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home : opinion : opinion May 29, 2016

1/14/2013 1:52:00 PM
Letter to the Editor from Tom Small

Dear Editor:

Mr. Dobson made two statements that prompted me to research his thoughts. The first statement I question is dated Dec. 19, 2012: "More people in the U.S. were killed by firearms the past two years than were killed in Syria by firearms and bombs the last two years." I find this misleading. The U.S. Center for Disease Control reported that in 2011 U.S. firearm deaths totaled 31,940. Deaths by accidental discharge were 851, suicide 19,766, homicide 11,101 and undetermined intent 222. In 2010, the total was 31,328. The totals for 2012 are not yet available to anyone. This data was found at

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported more than 45,000 people had been killed since the revolt began on March 18, 2011. There are no 2010 death reports from the uprising because it hadn't started yet. A Syrian opposition website claims 46,767 deaths from March 18, 2011 to Dec. 24, 2012. I don't know what two years of U.S. firearms deaths Mr. Dobson is comparing to one year and nine months of civil war in Syria.

Mr. Dobson's second statement, dated Dec. 26, 2012, reads: "Twice as many Americans are killed annually by firearms in the U.S. as were killed annually in combat in the Korean War." Again, I say this statement is meant to purposely mislead the reader. The Korean War began June 25, 1950 and ended July 27, 1953. According to the U.S. Dept. of Defense, 33,686 battle deaths occurred. It is interesting how the use and placement of certain words (last two, annually, combat, for example) can state a fact if picked apart, but in reality is meant to mislead, deceive or persuade.

The Wikipedia website lists that for the year 2000, U.S. firearm deaths numbered 29,000 and deaths from sexually transmitted infections at 20,000. Let Congress try to control that.

Tom Small


Claremont Service

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