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Old 12-16-2012, 10:35 PM  
Direckshun Direckshun is online now
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Let's research gun violence.

I've said this in a couple other threads, but I don't believe that gun control is going to get any traction in Congress. Some Democrats will push for it, some other Republicans will table it, some pro-gun control folks like myself will cry foul, and yet another Congress will pass without any gun control measures seeing the light of day.

But here's one thing that maybe we can start doing: better educate ourselves on gun violence, so we can stop stabbing in the dark as to what we can better do to mitigate it.

The problem is that for a couple decades now, the government has not been able to produce any information on gun violence because the NRA has been threatening war if Congress failed to choke off all funding for gun-related research.

The CDC and NIH used to conduct research for decades, but around the time of the late 90s, the NRA became so powerful it was able to prevent these agencies from granting funds to researchers on those topics. McClatchy DC:

Quote:
The CDC and NIH award billions in grants. They fund research into cancer, brain injury, tobacco use, obesity, AIDS, abortion, hearing loss, allergies, infectious diseases, back pain and virtually everything else related to human health. But gun violence is the one area that carries that specific language. The effect has been to limit federal funding into research that could be used to shape policy.
This is irresponsible. We pass hundreds of gun-related laws across the country every few years. Like all laws, we should be able to research the impact of the laws we pass, so we can make decisions based on more than pure ideology.

Anyway, there's a ton of stories on this, but here's a really good one from last year in the Times.

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/01/26/us...anted=all&_r=0

N.R.A. Stymies Firearms Research, Scientists Say
By MICHAEL LUO
Published: January 25, 2011

In the wake of the shootings in Tucson, the familiar questions inevitably resurfaced: Are communities where more people carry guns safer or less safe? Does the availability of high-capacity magazines increase deaths? Do more rigorous background checks make a difference?

The reality is that even these and other basic questions cannot be fully answered, because not enough research has been done. And there is a reason for that. Scientists in the field and former officials with the government agency that used to finance the great bulk of this research say the influence of the National Rife Association has all but choked off money for such work.

“We’ve been stopped from answering the basic questions,” said Mark Rosenberg, former director of the National Center for Injury Control and Prevention, part of the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which was for about a decade the leading source of financing for firearms research.

Chris Cox, the N.R.A.’s chief lobbyist, said his group had not tried to squelch genuine scientific inquiries, just politically slanted ones.

“Our concern is not with legitimate medical science,” Mr. Cox said. “Our concern is they were promoting the idea that gun ownership was a disease that needed to be eradicated.”

The amount of money available today for studying the impact of firearms is a fraction of what it was in the mid-1990s, and the number of scientists toiling in the field has dwindled to just a handful as a result, researchers say.

The dearth of money can be traced in large measure to a clash between public health scientists and the N.R.A. in the mid-1990s. At the time, Dr. Rosenberg and others at the C.D.C. were becoming increasingly assertive about the importance of studying gun-related injuries and deaths as a public health phenomenon, financing studies that found, for example, having a gun in the house, rather than conferring protection, significantly increased the risk of homicide by a family member or intimate acquaintance.

Alarmed, the N.R.A. and its allies on Capitol Hill fought back. The injury center was guilty of “putting out papers that were really political opinion masquerading as medical science,” said Mr. Cox, who also worked on this issue for the N.R.A. more than a decade ago.

Initially, pro-gun lawmakers sought to eliminate the injury center completely, arguing that its work was “redundant” and reflected a political agenda. When that failed, they turned to the appropriations process. In 1996, Representative Jay Dickey, Republican of Arkansas, succeeded in pushing through an amendment that stripped $2.6 million from the disease control centers’ budget, the very amount it had spent on firearms-related research the year before.

“It’s really simple with me,” Mr. Dickey, 71 and now retired, said in a telephone interview. “We have the right to bear arms because of the threat of government taking over the freedoms that we have.”

The Senate later restored the money but designated it for research on traumatic brain injury. Language was also inserted into the centers’ appropriations bill that remains in place today: “None of the funds made available for injury prevention and control at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention may be used to advocate or promote gun control.”

The prohibition is striking, firearms researchers say, because there are already regulations that bar the use of C.D.C. money for lobbying for or against legislation. No other field of inquiry is singled out in this way.

In the end, researchers said, even though it is murky what exactly is allowed under this provision and what is not, the upshot is clear inside the centers: the agency should tread in this area only at its own peril.

