A Right to Bear Arms?©
Maclean’s reported the following in the
A. One-third of Canadians own a gun or guns; 90% of Americans do.
B. Canada has 60 gun murders for every million people annually; the
C. Canada annually has 190 total murders per 1 million population; the
Let’s crunch those numbers a bit:
- Of the 190 people per million who are murdered in
, 60 die by bullet, 130 by some other means (knife, mostly, one imagines). That’s 31.5% by guns. Canada
- Of the 570 people per million murdered in the
, 340 die by bullet, 230 by some other means. That’s 59.6% by gun. US
- The murder rate overall in the
is 300% of US ’s. Canada
The appalling statistic here is that in
The statistics don’t prove anything about the efficacy of gun control. Gun murders in the
It could be argued that in the heat of the moment, the clean, arms-length death that can be delivered with a gun increases the likelihood of a murder being committed. An angry person might be deterred by the messy nature of hand-to-hand killing, but might not be if a handgun, say, were available and the murder could be done without looking the victim so intimately in the eye.
Also, the “right to bear arms” may contribute to an overall cultural climate in which the use of guns seems to be legitimized, and by extension, the use of violence of all kinds to settle quarrels. Is that what’s behind the enormous difference between the murder rates in the two countries, so similar in so many other ways?
Lest we become smug about our superiority to the Americans in this, however, Maclean’s also reports in the same story that our break-and-enter, arson and auto theft rates are higher than theirs. Go