In April of 2018, I wrote an MRCTV report covering the revelation that, going back even further in time (to 1996), the US Centers for Disease Control (CDC) burned OUR tax cash on a study intended to show that private gun ownership increased crime. I noted that the study ended up showing precisely the opposite: that, by a wide margin, private gun owners prevent crimes far more often than they engage in them, and that – shock – the CDC bureaucrats HID the results of their study until criminologist Gary Kleck uncovered the information.
As I wrote in 2018, from the CDC study, Kleck observed:
“The final adjusted prevalence of 1.24% [of the population experiencing a DGU (Defensive Gun Use) in the past twelve months] therefore implies that in an average year during 1996-1998, 2.46 million U.S. adults used a gun for self-defense. This estimate, based on an enormous sample of 12,870 cases (unweighted) in a nationally representative sample, strongly confirms the 2.5 million past-12-months estimate obtained [by me and Marc] Gertz in 1995 … CDC’s results, then, imply that guns were used defensively by victims about 3.6 times as often as they were used offensively by criminals.”
Because this CDC survey was based on data received from only fifteen states, and because the survey did not take into account respondents who were unwilling to put proverbial targets on themselves as gun-owners, Kleck later revised his analysis, and Reason’s Brian Doherty distilled the findings, noting that the new annual defensive gun uses average for that stretch of years hovered just over a million per year, “…CDC's state-level surveys range from a low of 620,648 for 1996 to 1.9 million in 1998, for an average over the years of 1.1 million.”
But the original CDC survey? The one the feds conducted with our cash? Gun-grabbers worked with collectivists at the White House and Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) to have it erased.
“The lobbying campaign spanned months and culminated with a private meeting between CDC officials and three advocates last summer, a collection of emails obtained by The Reload show. Introductions from the White House and Senator Dick Durbin’s (D., Ill.) office helped the advocates reach top officials at the agency after their initial attempt to reach out went unanswered.”
And he adds:
“Despite initially standing behind the description in the defensive gun use section of its ‘fast facts’ website on gun violence, the CDC backtracked after a previously-undisclosed virtual meeting with the advocates on September 15th, 2021.
‘We are planning to update the fact sheet in early 2022 after the release of some new data,’ Beth Reimels, Associate Director for Policy, Partnerships, and Strategic Communication at the CDC’s Division of Violence Prevention, said in one email to the three advocates on December 10th. ‘We will also make some edits to the content we discussed that I think will address the concerns you and other partners have raised.’”
Doesn’t it just warm the proverbial cockles of the heart to know that, somehow, the Founders wrote into their Constitution an invisible-ink provision that lets politicians pilfer your cash in order to create a job for an “Associate Director for Policy, Partnerships, and Strategic Communication” at the “Division of Violence Prevention”?
Bet you love being forced into that “partnership…”
And perhaps you, too, adore being treated with such fairness when it comes to the “report” and how the CDC keeps trying to hide it.
“The CDC did not respond to a request for comment on the decision, but none of the emails the agency released related to it did not show any attempts to obtain other outside points of view either before or after the meeting with the gun-control advocates. Hannah Bristol of the White House Office of Public Engagement did not respond to a request for comment on her role in the discussions beyond what the emails reveal. Emily Hampsten, Senator Durbin’s Communications Director, told The Reload their office’s only involvement was ‘simply connecting’ ‘stakeholder organizations’ with a federal agency as part of the ‘basic function of our work.’”
You, dear reader, are not considered a “stakeholder.”
“Kleck, Professor Emeritus at Florida State University’s College of Criminology and Criminal Justice, stood by his research. He said the CDC did not reach out to him for his perspective before making the change. He argued the removal of the reference to his estimate was ‘blatant censorship’ and said it was evidence of the politicization of the agency.’”
Well, since the CDC is a government agency, that means it’s part of the polis, which, by definition means that it is political.
Perhaps they mean “partisan”… And ideologically corrupt. And pro-government-guns-hiding-behind-all-government-actions.
“The website change and the fact that it resulted from a lobbying campaign were first reported by The Trace earlier this year. The publication identified Bryant’s (Mark Bryant, who runs Gun Violence Archive, an anti-gun rights site) involvement and that of Devin Hughes, who runs GVPedia. The new emails revealed through a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request filed by Konstadinos Moros, a lawyer representing the California Rifle & Pistol Association, showed the nature of that lobbying and the involvement of Newtown Action Alliance chairwoman Po Murray.”
Adds Gutowski, when it comes to stats, GVA and Mr. Bryant aren’t exactly the most trustworthy:
“Bryant and GVA have gained notoriety for its count of ‘mass shootings’ that uses a much broader definition, with any shooting where four or more victims are injured compared to the Associated Press definition of four or more killed. The difference in methodology results in a near-ten-fold difference in the number of identified ‘mass shootings.’ GVA’s count, alongside its near-real-time tracking of shootings through media reports, has been widely cited by media outlets since it was launched in 2013.
Conversely, GVA uses the most conservative criteria for what constitutes a defensive gun use. Instead of attempting to capture any time a person legally uses a gun to defend themselves or others, it only counts incidents that make it into media reports or police reports (though it’s unclear how many police reports they have access to). The site’s methodology takes a strikingly dismissive tone towards any other potential defensive gun uses.”
But all of this debate and even the dark revelations about the CDC and the forces levered to take down the report – this all misses the larger constitutional, ethical, and philosophical points.
First, on that easily observed constitutional level, there’s no enumerated power in the US Constitution that allows the feds to create and run a “center” to “control” or “prevent” disease, regardless of the slippery way the anti-gun zealots might try to depict guns as vectors of “epidemics” of death (which they are not).
Second, by maintaining that the feds SHOULD be involved with “fighting disease”, the boosters of the CDC reveal just how off-the-rails is their notion of the supposed justification for the polis.
According to the Founders and the Lockean philosophy on which they based the US Constitution, people form governments to provide people (and their property) protection against violence by other people – NOT to provide “protection” against naturally occurring phenomena like diseases.
And, of course, the deeper analysis of even THAT so-called “justification” tells observers that the boosters of the government actually are claiming that in order to protect you from being robbed or hurt, the government has the okay to take your money and hurt you if you object. That’s tautological, and insulting, to boot.
So, is it any wonder that the parasites at the CDC would continue to insult us by playing “hide the results” when their gun survey doesn’t facilitate even more government attacks on our rights?
Of course not. And it will take us – and extra work on our part – to spread the news about this kind of nefarious activity.
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