufacturers could do to make guns safer. »

Many such changes are possible. Fairly small tweaks in design and engineering could save countless human lives—in much the same way that the 1985 law requiring a third brake light (the upper back light) on cars reduced rear-end collisions. For starters, making childproof guns is, well, child’s play. Even a century ago, gunsmiths made pistols that would not fire unless the shooter put extra pressure on the handle while pulling the trigger; this required strength beyond that of a child’s hand.

Many times a teenaged boy will find a gun such as a semi-automatic pistol in his home and, after taking out the ammunition clip, assume that the gun is unloaded. He then points the pistol at his best friend and playfully pulls the trigger, killing the other lad with the bullet that was already in the chamber. « People say, ‘Teach kids not to pull the trigger,’ but kids will do it, » Hemenway says. In a 2001 study, for example, small groups of boys from 8 to 12 years old spent 15 minutes in a room where a handgun was hidden in a drawer. More than two-thirds discovered the gun, more than half the groups handled it, and in more than a third of the groups someone pulled the trigger—despite the fact that more than 90 percent of the boys in the latter groups had received gun-safety instruction.

Hence product redesign may do more good than safety education. Hemenway suggests such changes as adding « a magazine safety, so that when you remove the clip, the gun does not work. Or make guns that visually indicate if they are loaded—just like you can tell if there is film in a camera. » A different design solution could help police, who often find that guns recovered from crime scenes are untraceable because it’s « pretty easy to obliterate the serial number, » Hemenway notes. « Often you can just file it off. You could make it hard to remove a serial number. You won’t eliminate the problem, but you can decrease it. »

One of Hemenway’s main goals is to help create a society in which it is harder to make fatal blunders. He compares it to cutting down on speeding autos. « You can arrest speeders, but you can also put speed bumps or chicanes [curved, alternating-side curb extensions] into residential areas where children play….Just as…you can revoke the license of bad doctors, but also build [a medical] environment in which it’s harder to make an error, and the mistakes made are not serious or fatal. »

Yet even if such interventions became public policy, there would be no way to evaluate their impact without meaningful data. Consider the 1994 law that bans assault weapons, which is due to expire this year. « We don’t know if homicides have gone up, down, or stayed the same as a result of this law, » Hemenway says. « Or take unintentional gun deaths, of which there are about two a day. We don’t know if they tend to occur indoors or outdoors, whether the victim is the shooter or another person, whether they involve long guns or handguns, if they occur in the city or country, or if patterns have changed over time. »

This ignorance about gun deaths stands in sharp contrast to the wealth of useful data available on motor-vehicle fatalities, for which more than 100 pieces of information per death are collected consistently in every state. Shortly after its creation in 1966, the predecessor of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration began to record information like the make, model, and year of the car, speed limit and speed of car, where people were sitting, use of seatbelts and more recently airbags, weather conditions—these data and many more are available to researchers on the Web. Consequently, Hemenway says, « We know what works. We know that speed kills, so if you raise speed limits, expect to see more highway deaths. Motorcycle helmets work; seat belts work. Car inspections and driver education have no effect. Right-on-red laws mean more pedestrians hit by cars. »

This kind of detailed information allows researchers to statistically evaluate the effects of laws. Regarding those right-on-red laws, for example, Hemenway explains, « If you only [tracked] traffic deaths, you wouldn’t see this pattern. You need data on pedestrian deaths, and pedestrian deaths at intersections! »

In 1998, Hemenway and the Harvard Injury Control Research Center launched the pilot for what has become the National Violent Death Reporting System (NVDRS) in an attempt to assemble a similar database documenting violent deaths, including those by firearms. They funded 10 sites to organize a consistent, comparable set of data, using information that already existed. Vital statistics like age and sex were commonly available. The police have a good system for homicide data. Medical examiners’ (coroners’) reports are a rich source of information but are not part of any system and aren’t linked to anything else; the same is true of crime lab reports. The new system will also provide important suicide data. (Currently, once a death is defined as a suicide, the police investigation ends, so « all we have are death certificates, » says Hemenway. « They tell you nothing about the circumstances. »)

Two years ago, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) took over administration of NVDRS; Hemenway estimates that funding the whole system for all 50 states would cost about $20 million. He will continue this work, but he is also getting involved with international firearms problems. Although high-income countries (other than the United States) generally don’t have severe gun problems, the developing world faces major issues with guns in places like Jamaica, Colombia, and South Africa. The goal at home and abroad, he says, is « to make sure the guns we have are safe, and that people use them properly. We’d like to create a world where it’s hard to make mistakes with guns—and when you do make a mistake, it’s not a terrible thing. »
Craig A. Lambert ’69, Ph.D. ’78, is deputy editor of this magazine.December 19, 2012

Voir aussi:

The Simple Truth About Gun Control
Adam Gopnik
The New Yorker
December 19, 2012

We live, let’s imagine, in a city where children are dying of a ravaging infection. The good news is that its cause is well understood and its cure, an antibiotic, easily at hand. The bad news is that our city council has been taken over by a faith-healing cult that will go to any lengths to keep the antibiotic from the kids. Some citizens would doubtless point out meekly that faith healing has an ancient history in our city, and we must regard the faith healers with respect—to do otherwise would show a lack of respect for their freedom to faith-heal. (The faith healers’ proposition is that if there were a faith healer praying in every kindergarten the kids wouldn’t get infections in the first place.) A few Tartuffes would see the children writhe and heave in pain and then wring their hands in self-congratulatory piety and wonder why a good God would send such a terrible affliction on the innocent—surely he must have a plan! Most of us—every sane person in the city, actually—would tell the faith healers to go to hell, put off worrying about the Problem of Evil till Friday or Saturday or Sunday, and do everything we could to get as much penicillin to the kids as quickly we could.

We do live in such a city. Five thousand seven hundred and forty children and teens died from gunfire in the United States, just in 2008 and 2009. Twenty more, including Olivia Engel, who was seven, and Jesse Lewis, who was six, were killed just last week. Some reports say their bodies weren’t shown to their grief-stricken parents to identify them; just their pictures. The overwhelming majority of those children would have been saved with effective gun control. We know that this is so, because, in societies that have effective gun control, children rarely, rarely, rarely die of gunshots. Let’s worry tomorrow about the problem of Evil. Let’s worry more about making sure that when the Problem of Evil appears in a first-grade classroom, it is armed with a penknife.

There are complex, hand-wringing-worthy problems in our social life: deficits and debts and climate change. Gun violence, and the work of eliminating gun massacres in schools and movie houses and the like, is not one of them. Gun control works on gun violence as surely as antibiotics do on bacterial infections. In Scotland, after Dunblane, in Australia, after Tasmania, in Canada, after the Montreal massacre—in each case the necessary laws were passed to make gun-owning hard, and in each case… well, you will note the absence of massacre-condolence speeches made by the Prime Ministers of Canada and Australia, in comparison with our own President.

The laws differ from place to place. In some jurisdictions, like Scotland, it is essentially impossible to own a gun; in others, like Canada, it is merely very, very difficult. The precise legislation that makes gun-owning hard in a certain sense doesn’t really matter—and that should give hope to all of those who feel that, with several hundred million guns in private hands, there’s no point in trying to make America a gun-sane country.

As I wrote last January, the central insight of the modern study of criminal violence is that all crime—even the horrific violent crimes of assault and rape—is at some level opportunistic. Building a low annoying wall against them is almost as effective as building a high impenetrable one. This is the key concept of Franklin Zimring’s amazing work on crime in New York; everyone said that, given the social pressures, the slum pathologies, the profits to be made in drug dealing, the ascending levels of despair, that there was no hope of changing the ever-growing cycle of violence. The right wing insisted that this generation of predators would give way to a new generation of super-predators.

What the New York Police Department found out, through empirical experience and better organization, was that making crime even a little bit harder made it much, much rarer. This is undeniably true of property crime, and common sense and evidence tells you that this is also true even of crimes committed by crazy people (to use the plain English the subject deserves). Those who hold themselves together enough to be capable of killing anyone are subject to the same rules of opportunity as sane people. Even madmen need opportunities to display their madness, and behave in different ways depending on the possibilities at hand. Demand an extraordinary degree of determination and organization from someone intent on committing a violent act, and the odds that the violent act will take place are radically reduced, in many cases to zero.

Look at the Harvard social scientist David Hemenway’s work on gun violence to see how simple it is; the phrase “more guns = more homicide” tolls through it like a grim bell. The more guns there are in a country, the more gun murders and massacres of children there will be. Even within this gun-crazy country, states with strong gun laws have fewer gun murders (and suicides and accidental killings) than states without them. (Hemenway is also the scientist who has shown that the inflated figure of guns used in self-defense every year, running even to a million or two million, is a pure fantasy, even though it’s still cited by pro-gun enthusiasts. Those hundreds of thousands intruders shot by gun owners left no records in emergency wards or morgues; indeed, left no evidentiary trace behind. This is because they did not exist.) Hemenway has discovered, as he explained in this interview with Harvard Magazine, that what is usually presented as a case of self-defense with guns is, in the real world, almost invariably a story about an escalating quarrel. “How often might you appropriately use a gun in self-defense?” Hemenway asks rhetorically. “Answer: zero to once in a lifetime. How about inappropriately—because you were tired, afraid, or drunk in a confrontational situation? There are lots and lots of chances.”

So don’t listen to those who, seeing twenty dead six- and seven-year-olds in ten minutes, their bodies riddled with bullets designed to rip apart bone and organ, say that this is impossibly hard, or even particularly complex, problem. It’s a very easy one. Summoning the political will to make it happen may be hard. But there’s no doubt or ambiguity about what needs to be done, nor that, if it is done, it will work. One would have to believe that Americans are somehow uniquely evil or depraved to think that the same forces that work on the rest of the planet won’t work here. It’s always hard to summon up political will for change, no matter how beneficial the change may obviously be. Summoning the political will to make automobiles safe was difficult; so was summoning the political will to limit and then effectively ban cigarettes from public places. At some point, we will become a gun-safe, and then a gun-sane, and finally a gun-free society. It’s closer than you think. (I’m grateful to my colleague Jeffrey Toobin for showing so well that the idea that the Second Amendment assures individual possession of guns, so far from being deeply rooted in American law, is in truth a new and bizarre reading, one that would have shocked even Warren Burger.)

Gun control is not a panacea, any more than penicillin was. Some violence will always go on. What gun control is good at is controlling guns. Gun control will eliminate gun massacres in America as surely as antibiotics eliminate bacterial infections. As I wrote last week, those who oppose it have made a moral choice: that they would rather have gun massacres of children continue rather than surrender whatever idea of freedom or pleasure they find wrapped up in owning guns or seeing guns owned—just as the faith healers would rather watch the children die than accept the reality of scientific medicine. This is a moral choice; many faith healers make it to this day, and not just in thought experiments. But it is absurd to shake our heads sapiently and say we can’t possibly know what would have saved the lives of Olivia and Jesse.

On gun violence and how to end it, the facts are all in, the evidence is clear, the truth there for all who care to know it—indeed, a global consensus is in place, which, in disbelief and now in disgust, the planet waits for us to join. Those who fight against gun control, actively or passively, with a shrug of helplessness, are dooming more kids to horrible deaths and more parents to unspeakable grief just as surely as are those who fight against pediatric medicine or childhood vaccination. It’s really, and inarguably, just as simple as that.


Newtown and the Madness of Guns
Adam Gopnik

After the mass gun murders at Virginia Tech, I wrote about the unfathomable image of cell phones ringing in the pockets of the dead kids, and of the parents trying desperately to reach them. And I said (as did many others), This will go on, if no one stops it, in this manner and to this degree in this country alone—alone among all the industrialized, wealthy, and so-called civilized countries in the world. There would be another, for certain.

Then there were—many more, in fact—and when the latest and worst one happened, in Aurora, I (and many others) said, this time in a tone of despair, that nothing had changed. And I (and many others) predicted that it would happen again, soon. And that once again, the same twisted voices would say, Oh, this had nothing to do with gun laws or the misuse of the Second Amendment or anything except some singular madman, of whom America for some reason seems to have a particularly dense sample.

And now it has happened again, bang, like clockwork, one might say: Twenty dead children—babies, really—in a kindergarten in a prosperous town in Connecticut. And a mother screaming. And twenty families told that their grade-schooler had died. After the Aurora killings, I did a few debates with advocates for the child-killing lobby—sorry, the gun lobby—and, without exception and with a mad vehemence, they told the same old lies: it doesn’t happen here more often than elsewhere (yes, it does); more people are protected by guns than killed by them (no, they aren’t—that’s a flat-out fabrication); guns don’t kill people, people do; and all the other perverted lies that people who can only be called knowing accessories to murder continue to repeat, people who are in their own way every bit as twisted and crazy as the killers whom they defend. (That they are often the same people who pretend outrage at the loss of a single embryo only makes the craziness still crazier.)

