Here are the data to prove it.
Thumbnail credit: Thumbnail credit: Paul Sableman/Flickr CC BY 2.0
The country is, yet again, in a state of frenzy over guns and gun control. On May 24, President Joseph Biden named what he saw as enemy number-one of gun control. [[2:25 – 2:33 “As a nation – gun lobby?”]] This was right after Salvador Ramos shot up Robb Elementary School in Uvalde Texas; 22 dead, 18 wounded.
But that was one of three high-profile mass shootings that brought calls for gun control.
Just 10 days earlier in Buffalo, Payton Gendron killed 10 people and wounded three more in an attack on blacks that he thought would start a race war.
Just eight days after Uvalde, Michael Lewis killed four people at a hospital in Tulsa before shooting himself.
Lewis was angry at a black doctor who he thought botched his surgery. All three shooters used AR15-style rifles, but Smith, at the hospital, also used a pistol.
The heat is on to ban so-called assault rifles and high-capacity magazines, make weapons harder to get, and pass laws to take guns away from crazy people. This happens whenever there is a big-news shootings, and no doubt about it: A massacre of elementary-school children is especially terrible, heart-rending. But why do so many places ban guns from schools and hospitals? The good people will leave their guns in their cars, and mass killers know there will be no return fire. The Buffalo killer chose New York for his massacre because it has strict gun control. He knew his victims would be unarmed.
But after the Tulsa hospital shooting, Mr. Biden got back on television to whoop up gun control. “How much more carnage are we willing to accept?” he wanted to know.
The country actually accepts a lot of carnage without thinking very much about it. Massacres with rifles get huge coverage, but they are very rare. If Mr. Biden and his pals looked at the data – which they never do – they would understand that the murder problem is not AR-15s. It’s not really even firearms. It’s black men.
The three high-profile mass shootings took place over 19-days, and produced 37 dead and 21 wounded, for a total of 58 casualties. Do you know how many *other* mass shootings – that’s when at least four people stop a bullet – there were during those 19 days? Wikipedia keeps track of them.
There were 38 other mass shootings you never heard about. They left 41 dead and 164 wounded, for a total of 205 casualties. These practically unknown mass shootings killed more people and wounded eight times as many people as the three Mr. Biden was excited about.
It’s worse than that. Let’s look at all shootings, not just mass shootings.
2020 is the most recent year for which we have accurate statistics, and the CDC – which has more complete numbers than the FBI – recorded 24,576 homicides.
Of that number, firearms accounted for 19,384, or 79 percent.
The other 5,192 people were beaten to death, strangled, knifed, drowned, run over by cars, etc. This works out to 53 Americans shot to death every day, and 14 more disposed of by other means.
That means that if this year, Americans are shooting each other at the same clip as in 2020 – and it sure looks like they are – during that 19-day period of the three big-news massacres, 1,007 people were shot to death. That’s 27 times the number of killings from these three high-profile cases. Another 266 were killed in other ways – five times as many as died in the big three. In just 19 days.
How many people are shot to death every year with assault rifles? No one really knows, but not many. Here is a graph of the number of victims in 2020, according to the weapon used. Handguns are at the top, and rifles come pretty far down, fewer than the number of people who are beaten or stomped to death with hands and feet. But that’s not the full story because the second most common murder weapon is “firearms, type not stated.” If we split these unknown firearms between handguns and rifles in the same proportion as the known firearms, it pushes the number for rifles up to 706, just ahead of hands and feet.
Not a huge number, and we don’t know how many of those 706 were assault rifles.
Like it or not, the real problem is race. Here are CDC data on the 19,384 people who were shot to death in 2020, broken out by race.
Blacks accounted for 12,048 of them, even though blacks were only 14 percent of the population. And look over at the right, or deaths per 100,000. The figure of 25.5 for blacks is nearly 10 times the rate for whites, which is 2.7. However, the white rate includes Hispanics, who are not broken out separately.
Here are Hispanic deaths for 2020 by firearm, for a rate per 100,000 of 4.8, which is 80 percent higher than the white rate.
Because the government classifies virtually all Hispanics as white, you can subtract their figures from the white figures to get a more accurate gun homicide death rate for whites of 2.0. As you can see, Asians die from gun murder at only half the rate of whites, but blacks die at nearly 13 times the white rate, and Hispanics, at 4.8 per 100,000, or 2.4 times the white rate.
If, in 2020, everyone in America had died from gun murder at the white rate, there would have been only 6,570 gun homicides rather than 19,384, or a drop of 65 percent. You could defund the police.
Now, I have given you death rates by homicide by race, not murder rates. I was counting victims only. Could it be that white racists are killing all those black people? No. Murder usually does not cross racial lines, but when it does, blacks are a lot more likely to kill whites than the other way around. This FBI table of partial but typical data reports 566 blacks who killed whites (including Hispanics), but only 246 whites and Hispanics who killed blacks.
Since there are about 6-1/2 times as many whites and Hispanics as black, it means a black person is more likely to kill a white or a Hispanic by such a shockingly high multiple, I won’t even tell you what it is. So, the rate at which blacks commit murder is higher than their homicide death rate, and the white murder rate is lower. By exactly how much, I don’t know.
Let’s look at the really big picture. This is a graph put together by a very smart guy, Dr. John Robertson, III, which shows homicide rates for different countries plotted against private ownership of firearms.
Europe in green and Asia in orange are clustered at the lower left, meaning few privately owned guns and few murders. The most murderous places, up at the top, are in the Caribbean and Latin America, even though there isn’t that much private gun ownership.
The US is way out on the right, with lots of guns. But the total homicide rate of 7.5 per 100,000 (that is the blue square) is pulled up by the very high black total homicide rate of 29.2. As you can see, blacks are committing murder at Latin American rates, right up there with Brazil and Mexico, which are over to the left with low gun ownership. For whites alone, the total homicide rate of 3.12 is definitely higher than a lot of European countries – the ones in green – but it’s not off the charts. Which has a bigger impact on a country’s murder rates? The number of guns or the people who live there?
Here is a comparison of homicide death rates of American whites with mainly white countries.
As you can see, American whites are not that much more likely to be murdered than Australians or Canadians, even though their countries essentially banned private firearms. And there are white countries with not many guns, such as Russia and Lithuania, that have considerably higher death rates than white Americans. I included some white-ish Latin American countries for comparison, but you can ignore them if you like. So, to repeat: If you look only at American whites, our homicide death rate is definitely higher than in Western Europe, but not outrageously so. And as I pointed out, the white murder rate, as opposed to the rate at which whites are murdered, is lower than this, but I don’t know by how much, and I don’t think the Congressional Research Service is looking into it.
What are the chances *any* of this gets any official notice in all the yackety yack about gun control? Zero. This little talk of mine would make good Congressional testimony, but politicians don’t dare talk about race – well, except maybe for this guy: “Blake Masters Blames Gun Violence on ‘Black People, Frankly.”
This is from the Daily Beast. Note “Master Race” stamped under the headline. Tell the truth and you’re a Nazi. This is America, after all. Blake Masters is a venture capitalist running for the US Senate in Arizona. If you know him, send him a copy of this video.
If this latest batch of three extremely uncharacteristic mass shootings means more gun control, it will mean punishing law-abiding whites mainly because of criminal behavior by blacks. And no one – and I mean no one – in the mainstream will dare tell you that.
Data sources for graphs by Dr. John Robertson, III: “Estimating Global Civilian-Held Firearms Numbers,” Small Arms Survey and Australian Government.