Back in October (below), we reported that the CDC was entering the gun control arena. The idea was that it could use its leverage and “research” to make gun violence a public health crisis. This obviously comes at the tail end of the government using the idea of a “public health crisis” to impose draconian policies. Well, now it appears that the CDC was engaged in misinformation in order to achieve its goal. All at the behest of gun control proponents.
CDC Scrubbed Defensive Gun Use to Make Gun Violence a Public Health Crisis
There is a saying, “If you allow the government to break the law during an emergency, they will create emergencies to break the law.” And we may be seeing that play out right now. I have to admit I was not too keen on the idea of the CDC getting involved in gun control. And it appears my apprehension was well founded.
According to Fox News, “The stats sourced from a CDC-commissioned study finding that instances of defensive gun use occur between 60,000 and 2.5 million times per year. References to that study were deleted from the site following private meetings with gun control advocates in 2021, emails obtained and published by The Reload show.”
So, to be clear, we have been told for over two years to trust the science. And now there is evidence that the scientists are scrubbing the science they don’t like.
“Trust the science. NO, NOT THAT SCIENCE!”
In one email posted to The Reload, Mark Bryant, executive director of the Gun Violence Archive, directed the CDC to kill the data.
“[T]hat 2.5 Million number needs to be killed, buried, dug up, killed again and buried again. It is highly misleading, is used out of context and I honestly believe it has zero value — even as an outlier point in honest DGU discussions,” he wrote.
He then went on to claim that the study that led to this number had been debunked, calling it misinformation. His claim that the author of the study, Gary Kleck, even debunked it is categorically false.
Breitbart News states, “On February 19, 2015, Breitbart News reported Kleck responded to criticism of his past studies on DGUs by showing why the criticism is wrong and why a minimum of 760,000 DGUs each year is still a viable claim.”
Politics Kills Science
As it turns out, the scientific process is up for grabs to whoever has an agenda that fits a particular goal. We are no longer a society directed by science; we have science directed by society. This case is a prime example.
According to The Reload, Bryant argued that Kleck’s research was damaging to the political prospects of passing new gun restrictions. As a result, he petitioned the CDC to remove the data. Although the CDC initially stood behind the study, it eventually caved to the pressure. However, it may be due to who set up the meeting.
As it turns out, introductions from the White House and Senator Dick Durbin’s (D., Ill.) office helped gun control advocates reach top officials at the CDC. This is after initial attempts went unanswered.
Following the introductions and ensuing emails, Beth Reimels, Associate Director for Policy, Partnerships, and Strategic Communication at the CDC’s Division of Violence Prevention, sent an email to the three advocates. In it she states:
“We are planning to update the fact sheet in early 2022 after the release of some new data. We will also make some edits to the content we discussed that I think will address the concerns you and other partners have raised.”
The Reload states, “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.”
The Truth is Out There
Meanwhile, in the real world, the truth is out there, and evidence that guns save lives is prevalent. In fact, if I had the capacity, I could write an example a day. I see case after case of guns being used for self-defense. If you are a regular reader of Personal Defense World online, you see them too.
Maybe Bryant needs to read our piece on the study of CCW holders stopping mass shooters. However, I am sure he would discount this as well since it proves the fallacy of his argument. Someone recently said, “If you have to censor the data, you’re wrong.” So true. This is very similar to something I like to say, “If you have to lie to make your point, your point isn’t worth making.”
On May 16, 2022, Personal Defense World reported:
I’m not sure who needs to hear this, but guns have nothing to do with infectious diseases. So, what is the Centers for Disease Control doing poking their nose into gun violence research? Although it is doing it under the guise of gun violence as a public health crisis, it feels more like a back door attempt at gun control. Remember how much control they had during COVID? Imagine that, but with the Second Amendment.
CDC Attempting to Paint Gun Violence as a Public Health Crisis
Thanks to the Dickey Amendment, enacted in 1996, the CDC has remained largely out of the gun control business. However, after getting a taste for power and being emboldened by an anti-gun Biden administration, they are back at it. With COVID winding down, the organization is turning its eyes on gun violence in the United States. I guess there are no other infectious diseases to worry about.
According to a report from the CDC, “In 2020, coincident with the COVID-19 pandemic, the firearm homicide rate increased nearly 35%, reaching its highest level since 1994, with disparities by race and ethnicity and poverty level widening. The firearm suicide rate, although higher than that for firearm homicide, remained nearly level overall but increased among some populations.”
But it would appear that it is trying to use COVID as a shoehorn to make its involvement legitimate. However, regardless of why the organization is involved, it is now.
The Washington Times writes, “The CDC said the drivers for the increases are hard to pin down but it pointed to possible culprits: Widespread disruptions in health, social, and emergency services during the COVID-19 pandemic; strains in law enforcement-community relations reflected in protests over the police and its use of lethal force; increases in gun purchases; and violence between intimate partners.”
After reading the list of possible drivers for the increase, it’s almost laughable to hear CDC Director Rochelle Walensky say:
“The tragic and historic increase in firearm homicide and the persistently high rates of firearm suicide underscore the urgent need for action to reduce firearm-related injuries and deaths.”
This begs the question, what kind of action is she talking about? The actions taken by the CDC led to the list of drivers it is citing as responsible. Maybe they should sit this one out.
Focusing on Facts
While the CDC is trying to force a public health approach, the NRA suggests we look at other causes.
NRA spokesman Lars Dalseide told the Washington Times, “As communities across the country chose to defund law enforcement, elect soft-on-crime prosecutors, prematurely release dangerous prisoners and institute no-cash bail, no one should be surprised to see an uptick in violent crime.”
The NRA states that it sees this as nothing more than a pivot from a “flailing” response to COVID. As a result, the CDC is trying to assert control over other aspects of people’s lives. In fact, gun deaths are no more a “public health issue” than automotive deaths.
According to the National Safety Council, 42,060 people died in 2020 as a result of auto accidents. That is only slightly less than the 43,595 gun-related deaths, over half of which were suicides. However, no one is calling for stricter regulations on driving.
Proving this is about control and not an effort to prevent gun violence, Walensky said the quiet part out loud.
She told the Washington Times, “Emerging data indicates that we must radically increase our nation’s investment in this research to help curb the record number of gun murders, as well as a near-record number of gun suicides in our nation.”
I think we all remember what happened the last time the CDC “radically increased” involvement in our lives. We are still recovering from its radical involvement.
A Real Focus
To call gun violence a public health issue, while ignoring all other forms of violence is a waste of time. Until our public officials are willing to look at violence as a whole in the United States, nothing will change. As a result, our cities will continue to decline, and violent crime will continue to increase.
It’s clear that the CDC is not trying to reduce gun violence, it’s trying to further erode our Second Amendment. At a time when people need it most and are exercising that right in record numbers.
According to Alan Gottlieb of CCRKBA, “It is no wonder more Americans are buying guns for personal and family protection. And just like clockwork, here comes the CDC with research focusing on guns that appears tailor-made for the gun prohibition lobby’s crusade to add even more restrictions on a constitutionally-protected right. At a time when violent crime is on the rise, we should not be considering new ways to disarm the public.”
I am very apprehensive at the CDC’s labeling of gun violence as a public health threat. It feels like a back door attempt to assert authority where they have none. COVID gave the organization a taste of power that they will continue to find ways to wield.
Not to mention, citizens are now conditioned to believe that the CDC can shut down an entire country, as long as it is “health” related. What’s to say they can’t strip us of a constitutional right due to a “health crisis”?
Someone keep an eye on the back door, the CDC is picking the lock.
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