So let’s state the plain facts one more time, so that they can’t be mistaken: Gun massacres have happened many times in many countries, and in every other country, gun laws have been tightened to reflect the tragedy and the tragic knowledge of its citizens afterward. In every other country, gun massacres have subsequently become rare. In America alone, gun massacres, most often of children, happen with hideous regularity, and they happen with hideous regularity because guns are hideously and regularly available.

The people who fight and lobby and legislate to make guns regularly available are complicit in the murder of those children. They have made a clear moral choice: that the comfort and emotional reassurance they take from the possession of guns, placed in the balance even against the routine murder of innocent children, is of supreme value. Whatever satisfaction gun owners take from their guns—we know for certain that there is no prudential value in them—is more important than children’s lives. Give them credit: life is making moral choices, and that’s a moral choice, clearly made.

All of that is a truth, plain and simple, and recognized throughout the world. At some point, this truth may become so bloody obvious that we will know it, too. Meanwhile, congratulate yourself on living in the child-gun-massacre capital of the known universe.

Voir encore:

St Louis Post dispatch

February 19, 2013

We are writing today as pediatric emergency and trauma physicians to share our concern about the epidemic of gun violence that threatens the safety, health, and well-being of our children in St. Louis and in the United States.

Since 2002, St. Louis Children’s Hospital has cared for 771 children injured or killed by gunfire; 35 percent were younger than 15. These include the recent 12-year-old boy accidentally killed by his friend when playing with his grandfather’s pistol kept under his pillow, the 2-year-old boy paralyzed when his father accidentally discharged his gun during loading, the 5-year-old girl caught in a cross-fire as she sat on her front porch, the 10-year-old boy killed by his mother overwhelmed with mental illness, and the 4-year-old boy who found a handgun in a closet at home, placed the barrel into his mouth and pulled the trigger as he had often done to get a drink from his water-pistol. Many of these children died despite the heroic efforts of our highly trained pre-hospital, emergency, surgical and critical care staff.

In 2010, seven American children age 19 and younger were killed every day. This is twice the number of children who die from cancer, five times the number from heart disease, and 15 times the number from infections. This is also the equivalent of 128 Newtown shootings.

It has been estimated at least 38 percent of American households have a gun. In homes with children younger than 18, 22 percent store the gun loaded, 32 percent unlocked, and 8 percent unlocked and loaded. The children in these homes know the gun is present, and many handle the gun in the absence of their parents.

Children who have received gun safety training are just as likely to play with and fire a real gun as children not trained. In one study, 8-to-12-year-old boys were observed via one-way mirror as they played for 15 minutes in a waiting room with a disabled .38 caliber handgun concealed in a desk drawer. Seventy two percent discovered the gun, and 48 percent pulled the trigger; 90 percent of those who handled the gun and/or pulled the trigger had prior gun safety instruction.

Rather than confer protection, careful studies find guns stored in the home are more likely to be involved in an accidental death, homicide by a family member, or suicide than against an intruder. In 2009, suicide was the third leading cause of death for American youth, with firearms the most common method used. The American Academy of Pediatrics has concluded, “The most effective measure to prevent suicide, homicide, and unintentional firearm-related injuries to children and adolescents is the absence of guns from homes and communities.”

We concur with recent recommendations from more than a dozen national pediatric professional organizations, including the American Academy of Pediatrics, Academic Pediatric Association, and the American College of Surgeons in response to the Newtown school shooting. We called for action in three areas: reinstating and revising the ban on assault weapons and large ammunition magazines; improving quality and availability of mental health services; and reducing the exposure our children have to media violence. In addition, we called for increasing research on the relationship of these factors on the epidemic of death and injury to children caused by firearm violence and for ending restrictions to this research imposed by Congress.

We are gratified the plan President Obama recently announced addresses all of these issues. The president called for public support of these initiatives, and we strongly agree. As physicians who care for children and families devastated by gun violence, we know first-hand the importance of taking action that will begin to make the environment in St. Louis safer for our children. It has been done in many other economically advanced countries, and we can do it in the United States.

As Gabrielle Giffords said to Congress: “Too many children are dying. Too many children. We must do something. It will be hard, but the time is now. You must act. Be bold, be courageous. Americans are counting on you.” Our children are counting on us!

Voir de même:

Accidental gun deaths of children are far down on the list

St Louis Post dispatch

February 23, 2013

Regarding Drs. Kennedy, Jaffe & Keller’s editorial on child gun deaths, “Gun violence is a pediatric public health crisis” (Feb. 19):

They quote statistics that would lead the reader to believe that child gun deaths are a national public health crisis. They suggest that there is an epidemic of gun violence that threatens the safety, health and well-being of our children and devote considerable print to listing the number of children killed or treated for gunshot injuries at St. Louis Children’s Hospital. However, most of the individual cases they report suggest that accidental shootings are the main culprit for these injuries, and that inadequate gun storage at home is to blame. In reality, as is obvious from the daily reporting by the Post-Dispatch of area gun violence, most of the victims of these gun-related deaths and injuries are inner-city residents and their injuries are not accidental.

According to reliable statistical data reported in 2009 covering the years 1904-2006, from the National Center for Health Statistics (1981 on) and the National Safety Council (prior to 1981), while the number of privately owned guns in the U.S. is at an all-time high, and rises by about 4.5 million per year, the firearm accident death rate is at an all-time annual low, 0.2 per 100,000 population, down 94 percent since the all-time high in 1904. Since 1930, the annual number of such deaths has decreased 80 percent, to an all-time low, while the U.S. population has more than doubled and the number of firearms has quintupled. Among children, such deaths have decreased 90 percent since 1975.

Today, the odds are more than a million to one against a child in the U.S. dying in a firearm accident. According to the 2009 data, in reality among all child accidental deaths nationally, firearms were involved in 1.1 percent, compared to motor vehicles (41 percent), suffocation (21 percent), drowning (15 percent), fires (8 percent), pedal cycles (2 percent), poisoning (2 percent), falls (1.9 percent), environmental factors (1.5 percent), and medical mistakes (1 percent). Since the difference between accidental deaths due to medical mistakes (1 percent) and accidental deaths due to firearms (1.1 percent) is only 0.1 percentage points, perhaps we should consider a ban on pediatricians along with the ban they propose on firearms and large-capacity magazines.

F.A. Ruecker  •  Manchester

Homicide

1. Where there are more guns there is more homicide (literature review).

Our review of the academic literature found that a broad array of evidence indicates that gun availability is a risk factor for homicide, both in the United States and across high-income countries.  Case-control studies, ecological time-series and cross-sectional studies indicate that in homes, cities, states and regions in the US, where there are more guns, both men and women are at higher risk for homicide, particularly firearm homicide.

Hepburn, Lisa; Hemenway, David. Firearm availability and homicide: A review of the literature. Aggression and Violent Behavior: A Review Journal. 2004; 9:417-40.

2. Across high-income nations, more guns = more homicide.

We analyzed the relationship between homicide and gun availability using data from 26 developed countries from the early 1990s.  We found that across developed countries, where guns are more available, there are more homicides. These results often hold even when the United States is excluded.

Hemenway, David; Miller, Matthew. Firearm availability and homicide rates across 26 high income countries. Journal of Trauma. 2000; 49:985-88.

3. Across states, more guns = more homicide

Using a validated proxy for firearm ownership, we analyzed the relationship between firearm availability and homicide across 50 states over a ten year period (1988-1997).

After controlling for poverty and urbanization, for every age group, people in states with many guns have elevated rates of homicide, particularly firearm homicide.

Miller, Matthew; Azrael, Deborah; Hemenway, David. Household firearm ownership levels and homicide rates across U.S. regions and states, 1988-1997. American Journal of Public Health. 2002: 92:1988-1993.

4. Across states, more guns = more homicide (2)

Using survey data on rates of household gun ownership, we examined the association between gun availability and homicide across states, 2001-2003. We found that states with higher levels of household gun ownership had higher rates of firearm homicide and overall homicide.  This relationship held for both genders and all age groups, after accounting for rates of aggravated assault, robbery, unemployment, urbanization, alcohol consumption, and resource deprivation (e.g., poverty). There was no association between gun prevalence and non-firearm homicide.

Miller, Matthew; Azrael, Deborah; Hemenway, David. State-level homicide victimization rates in the U.S. in relation to survey measures of household firearm ownership, 2001-2003. Social Science and Medicine. 2007; 64:656-64.

Voir encore:

Tuerie dans l’Oregon et port d’arme : sachons raison garder

Edouard H.

Contrepoints

4 octobre 2015

Jeudi 1er octobre a lieu une nouvelle tuerie à l’Université Umpqua dans l’Oregon, faisant 10 morts. Comme à chaque nouvelle tuerie à l’aide d’une arme à feu, de nombreuses voix s’élèvent pour mettre en place des politiques restreignant le droit de détenir et de porter des armes. Portées par l’émotion, elles réclament toujours plus de politiques répressives et liberticides. Bien que compréhensibles, ces demandes n’en sont pas moins illégitimes, et il s’agit de défendre cette liberté fondamentale qu’est le droit de détenir et de porter des armes.

Jeudi dernier, le matin, Chris Harper Mercer amène 6 armes à feu sur le campus de l’Université Umpqua et ouvre le feu sur des étudiants, faisant 9 morts. Il meurt ensuite lors d’un échange de tirs avec la police. Face à cette nouvelle tragédie, nous ne pouvons qu’avoir dans notre cœur les familles des victimes, et leur assurer de nos condoléances les plus sincères.

Mais l’émotion générée par cette tuerie, bien que légitime, doit-elle servir de base à des restrictions sur des libertés fondamentales ? L’État américain devrait-il restreindre encore le droit de détention et de port d’armes des honnêtes citoyens américains, comme Barack Obama l’a suggéré ?

Comme dans tous les débats enflammés qui font suite à des événements tragiques, il s’agit de raison garder. La proposition simple consistant à dire « le tueur était armé, restreignons donc l’accès légal aux armes à feu » peut sembler logique au premier abord, mais en réalité, elle ignore complètement le contexte bien plus complexe de la question du port d’arme aux États-Unis. Car en matière d’armes à feu comme dans d’autres, il y a ce qu’on voit et ce qu’on ne voit pas.

Il est en effet essentiel de mettre les choses en perspective : les tueries de masse, bien que tragiques, restent statistiquement extrêmement rares. Moins de 0,2% des homicides sont liés à des tueries de masse.

De manière plus large et malgré la perception générale du contraire, le taux de crime aux États-Unis est en baisse constante depuis plus de 20 ans.

Même le taux d’homicides par armes à feu est en baisse, de 49% depuis 1993.

Ainsi, depuis plus de 20 ans aux États-Unis, le taux de crime diminue, et ce malgré un nombre record d’armes à feu détenus par des Américains. Dans le même temps, le nombre de permis de port d’arme en public (« concealed carry permit ») a lui aussi augmenté. « Plus d’armes = plus de crimes », vraiment ?

Mais au-delà des crimes demeure un fait peu rappelé dans les débats qui suivent les tueries aux États-Unis : avec plus de 300 millions d’armes à feu en circulation, les citoyens américains utilisent massivement leurs armes pour des motifs légitimes. Parmi ceux-ci, on retrouve la collection, la chasse, le tir sportif ou encore la défense de soi et de son prochain.

Ainsi, plus de 99,9% des Américains propriétaires légaux d’armes n’ont jamais utilisé celles-ci pour causer du tort à autrui. De quel droit viendrait-on restreindre leurs libertés parce qu’un dément a utilisé ses propres armes à feu pour nuire à autrui ?

Non seulement l’immense majorité de ces détenteurs légaux d’armes à feu ne cause pas de tort à autrui, mais elle empêche des crimes et sauvent des vies. Combien de crimes n’ont jamais eu lieu parce que des criminels violents, de peur de se faire abattre, ont été dissuadés d’agresser autrui ? Nous ne connaîtrons malheureusement jamais ce chiffre. À défaut, nous avons cependant des estimations du nombre de citoyens américains ayant en effet utilisé leurs armes pour se défendre d’un crime, et le chiffre est conséquent : d’après un rapport du National Research Council, les armes sont utilisées aux États-Unis pour se protéger d’un crime de 500.000 à 3.000.000 fois chaque année.