“They had a near-death experience,” said Dr. Arthur Kellermann, whose study on the risks versus the benefits of having guns in the home became a focal point of attack by the N.R.A.

In the years since, the C.D.C. has been exceedingly wary of financing research focused on firearms. In its annual requests for proposals, for example, firearms research has been notably absent. Gail Hayes, spokeswoman for the centers, confirmed that since 1996, while the agency has issued requests for proposals that include the study of violence, which may include gun violence, it had not sent out any specifically on firearms.

“For policy to be effective, it needs to be based on evidence,” said Dr. Garen Wintemute, director of the Violence Prevention Research Program at the University of California, Davis, who had his C.D.C. financing cut in 1996. “The National Rifle Association and its allies in Congress have largely succeeded in choking off the development of evidence upon which that policy could be based.”

Private foundations initially stepped into the breach, but their attention tends to wax and wane, researchers said. They are also much more interested in work that leads to immediate results and less willing to finance basic epidemiological research that scientists say is necessary to establishing a foundation of knowledge about the connection between guns and violence, or the lack thereof.

The National Institute of Justice, part of the Justice Department, also used to finance firearms research, researchers said, but that money has also petered out in recent years. (Institute officials said they hoped to reinvigorate financing in this area.)

Stephen Teret, founding director of the Johns Hopkins Center for Gun Policy and Research, estimated that the amount of money available for firearms research was a quarter of what it used to be. With so much uncertainty about financing, Mr. Teret said, the circle of academics who study the phenomenon has fallen off significantly.

After the centers’ clash with the N.R.A., Mr. Teret said he was asked by C.D.C. officials to “curtail some things I was saying about guns and gun policy.”

Mr. Teret objected, saying his public comments about gun policy did not come while he was on the “C.D.C. meter.” After he threatened to file a lawsuit against the agency, Mr. Teret said, the officials backed down and gave him “a little bit more leeway.”

C.D.C. financing for research on gun violence has not stopped completely, but it is now mostly limited to work in which firearms are only a component.

The centers also ask researchers it finances to give it a heads-up anytime they are publishing studies that have anything to do with firearms. The agency, in turn, relays this information to the N.R.A. as a courtesy, said Thomas Skinner, a spokesman for the centers.

Invariably, researchers said, whenever their work touches upon firearms, the C.D.C. becomes squeamish. In the end, they said, it is often simply easier to avoid the topic if they want to continue to be in the agency’s good graces.

Dr. Stephen Hargarten, professor and chairman of emergency medicine at the Medical College of Wisconsin, used to direct a research center, financed by the C.D.C., that focused on gun violence, but he said he had now shifted his attention to other issues.
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Old 12-22-2012, 09:35 AM   #691
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Originally Posted by Wickedson View Post
Hunting period is for pussys. Why would you go shoot an animal that has no chance to defend itself?

I almost have more respect for people who openly admit their guns are to kill other people. People who shoot animals are just weird.
So your a vegetarian then dipshit?
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Old 12-22-2012, 10:15 AM   #692
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Originally Posted by Wickedson View Post
The only extinction events I hear are from hunting itself.

Your point is interesting though. Have any data to back it up?
I fear we're taking our eye off the ball here.

Nobody gives a shit about legal hunting. No idea why you're even wandering into this nonsense.
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Old 12-22-2012, 10:18 AM   #693
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Originally Posted by frazod View Post
I'm just fighting Direckshun with Direckshun. What, you don't like it?
I have no idea what this even means.

You've written yourself out of this thread by refusing to address the actual issue being discussed, or refusing to engage in hardly any of the idiotic statements you have made.
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Old 12-22-2012, 10:22 AM   #694
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Originally Posted by Direckshun View Post
I have no idea what this even means.

You've written yourself out of this thread by refusing to address the actual issue being discussed, or refusing to engage in hardly any of the idiotic statements you have made.
Would you care to expand on that?
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Old 12-22-2012, 10:23 AM   #695
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Originally Posted by frazod View Post
Would you care to expand on that?
Do you wish to return to the subject, or are we done here.
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Old 12-22-2012, 10:24 AM   #696
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So your a vegetarian then dipshit?
I eat meat from controlled cattle that grows to an approprite size and is slaughtered for food. I am pleased with all the recent anti-meat activism though that has shed light on the meat industry and are helping to improve the conditions in which animals are treated before they come to our supermarkets and restaurants.

