Gun fatalities have been on the rise– slowly but steadily every year since 2002, according to a National Institute of Justice survey. In 1975, 60 percent of the homicides in the U.S. were committed using a handgun. By 2005 that number had shot up to nearly 80 percent, with the rise in gang related gun killings even steeper.Well I responded that homicide rates are lower than they were in 1975 so that claim is7 years out of date. The response:
I agree that homicide rates have slightly decreased, but not homcsides comitted by those using guns. Gun related deaths have risen.Slightly? In 1975, homicide rates were 9.6/100k. In 2010, they they were 4.8 and dropped even more in 2011. Even using the outdated 2005 numbers it was 5.6. But let's go on.
Number of murders 1975 :20510 2010: 14748 2005: 16740
According to the NIJ, the number of homicides by firearms in 1976: 11979 In 2005: 11346
So while the 'percentages' may be higher (from 64%-68%), the rate and number of homicides by firearms and total are lower than they were in 1975.
You may have noticed I used NIJ numbers from 1976, not 1975. Let's compare what the linked article from 'Care2' says above (using Joyce Foundation puppet reports) compared to what the actual NIJ report says:
the percentage of homicides caused by firearms during the commission of a felony rose from about 60 percent to 77 percent from 1976 to 2005.Not only did they get the year wrong, they didn't even use the right statistics.
So was this a deliberate attempt to skew the numbers or sloppy reporting? Or both.
For more fun w/ numbers, take a look at Linoge's 'Graphics Matter' series.