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View Diary: Some Truth About Switzerland and Guns (121 comments)

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  •  UN figures (4+ / 0-)

    From the UN Office on Drugs and Crime you can download their report on the subject for 2011.

    The firearms homicide rate in Switzerland is .77 per 100,00 people. The rate in the US is 3.21. Of the countries listed, 12 are higher than Switzerland (including the US), and 5 are higher than the US.

    All of the ones higher than the US have stricter gun control than either the US or Switzerland, but to be fair the closest one of them to a first world democracy would be Mexico, at 9.97 per 100,000.

    Everything written in this post even if inaccurate comes from the sources listed at the end of the post
    Not sure that "even if inaccurate, I found it on the internet" and "I'm a teacher and I'm passing this on to my students" are things I want to hear together.
    •  Does this source work for you? (4+ / 0-)

      Obviously, there are a number of ways to use statistics. But I believe I have done due rigor here, specifically on this question.

      I take seriously how the Internet is used, but use it we must. I have weeded through a number of sources before writing this article and, in fact, have multiple sources for each statement in the article.

      •  Switzerland doesn't look so bad... (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        JR, andalusi, JesseCW, Smoh

        When you compare it to the right (Wrong?) countries: (Same site, different choice of countries)

      •  You've misused that site's chart (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Flying Goat, andalusi, JesseCW, MGross

        Switch out the countries and a completely different picture emerges. Common sense should tell you that there are a) more countries than the ones on your graph, and b) that many of those not on the list are likely--owing to recent instability, ethnic conflict or war--to have higher violence rates than Switzerland.

        The claim seems to be wildly inaccurate, and should be edited to reflect that fact.

        "Speaking for myself only" - Armando

        by JR on Thu Feb 28, 2013 at 09:34:05 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  we should compare the US to countries at war...? (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          ... and countries involved in other types of instability to get a fair comparison for the amount of gun violence in the US...?


          •  Didn't say that. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            I said the claim the diarist made was inaccurate. (And having had a recent war is not the same as being "at war" in any case, so your counterpoint falls flat as well. I don't think we get to exclude post-war countries from the list of "countries of the world," do you?)

            Look, I completely agree that the comparisons are largely irrelevant, and that our levels of gun violence are unacceptable. I'll be standing in the cold in front of the state house in Annapolis in about eight hours (I really should get to bed, "Love Actually" be damned) to make that point to my legislators, and even a cursory glance at my comment history should be enough to establish my views on the subject. But I don't allow sympathy with a position to trump the need for accurate arguments, and the argument the diarist made--the specific, verifiable statement being claimed as truth--is just wrong. There is no metric by which you can accurately claim that "Switzerland's gun violence rate is fourth highest in the world" and even the citations he provided undermine his claim. Why waste the time to defend that?

            "Speaking for myself only" - Armando

            by JR on Thu Feb 28, 2013 at 11:54:39 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  I'm responding to your comment, not... (0+ / 0-)

     the diary in general.

              My question seems a completely valid question considering your comment, and it could probably be slightly rephrased and accurately characterized as an accurate observation.

              Congrats on the action tomorrow, tho' I don't see my question as discussing anything other than a comparison of US gun violence and that in other countries with high rates of gun violence.


          •  We have lots of wars going on in the US (0+ / 0-)

            Afghanistan for sure but then there's the war on drugs, the war on Christmas, the war on obnoxious rightwing blowhards, the war on freedoms etc.

            "You have attributed conditions to villainy that simply result from stupidity"

            by newfie on Fri Mar 01, 2013 at 06:33:43 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

      •  I agree (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        I take seriously how the Internet is used, but use it we must. I have weeded through a number of sources before writing this article and, in fact, have multiple sources for each statement in the article.
        I agree. I may come across as ragging on you, but the subject matter is important enough that we (all of us) should be accurate as possible, both with our sources and our language. Errors taint the whole.

        So, if you say that Switzerland has strong ammunition controls because of a third-hand source and a copy of actual Swiss law says otherwise, it reduces the credibility of your sources in general, even though they may be right on other particulars. Similarly, your claim for the 4th highest gun homicide rate in Switzerland was based on a very specific selection of countries, while the claim was a broad "4th highest in the world", which is not the case. This would be an instance where listing the countries or the characteristics of the countries on the list would have eliminated a large number of comments on that statement's accuracy.

        On the matter of percentage of guns owner, I believe you are correct. My original question was not saying you were wrong, it just seemed odd considering their system. After digging around, the numbers I was able to find approximate yours. Here is another article on their system, attitudes and some of their own gun violence:

    •  Misleading or Erroneous (0+ / 0-)

      Your link is for the UN's "2011 Global Study on Homicide".

      Homicide is different from gun injuries and gun deaths: homicide may include gun deaths, but should in no way be considered equivalent to deaths due to guns.

      "The fool doth think he is wise: the wise man knows himself to be a fool" - W. Shakespeare

      by Hugh Jim Bissell on Fri Mar 01, 2013 at 07:33:36 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

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