Ainsi, ce qu’on voit ce sont les crimes commis avec des armes à feu, qui font toujours grand bruit. Ce qu’on ne voit pas, ce sont les utilisations massivement plus nombreuses de ces mêmes armes pour des motifs légitimes, y compris la protection de la vie humaine. Jamais vous n’entendrez évoquer dans des médias traditionnels ces centaines de milliers de citoyens américains qui empêchent des crimes chaque année.

Mais si des mesures restrictives sur les armes à feu empêchaient effectivement leurs utilisations légitimes, elles permettraient au moins d’empêcher les dérangés de faire des tueries de masse, n’est-ce-pas ? On peut en douter. En France la détention d’armes à feu est strictement limitée, le port d’arme est interdit, et cela n’empêche aucunement les fusillades. Par définition, un criminel ne respecte pas la loi. Un fou souhaitant commettre une tuerie trouvera toujours les outils nécessaires. Les seules personnes concernées par les lois sur les armes à feu sont les citoyens honnêtes et pacifiques.

Le droit de détenir et de porter des armes est une liberté fondamentale. La vive émotion suscitée par une telle tragédie ne doit pas nous faire oublier que l’immense majorité des armes à feu aux États-Unis sont possédées par d’honnêtes citoyens ne voulant causer de tort à personne. De tels événements ne doivent pas être instrumentalisés pour restreindre des libertés, qu’il s’agisse de celle de la détention et du port d’armes ou celle du respect de notre vie privée face à la surveillance étatique.

Que faire alors pour empêcher ces tragédies ? Il paraît essentiel de se pencher sur l’origine réelle de ces tragédies : les tireurs et leurs motivations, et non l’outil qu’ils utilisent. Qu’est-ce qui les amène à commettre de telles atrocités, et que pouvons-nous changer à cela ?

Toutefois malgré ces efforts, il paraît vain de souhaiter en finir avec la violence. Certaines personnes seront toujours promptes à agresser autrui. Et face à ces personnes-là, les citoyens honnêtes doivent pouvoir s’armer pour leur défense. Cela n’a pas été le cas sur le campus de l’université dans l’Oregon qui était une « gun free zone », une zone où les citoyens honnêtes en possession de permis de port d’arme ne peuvent la porter. Le tueur avait ainsi le champ libre, sachant que ses victimes seraient incapables de se défendre avant l’arrivée de la police.

L’État américain doit en finir avec cette politique de « gun free zones » qui n’empêchent pas les tueurs de commettre leurs crimes, mais empêche une réponse rapide de citoyens qui pourraient stopper l’attaque.

Voir également:

Americans and their cars
Bangers v bullets
A gun is now more likely to kill you than a car is
The Economist
Jan 10th 2015
New York
ACCORDING to data gathered by the Centres for Disease Control (CDC), deaths caused by cars in America are in long-term decline. Improved technology, tougher laws and less driving by young people have all led to safer streets and highways. Deaths by guns, though—the great majority suicides, accidents or domestic violence—have been trending slightly upwards. This year, if the trend continues, they will overtake deaths on the roads.
The Centre for American Progress first spotted last February that the lines would intersect. Now, on its reading, new data to the end of 2012 support the view that guns will surpass cars this year as the leading killer of under 25s. Bloomberg Government has gone further. Its compilation of the CDC data in December concluded that guns would be deadlier for all age groups.
Comparing the two national icons, cars and guns, yields “a statistic that really resonates with people”, says Chelsea Parsons, co-author of the report for the Centre for American Progress. Resonance is certainly needed. There are about 320m people in the United States, and nearly as many civilian firearms. And although the actual rate of gun ownership is declining, enthusiasts are keeping up the number in circulation. Black Friday on November 28th kicked off such a shopping spree that the FBI had to carry out 175,000 instant background checks (three checks a second), a record for that day, just for sales covered by the extended Brady Act of 1998, the only serious bit of gun-curbing legislation passed in recent history.
Many sales escape that oversight, however. Everytown for Gun Safety, a movement backed by Mike Bloomberg, a former mayor of New York, has investigated loopholes in online gun sales and found that one in 30 users of Armslist classifieds has a criminal record that forbids them to own firearms. Private reselling of guns draws no attention, unless it crosses state lines.
William Vizzard, a professor of criminal justice at California State University at Sacramento, points out that guns also don’t wear out as fast as cars. “I compare a gun to a hammer or a crowbar,” he says. “Even if you stopped making guns today, you might not see a real change in the number of guns for decades.”
Motor vehicles, because they are operated on government-built roads, have been subject to licensing and registration, in the interests of public safety, for more than a century. But guns are typically kept at home. That private space is shielded by the Fourth Amendment just as “the right to bear arms” is protected by the Second, making government control difficult.
Car technologies and road laws are ever-evolving: in 2014, for example, the National Highways Traffic Safety Administration announced its plan to phase in mandatory rear-view cameras on new light vehicles, while New York City lowered its speed limit for local roads. By contrast, safety features on firearms—such as smartguns unlocked by an owner’s thumbprint or a radio-frequency encryption—are opposed by the National Rifle Association, whose allies in Congress also block funding for the sort of public-health research that might show, in even clearer detail, the cost of America’s love affair with guns.
Voir de même:
Technology
America’s Top Killing Machine
Gun deaths are poised to surpass automobile deaths in the United States this year.
Adrienne LaFrance
The Atlantic
Jan 12, 2015
For the better part of a century, the machine most likely to kill an American has been the automobile.

Car crashes killed 33,561 people in 2012, the most recent year for which data is available, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Firearms killed 32,251 people in the United States in 2011, the most recent year for which the Centers for Disease Control has data.

But this year gun deaths are expected to surpass car deaths. That’s according to a Center for American Progress report, which cites CDC data that shows guns will kill more Americans under 25 than cars in 2015. Already more than a quarter of the teenagers—15 years old and up—who die of injuries in the United States are killed in gun-related incidents, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics.

A similar analysis by Bloomberg three years ago found shooting deaths in 2015 « will probably rise to almost 33,000, and those related to autos will decline to about 32,000, based on the 10-year average trend. » And from The Economist, which wrote about the projection over the weekend:

Comparing the two national icons, cars and guns, yields “a statistic that really resonates with people, » says Chelsea Parsons, co-author of the report for the Centre for American Progress. Resonance is certainly needed. There are about 320 [million] people in the United States, and nearly as many civilian firearms. And although the actual rate of gun ownership is declining, enthusiasts are keeping up the number in circulation.

The figures may say more about a nation’s changing relationship with the automobile than they reveal about America’s ongoing obsession with guns.

The number of fatalities on the roads in the United States has been going down for years as fewer young people drive, car safety technology improves, and even as gas prices climb. (Lower gas prices are correlated with more deaths. A $2 drop in gasoline is linked to some 9,000 additional road fatalities per year in the United States, NPR recently reported.) Though even as fatal transportation incidents dropped in 2013, they accounted for two in five fatalities in the workplace in the United States that year, according to Bureau of Labor Statistics data.

CDC data on firearms offers a more complicated picture, in part because of how the agency categorizes causes of death. Gun deaths can include suicides, homicides, accidental firearms discharges, and even legal killings—but the overall data picture is incomplete. Since 2008, some county-level deaths have been left out to avoid inadvertent privacy breaches. And the number of police shootings—including arrest-related deaths, which are recorded but not made public, according to The Washington Post—are notoriously evasive.

The record of firearm deaths in the United States is murkier still because of how much is at stake politically. Firearm safety remains one of the most divisive issues in the country, with advocates on both sides cherry-picking data to support arguments about the extent to which gun regulation is necessary. It’s not even clear how many guns are out there in the first place, as the Pew Research Center pointed out in a 2013 study: « Respondent error or misstatement in surveys about gun ownership is a widely acknowledged concern of researchers. People may be reluctant to disclose ownership, especially if they are concerned that there may be future restrictions on gun possession or if they acquired their firearms illegally. »

We do know American gun ownership far outstrips gun ownership in other countries. “With less than 5 percent of the world’s population, the United States is home to 35-50 percent of the world’s civilian-owned guns,” according to the Small Arms Survey.

And while the number of firearm homicides dropped dramatically over a 20-year period ending in 2011, the percentage of violent crimes involving firearms has stayed fairly constant, according to the 2013 survey. In other words, even when fewer people die from gun violence, violent crimes involving guns are still happening at the same rate. It’s also true that as the gun homicide rate has declined in the United States, suicides now account for the majority of gun deaths, according to Pew.

Data complexities aside, there is much to learn about a culture from the technologies that kill its people. In the 19th century, before modern labor laws were established, thousands of American workers died in textile mills and other factories. Heavy machinery was hazardous—and violent deaths often made headlines—but chemicals and asbestos killed many workers, too. Workers who made baked enamelware died after inhaling powdered glaze, and textile workers warned of the « kiss of death » from a loom that required its operator to suck a thread through the shuttle’s needle—which meant breathing toxic lint and dust, too.

Americans have been drawing connections between guns and cars for more than a century, since the dawn of the automobile age.

In 1911, The New York Times cited new traffic laws and gun regulations—including imprisonment rather than a monetary fine for people caught carrying pistols—as responsible for driving down the firearm and automobile death rates compared to the year before. But the larger public health risk in those days was infectious disease, which were responsible for almost half of the deaths among Americans in large cities at the turn of the century. It was around that time that officials began collecting reliable annual mortality statistics, according to a 2004 National Bureau of Economic Research paper about public health improvements.

Today, overall accidents are the fifth leading cause of death, according to CDC data. Americans are most likely to die from heart disease—followed by cancer, chronic respiratory disease, and stroke.

 Voir encore:

NBC news

The gun debate in the United States has changed a lot over the last 20 years. Support for gun control has declined sharply as support for gun rights has risen, as we noted earlier this week. Those trends are evident in data from a range of sources including Gallup and the Pew Research Center.

A complicated mix of emotions, attitudes and perceptions go into how people feel about guns, but when you look at the data, two points help explain the drop in support for gun control. Over the same period of time the violent crime rate has also dropped sharply. And the partisan divides that have come to define U.S. politics have pushed into the gun control debate.

The decline in violent crime over the past 25 years has been remarkable. In 1990, there were 729 violent crimes reported for every 100,000 people in the United States, according to the FBI’s Uniform Crime Statistics. The number got as high as 757 in 1992 – and then it began to fall steadily over the next 20 years.

By 2012, the figure was down to 386 violent crimes per 100,000 people.

