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Thu., Jan. 31, 2013

Murder rates by guns

David Barker’s statistics (Jan. 18) are incorrect. The United States has 88.8 guns per 100 people, Switzerland 45.7, Germany 30.3, and Japan 0.6.

In 2012, there were 14,748 killings in the U.S., 9,960 by guns. Germany 690 killings, 158 by guns; Switzerland 97 killings, 57 by guns; Japan 646 killings, 11 by guns.

Extrapolating per 100,000 inhabitants: The murder rate in the U.S. was 5.6 times the rate of Germany, 3.7 times the rate of Switzerland, and 12 times the rate of Japan.

The murder rate using a gun in the U.S. was 16.4 times the rate in Germany, 4.3 times the rate in Switzerland and 327 times the rate in Japan.

Note also that the murder rate in Switzerland is higher than in Germany. Because of more guns?

What does the radical gun lobby not understand? The easy availability of guns makes killing much easier.

People without guns might still want to kill you, but might think twice before trying it with fists or knives. Plus the victim might be able to run away. Any coward can pull a trigger.

Juergen Nolthenius

Coeur d’Alene

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