Report: Firearm Deaths Outpace Car Accident Deaths in Illinois

Group uses statistics to argue guns should be regulated as a consumer product

WTVO/WQRF - A group which supports stricter gun control laws says Illinois was one of 21 states and the District of Columbia where gun deaths surpassed motor vehicle deaths in 2014. 

The Violence Policy Center did this analysis (click here for link) to determine that Illinois had 1179 gun deaths compared to 1,075 motor vehicle deaths.

The data is from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Injury Prevention and Control. Gun deaths include gun suicides, homicides, and fatal unintentional shootings; motor vehicle deaths include both occupants and pedestrians.

“Firearms are the only consumer product the federal government does not regulate for health and safety,” states VPC Legislative Director Kristen Rand in a news release. “Meanwhile, science-based regulations have dramatically reduced deaths from motor vehicles in recent decades. It’s well past time that we regulate firearms for health and safety just like all other consumer products.”  She goes on to note nine out of ten Americans have access to a motor vehicle while only about a third have access to a gun.

Complicating the Violence Policy Center's conclusion however is that unlike operating an automobile, owning a firearm is a protected right under the Constitution, and treating a gun as a consumer product would appear to gloss over that fact.  The VPC report and accompanying news release do not mention the 2nd Amendment to the Constitution providing citizens with the right to bear arms.


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