Gun Homicide Rate Down 49% Since 1993 Peak; Public Unaware
Pace of Decline Slows in Past DecadeD’Vera Cohn, Paul Taylor, Mark Hugo Lopez, Catherine A. Gallagher, Kim Parker and Kevin T. Maass
Pew
May 7, 2013
Chapter 1: Overview
National rates of gun homicide and other violent gun crimes are strikingly lower now than during their peak in the mid-1990s, paralleling a general decline in violent crime, according to a Pew Research Center analysis of government data. Beneath the long-term trend, though, are big differences by decade: Violence plunged through the 1990s, but has declined less dramatically since 2000.Compared with 1993, the peak of U.S. gun homicides, the firearm homicide rate was 49% lower in 2010, and there were fewer deaths, even though the nation’s population grew. The victimization rate for other violent crimes with a firearm—assaults, robberies and sex crimes—was 75% lower in 2011 than in 1993. Violent non-fatal crime victimization overall (with or without a firearm) also is down markedly (72%) over two decades.Nearly all the decline in the firearm homicide rate took place in the 1990s; the downward trend stopped in 2001 and resumed slowly in 2007. The victimization rate for other gun crimes plunged in the 1990s, then declined more slowly from 2000 to 2008. The rate appears to be higher in 2011 compared with 2008, but the increase is not statistically significant. Violent non-fatal crime victimization overall also dropped in the 1990s before declining more slowly from 2000 to 2010, then ticked up in 2011.Despite national attention to the issue of firearm violence, most Americans are unaware that gun crime is lower today than it was two decades ago. According to a new Pew Research Center survey, today 56% of Americans believe gun crime is higher than 20 years ago and only 12% think it is lower.Looking back 50 years, the U.S. gun homicide rate began rising in the 1960s, surged in the 1970s, and hit peaks in 1980 and the early 1990s. (The number of homicides peaked in the early 1990s.) The plunge in homicides after that meant that firearm homicide rates in the late 2000s were equal to those not seen since the early 1960s.1 The sharp decline in the U.S. gun homicide rate, combined with a slower decrease in the gun suicide
rate, means that gun suicides now account for six-in-ten firearms deaths, the highest share since at least 1981.Trends for robberies followed a similar long-term trajectory as homicides (National Research Council, 2004), hitting a peak in the early 1990s before declining.This report examines trends in firearm homicide, non-fatal violent gun crime victimization and non-fatal violent crime victimization overall since 1993. Its findings on firearm crime are based mainly on analysis of data from two federal agencies. Data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, using information from death certificates, are the source of rates, counts and trends for all firearm deaths, homicide and suicide, unless otherwise specified. The Department of Justice’s National Crime Victimization Survey, a household survey conducted by the Census Bureau, supplies annual estimates of non-fatal crime victimization, including those where firearms are used, regardless of whether the crimes were reported to police. Where relevant, this report also quotes from the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reports (see text box at the end of this chapter and the Methodology appendix for more discussion about data sources).Researchers have studied the decline in firearm crime and violent crime for many years, and though there are theories to explain the decline, there is no consensus among those who study the issue as to why it happened.There also is debate about the extent of gun ownership in the U.S., although no disagreement that the U.S. has more civilian firearms, both total and per capita, than other nations. Compared with other developed nations, the U.S. has a higher homicide rate and higher rates of gun ownership, but not higher rates for all other crimes. (See Chapter 5 for more details.)In the months since the mass shooting at a Newtown, Conn., elementary school in December, the public is paying close attention to the topic of firearms; according to a recent Pew Research Center survey (Pew Research Center, April 2013) no story received more public attention from mid-March to early April than the debate over gun control. Reducing crime has moved up as a priority for the public in polling this year.Mass shootings are a matter of great public interest and concern. They also are a relatively small share of shootings overall. According to a Bureau of Justice Statistics review, homicides that claimed at least three lives accounted for less than 1% of all homicide deaths from 1980 to 2008. These homicides, most of which are shootings, increased as a share of all homicides from 0.5% in 1980 to 0.8% in 2008, according to the bureau’s data. A Congressional Research Service report, using a definition of four deaths or more, counted 547 deaths from mass shootings in the U.S. from 1983 to 2012.2Looking at the larger topic of firearm deaths, there were 31,672 deaths from guns in the U.S. in 2010. Most (19,392) were suicides; the gun suicide rate has been higher than the gun homicide rate since at least 1981, and the gap is wider than it was in 1981.Knowledge About Crime
Despite the attention to gun violence in recent months, most Americans are unaware that gun crime is markedly lower than it was two decades ago. A new Pew Research Center survey (March 14-17) found that 56% of Americans believe the number of crimes involving a gun is higher than it was 20 years ago; only 12% say it is lower and 26% say it stayed the same. (An additional 6% did not know or did not answer.)Men (46%) are less likely than women (65%) to say long-term gun crime is up. Young adults, ages 18 to 29, are markedly less likely than other adults to say long-term crime is up—44% do, compared with more than half of other adults. Minority adults are more likely than non-Hispanic whites to say that long-term gun crime is up, 62% compared with 53%.Asked about trends in the number of gun crimes “in recent years,” a plurality of 45% believe the number has gone up, 39% say it is about the same and 10% say it has gone down. (An additional 5% did not know or did not answer.) As with long-term crime, women (57%) are more likely than men (32%) to say that gun crime has increased in recent years. So are non-white adults (54%) compared with whites (41%). Adults ages 50 and older (51%) are more likely than those ages 18-49 (42%) to believe gun crime is up.What is Behind the Crime Decline?
Researchers continue to debate the key factors behind changing crime rates, which is part of a larger discussion about the predictors of crime.3 There is consensus that demographics played some role: The outsized post-World War II baby boom, which produced a large number of people in the high-crime ages of 15 to 20 in the 1960s and 1970s, helped drive crime up in those years.A review by the National Academy of Sciences of factors driving recent crime trends (Blumstein and Rosenfeld, 2008) cited a decline in rates in the early 1980s as the young boomers got older, then a flare-up by mid-decade in conjunction with a rising street market for crack cocaine, especially in big cities. It noted recruitment of a younger cohort of drug seller with greater willingness to use guns. By the early 1990s, crack markets withered in part because of lessened demand, and the vibrant national economy made it easier for even low-skilled young people to find jobs rather than get involved in crime.At the same time, a rising number of people ages 30 and older were incarcerated, due in part to stricter laws, which helped restrain violence among this age group. It is less clear, researchers say, that innovative policing strategies and police crackdowns on use of guns by younger adults played a significant role in reducing crime.Some researchers have proposed additional explanations as to why crime levels plunged so suddenly, including increased access to abortion and lessened exposure to lead. According to one hypothesis, legalization of abortion after the 1973 Supreme Court Roe v. Wade decision resulted in fewer unwanted births, and unwanted children have an increased risk of growing up to become criminals. Another theory links reduced crime to 1970s-era reductions in lead in gasoline; children’s exposure to lead causes brain damage that could be associated with violent behavior. The National Academy of Sciences review said it was unlikely that either played a major role, but researchers continue to explore both factors.

The plateau in national violent crime rates has raised interest in the topic of how local differences might influence crime levels and trends. Crime reductions took place across the country in the 1990s, but since 2000, patterns have varied more by metropolitan area or city.4

One focus of interest is that gun ownership varies widely by region and locality. The National Academy of Sciences review of possible influences on crime trends said there is good evidence of a link between firearm ownership and firearm homicide at the local level; “the causal direction of this relationship remains in dispute, however, with some researchers maintaining that firearm violence elevates rates of gun ownership, but not the reverse.”

There is substantial variation within and across regions and localities in a number of other realms, which complicates any attempt to find a single cause for national trends. Among the variations of interest to researchers are policing techniques, punishment policies, culture, economics and residential segregation.

Internationally, a decline in crime, especially property crime, has been documented in many countries since the mid-1990s. According to the authors of a 30-country study on criminal victimization (Van Dijk et al., 2007), there is no general agreement on all the reasons for this decline. They say there is a general consensus that demographic change—specifically, the shrinking proportion of adolescents across Europe—is a common factor causing decreases across Western countries. They also cite wider use of security measures in homes and businesses as a factor in reducing property crime.

But other potential explanations—such as better policing or increased imprisonment—do not apply in Europe, where policies vary widely, the report noted

Among the major findings of this Pew Research Center report:

U.S. Firearm Deaths
In 2010, there were 3.6 gun homicides per 100,000 people, compared with 7.0 in 1993, according to CDC data.
In 2010, CDC data counted 11,078 gun homicide deaths, compared with 18,253 in 1993.5
Men and boys make up the vast majority (84% in 2010) of gun homicide victims. The firearm homicide rate also is more than five times as high for males of all ages (6.2 deaths per 100,000 people) as it is for females (1.1 deaths per 100,000 people).
By age group, 69% of gun homicide victims in 2010 were ages 18 to 40, an age range that was 31% of the population that year. Gun homicide rates also are highest for adults ages 18 to 24 and 25 to 40.
A disproportionate share of gun homicide victims are black (55% in 2010, compared with the 13% black share of the population). Whites were 25% of victims but 65% of the population in 2010. Hispanics were 17% of victims and 16% of the population in 2010.
The firearm suicide rate (6.3 per 100,000 people) is higher than the firearm homicide rate and has come down less sharply. The number of gun suicide deaths (19,392 in 2010) outnumbered gun homicides, as has been true since at least 1981.
U.S. Firearm Crime Victimization
In 2011, the NCVS estimated there were 181.5 gun crime victimizations for non-fatal violent crime (aggravated assault, robbery and sex crimes) per 100,000 Americans ages 12 and older, compared with 725.3 in 1993.
In terms of numbers, the NCVS estimated there were about 1.5 million non-fatal gun crime victimizations in 1993 among U.S. residents ages 12 and older, compared with 467,000 in 2011.
U.S. Other Non-fatal Crime
The victimization rate for all non-fatal violent crime among those ages 12 and older—simple and aggravated assaults, robberies and sex crimes, with or without firearms—dropped 53% from 1993 to 2000, and 49% from 2000 to 2010. It rose 17% from 2010 to 2011.
Although not the topic of this report, the rate of property crimes—burglary, motor vehicle theft and theft—also declined from 1993 to 2011, by 61%. The rate for these types of crimes was 351.8 per 100,000 people ages 12 and older in 1993, 190.4 in 2000 and 138.7 in 2011.
Context
The number of firearms available for sale to or possessed by U.S. civilians (about 310 million in 2009, according to the Congressional Research Service) has grown in recent years, and the 2009 per capita rate of one person per gun had roughly doubled since 1968. It is not clear, though, how many U.S. households own guns or whether that share has changed over time.
Crime stories accounted for 17% of the total time devoted to news on local television broadcasts in 2012, compared with 29% in 2005, according to Pew Research Center’s Project for Excellence in Journalism. Crime trails only traffic and weather as the most common type of story on these newscasts.
About the Data
Findings in this report are based on two main data sources:

Data on homicides and other deaths are from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, based on information from death certificates filed in state vital statistics offices, which includes causes of death reported by attending physicians, medical examiners and coroners. Data also include demographic information about decedents reported by funeral directors, who obtain that information from family members and other informants. Population data, used in constructing rates, come from the Census Bureau. Most statistics were obtained via the National Center for Injury Prevention and Control’s Web-based Injury Statistics Query and Reporting System (WISQARS), available from URL: http://www.cdc.gov/ncipc/wisqars. Data are available beginning in 1981; suitable population data do not exist for prior years. For more details, see Appendix 4.

Estimates of crime victimization are from the National Crime Victimization Survey, a sample survey conducted for the Bureau of Justice Statistics by the Census Bureau. Although the survey began in 1973, this report uses data since 1993, the first year employing an intensive methodological redesign. The survey collects information about crimes against people and households, but not businesses. It provides estimates of victimization for the population ages 12 and older living in households and non-institutional group quarters; therefore it does not include populations such as homeless people, visiting foreign tourists and business travelers, or those living in institutions such as military barracks or mental hospitals. The survey collects information about the crimes of rape, sexual assault, personal robbery, aggravated and simple assault, household burglary, theft, and motor vehicle theft. For more details, see Appendix 4.

 Roadmap to the Report
The remainder of this report is organized as follows. Chapter 2 explores trends in firearm homicide and all firearm deaths, as well as patterns by gender, race and age. Chapter 3 analyzes trends in non-fatal violent gun crime victimizations, as well as patterns by gender, race and age. Chapter 4 looks at trends and subgroup patterns for non-fatal violent crime victimizations overall. Chapter 5 examines issues related to the topic of firearms: crime news, crime as a public priority, U.S. gun ownership data, and comparison of ownership and crime rates with those in other nations. Appendices 1-3 consist of detailed tables with annual data for firearm deaths, homicides and suicides, as well as non-fatal firearm and overall non-fatal violent crime victimization, for all groups and by subgroup. Appendix 4 explains the report’s methodology.Notes on Terminology
All references to whites, blacks and others are to the non-Hispanic components of those populations. Hispanics can be of any race.“Aggravated assault,” as defined by the Bureau of Justice Statistics, is an attack or attempted attack with a weapon, regardless of whether an injury occurred, and an attack without a weapon when serious injury results.The terms “firearm” and “gun” are used interchangeably.“Homicides,” which come from Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data, are fatal injuries inflicted by another person with intent to injure or kill. Deaths due to legal intervention or operations of war are excluded. Justifiable homicide is not identified.“Robbery,” as defined by the Bureau of Justice Statistics, is a completed or attempted theft, directly from a person, of property or cash by force or threat of force, with or without a weapon, and with or without injury.“Sex crime,” as defined by the Bureau of Justice Statistics, includes attempted rape, rape and sexual assault.“Simple assault,” as defined by the Bureau of Justice Statistics, is an attack (or attempted assault) without a weapon resulting either in no injury, minor injury (for example, bruises, black eyes, cuts, scratches or swelling) or in undetermined injury requiring less than two days of hospitalization.“Victimization” is based on self-reporting in the National Crime Victimization Survey, which includes Americans ages 12 and older. For personal crimes (which in this report include assault, robbery and sex crime), it is expressed as a rate based on the number of victimizations per 100,000 U.S. residents ages 12 and older. See the Methodology appendix for more details.Acknowledgments
Many researchers and scholars contributed to this report. Senior writer D’Vera Cohn wrote the body of the report. Paul Taylor, senior vice president of the Pew Research Center, provided editorial guidance. Mark Hugo Lopez, senior researcher and associate director of the Pew Hispanic Center, managed the report’s data analysis and wrote the report’s methodology appendix. Catherine A. Gallagher, director of the Cochrane Collaboration of the College for Policy at George Mason University, provided guidance on the report’s data analysis and comments on earlier drafts of the report. Lopez and Kim Parker, associate director of the Center’s Social & Demographic Trends project, managed the report’s development and production. Kevin T. Maass, research associate at the Cochrane Collaboration at George Mason University’s College for Policy, provided analysis of the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reports. Research Assistants Eileen Patten and Anna Brown number-checked the report and prepared charts and tables. Patten also conducted background research on trends in crime internationally. The report was copy-edited by Marcia Kramer of Kramer Editing Services.The report also benefited from a review by Professor Richard Felson of Pennsylvania State University. The authors also thank Andrew Kohut and Scott Keeter for their comments on an earlier draft of the report. In addition, the authors thank Kohut, Michael Dimock, Keeter and Alec Tyson, our colleagues at the Pew Research Center, for guidance on the crime knowledge public opinion survey questionnaire. Jeffrey Passel, senior demographer at the Pew Research Center, provided computational assistance for the report’s analysis of homicide rates by race and ethnicity.Finally, Michael Planty and Jennifer Truman of the Bureau of Justice Statistics at the U.S. Department of Justice provided data, invaluable guidance and advice on the report’s analysis of the National Crime Victimization Survey.See Cooper and Smith, 2011. The rate declined through at least 2010. ↩
A USA Today analysis in 2013 found that 934 people died since 2006 in mass shootings, defined as claiming at least four victims, and that most were killed by people they knew: http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2013/02/21/mass-shootings-domestic-violence-nra/1937041/
Much of this section draws from Blumstein and Rosenfeld, 2008. ↩
The diversity of homicide trend by city was the topic of a recent forum, “Putting Homicide Rates in Their Place,” sponsored by the Urban Institute. ↩
There were 11,101 gun homicide deaths in 2011 and the gun homicide rate remained 3.6 per 100,000 people, according to preliminary CDC data. ↩

