CDC Director: Gun Violence Is A Public Health Crisis

Stefani Reynolds/The New York Times via AP, Pool

The Centers for Disease Control, or CDC, hasn’t exactly endeared itself to a lot of people over the last year and a half or so. While we’ve been dealing with the coronavirus, we’ve also seen the CDC reverse policies seemingly due to politics rather than science.

In other words, a lot of us aren’t trusting the organization on anything that’s remotely politically charged.

Luckily, at least until recently, the CDC wasn’t really in a position to comment on gun violence. While funding was never really cut off for gun research, the CDC was pretty much barred from pushing for gun control.

That changed, and now the director is popping off about guns.

For the first time in decades, the director of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention — the nation’s top public health agency — is speaking out forcefully about gun violence in America, calling it a “serious public health threat.”

“Something has to be done about this,” CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky said in an exclusive interview with CNN. “Now is the time — it’s pedal to the metal time.”

“The scope of the problem is just bigger than we’re even hearing about, and when your heart wrenches every day you turn on the news, you’re only hearing the tip of the iceberg,” Walensky said. “We haven’t spent the time, energy and frankly the resources to understand this problem because it’s been so divided.”

“I swore to the President and to this country that I would protect your health. This is clearly one of those moments, one of those issues that is harming America’s health,” Walensky said.

Decades after lobbying pressure and politics all but stopped gun violence research, Walensky’s plan is to restart that research and identify effective solutions.

And, of course, we all know what those “effective solutions” actually are.

Understand, “gun violence” isn’t a public health issue. It’s a crime issue. While that may impact people’s safety and cause injuries, there’s no medical intervention you care to name that will really create an impact on the issue.

Which is why the CDC director needs to stay in her damn lane.

Oh, I know that the NRA told a bunch of doctors to stay in their lane and they pretended it really was their lane because they treated gunshot wounds. No, their lane is the treatment of injuries, not the policies surrounding the weapon used. That’s where Walensky’s lane ends as well.

See, part of the problem here is that there wasn’t really any restriction on gun violence research. What was restricted was using taxpayer money to fund efforts to push gun control. The CDC determined that meant research too, which tells me that their intention with all their research was to push an anti-Second Amendment agenda.

Now that the shackles are off, we’re going to see more of this push and we all know it.

And what we won’t see from the CDC? Absolutely anything that provides alternatives to gun control, something that might just work for all violence and not just that carried out with a firearm.

Too bad, too, because that would make a real difference.

Dec 08, 2021 12:30 PM ET