It’s no secret that the NRA has pushed legislation that stifled the study and spread of information about the causes of gun violence for decades. Now, as the FBI looks into the NRA’s connections with Russian spies and money, a new study of FBI records shows that the NRA’s precious semiautomatic rifles “double the chances of victims being wounded and killed” compared to other types of guns.
“Shooters carrying semiautomatic rifles have the ability to kill and injure more people than those armed with handguns, shotguns and non-semiautomatic rifles, a new study shows.
Researchers poring over FBI data found that shooters could hit nearly twice as many people if they were armed with a semi-automatic rifle, according to the study published in JAMA.”
The FBI data covered 248 “active shooter” incidents during a 17-year period between 2000 and 2017, cross-referenced with court records and media reports to verify the type of gun used in the incidents.
The data did not cover shootings due to gang or drug violence or mass shootings involving mass casualties, fatalities of more than several people, or shootings carried out by multiple gunmen.
Adil Haider, a trauma and critical care surgeon who directs the Center for Surgery and Public Health at BWH, decided to do one of the first comprehensive assessments of injuries from the different types of firearms used by “active shooters,” or “people who attempt to kill or hurt others with a gun in a populated area.”
“The biggest take-home message is that in an active shooter incident, an assailant with a semiautomatic rifle may be able to hurt and kill about twice the number of people compared to if they had a non-semiautomatic rifle or a handgun,” said Adil.
We compared number of people wounded / killed during active shooter incidents with or without semiautomatic rifles. Semi-Automatics = 2 X number injured or dead. See @JAMA_current https://t.co/3UAJQfbdh1 … study by @ElzerieDJ @EricGoralnick @JustinCMcCarty et al & @CSPH_BWH team pic.twitter.com/2cCHelVs3D
— Adil Haider (@AdilHaiderMD) September 11, 2018
Haider didn’t include data about mass shootings or shootings carried out by multiple shooters to avoid skewing the results.
“We wanted to make sure we were comparing like with like incidents to truly get at the question about injuries and deaths from semiautomatic rifles versus other guns with a single active shooter,” said Haider.
The study was conducted by researchers at Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH) and published in the published in The Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA).
The semiautomatic rifles in question include the AR-15 and its variants, with large magazines and high-velocity ammunition that can cause extreme damage to soft tissue and bone in seconds.
From Scientific American:
“The analysis found a shooting involving a semiautomatic rifle was associated on average with five injuries versus three if a different kind of gun was used. Similarly, the presence of the semiautomatic rifle was associated with four deaths instead of two.”
The study obviously gives gun control activists the objective facts that the NRA has long tried to suppress as well as more momentum to bring back the now-expired 1994 federal assault weapons ban.
Critics say the study is flawed because it looked at all semiautomatic rifles instead of just the “assault weapons” identified in the 1994 legislation.
Once again, the average person can probably use common sense to determine that guns with large magazines and high-velocity ammunition are the ones most dangerous to innocent citizens. It’s pathetic that we have been blocked for decades by the NRA from coming to such an obvious but absolutely necessary and official conclusion.
If you would like to see an America safer from constant gun violence, vote blue in the midterms. Your life really may depend on it, in more ways than one.