The Problem Isn’t Guns or White Men
The ticking time bombs that the Left lets loose among us
Ann Coulter
Front Page magazine
October 8, 2015

The media act as if they’re performing a public service by refusing to release details about the perpetrator of the recent mass shooting at a community college in Oregon. But we were given plenty of information about Dylan Roof, Adam Lanza, James Holmes and Jared Loughner.

Now, quick: Name the mass shooters at the Chattanooga military recruitment center; the Washington Navy Yard; the high school in Washington state; Fort Hood (the second time) and the Christian college in California. All those shootings also occurred during the last three years.

The answers are: Mohammad Youssuf Abdulazeez, Kuwaiti; Aaron Alexis, black, possibly Barbadian-American; Jaylen Ray Fryberg, Indian; Ivan Antonio Lopez, Hispanic; and One L. Goh, Korean immigrant. (While I’m here: Why are we bringing in immigrants who are mentally unstable?)

There’s a rigid formula in media accounts of mass shootings: If possible, blame it on angry white men; when that won’t work, blame it on guns.

The perpetrator of the latest massacre, Chris Harper-Mercer, was a half-black immigrant, so the media are refusing to get too specific about him. They don’t want to reward the fiend with publicity!

But as people hear details the media are not anxious to provide, they realize that, once again: It’s a crazy person. How long is this going to go on?

When will the public rise up and demand that the therapeutic community stop loosing these nuts on the public? After the fact, scores of psychiatrists are always lining up to testify that the defendant was legally insane, unable to control his actions. That information would be a lot more helpful before the wanton slaughter.

Product manufacturers are required by law to anticipate that some idiot might try to dry his cat in the microwave. But a person whose job it is to evaluate mental illness can’t be required to ascertain whether the person sitting in his office might be unstable enough to kill?

Maybe at their next convention, psychiatrists could take up a resolution demanding an end to our absurd patient privacy and involuntary commitment laws.

True, America has more privately owned guns than most other countries, and mass shootings are, by definition, committed with guns. But we also make it a lot more difficult than any other country to involuntarily commit crazy people.

Since the deinstitutionalization movement of the 1960s, civil commitment in the United States almost always requires a finding of dangerousness — both imminent and physical — as determined by a judge. Most of the rest of the world has more reasonable standards — you might almost call them « common sense » — allowing family, friends and even acquaintances to petition for involuntarily commitment, with the final decision made by doctors.

The result of our laissez-faire approach to dangerous psychotics is visible in the swarms of homeless people on our streets, crazy people in our prison populations and the prevalence of mass shootings.

According to a 2002 report by Central Institute of Mental Health for the European Union, the number of involuntarily detained mental patients, per 100,000 people, in other countries looks like this:

— Austria, 175

— Finland, 218

— Germany, 175

— Sweden, 114

— England, 93

The absolute maximum number of mental patients per 100,000 people who could possibly be institutionalized by the state in the U.S. — voluntarily or involuntarily — is: 17. Yes, according to the Treatment Advocacy Center, there are a grand total of 17 psychiatric beds even available, not necessarily being used. In 1955, there were 340.

After every mass shooting, the left has a lot of fun forcing Republicans to defend guns. Here’s an idea: Why not force Democrats to defend the right of the dangerous mentally ill not to take their medicine?

Liberals will howl about « stigmatizing » the mentally ill, but they sure don’t mind stigmatizing white men or gun owners. About a third of the population consists of white men. Between a third and half of all Americans have guns in the home. If either white men or guns were the main cause of mass murder, no one would be left in the country.

But I notice that every mass murder is committed by someone who is mentally ill. When the common denominator is a characteristic found in about 0.1 percent of the population — I think we’ve found the crucial ingredient!

Democrats won’t be able to help themselves, but to instantly close ranks and defend dangerous psychotics, hauling out the usual meaningless statistics:

— Most mentally ill are not violent!

Undoubtedly true. BUT WE’RE NOT TALKING ABOUT ANOREXICS, AGORAPHOBICS OR OBSESSIVE COMPULSIVES. We were thinking of paranoid schizophrenics.

— The mentally ill are more likely to be victims than perpetrators of violence!

I’ll wager that the percentage of the nation’s 310 million guns that are ever used in a crime is quite a bit lower than the percentage of mentally ill to ever engage in violence.

As with the « most Muslims are peaceful » canard, while a tiny percentage of mentally ill are violent, a gigantic percentage of mass shooters are mentally ill.

How can these heartless Democrats look the parents of dead children in the eye and defend the right of the mentally deranged to store their feces in a shoebox, menace library patrons — and, every now and then, commit mass murder?

Voir de plus:

The Reasons for the Decline in Support for Gun Control

The gun debate in the United States has changed a lot over the last 20 years. Support for gun control has declined sharply as support for gun rights has risen, as we noted earlier this week. Those trends are evident in data from a range of sources including Gallup and the Pew Research Center.
A complicated mix of emotions, attitudes and perceptions go into how people feel about guns, but when you look at the data, two points help explain the drop in support for gun control. Over the same period of time the violent crime rate has also dropped sharply. And the partisan divides that have come to define U.S. politics have pushed into the gun control debate.
The decline in violent crime over the past 25 years has been remarkable. In 1990, there were 729 violent crimes reported for every 100,000 people in the United States, according to the FBI’s Uniform Crime Statistics. The number got as high as 757 in 1992 – and then it began to fall steadily over the next 20 years.
By 2012, the figure was down to 386 violent crimes per 100,000 people.

Caldwell, Leigh (206448258) / NBC News

(This trend is also true for the U.S. murder rate. In 1990, there were 9.4 murders for every 100,000 people, according to the Uniform Crime Statistics. In 2012, there were only 4.7 for every 100,000.)
These numbers aren’t meant to suggest that people’s attitudes about guns affected the violent crime rate, but it could be the other way around.
Despite the headlines about mass shootings, like last week’s in Oregon, in terms of people’s day-to-day lives and the stories in local media, violent crime is less of an issue today than it was in the United States in 1994. The numbers are still high when compared to other developed countries, but low compared to where the country used to be.
That may have played a role in peoples’ attitudes about gun control. The epidemic of violence that dominated news coverage in the late-1980s and early-1990s gave way to news stories about dropping crime rates and safer cities. That’s become the dominant crime story over the past two decades. It’s one thing see coverage of a senseless horrific shooting somewhere far away from you. It’s another thing to see crime scene tape a few blocks away and personally know victims.
The latest data suggest those declines may be starting to reverse themselves, particularly in big cities and if that rising trend continues, attitudes on gun control may shift.
But there is also a political factor in the gun debate that could be harder to change. As the nation has become more politically polarized and voters have retreated into their red and blue camps, the partisan differences on gun control have become much more pronounced.
Overall, support for gun control has indeed dropped, but Democrats and Republicans have moved in different directions.
In 1993, 47% of Republicans and 65% of Democrats supported gun control, according to Pew Research data. That’s an 18-point gap between members of the two parties, with Republicans sitting near 50%.
In 2015, only 26% of Republicans support gun control, in the Pew Research data. But the Democrats have moved in the other direction – 73% now favor gun control. That’s an enormous 47-point gap with the parties at opposite ends of the spectrum on the question.
In other words, the gun control issue has become deeply intertwined with political identity and as we see on other issues – from abortion to gay marriage – overcoming factors tied to political identity to find consensus can be extremely difficult.
Even if Democratic support for gun control grows and even if independents, who tend to hover around the middle, move back above 50% supporting, it’s unlikely the numbers will show support for it climbing in a significant way.

Voir de même:

Voir aussi:

U.S. Gun Policy: Global Comparisons

Jonathan Masters, Deputy Editor

Council on Foreign Relations
June 24, 2015

Introduction
The debate over gun control in the United States has waxed and waned over the years, stirred by a series of mass killings by gunmen in civilian settings. In particular, the killing of twenty schoolchildren in Newtown, Connecticut, in December 2012 fueled a national discussion over gun laws and calls by the Obama administration to limit the availability of military-style weapons. However, compromise legislation that would have banned semiautomatic assault weapons and expanded background checks was defeated in the Senate in 2013, despite extensive public support.

Gun control advocates sought to rekindle the debate following the shooting deaths of nine people at a South Carolina church in June 2015. These advocates highlight the stricter gun laws and lower incidents of gun violence in several other democracies, like Japan and Australia, but many others say this correlation proves little and note that rates of gun crime in the United States have plunged over the last two decades.

United States
The Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution states: « A well-regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed. » Supreme Court rulings, citing this amendment, have upheld the right of states to regulate firearms. However, in a 2008 decision (District of Columbia v. Heller [PDF]) confirming an individual right to keep and bear arms, the court struck down Washington, DC, laws that banned handguns and required those in the home to be locked or disassembled.

A number of gun advocates consider ownership a birthright and an essential part of the nation’s heritage. The United States, with less than 5 percent of the world’s population, has about 35–50 percent of the world’s civilian-owned guns, according to a 2007 report by the Switzerland-based Small Arms Survey. It ranks number one in firearms per capita. The United States also has the highest homicide-by-firearm rate among the world’s most developed nations.

But many gun rights proponents say these statistics do not indicate a cause-and-effect relationship and note that the rates of gun homicide and other gun crimes in the United States have dropped since highs in the early 1990s.

Federal law sets the minimum standards for firearm regulation in the United States, but individual states have their own laws, some of which provide further restrictions, others which are more lenient. Some states, including Idaho, Alaska, and Kansas, have passed laws designed to circumvent federal policies, but the Constitution (Article VI, Paragraph 2) establishes the supremacy of federal law.

The Gun Control Act of 1968 prohibited the sale of firearms to several categories of individuals, including persons under eighteen years of age, those with criminal records, the mentally disabled, unlawful aliens, dishonorably discharged military personnel, and others. In 1993, the law was amended by the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act, which mandated background checks for all unlicensed persons purchasing a firearm from a federally licensed dealer.

However, critics maintain that a so-called « gun show loophole, » codified in the Firearm Owners Protection Act of 1986, effectively allows anyone, including convicted felons, to purchase firearms without a background check.

As of 2015, there were no federal laws banning semiautomatic assault weapons, military-style .50 caliber rifles, handguns, or large-capacity ammunition magazines, which can increase the potential lethality of a given firearm. There was a federal prohibition on assault weapons and high-capacity magazines between 1994 and 2004, but Congress allowed these restrictions to expire.

The United States, with less than 5 percent of the world’s population, has about 35–50 percent of the world’s civilian-owned guns, according to a 2007 report by the Switzerland-based Small Arms Survey.

Canada
Many analysts characterize Canada’s gun laws as strict in comparison to the United States, while others say recent developments have eroded safeguards. Ottawa, like Washington, sets federal gun restrictions that the provinces, territories, and municipalities can supplement. Federal regulations require all gun owners, who must be at least eighteen years of age, to obtain a license that includes a background check and a public safety course.