I don't really see those that claim hunting for food as a necessity. I think its weird. Its usually a lie too because everyone I have ever met who hunts tries to give me vennison or whatever you call it, all the time. They do this because it tastes like shit and sits in their freezer until they throw it out.

Anything else dipshit?
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Old 12-22-2012, 10:24 AM   #697
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Originally Posted by Direckshun View Post
Do you wish to return to the subject, or are we done here.
I feel I am entitled to a more detailed explanation of your question.
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Old 12-22-2012, 10:25 AM   #698
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I feel I am entitled to a more detailed explanation of your question.
Message received.
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Old 12-22-2012, 10:26 AM   #699
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Originally Posted by Wickedson View Post
I eat meat from controlled cattle that grows to an approprite size and is slaughtered for food. I am pleased with all the recent anti-meat activism though that has shed light on the meat industry and are helping to improve the conditions in which animals are treated before they come to our supermarkets and restaurants.

I don't really see those that claim hunting for food as a necessity. I think its weird. Its usually a lie too because everyone I have ever met who hunts tries to give me vennison or whatever you call it, all the time. They do this because it tastes like shit and sits in their freezer until they throw it out.

Anything else dipshit?
You never answered my question. What did that poor little cow ever do to you?

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Old 12-22-2012, 10:27 AM   #700
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Originally Posted by Direckshun View Post
Message received.
What message? Could you be more specific?
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Old 12-22-2012, 10:33 AM   #701
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Originally Posted by Wickedson View Post
I eat meat from controlled cattle that grows to an approprite size and is slaughtered for food. I am pleased with all the recent anti-meat activism though that has shed light on the meat industry and are helping to improve the conditions in which animals are treated before they come to our supermarkets and restaurants.

I don't really see those that claim hunting for food as a necessity. I think its weird. Its usually a lie too because everyone I have ever met who hunts tries to give me vennison or whatever you call it, all the time. They do this because it tastes like shit and sits in their freezer until they throw it out.

Anything else dipshit?
Improved conditions before they are slaughtered? LOL
Whatever helps you sleep better at night I suppose.

And I've done tons of work inside of slaughter houses so I know how the process works.
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Old 12-22-2012, 10:33 AM   #702
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Wickedson? Why do I have to die for you? I never harmed you. I don't want to go to the slaughterhouse. Pleeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeese Wickedson save me!!!!

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Old 12-22-2012, 10:34 AM   #703
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Ah. A much more updated piece than in the OP.

http://www.slate.com/articles/health...es_at_cdc.html

How Congress Blocked Research on Gun Violence
The ugly campaign by the NRA to shut down studies at the CDC.
By Paul D. Thacker
Posted Wednesday, Dec. 19, 2012, at 5:38 PM ET

After the tragic shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School, calls for gun-control legislation have begun. Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) said on NBC's Meet the Press that she plans to introduce a bill to ban assault weapons. Even West Virginia Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin, who calls himself a gun supporter, says he sees no reason for these types of weapons.

But as Congress considers new laws, the scientific research we need to craft the best policies is in short supply. This is by design.

In the 1990s, politicians backed by the NRA attacked researchers for publishing data on firearm research. For good measure, they also went after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for funding the research. According to the NRA, such science is not “legitimate.” To make sure federal agencies got the message, Rep. Jay Dickey (R-Ark.) sponsored an amendment that stripped $2.6 million from the CDC’s budget, the exact amount it had spent on firearms research the previous year.

But last summer, Dickey recanted. No longer in office, he wrote an editorial stating that “scientific research should be conducted into preventing firearm injuries and that ways to prevent firearm deaths can be found without encroaching on the rights of legitimate gun owners.”

To understand more about what we know and don’t know about the science of firearm violence, Slate contacted Garen Wintemute, director of the Violence Prevention Research Program at the University of California, Davis Medical Center. For over 30 years, he has studied firearm violence and published more than 100 studies in the field.

Paul Thacker: Since the ban on CDC funding for firearm violence research, how do scientists such as yourself find money for this type of science?

Garen Wintemute: The National Institute of Justice had a highly respected program of research in the field, smaller than CDC’s. That program ended several years ago when its program officer, a strong advocate for research on violence, retired. A number of private foundations also provided funding for this research, particularly in the 1990s, but many of them have left the field as well. Today, to my knowledge, there are fewer than five.

PT: Have other agencies besides the CDC also been intimidated by funding this type of research?

