Study linking injury costs with gun laws raises questions

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For better or worse, we have a wide variety of gun laws on the books here in the United States. Some states favor a lot of gun control and others don’t.

Obviously, this is a point of contention. If it weren’t, this site likely wouldn’t exist.


Through this contention, though, we tend to see a lot of studies that seemingly try to link guns with violent crime in an effort to convince people to ignore pesky things like rights.

The latest tries to claim that places without a lot of gun control have higher costs associated with gun injuries.

U.S. regions with weak gun laws face the highest hospital costs from gun injuries, with the South leading the way in injuries and fees, a new study says.

Taxpayers cover nearly half of the cost of gun injuries nationwide, said researchers led by Dr. Sarabeth Spitzer, of the surgery department at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston.

And an “anti-poor policy” is evident in the South, the investigators stated.

In the study, published Tuesday in the journal Trauma Surgery & Acute Care Open, an analysis of federal government data showed that more than 317,400 people were admitted to U.S. hospitals with gun injuries between 2005 and 2015.

Over that decade, the South had the highest rate of hospital admissions (more than 42%), followed by the Midwest (21%), West (20%) and the Northeast (17%).

Gun-related hospital admissions and readmissions totaled $7.77 billion during the study period, and taxpayers covered 42% of that amount.

Just over a third of the nation’s population lives in the South, but this region accounted for more than 41% of the total cost, or $3.21 billion. In contrast, the Northeast has just under 18% of the U.S. population and accounted for about 14% of the total, or $1.98 billion.


First, let me just say I’m more than a little skeptical of this one just on general principle. After all, we know just how many such studies are fundamentally flawed and heavily biased.

In addition, this entire study relies on correlations. By now, we should all know that correlation doesn’t necessarily equal causation. As such, any study that relies on correlation to make its point is one that should be questioned without a whole lot of supporting evidence.

Additionally, there are problems with who the researchers turned to in order to determine which states had “weak” gun laws.

That’s right, they looked to Brady.

I’m sorry, but Brady is hardly an unbiased source for information. They’re heavily biased and the fact that researchers turned there for a determination is a big red flag for me.

We also have a “chicken and the egg” problem.

Is the cost for gun injuries so high because of the gun laws, or are the gun laws as they are because of so many gun injuries? It doesn’t appear the study even bothered to address this issue, and why would they? They know what they wanted to find, so they did.


Frankly, there are so many questions about this study that it’s downright laughable. The fact that the media will dutifully report this as an absolute, unassailable fact tells you all you need to know about the media and studies.

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