There are three classes of weapons: nonrestricted (e.g., ordinary rifles and shotguns), restricted (e.g., handguns, semiautomatic rifles/shotguns, and sawed-offs), and prohibited (e.g., automatics). A person wishing to acquire a restricted firearm must obtain a federal registration certificate, according to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.

Modern Canadian gun laws have been driven by prior gun violence. In December 1989, a disgruntled student walked into a Montreal engineering school with a semiautomatic rifle and killed fourteen students and injured over a dozen others. The incident is widely credited with driving subsequent gun legislation, including the 1995 Firearms Act, which required owner licensing and the registration of all long guns (i.e., rifles and shotguns) while banning more than half of all registered guns. However, in 2012, the government abandoned the long-gun registry, citing cost concerns.

Australia
The inflection point for modern gun control in Australia was the Port Arthur massacre of April 1996, when a young man killed thirty-five people and wounded twenty-three others. The rampage, perpetrated with a semiautomatic rifle, was the worst mass shooting in the nation’s history. Less than two weeks later, the conservative-led national government pushed through fundamental changes to the country’s gun laws in cooperation with the various states, which regulate firearms.

The National Agreement on Firearms all but prohibited automatic and semiautomatic assault rifles, stiffened licensing and ownership rules, and instituted a temporary gun buyback program that took some 650,000 assault weapons (about one-sixth of the national stock) out of public circulation. Among other things, the law also required licensees to demonstrate a « genuine need » for a particular type of gun and take a firearm safety course. After another high-profile shooting in Melbourne in 2002, Australia’s handgun laws were tightened as well.

Many analysts say these measures have been highly effective, citing declining gun-death rates, and the fact that there have been no gun-related mass killings in Australia since 1996. Many also suggest the policy response in the wake of Port Arthur could serve as a model for the United States.
Israel
Military service is compulsory in Israel and guns are very much a part of everyday life. By law, most eighteen-year-olds are drafted, psychologically screened, and receive at least some weapons training after high school. After serving typically two or three years in the armed forces, however, most Israelis are discharged and must abide by civilian gun laws.

The country has relatively strict gun regulations, including an assault-weapons ban and a requirement to register ownership with the government. To become licensed, an applicant must be an Israeli citizen or a permanent resident, be at least twenty-one-years-old, and speak at least some Hebrew, among other qualifications. Notably, a person must also show genuine cause to carry a firearm, such as self-defense or hunting.

However, some critics question the efficacy of these measures. « It doesn’t take much of an expert to realize that these restrictions, in and of themselves, do not constitute much by the way of gun control, » writes Liel Leibovitz for the Jewish magazine Tablet. He notes the relative ease with which someone can justify owning a gun, including residing in an Israeli settlement, employment as a security guard, or working with valuables or large sums of money. Furthermore, he explains that almost the entire population has indirect access to an assault weapon by either being a soldier or a reservist or a relative of one. Israel’s relatively low gun-related homicide rate is a product of the country’s unique « gun culture, » he says.
United Kingdom

Modern gun control efforts in the United Kingdom have been precipitated by extraordinary acts of violence that sparked public outrage and, eventually, political action. In August 1987, a lone gunman armed with two legally owned semiautomatic rifles and a handgun went on a six-hour shooting spree roughly seventy miles west of London, killing sixteen people and then himself. In the wake of the incident, known as the Hungerford massacre, Britain introduced the Firearms (Amendment) Act, which expanded the list of banned weapons, including certain semiautomatic rifles, and increased registration requirements for other weapons.

A gun-related tragedy in the Scottish town of Dunblane, in 1996, prompted Britain’s strictest gun laws yet. In March of that year, a middle-aged man armed with four legally purchased handguns shot and killed sixteen young schoolchildren and one adult before committing suicide in the country’s worst mass shooting to date. The incident sparked a public campaign known as the Snowdrop Petition, which helped drive legislation banning handguns, with few exceptions. The government also instituted a temporary gun buyback program, which many credit with taking tens of thousands of illegal or unwanted guns out of supply.

However, the effectiveness of Britain’s gun laws in gun-crime reduction over the last twenty-five years has stirred ongoing debate. Analysts note that the number of such crimes grew heavily in the late 1990s and peaked in 2004 before falling with each subsequent year. « While tighter gun control removes risk on an incremental basis, » said Peter Squires, a Brighton University criminologist, in an interview with CNN, « significant numbers of weapons remain in Britain. »
Norway
Gun control had rarely been much of a political issue in Norway—where gun laws are viewed as tough, but ownership rates are high—until right-wing extremist Anders Behring Breivik killed seventy-seven people in an attack on an island summer camp in July 2011. Though Norway ranked tenth worldwide in gun ownership, according to the Small Arms Survey, it placed near the bottom in gun-homicide rates. (The U.S. rate is roughly sixty-four times higher.) Most Norwegian police, much like the British, do not carry firearms.

In the wake of the tragedy, some analysts in the United States cited Breivik’s rampage as proof that strict gun laws—which in Norway include requiring applicants to be at least eighteen years of age, specify a « valid reason » for gun ownership, and obtain a government license—are ineffective. « Those who are willing to break the laws against murder do not care about the regulation of firearms, and will get a hold of weapons whether doing so is legal or not, » wrote Charles C. W. Cooke in National Review. Other gun-control critics have argued that had other Norwegians, including the police, been armed, Breivik might have been stopped earlier and killed fewer victims. An independent commission after the massacre recommended tightening Norway’s gun restrictions in a number of ways, including prohibiting pistols and semiautomatic weapons.

Japan
Gun-control advocates regularly cite Japan’s highly restrictive firearm regulations in tandem with its extraordinarily low gun-homicide rate, which is the lowest in the world at one in ten million, according to the latest data available. Most guns are illegal in the country and ownership rates, which are quite small, reflect this.

Under Japan’s firearm and sword law [PDF], the only guns permitted are shotguns, air guns, guns that have research or industrial purposes, or those used for competitions. However, before access to these specialty weapons is granted, one must obtain formal instruction and pass a battery of written, mental, and drug tests and a rigorous background check. Furthermore, owners must inform the authorities of how the weapon and ammunition is stored and provide the firearm for annual inspection.

Some analysts link Japan’s aversion to firearms with its demilitarization in the aftermath of World War II. Others say that because the overall crime rate in the country is so low, most Japanese see no need for firearms.

Voir par ailleurs:

Volkswagen, ce coupable qui en cache un autre
Contrepoints

25 septembre 2015

C’est à un tsunami de surprise feinte que nous avons eu droit la semaine passée : oh, vertuchou, Volkswagen a bricolé les logiciels embarqués dans ses voitures pour obtenir des résultats brillants aux tests anti-pollution aux États-Unis ! Le constructeur a menti, et il a même reconnu l’avoir fait ! Oh ! La pseudo-consternation a atteint rapidement la bourse, où l’action du constructeur a dévissé, et s’étend maintenant sur le marché européen, en touchant rapidement tous les autres constructeurs. Quel monde, mes amis, quel monde !

Ceci posé, revenons un peu sur Terre. Et si je parle de surprise feinte, c’est bien parce que les petites bidouilles des constructeurs pour faire passer leurs engins pour plus propres qu’ils ne le sont étaient connues de pas mal de monde. L’État, déjà, qui a savamment construit les normes, main dans la main avec les fabricants eux-mêmes, et qui devait bien se douter qu’il y aurait le cas des tests bâtis pour permettre aux modèles de remporter de bonnes notes, et les conditions réelles, franchement éloignées. Les automobilistes ensuite, dont l’écrasante majorité a pu constater l’écart entre la consommation affichée publicitairement, et qu’on ne peut obtenir que dans des conditions de roulage qui frôle la crédibilité par le mauvais côté de la tangente. Les associations écolo enfin, qui, toutes largement subventionnées par l’État, ont su tourner les yeux ailleurs le temps qu’il fallait pour ne pas voir les petits soucis de certaines motorisations.

Avant d’aller plus loin, cela ne retire, évidemment, absolument rien à la faute initiale de Volkswagen dans le cas qui nous occupe. Comme le précise avec raison Vincent Bénard dans son dernier article à ce sujet, le constructeur allemand a bel et bien fraudé, en masquant (de façon logicielle, donc) une production de gaz polluants (des oxydes d’azote, dans ce cas-là) bien au-dessus des normes admises en condition de conduite normale. Il mérite donc ce qui lui arrive actuellement.

Maintenant, ce constat ne permet pas d’éviter de rappeler quelques évidences bien trop vite oubliées tant par la plupart des journalistes que, surtout, par ces politiciens qui commentent l’actualité du haut de leur morale irréprochable et de leur parcours dans leur domaine généralement exempt de toute fraude.

On pourra ainsi pouffer en lisant la demande péremptoire et assez gonflée de « totale transparence » de la part de la ministre de l’Écologie, par exemple. C’est bien joli de réclamer la transparence, mais il faudrait aussi pousser les explications techniques un tantinet pour bien faire comprendre exactement l’enjeu, du côté des constructeurs, de respecter des normes anti-CO2 toujours plus drastiques.

En effet, et n’importe quel chimiste pourra le confirmer, l’apparition des oxydes d’azote (NOx) en combustion signifie que le carburant a été brûlé à des températures et des pressions élevées, qui certes contribuent à une diminution de la production de CO2, mais favorisent aussi l’augmentation de la production des NOx. Pour les constructeurs, chaque effort fait pour baisser la quantité de dioxyde de carbone aura donc tendance à augmenter la production des NOx. Cette augmentation est en partie absorbée par des systèmes de catalyse en sortie (notamment à base d’urée), mais on comprend qu’il est très complexe, chimiquement parlant, d’avoir à la fois une baisse constante des émissions d’un gaz qui, rappelons-le, n’est absolument pas nocif comme le CO2, et dans le même temps, une diminution des NOx (qui eux, sont effectivement nocifs pour la santé).

À ce point, on comprend que la course à l’homologation étatique des moteurs provoque le renchérissement des mécaniques vendues (avec l’introduction de systèmes progressivement de plus en plus complexes), ou, moins honnêtement, l’apparition de trucs et astuces pour réussir les conditions, bien calibrées, de tests connus à l’avance. Si la dernière option est clairement punissable, la première laisse songeur quant au bilan de l’action de l’État dans le domaine automobile.

On pourrait évoquer, par exemple, l’apparition de voitures électriques badigeonnées de massives subventions qui, si elles permettent à certains de frimer dans des Tesla agréables à regarder, n’ont toujours pas permis de régler les problèmes d’autonomie (et loin s’en faut), de recharges (longues et épuisantes pour le réseau électrique) ou de recyclage en fin de vie. D’autant que l’État qui subventionne les lubies électriques, c’est d’autant moins pour d’autres technologies, parfois prometteuses mais enterrées.

On pourrait rappeler que le développement en fanfare du diesel sur le sol européen ne doit à peu près rien au hasard et tout à la patte de l’État qui a sciemment encouragé son ascension par des taxations de plus en plus vexatoires sur l’essence. Ici, l’État stratège a bien frappé, et frappe encore : croyant soutenir une industrie automobile en concurrence avec le reste du monde en tabassant l’essence, l’État a introduit un biais énorme en faveur du diesel qui s’est effectivement révélé lucratif pour les constructeurs français… Jusqu’au moment où l’écart fiscal est devenu palpable (la Cour des Comptes évalue le – fameux – manque à gagner à 8 milliard d’euros) et où l’on s’est rendu compte que le diesel était particulièrement médiocre pour l’atmosphère.

On pourrait se rappeler qu’ensuite, l’écologie entrant dans les mœurs et la politique, les normes antipollution se sont mises à pulluler. L’État, toujours aussi stratège, s’est retrouvé avec d’un côté un diesel favorisé et de l’autre une atmosphère à dépolluer, à coup de normes de plus en plus drastiques, et des tests d’homologation idoines (et négociés avec les constructeurs). Là encore, on a du mal à oublier complètement la part de responsabilité de l’État. On pourrait en effet se rappeler qu’il n’y a pas de lobbying sans des individus, des administrations, des élus à « lobbyiser » surtout lorsqu’ils ont un grand pouvoir sur l’avenir d’une filière.

On pourrait enfin se rappeler que c’est encore l’État, au travers de la loi DMCA (protection des droits d’auteurs) qui a directement empêché que la tricherie soit révélée plus tôt : eh oui, selon cette loi, les constructeurs automobiles affirment qu’il est illégal pour des chercheurs indépendants de vérifier le code du logiciel contrôlant les véhicules, et ceci sans l’autorisation du fabricant, et cette interdiction a permis à Volkswagen de conserver ses manipulations à l’abri pendant des années.

