More guns than people


Here’s what’s wrong with this country. Well, at least this one thing, there are others.

By the way, the death toll in the Texas shooting is now up to 18.


Oops. Now 21 dead.

Comments

  1. Walter Solomon says

    This must be a more up-to-date chart than the one I found that listed The Falklands as number 2.

  2. Pierce R. Butler says

    blf @ # 2: … the Duchy of Grand Fenwick did invade — and won.

    Grand Fenwick cheated: they had a transgender commander-in-chief! (Too scary for the US to even contemplate!)

  3. John Morales says

    Walter, do you consider the Falkland Islands one the “25 most developed countries”?

    (Because that’s what the chart claims)

    To be fair, the distribution of ownership is clumpy.
    Lots of gun nuts over that way, so even though roughly only a third of the population owns a gun, there are (as noted) 1.2 guns per person. Obs, some people have loads.

    Another set of charts: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-41488081

  4. Pierce R. Butler says

    Hrrrm, comments # 2 & 5 got me reconsidering this chart.

    Had not known France & Italy, though parts of “the G-7”, do not qualify among the top 26 most developed countries, nor any Europlace north or east of Austria.

    Hadn’t known Hong Kong qualifies as its own country ever, either. (Don’t tell anybody in Beijing, they’d get so upset.)

  5. says

    How can we live in a country that has more guns than people? Despite what you see in movies, dual wielding fire arms is NOT a thing any sane person would do. Always use two hands on ANY gun. Even some little Saturday night special handgun. Muzzle control and bracing are key to making the shot hit home.

  6. numerobis says

    This is the top news story in my local papers but it doesn’t rate a big headline. That’s how normal it is.

    Also apparently there was a shooting in Laguna Woods a few days ago that was targeted at the Taiwanese community. I heard of it from a friend, not from the news.

  7. raven says

    @3
    Why does anyone living on the Falklands need a gun anyway?
    The population is 3,354 and the island is wealthier per capital than the UK.

    What animals live on the Falklands?

    The Falkland Islands boast not one, but five penguin species. With the islands’ only native land mammal, the Falkland Island wolf, extinct, the Rockhopper, Magellanic, Gentoo, King, and Macaroni penguins have bred on the islands in relative safety. There are now around a million penguins living in the Falkland Islands.

    There are no native land mammals.
    There are a million penguins of 5 different species living there.
    There are also a lot of sheep.

    I do remember the war with Argentina, which Argentina lost, but that was long ago and I don’t think they are going to repeat the experience.

  8. nerwal says

    It’s not just the number of guns. The countries I know about in this list (and I would guess most of the rest) have very strict laws about how firearms are used and stored.

  9. consciousness razor says

    This must be a more up-to-date chart than the one I found that listed The Falklands as number 2.

    The says the source is gunpolicy.org. That site’s most recent data seems to be from 2017, which is at least partly derived from this (PDF, 7 pages). I pulled the largest figures from that, for civilian firearms per 100, which are not all shown in that graphic:
    United States: 120.5 (pop. 326,474,000)
    Falkland Islands: 62.1 (pop. 3,000)
    Yemen: 52.8 (pop. 28,120,000)
    New Caledonia: 42.5 (pop. 270,000)
    Serbia: 39.1 (pop. 6,946,000)
    Montenegro: 39.1 (pop. 625,000)
    Canada: 34.7 (pop. 36,626,000)
    Uruguay: 34.7 (pop. 3,457,000)
    Cyprus: 34.0 (pop. 839,000)
    Finland: 32.4 (pop. 5,541,000)

    The PDF says Switzerland’s rate is 27.6 and New Zealand’s is 26.3. I don’t know what explains those discrepancies (and possibly others) between this and the WaPo image which seems to be sourcing it.

  10. consciousness razor says

    Sorry…. edit: The image says the source is gunpolicy.org (in the bottom left corner).

  11. consciousness razor says

    Also worth mentioning: of the estimated 393,347,000 civilian firearms in the US in 2017, it says that 1,073,743 (0.27%) were registered and 392,273,257 (99.73%) were unregistered.

    But I don’t know how that’s determined or what’s required for something to qualify as “registered” under their definition.

  12. John Morales says

    CR, you also don’t think it odd to compare the USA with the Falkland Islands?

    OK. What are their comparative gun death rates?

  13. lochaber says

    Then there is also the issue that something like less than 1/2 of the U.S. population owns any firearms (I want to say closer to 1/3, but I’m too lazy to look up sources…

    So, it’s not like almost everyone has one firearm, and every 5th person or so has two; but more like half or more of U.S. residents don’t own any firearms, but that a lot of those individuals in the firearm-possessing portion own multiple firearms.

    And, again, I’m too lazy too look up sources, but I feel like I ran across some claims that a lot of the privately owned firearms in the U.S. belong to people who own not one or two or even 5, but literally dozens.

