Gun Violence - Crunching Some Numbers

Discussion in 'Politics & Law' started by PretzelCorps, Jan 6, 2009.

  1. PretzelCorps

    PretzelCorps Registered Member


    Okay, when I first saw this picture, I thought it was a clever bit of propaganda --> America has 10 times the population of Canada, so obviously if gun violence was the same, America would certainly have a lot more deaths by gun violence than Canada.

    So I processed the numbers to include population:

    Estimated Population, 2004

    New Zealand - 4,000,000
    Sweden - 9,000,000
    Australia - 20,000,000
    England and Wales - 53,000,000
    Canada - 32,000,000
    America - 294,000,000

    Ratio of people killed by guns to population

    New Zealand - 5 : 4,000,000
    Sweden - 37 : 9,000,000
    Australia - 56 : 20,000,000
    England and Wales - 73 : 53,000,000
    Canada - 184 : 32,000,000
    America - 11,344 : 294,000,000

    Percentage of population killed by gun violence (% * 1,000)

    New Zealand - 0.125% (/ 1,000)
    England and Wales - 0.138% (/ 1,000)
    Australia - 0.28% (/ 1,000)
    Sweden - 0.4% (/ 1,000)
    Canada - 0.575% (/ 1,000)
    America - 3.86% (/ 1,000)

    NOTE - All percentages were multiplied by 1,000, to make them easier to compare (ie: New Zealand - 0.000125% = 0.125% (/ 1,000)

    Proportionally (ie: including population), America had 6.7 times more people die by gun violence than Canada, and 30 times more people dead by gun violence than England and Wales.

    Even I was a little shocked to see such a broad difference.


    I realized after the fact that if America has 10 times the population of Canada, it should have 10 times the amount of people dead by gun violence than Canada --> If gun violence is the same in America and Canada, that number should be 1,840. Not 11,344.

    To show just how broad this difference really is:
    (Remember, 0.0000386 is the (decimal) proportion of people killed in America by guns)

    People killed by gun violence, if everyone was America
    (Population * 0.0000386)

    New Zealand - 154
    Sweden - 347
    Australia - 772
    Canada - 1,235
    England and Wales - 2,045


    This argument is, by necessity, somewhat based on the following idea:

    If gun crime is not affected by gun laws, the proportion (%) of people killed should be similar between nations with varying gun laws.

    Obviously, there are some serious flaws with that idea, as there are many other things at work.

    What I do see demonstrated in the above numbers, however, is a difference that IS vast enough that one could potentially develop an argument against guns, using those numbers.

    I would've liked to have done some more crunching, using general homicide/murder numbers, rather than just gun crime, but I don't have the time today.
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2009
    Tucker likes this.

  2. Bananas

    Bananas Endangered Species

    The numbers are disproportional for sure and regardless of your stance on firearm ownership there should be reason for concern, not just for the 10s of thousands of deaths in the USA but for the half dozen in New Zealand as well.

    I know you've mentioned the serious flaws, there are with nearly all statistics.

    The biggest problem with comparitave studies it is difficult to find two similarities to compare. The only recent place(Im not sure if they did a gun study) that could avoid most of these impartialities was Berlin before the wall came down, even then there was a major imbalance in population and socio-economics. This in the above gun statistics is a major one, the USA has a far greater population, even though you have factored this in, you should also factor in an exponential curve, as the popualtion rises as would the % of crime level. With the exception of Canada this is apparent, when all said and done though the USA still has an excessive number even with an exponential rise in crime.

    Another major flaw is who drew the stats and from where? Different police forces and government agencies use different formula to draw up different statistics on the same thing, again though, when all said and done the USA has a disproprtionate level, that I doubt could be by record keeping alone.

    Whatever the reasoning behind the murders it is still a shockingly high number.
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2009
    Tucker likes this.
  3. Merc

    Merc Certified Shitlord V.I.P. Lifetime

    I've said it before and I'll say it again. Yes, America has a gun problem, but the source is not the guns. It's the people. We've had guns for centuries and only lately has it become a problem.
  4. PretzelCorps

    PretzelCorps Registered Member

    I'm not saying one thing or another in this thread, yet --> I'm just throwing some numbers out there for you folks to make some conclusions.
  5. Merc

    Merc Certified Shitlord V.I.P. Lifetime

    I think it definitely shows what liberals and conservatives alike understand and know, that this country has a problem with guns. However, liberals blame the guns and conservatives can't find any blame.
  6. snowflake

    snowflake Registered Member

    Guns prohibited in the UK. And still so many deaths.... I guess no matter where you are the world you are, That means nothing.
  7. ExpectantlyIronic

    ExpectantlyIronic e̳̳̺͕ͬ̓̑̂ͮͦͣ͒͒h̙ͦ̔͂?̅̂ ̾͗̑

    No. Some liberals think reducing the availability of guns will reduce gun violence. As Micheal Moore pointed out in Bowling for Columbine: Canada has plenty of guns, so there has to be some other root cause. I'd pin it down to stress. We don't have a great social safety net, and our income disparity creates a feeling of impoverishment where folks are actually doing quite well for themselves. Of course, there are probably a lot of contributing causes to why we American types like to shoot ourselves and each other, but I gotta think stress is a big one.
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2009
  8. Stab-o-Matic5000

    Stab-o-Matic5000 Cutting Edge in Murder

    I agree with EI on this one. Quite a lot of gun related crimes are gang related. Gangs are predominately comprised of poor minorities in inner city areas. The people who join gangs usually do so because they see no other way to get ahead in life other than crime. So they join up with a gang, begin selling drugs and doing other criminal activities to make money, and this is where the murders take place. Drug deals going bad, etc, holding up stores, etc.

    The big way to cut down on this is to give the disadvantaged people in inner city areas more opportunities for success, not by making guns less available.

    EDIT: I can't wait to see what pro2a says when he sees the sentence "Guns murdered X amount of people."
  9. Duke1985

    Duke1985 EatsApplePieShitsFreedom

    I'm not so sure about that statement as I recall I founding fathers were rather fond of settling disagreements with duels.

    I'd say Americans have always loved killing each other.
    Bananas likes this.
  10. snowflake

    snowflake Registered Member

    I don't think you can just say Americans, Gun crime is everywhere, in every country!!

Share This Page