L’État qui édicte des normes, l’État qui édicte des interdits, l’État qui pousse certaines motorisations au détriment d’autres … Volkswagen est évidemment coupable (et il l’a reconnu), mais oublier l’État n’est pas oublier un détail de la pièce qui s’est jouée, c’est oublier le décor, la musique et le metteur en scène.

Alors, quand, sur tout ce bazar déjà bien glauque, on apprend que l’État envisagerait de redresser les torts causés avec … une bonne grosse interdiction des diesels d’ici 2025 (parce que ça marche, ces trucs là, qu’on vous dit : c’est efficace et ça n’apporte jamais d’intéressants effets de bords), on sait que là, on tient la solution, c’est évident ! Bingo !

Toute cette affaire pue. Elle pue le capitalisme de connivence. Elle pue le lobbyisme débridé. Elle pue les petits arrangements, les compromis douteux, les arrangements entre copains et coquins. Elle pue de l’odeur âcre d’un diesel mal brûlé, elle pue d’une écologie politisée à mort et utilisée à des fins protectionnistes (ici, des USA contre l’Europe, jusqu’au prochain retour de bâton), elle pue l’interventionnisme de l’État à tous les niveaux.

Volkswagen paiera, cher, sa fraude, et c’est tant mieux. Mais cette affaire montre de façon éclatante l’incohérence des pouvoirs publics, tiraillés entre leurs lubies, leurs compromissions et les petits intérêts bien compris de ceux qui les dirigent. Tout ceci démontre encore une fois que la régulation étatique ne marche pas. Ceci montre à quel point on est éloigné d’un marché libre où les fraudeurs n’auraient jamais eu la possibilité de faire durer leurs manigances aussi longtemps, où l’État n’aurait jamais pu imposer des normes débiles et des tests ridicules, où le consommateur aurait pu se faire flouer sans rien pouvoir dire.

L’État stratège, quelle bouffonnerie !

Voir enfin:

UN Report 2014

Some 437,000 people murdered worldwide in 2012, according to new UNODC study.
Men made up almost 8 out of every 10 homicide victims, women accounted for vast majority of domestic violence fatalities
10 April 2014 – (London/Vienna)
– Almost half a million people (437,000) across the world lost their lives in 2012 as a result of intentional homicide, according to a new study by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC).
Launching the Global Study on Homicide 2013 in London today, Jean-Luc Lemahieu, Director for Policy Analysis and Public Affairs, said: “Too many lives are being tragically cut short, too many families and communities left shattered. There is an urgent need to understand how violent crime is plaguing countries around the world, particularly affecting young men but also taking a heavy toll on women.”
Globally, some 80 per cent of homicide victims and 95 per cent of perpetrators are men. Almost 15 per cent of all homicides stem from domestic violence (63,600). However, the overwhelming majority – almost 70 per cent – of domestic violence fatalities are women (43,600). “Home can be the most dangerous place for a woman,” said Mr. Lemahieu. “It is particularly heart-breaking when those who should be protecting their loved ones are the very people responsible for their murder.”Over half of all homicide victims are under 30 years of age, with children under the age of 15 accounting for just over 8 per cent of all homicides (36,000), the Study highlighted.
The regional picture
Almost 750 million people live in countries with the highest homicide rates in the world – namely the Americas and Africa –
meaning that almost half of a
ll homicide occurs in countries
that are home to just 11
per cent of the earth’s
population. At the opposite end of the spectrum, 3
billion people – mainly in Europe, Asia and Oceania- live in countries where homicide rates are
relatively low.
The global average murder rate stands at
6.2 per 100,000 population, but Southern Africa and
Central America recorded more than four
times that number (30 and 26 victims per 100,000
population respectively), the highest in the world. Meanwhile, with rates some five times lower
than the global average, East Asia, Southern
Europe and Western Europe recorded the lowest
homicide levels in 2012. Worryingl
y, homicide levels in North Af
rica, East Africa and parts of
South Asia are rising amid social
and political instability. In an
encouraging trend,
South Africa,
which has consistently high rates of homicide
, saw the homicide rate
halve from 64.5 per 100,000
in 1995 to 31.0 per 100,000 in 2012.
Homicides linked to gangs and organized crim
inal groups accounted for 30 per cent of all
homicides in the Americas compared to below
1 per cent in Asia, Europe and Oceania. While
surges in homicide are often linked to this type
of violence, the Americas saw homicide levels
five to eight times higher than Eu
rope and Asia since the 1950s.
2
The gender bias
Globally, the male homicide rate
is almost four times higher than for females (9.7 versus 2.7 per
100,000) and is highest in the Americas (29.3 pe
r 100,000 males), where it is almost seven times
higher than in Asia, Europe and Oceania (a
ll under 4.5 per 100,000 males). In particular, the
homicide rate for male victims aged 15-29 in S
outh and Central America is over four times the
global average rate for that age
group. More than 1 in 7 of a
ll homicide victims globally is a
young male aged 15-29 in the Americas.
While men are mostly killed by someone they ma
y not even know, almost half of all female
victims are killed by those closest to them. In As
ia, Europe and Oceania the share of victims from
domestic violence is particularly important. In a
ll these regions, the majority of female homicide
victims are killed at the hands of their intimat
e partners/family members (in Asia and Europe, 55
per cent, and in Oceania, 73 per cent). For example, in Asia, 19,700 women were killed by their
intimate partners or family members in 2012. When
only looking at intimat
e partner violence, the
overwhelming majority of homicide victim
s are women (79 per cent in Europe).
The causes of homicide
The consumption of alcohol and/or
illicit drugs increases the risk
of perpetrating homicide. In
some countries, over half of homicide offenders
acted under the influence of alcohol. Although
the effects of illicit drugs are less well docum
ented, cocaine and amphetamine-type stimulants
have been associated with vi
olent behaviour and homicide.
Firearms are the most widely used murder w
eapons, causing 4 in 10 homicides globally, whereas
about a quarter of victims are ki
lled with blades and sharp object
s and just over a third die though
other means (such as strangulation, poisoning etc.).
The use of firearms is particularly prevalent
in the Americas, where two thirds of homicide
s are committed with guns, while sharp objects are
used more frequently in Oceania and Europe.
Post-conflict societies awash in arms and gra
ppling with weak rule of law and impunity are
conducive to organized crime and interpersonal vi
olence. Haiti, for example, saw homicide rates
double from 5.1 in 2007 to 10.2 per 100,000 in 2012.
In South Sudan, the homicide rate in 2013
was, at over 60 per 100,000 people, among the highest
in the world. In contrast, in Sierra Leone
and Liberia, where reconciliation processes and anti
-crime strategies are taking root, security is
gradually improving.
Conviction rates
The global conviction rate for intentional hom
icide is of 43 convictions per 100 homicides.
However, disparities exist across regions, with a
conviction rate of 24 per cent in the Americas,
48 per cent in Asia and 81 per cent in Europe.
For more information please contact:
In Vienna: Preeta Bannerjee, Public
Information Officer, Phone: +43 699 1459 5764
Email:
preeta.bannerjee [at] unodc.org
For media interviews in London: Karen Davies
, Communications Officer for the UK and Ireland
United Nations Regional Information Centre (UNRIC),
Mobile: +32 473 26 22 55
Email:
davies [at] unric.org

7 commentaires pour Armes à feu: Attention, un massacre peut en cacher un autre ! (As guns could soon overtake cars as America’s number one killer, Harvard econonomist confirms that in developed countries it’s the number of handguns and not assault rifles that kill the most people and children)

  1. jcdurbant dit :

    GUESS WHO’S GOT THE STRICTEST GUN LAWS (And incidentally the largest number of firearm homicides)

    If you’re a gun owner in California, you must:

    Pass a universal background check, no matter where you buy your gun
    Wait at least 10 days to receive that gun (the idea here is to give law enforcement enough time to conduct the background check)
    Get your handgun microstamped, which means the make, model and serial number of the gun is transferred to each cartridge case every time the gun is fired (the idea is to allow police at a crime scene to trace a gun back to its owner)
    Take and pass a written safety test

    You can’t:

    Own most assault weapons or buy and sell large-capacity ammunition magazines or .50 caliber rifles
    Buy your gun through a private sale, like online or via a friend, without first going through a licensed dealer (and thus getting a background check)
    Buy more than one handgun a month

    Despite these restrictions, California had by far and away the largest number of firearm homicides in the nation in 2013, according to the FBI — almost four times as many as Illinois, for instance, while having slightly under three times as many people as in the Land of Lincoln. California had a firearm homicide rate of roughly 3.22 per 100,000 in 2013; Illinois, with its tough gun-control regimen in Chicago, had a 2.82 per 100,000 rate. By comparison, Arizona – cited as having the third-most lax gun laws in the nation by the Post – had a firearm homicide rate of 2.75 per 100,000 in 2013. (Louisiana, which came in first as most lax, does has a pretty awful 7.57 per 100,000 rate for 2013.) …

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2015/12/04/california-has-the-nations-strictest-gun-laws-here-are-the-other-strictest-and-loosest-states/

    http://hotair.com/archives/2015/12/04/rubio-no-stronger-gun-laws-wouldnt-have-prevented-san-bernardino-terrorist-attack/

    J'aime

  2. jcdurbant dit :

    Understanding Graham v. Connor
    A quarter-century ago the U.S. Supreme Court ruled on a case that determines the legality of every law enforcement use-of-force incident.
    Mark Clark
    Police Mag
    October 27, 2014

    No law enforcement officer starts his or her shift saying, « I want to make some case law here today. » But there are those rare occasions where an officer’s observations and actions get reviewed, scrutinized, and solidified as case law in the highest courts of the land. The 1989 case of Graham v. Connor is an example of how the actions of one officer can start a process that establishes law.

    Findings from Graham v. Connor determine the legality of every use-of-force decision an officer makes. And they will certainly be considered in the recent deadly use-of-force decision made by Ferguson, Mo., police officer Darren Wilson when using deadly force on Michael Brown. Which is why every American law enforcement officer should have a sound understanding of the Graham case and what it means.

    Using the Graham standard, an officer must apply constitutionally appropriate levels of force, based on the unique circumstances of each case. The officer’s force should be applied in the same basic way that an « objectively reasonable » officer would in the same circumstances. The Supreme Court has repeatedly said that the most important factor to consider in applying force is the threat faced by the officer or others at the scene.

    Orange Juice

    1984, On Nov. 12, 1984, Dethorne Graham, a North Carolina Department of Transportation maintenance worker and diabetic, sensed the onset of a diabetic reaction and needed sugar to offset the insulin. He asked a friend to drive him to a convenience store so he could purchase orange juice to counteract the insulin reaction.

    As he entered the store, Graham took note of the police car parked across from the store, but didn’t give it a second thought. He needed sucrose and couldn’t wait. Upon entering the store and seeing the number of people ahead of him, Graham hurried out of the store and asked his friend to drive him elsewhere for his sugar. Officer Connor of the Charlotte Police Department, sitting in the car across the street, saw Graham enter the store, then quickly run from the store, a textbook move for a thief or robber.

    Officers are trained to look for suspicious activity and Connor, along with any other « objectionably reasonable » officer, would think that Graham’s actions were suspicious and worth investigating further.

    According to well-publicized facts of the case, Connor followed the car Graham got into and stopped it a short ways down the street. The driver of the car, William Berry, told the officer that Graham was a diabetic, but the officer ordered the pair to wait while he found out what had happened in the store.

    When Connor returned to his patrol car to call for backup, Graham got out of the car, ran around it twice, and finally sat down on the curb, where he passed out briefly.

    A number of Charlotte police officers arrived as backup on the scene. One of the officers rolled Graham over on the sidewalk and cuffed his hands tightly behind his back, as Berry pleaded with the officers to get Graham some sugar. Several officers then lifted Graham up from behind, carried him over to Berry’s car, and placed him face down on its hood.

    Regaining consciousness, Graham asked the officers to check in his wallet for a diabetic decal that he carried. In response, one of the officers told him to « shut up » and shoved his face down against the hood of the car. Four officers grabbed Graham and put him head first into the police car.

    A friend of Graham’s brought some orange juice to the car, but the officers refused to let him have it. Finally, Officer Connor received a report that Graham had done nothing wrong at the convenience store, and the officers drove him home and released him.

    At some point during his encounter with the police, Graham sustained a broken foot, cuts on his wrists, a bruised forehead, and an injured shoulder; he also claims to have developed a loud ringing in his right ear that continues to this day.

