America on Guns: ‘It’s Just Shameful’

As part of the “buts” discussion in the wake of the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre, I have read here and elsewhere how other nations are “worse” in gun violence than the United States — as if having someone or something worse would make it all OK.

The New York Times has some eye-opening statistics here that show “just how anomalous America is on the issues of guns and violence among developed countries.”

The data in the Times:

shows how shamefully we measure up against other countries in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. Among the O.E.C.D. countries that the World Bank groups as “high income,” America has the highest gun homicide rate, the highest number of guns per capita and the highest rate of deaths due to assault. In fact, America has more homicides by gun than all of the other high-income O.E.C.D. countries combined.

As Times Op-Ed columnist Charles M. Blow says, “It’s just shameful.”

Please study it all here and, I repeat:

Sometimes there are no more buts available, no more reasons left to make sense of such tragedies.

Let us at least agree that the slaughter of our most innocent demands fewer “buts” and more “hows” by both sides in order to even begin to “take meaningful actions to prevent more tragedies like this, regardless of the politics.”

Author: DORIAN DE WIND, Military Affairs Columnist