Deaths from firearms in the US, 2000-2007

Because you wanted to know:

First observation: Far more men are killed in this manner than women. Boys with their toys. Presumably, women are being killed by something else. Second observation: There may be a trend towards decreasing rates of death by accident involving firearms. This could be a simple increase in the effectiveness of medial intervention, or perhaps it is something else.

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Greg, I mostly just skip over your gun posts. But it's late and I'm in a pensive mood, and my cups, so I'll ask: What is it you're hoping to achieve?

Let me put that question in a context. For better or worse, as a historical result of technology when it was colonized, its frontier culture, the kinds of wars it has fought, a long practice of hunting, popular literature on all these, and other factors, the US has a gun culture. US's gun culture is embedded in its Constitution. Heller and McDonald are now the highest law of the land. (The other western nation that has something similar is Switzerland. But its gun culture is more tied to universal military service. Those wanting to sever that just lost a significant vote.)

You're an anthropologist. You understand that there are a lot of practices that can be explained only with respect to the historical path of a culture, that nonetheless are real. The UK drives on the wrong side of the road. An American man from the south with a young woman colleague from Japan will remain standing, before either takes the last seat on a subway car. My former colleagues from Minneapolis will go out on the ice each winter, drinking and fishing. I suspect you could list endless other examples.

There's nothing wrong, of course, with wanting to nudge culture. Michele Obama has taken on obesity. Which is also part of US culture. And kills an order of magnitude more Americans than guns. She has the advantage of being first lady. And the disadvantage that half of America will eat an extra quarter pounder just to spite her. Personally, I would broadcast the message that there's nothing more Republican than eating a quarter pounder with bacon while smoking a pack of Marlboros. But first ladies are expected to act eleemosynary. My own suspicion is that your gun posts serve more to let off steam than act as any kind of cultural nudge. That's OK. Everyone has their pet peeves. I just suspect it's counterproductive politically, since you become an example of "yet another liberal who doesn't like guns." Which bothers me a bit as someone concerned with other issues typically viewed as liberal, than from any concern with guns. I guess there's still a part of me that thinks Ann Richards would have defeated George Bush, had she supported concealed carry, and the Republicans not been able to use that issue against her. And the world (and Texas) would have been quite a good deal better off if George were now a failed gubernatorial candidate long since forgotten.

Damn, I miss our last sane governor. She was classy. Intelligent. When she was governor, she used to run out to the Village 4 to watch indie films, with a Texas Ranger at her side. The Ranger would look serious, but Ann seemed happy to be out bumping shoulders with the hoi polloi. Most of all, she was sane:

Russel: Greg, I mostly just skip over your gun posts. But it's late and I'm in a pensive mood, and my cups, so I'll ask: What is it you're hoping to achieve?

If you mostly skip over my gun posts, then you have mostly skipped over my discussions of what I hope to achieve. A quick glance at the rest of your comment proves that, I'm afraid.

Greg writes:

You never know in Texas. Your most recent governor could always end up your first president! (Of Texas)

Nay. We've already had four presidents. If my early civics courses serve. So at best, or actually, worst, he'd be fifth. Someone needs to remind our current governor that Texas left Mexico in part because Mexico failed to establish public schools.

If you mostly skip over my gun posts, then you have mostly skipped over my discussions of what I hope to achieve.

Link, please?

All my gun posts are tagged "gun ownership" ... see tag near top of post, just click that.

In fact. I often avoid stating a position or point of view. It is more useful to have people show up assuming that I have a particular point of view, then they yell at me for that for a while, then we eventually have a conversation. But by glancing at the posts with the most comments, then glancing through the comments, you can get the jist of the gun-related conversation here.