    Graham secured counsel and filed a federal lawsuit under 42 U.S.C. § 1983—a section of U.S. Code that covers the violation of someone’s civil rights by a law enforcement officer—against the individual officers involved in the incident. The case wound its way through the appellate process all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court, which established the rulings in Graham v. Connor as the law of the land in 1989.

    Graham and Ferguson

    On closer inspection of the Graham v. Connor ruling, there are some important thoughts expressed by the court that are salient to the Ferguson shooting case.

    Devallis Rutledge is special counsel to the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office, a use-of-force subject matter expert, and author of numerous books and POLICE Magazine’s monthly « Point of Law » column. He says that the most important quotes from the written opinion of the Supreme Court in the Graham decision are in the three paragraphs talking about the reasonableness test of the Fourth Amendment.

    These paragraphs say: Any use of force by law enforcement officers needs to take into account « severity of the crime at issue, whether the suspect poses an immediate threat to the safety of the officers or others, and whether he is actively resisting arrest or attempting to evade arrest by flight. »

    « The ‘reasonableness’ of a particular use of force must be judged from the perspective of a reasonable officer on the scene, rather than with the 20/20 vision of hindsight. »

    « The calculus of reasonableness must embody allowance for the fact that police officers are often forced to make split-second judgments—in circumstances that are tense, uncertain, and rapidly evolving—about the amount of force that is necessary in a particular situation. »

    So considering the facts that are known in the Ferguson case, of which there are very few in the public domain at this time, the officer’s state of mind will play an important role in considering if the shooting was excessive. What level of threat did the officer perceive? What is his training and background? What are the physical size differences between officer and offender? What options could be reasonable considered short of deadly force?

    It is safe to say that the situation in Ferguson was « tense, uncertain, and rapidly evolving, » as the incident was reportedly a prolonged violent confrontation that went from a police car to a confrontation on the street. Would a reasonable officer, faced with the exact same circumstances, with the same training and physical conditioning, make the same decision to use force in the same manner? These are the questions to be answered by the investigators.

    We don’t know what will happen with Officer Darren Wilson of the Ferguson Police Department. But we can be certain that officials charged with evaluating the facts of his shooting will consider Graham when deciding if it was objectively reasonable and constitutional.

    Write It Up

    Officers working the street and applying the principles of Graham v. Connor every day may or may not know they are doing it. A generation of officers has been trained in the case’s practical meaning and has spent decades applying it to every use-of-force decision. So it has become part of law enforcement DNA, often unnoticed as it works in the background to determine our actions. But now the events in Ferguson give us a rare opportunity to put the application of the Graham standards in everyday policing and in-service training under the microscope and study them.

    What are the relevant points for a police officer in a situation of deciding the right level of force to use to effect an arrest? Focus on the main questions to be asked: Was the force « objectively reasonable » based on the facts and circumstances faced by the officer? What was the seriousness of the crime? What was the threat to the officer or other people? Was the suspect resisting and/or attempting to flee?

    According to retired LAPD Capt. Greg Meyer, a POLICE Advisory Board member and noted use-of-force expert, the officer’s assessment of the suspect becomes very important in a Graham analysis. Height and weight? Weapons? Demeanor? Verbal threats? Intoxication? Prior knowledge of suspect’s history? These are among the many factors that you should remember to include in the reporting.

    « When you focus on the Graham factors, your police report will be better, » Meyer says. « Your report should be specific about what the suspect was doing that caused you to use force. »

    It’s not enough to give a generalized statement about levels of resistance and levels of force, Meyer says. It’s far better to specifically write what happened. Meyer provides the following example of specifics for a police report on a TASER deployment.

    « The suspect started looking around to his left and his right. I used my radio to request a backup unit. He flexed his arm muscles and clenched his fists. I drew my TASER and stated, ‘Sir, if you don’t calm down, I will use the TASER on you, and it will hurt a lot.’ Then he yelled at me, ‘I am not going to jail again!’ I calmly repeated my instruction, ‘Sir, I know you’re upset, but you are under arrest. Please cooperate. Put your hands behind your head, and turn around so that I can handcuff you. Do it now!’ At that time, the suspect looked around to his left and right again. He bent forward at the waist and began to take a step forward in my direction. At that time, I believed that he was about to attack me. I deployed TASER probes, and he fell to the ground. At that time I handcuffed him. »

    Writing specific accounts of why you used force during an incident will go a long way toward getting any potential jury inside your head and understanding what you were thinking. You have to say what the exact threat was that you perceived. You may not be thinking about making case law at the time, but you may be doing just that.

    The Decision

    The words of Chief Justice William Rehnquist can still be heard loud and clear today, 25 years after the Graham v. Connor decision. And every American law enforcement officer should know them well.

    « The reasonableness of a particular use of force must be judged from the perspective of a reasonable officer on the scene, rather than with the 20/20 vision of hindsight. The calculus of reasonableness must embody allowance for the fact that police officers are often forced to make split-second judgments—in circumstances that are tense, uncertain and rapidly evolving—about the amount of force that is necessary in a particular situation. The test of reasonableness is not capable of precise definition or mechanical application. »

    Our society would benefit from listening to Rehnquist’s opinion rather than listening to community activists, protesters, or ill-informed politicians who see issues in black and white instead of seeing the issues from the standpoint of objective reasonableness. After the dust settles in Ferguson, we may have new case law or we may have affirmation of a 25-year-old decision that started with a quest for a bottle of orange juice.

    Mark Clark is a 27-year veteran police sergeant. He has served as PIO, training officer, and as supervisor for various squads.

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  3. jcdurbant dit :

    WORLD’S MOST VIOLENT CITIES (Outside of war zones, all but eight – including four US and two South African cities – of the 50 worst cities are to be found in Latin America and the Caribbean)

    Latin America is particularly blighted by violence. All but eight of the 50 worst cities on the list are to be found in Latin America and the Caribbean. Murders in El Salvador’s capital, San Salvador, have almost doubled in a year to 1,900 in a city of 1.8m people, mainly as a result of the government ending a truce with drug gangs. The country’s national statistics also bear out this grim record; it has surpassed Honduras as the country with the world’s highest murder rate. The numbers from Brazil are especially bleak, some 21 of its cities now feature on the list, up from 14 five years ago. Yet there are some glimmers of optimism. The number of Mexican cities in the ranking has fallen from 12 to five over the same period. Colombia’s progress towards peace is reflected in the figures; its second city, Medellín, had a murder rate of 70 in 2011 but no longer features at all. San Pedro Sula in Honduras, formerly the worst city for several years running, saw murders nearly halve.

    Cities from only two countries outside Latin American and the Caribbean occupy places on the list; the United States and South Africa. Four American cities from the previous year remain, lead by St Louis, where murders rose slightly in 2015. Baltimore has seen the largest rise, from 40th to 19th.

    Some caution should be used when reading the ranking, which applies to cities with 300,000 people or more, and does not count war zones or cities with unavailable data. It is also notoriously difficult to compare crime statistics within countries, let alone across them. Murder statistics are usually supplied by police or from death registers derived from health-agency data. In countries with fewer resources the data are therefore less reliable. CCSP-JP uses estimates* in such cases, and cities with good records may therefore suffer from their efficiency.

    *For example, Caracas’s rate of 120 per 100,000 people (3,900 murders in a population of 3.3m) is derived from counting bodies in the city’s morgue, which covers a slightly larger area than the city itself, and an assumption that 80% of these are the result of homicide …

    http://www.economist.com/blogs/graphicdetail/2016/02/daily-chart-3?fsrc=scn/fb/wl/bl/dc/st/theworldsmostviolentcities

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  4. jcdurbant dit :


    WORLD’S MURDER CAPITAL BUT SAFER THAN COMPTON (Nineteen out of fifty: no country in the world has more cities plagued by violent crime than Brazil)

    With joblessness on the rise and above-target inflation eating into real wages, consumption in Brazil has been declining as the country heads to its longest recession since 1931. As a result, violent crimes have turned Brazil into the murder capital of the Americas. More people are murdered in Brazil than in any country outside of a war zone, according to one Mexico City based think tank. The good news is, thanks to a large and dedicated Rio police force, the city is safer than most when it comes to violent crimes.

    But when it comes to mortal gunshot wounds, Brazil takes the cake. Out of the 50 cities with high per capita homicide rates, the “country of the future”, where God is a registered voter, according to local lore, has a whopping 22 cities on the list. Even clean-and-green Curitiba and homogenous Porto Alegre are on it.

    The zica virus may very well go the way of SARS and other diseases the World Health Organization warns are heading for run-for-your-life pandemics, violent crime in Brazil will be harder to eradicate. It won’t go away with pesticides and booster shots. Reducing the homicide rate requires a better police force, stronger land rights, a stronger public health system equipped to deal with drug addiction, and a better economy in the much poorer northern states. Seeing how most Brazil economists are forecasting the country to get marginally worse this year, rising unemployment and sinking incomes also put Brazilian crime fighters in the spot light …

    http://www.forbes.com/sites/kenrapoza/2016/01/29/months-before-rio-olympics-murder-rate-rises-in-brazil/#6b71a7511a0b

    The number of Brazilian cities violent enough to be placed among the 50 most violent in the world just keeps going up, from 14 cities on the list in 2011, to 19 cities in 2014. In 2011, just two Brazilian cities were among the world’s ten most violent; that number has since doubled. One of those cities, João Pessoa, the capital of northern state Paraiba, has seen a particularly dramatic jump in violence over the years — ranking 29th in 2011, and now ranking fourth.

    Since 2011, when Mexico had 12 cities that ranked among the world’s 50 most violent, that number has now dropped to 10. Nine of those cities were among the 25 most violent in the world in 2011; now, there are only two — Acapulco and Culiacan.

    Over the years, there hasn’t been that much difference between the number of Venezuelan cities on the list, versus the number of cities in the United States. This year, both Venezuela and the US have four cities among the 50 most violent, but three of those Venezuelan cities are in the top 20, and just one is in the US.

    Juarez had a staggering 148 homicides per 100,000 people in 2011, the second most violent city in the world. Now, it’s the 27th — with a homicide rate of 40. Torreon and Chihuahua saw similar improvements — the homicide rate in these cities fell from 88 and 83, respectively, in 2011, to 28 and 33 in 2014.

    Meanwhile, Colombia’s second-largest city, Medellin, is now safer than every other US city on this list — Baltimore, New Orleans, St. Louis and Detroit. This is compared to 2011, when Medellin ranked at 14th.

    However, as reported by InSight Crime, these improvements in Medellin may have less to do with government initiatives and more to do with an ongoing pax mafioso. Likewise, while the Mexican government remains keen on emphasizing the improvements in Juarez, the reasons behind the border city’s declining homicides are a mixed bag.

    Another dramatic improvement was seen in San Juan, Puerto Rico, the 25th most violent city in the world in 2011. This year, it doesn’t even rank in the top 50, an improvement that’s been attributed to several policies, including more effective use of technology. Another city in the Caribbean, Kingston, remains among the top 30 most violent in the world, but saw a sizable drop in its homicide rate between 2013 and 2014, possibly helped by fewer police killings.

    On the flip side, one of the most dramatic upticks in violence was in Valencia, Venezuela. The city wasn’t even ranked in 2011, then ranked 50th in 2013, with a homicide rate of 30 per 100,000. This year, it’s the seventh most violent city in the world, with a homicide rate of 71.

    After El Salvador negotiated a truce between its most violent gangs, its capital, San Salvador, went from the 20th most violent city in the world (in 2011) to the 44th, in 2012. After the gang truce fell apart, the city now has a higher homicide rate than it did the year before the truce — it’s currently the 13th most violent in the world.

    It’s not just the number of Latin American cities on the CCSP-JP’s list, it’s the degree of the violence found there. Of the 43 Latin American cities on the 2014 list, about 40 percent of them have homicide rates higher than 50 per 100,000, and about 46 percent have homicide rates at 30 per 100,000 or higher. The global homicide average is about 7 per 100,000 …

    http://www.insightcrime.org/news-analysis/latin-america-dominates-list-of-worlds-most-violent-cities

    http://www.seguridadjusticiaypaz.org.mx/sala-de-prensa/1165-por-cuarto-ano-consecutivo-san-pedro-sula-es-la-ciudad-mas-violenta-del-mundo

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  5. jcdurbant dit :


    IF YOU GO TO RIO (Watch your back, says Brazilian soccer star)

    Things are getting uglier here every day. I advise everyone with plans to visit Brazil for the Olympics in Rio — to stay home. You’ll be putting your life at risk here. This is without even speaking about the state of public hospitals and all the Brazilian political mess. Only God can change the situation in our Brazil.

    Rivaldo

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