Guns and autos

This is an archived article that was published on in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

USA Today recently reported that "deaths from traffic accidents have dropped dramatically over the last 10 years, while firearm-related fatalities rose for decades. … In the United States in 2010, the rate of firearm deaths was 10 people per 100,000, while for traffic accidents it was 12 per 100,000. Firearm-related deaths totaled 31,672."

It is interesting that over the past half-century, we have spent billions in research, regulations and education to make driving cars safer. Yet there has been scant regulation, education or research on gun fatalities.

Yes, individuals have a constitutional right to own a gun, but society has a responsibility to do everything it can to reduce gun-related deaths, and we're not at all doing that. With car and gun death rates now about equal, how can you be for guns and not for enhanced gun safety laws? They worked for cars.

If gun-rights advocates applied their arguments to auto safety, they'd be against driver education, car registration and inspection, seat belts, air bags and smarter road designs.

They keep saying they're responsible gun owners. Well, then act like it!

Chris Patrick

Salt Lake City