    I don’t currently own a firearm, because I don’t really feel like I have any need for one, and I really dislike having to deal with unnecessary responsibilities, and I also feel like owning a firearm is a really fucking big responsibility.

    I could maybe see situations where it would be desirable to have multiple firearms, if each were for a different purpose (bird hunting, deer hunting, varmint…something?), but I feel like those are pretty niche scenarios, and while may be an argument for owning multiple firearms, I don’t think are a valid argument for owning dozens of firearms…

  14. John Morales says

    lochaber, I’m feeling cultural today, so…

    I could maybe see situations where it would be desirable to have multiple firearms, if each were for a different purpose (bird hunting, deer hunting, varmint…something?)

    Ever see the movie Tremors?

    Elephant gun, for the biggies!

    Unrelated, or at least ostensibly so:
    https://www.dailymotion.com/video/x2hwqlw

    (replace ‘spam’ with guns and ‘eatery’ with country, same thing)

  15. StevoR says

    Yet again, the NRA, GOP & Regressive pro shootings & firearms industry lawyers have the blood of American schoolchildren on their hands.

    No words suffice.

    But a few cartoons that sum it up and might hopefully help here :

    https://www.ocregister.com/2012/12/24/cartoon-gallery-75-gun-control-cartoons/

    (Not all of those are great or applicable here but quite a lot are.)

    Plus some of these :

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/comic-riffs/wp/2018/03/20/the-seven-types-of-political-cartoons-youll-see-about-gun-control/

    Also Jim Wright’s powerful truths put well in his Stonekettle Station blog post series here :

    https://www.stonekettle.com/2022/05/the-gun-posts.html

  16. consciousness razor says

    John Morales, #14

    CR, you also don’t think it odd to compare the USA with the Falkland Islands?

    Sure. I think the US is an oddball compared to most other countries (or overseas territories, as the case may be) and not just with regard to guns.

    The rates from some other big countries:
    Pakistan: 22.3
    Russia: 12.3
    Brazil: 8.3
    India: 5.3
    Nigeria: 3.2
    China: 3.1
    Indonesia: 0.00031

    It also claims the total number of civilian firearms worldwide was around 857,396,100, meaning about 46% of them were in the US (which is only about 4% of the world population). And have you heard about our police or military?

  17. sparc says

    I wonder if the numbers are comparable. To my best knowledge many Swiss citizens keep their army rifle at home and there are only 5 Mio. legal weapons in Germany half of which are owned by leagally hunting people. However, I cannot judge the number of 20 Mio. illegal weapons mentioned in some reports. Even if high numbers for other countries are true the high numbers of shootings seems something specific for the US.

  18. Walter Solomon says

    Ray Ceeya @7

    Despite what you see in movies, dual wielding fire arms is NOT a thing any sane person would do.

    Um…

  19. whheydt says

    Re: raven @ #9…
    I wouldn’t be too sure that Argentina wouldn’t tray again. They still maintain that they are the proper owners of the islands and have never (so far as I know) renounced taking them by force. All it would take would be a populist (or Trumpian) president and some sort of domestic crisis, like the economy coming unglued, to look for a “common enemy” approach to regaining popularity. (After all, that’s what pushed Argentina to try the last time.)

    Side note… The Argentine cruiser (General Belgrano) that was sunk during the Falklands War had survived being at Pearl Harbor on 7 Dec. 1941. It was moored in the outer harbor and wasn’t attacked.

  20. Russell says

    As China is most emphatically developed country, why has PZ omitted it from his private firearms per capita ranking?

  21. KG says

    raven@9,
    Well, what if those 5 species of penguin put aside their inter-specific differences and gang up on the human Falklanders? I’ve heard a penguin can give you a very nasty peck!

  22. Chakat Firepaw says

    @lochaber #15:

    I could maybe see situations where it would be desirable to have multiple firearms, if each were for a different purpose (bird hunting, deer hunting, varmint…something?), but I feel like those are pretty niche scenarios, and while may be an argument for owning multiple firearms, I don’t think are a valid argument for owning dozens of firearms…

    There are some where it’s a collecting thing. Not in the sense of “I have a lot of guns” but in the sense of being able to go “here’s an interesting piece, it was made in Romania in 1927 as a knockoff of a Turkish design…” where the gun is less a weapon and more an example of mechanical design.

  23. PaulBC says

    Chakat Firepaw@27 I support repealing the 2nd amendment entirely and instituting effective gun control laws that aren’t hobbled by it.

    That said, I have no trouble with responsible people collecting Turkish knockoffs of old Romanian firearms or similar museum pieces. If they’re dangerous, they should still be registered, but in practice these aren’t going to be used in a mass shooting.

    And I also have no trouble with traditional uses such as hunting or pest control. But it really depends on location and the kind of weapon. Right now, SCOTUS has made it nearly impossible to regulate guns that have no practical purpose except to kill a great number of people very fast.

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