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Our rate is worse than any country in North Africa and any country in the Mideast except Iraq (gee, I wonder why their rate is so high?). But hey, North Korea is a few tenths-of-one-percent higher than us!

In all fairness, the U.S. is not the only industrialized country with a populace armed to the teeth - look at Canada or Switzerland. We Americans just seem to think that what we’re supposed to use our guns for killing people more than others.


And conversely, I’m sure personal firearms aren’t common in North Korea.


What’s up with Greenland?

11 events in a population of a small town (56,701)? Can be as well a statistical anomaly. We’d need a longer-term data to know for sure.

Edit: there’s a graph there, big one, why I didn’t see it. You can see the data are all over the place, as can be expected on a small sample with high random component.

Curiously, the long-term evolution for the USA seem to be a slow descent. Does the number of firearms in the population copy the trend?

If we didn’t have guns, we’d just murder each other with knives. Or something.

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I always love that example!

Every home on the planet has at least one knife. That’s one of the few physical items we all have in common, in any culture.

Really, you want to make this a gun control debate? OK…

Let’s look at the Top 10 Countries by guns per capita (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Number_of_guns_per_capita_by_country), and look at their homicide numbers.

US - 4.7
Serbia - 1.3
Yemen - 4.8
Switzerland - 0.7
Cyprus - 0.7
Saudi Arabia - 0.8
Iraq - 8
Uruguay - 7.9
Sweden - 0.7
Norway - 0.6

Does that look strongly correlated to you?


I think there may be an issue of lack of statistics in some places also. Where government isn’t effective, homicide may just go unreported…

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Interestingly, places like Mexico and Greenland are not parts of the developed world, apparently.

I’ve long had a pet theory that murder rate would go up as it neared the equator, with places like the Middle East and North Africa being hotbeds of hot tempers.

This holds true for the Americas, pretty much, but for the rest of the world, it almost seems the opposite. The more equatorial places are all relatively peaceful, for all that our media would tell us otherwise.

It does frustrate me that maps like this always break down around country borders, rather than being more fine grained for the larger countries. Per-capita by closest city, or even by pixel, might give a very different picture.

Clubs!!! Kevin Harrelson will take issue with you for ignoring the dangers of clubs.

The Small Arms Survey 2007, provides an estimate of the total number of known civilian-owned guns in a country per 100 people of that country. These numbers say nothing about which percentage of the population owns those guns.

Since your numbers mean essentially nothing, how about we look at where america sits on that scale of intentional homicide rate:

If you’re cool with that position and having guns everywhere, then thanks for another reminder why I don’t want to live in a place with that many selfish fools.

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Yes, we have an unacceptably high homicide rate. No, homicide rates are not
correlated with gun ownership rates.

homicide rates are not correlated with gun ownership rates

That we can agree on. The next question is whether you think it’s smart for a country with an unacceptably high homicide rate to have such easy access to a tool that takes the physicality out of killing, not to mention a culture that celebrates guns?


The US murder rate, along with violent crime in general, has been dropping steadily since the early 1990s, with it now being less than half the peak rate of 9.8 in 1991. Overall the country is safer than any time since the Kennedy administration.

The number of households reporting having a gun has decreased according to Gallup’s series of polls, with 42% reporting having one, down from a peak of 51%.

But… cowboys! Founding fathers! Revolution and bearing arms and shit! Pew pew pew!!!


How dare you besmirch the good name of lasers!!! What have they ever done, except blind 30 people at a Russian music festival?


Make that a very small percentage of the population. Namely the criminal element and people around them.

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I’ve thought for a long time that the US predilection for using guns on each other is directly related to the frontier/pioneer mentality.

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