GW: I’ll let the agencies discuss whether they’ve been intimidated or simply prevented or prohibited. The statutory language, which remains in appropriations legislation for the Department of Health and Human Services to this day, is that “none of the funds made available in this title may be used, in whole or in part, to advocate or promote gun control.” I think it’s fair to say that this language has been interpreted at times to mean that none of the funds could be used to support research that, depending on its findings, might be used in support of efforts to alter current firearm policy.

It’s worth noting that when signing the budget for 2012, President Obama said of this provision that “I have advised the Congress that I will not construe these provisions as preventing me from fulfilling my constitutional responsibility to recommend to the Congress’s consideration such measures as I shall judge necessary and expedient.”

These comments have new relevance in light of the president’s statement this Wednesday that he is appointing Vice President Biden to chair a panel that will recommend a slate of firearm policy reforms by next month.

PT: About as many people in the United States are killed in auto accidents as by firearms. How does the amount of research and number of scientists in auto safety compare to firearm safety?

GW: I believe that 2012 will turn out to be the first year in which the United States has more deaths from firearm violence than motor vehicles.

An entire federal agency, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, has as its mission the understanding and prevention of death and injury on our roads and highways. It reports fiscal year 2012 funding of $62.4 million overall for research and analysis: $35.5 million for vehicle safety and $26.9 million for highway safety.

These funds are well spent. For nearly 50 years, this agency has worked to reduce death and injury. And it has succeeded.

PT: Do other countries fund research on gun violence, and can we use their data?

GW: I have read many studies over the years of firearm violence in other countries that have been funded by their governments. The findings of those studies are useful here, with the usual caveats about demographic and societal differences. The science is solid.

PT: Have you experienced personal attempts at intimidation for your research? How about colleagues?

GW: I won’t speak for colleagues. The president of one of the largest handgun manufacturers in the country once told me, face to face, how much money he had committed to an intimidation effort and advised me to keep my life insurance paid up. There was a time when federal law enforcement agents recommended that I wear a ballistic vest. There is a wanted poster on the Internet.

PT: What does the best research tell us about ways to limit gun violence in this country?

GW: It tells us that no one intervention is sufficient, but that an array of measures are effective, in different ways. We can set meaningful restrictions on who should have firearms, particularly when comprehensive background checks are in place. We can limit where and how firearms may be used, and what firearms should be owned by civilians. We can map and disrupt criminal firearm markets.

PT: What are some of the biggest gaps between what the research tells us and what the American public believes to be true about guns?

GW: Here are 3 important myths:

1) Rates of firearm violence are decreasing. In fact, overall mortality from firearm violence has remained absolutely steady for a decade, after decreasing from the early 1990s to about 2001.

2) Criminals can’t legally buy guns. Felons and persons convicted of domestic violence misdemeanors can’t. But others with a long history of misdemeanor crimes such as assault and battery, resisting arrest, and brandishing a weapon can buy all the firearms they want. So can alcohol abusers.

3) Nothing can be done because so many guns are in civilian hands. There are a great many firearms in the United States (perhaps 250 million to 300 million), but most of them are not in circulation. Many studies have shown that new guns figure disproportionately in crime, and we know both from research and decades of law enforcement work that effective interventions can be taken, no matter how many guns there are.

PT: If you sat on an NIH panel to fund firearm violence prevention, what projects do you think need public funding? What are the biggest gaps in the science?

GW: Actually, I did sit on such a panel, a National Institute of Justice Working Group, in November 2011. The group’s recommendations are here.

I would emphasize studies that evaluate interventions and randomized trials where those are feasible.

PT: There has been a history in this country of attacks on scientists for publishing research on topics—tobacco, climate change, chemicals—that is unpopular with certain political interests. What are your thoughts on this and your advice to young scientists venturing into these areas?

GW: This one is easy, and thanks for asking. If you love the science and believe the questions matter, do the research. The rest will all work out.
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Old 12-22-2012, 10:38 AM   #704
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Wickedson! Help me!

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Old 12-22-2012, 11:07 AM   #705
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Originally Posted by Wickedson View Post
Hunting period is for pussys. Why would you go shoot an animal that has no chance to defend itself?

I almost have more respect for people who openly admit their guns are to kill other people. People who shoot animals are just weird.
For real? I shoot animals, it's how I feed my family asshole, I shoot, kill, and butcher about 6 deer a year, I violently kill about 30 halibut and 100 salmon each year too. Every once in a while I'll murder a moose or a bear. My family eats well. **** you.
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