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  • Something Rotten in Geneva

    Posted by James R. Rummel on September 12th, 2008 (All posts by )

    The headline reads “Armed killings cost nations billions of dollars”. survey from the United Nations Development Program and the

    Okay, so there is an economic cost to violence. That is obvious just through the lifelong revenue lost when someone is murdered. But the first sentence of the news article wants to make a point.

    “The United States leads the world in economic loss from deaths caused by armed crime, according to a global survey released Friday.”

    The US leads the world when it comes to economic costs due to violence, but the author also points out that there are countries with higher levels of violence than the United States. No doubt the higher standard of living and GDP we enjoy here when compared to majority of the world has something to do with it, but the article makes no mention of that.

    There is also no attempt made to define what is meant by the phrase “armed killings”. Do they mean any weapon, with rocks and sticks lumped in with machine guns and crossbows? Are improvised weapons included, such as normally innocent clotheslines used for hanging or water in bathtubs which is used to drown someone? How do they discount people who are killed by bare hands alone? Isn’t someone who is strangled or beaten to death just as dead, the economic costs just as high, as someone who is deliberately run over by a car?

    And I wonder about suicides. Are they included as well? Suicide is illegal, so it would certainly fit the definition of “armed crime”. What about people who overdose instead of slitting their wrists or shoot themselves? Are prescription pills considered a weapon when deliberately used to end an innocent life?

    All of these questions I am raising might seem frivolous, and they certainly are. But that is because I find the entire premise to be laughable. The people behind this study are obviously trying to advance an agenda of some kind, and the details they ignore say more about their motives than anything they claim to reveal. It is no surprise that the study was sponsored by the United Nations Development Program and the Small Arms Survey.

    These are the same people that like to argue that the 2nd Amendment is actually a violation of human rights. (PDF file here.) Looks like they are up to the same old tricks, using smoke and mirrors to try and make their case.

     

    2 Responses to “Something Rotten in Geneva”

    1. rmark Says:

      So poor crime victims don’t really matter?

    2. James R. Rummel Says:

      “So poor crime victims don’t really matter?”

      I suppose, to the authors of the study, that they matter. But it would seem that they think the worth of a human life is related to how much coin the victim earns. Rich murder victims matter more than poor ones.

      Unless, of course, the rich person was killed without the murderer using weapons. Then they don’t matter at all.

      James