Protesters hold photos of victims of the Robb Elementary School shooting outside the National Rifle Association Annual Meeting in Houston, Texas, on Friday. AFP / Reuters / AP-
Overall, 4,368 children and adolescents up to the age of 19 died from firearm-caused injuries in 2020, a rate of 5.4 per 100,000 a dashboard by the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) showed. Homicides made up nearly two-thirds of the gun deaths.
By comparison, there were 4,036 deaths linked to motor vehicles, the previous leading cause of death among this age group.
Soccer teammates of Tess Mata, who died in the shooting, cry, supported by their mothers, as they visit a makeshift memorial in Texas. AFP
The gap has been narrowing as road safety measures have improved over the decades, while gun related deaths have risen. The trend lines crossed in 2020, the latest year for which data is available — a finding identified in a letter to the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) last week.
The letter's authors noted the new data was consistent with other evidence that gun violence rose during the COVID-19 pandemic, for reasons that aren't fully clear, but "it cannot be assumed that (it) will later revert to pre-pandemic levels."
Children hold photos of victims of the Robb Elementary School shooting outside the National Rifle Association Annual Meeting. AFP
The newly-updated CDC dashboard shows that nearly 30 percent of the deaths were suicides, just over three percent were unintentional, and two percent were of undetermined intent.
A small number were categorised as "legal intervention" or self-defence. The deaths disproportionately impacted Black children and adolescents, who were more than four times as likely to die as white children — for whom motor vehicles still posed a greater threat. The second most impacted group by guns were American Indians.
Males meanwhile were six times likelier to die by a gun than females. By region, the gun-related death rate was highest in the capital Washington, followed by the state of Louisiana, then Alaska.
The figures served to underscore that while mass shootings such as the one in Uvalde provoke horror, they make up only a tiny fraction of overall childhood gun deaths.
"Since the 1960s, continuous efforts have been directed toward preventing deaths from motor vehicle crashes," wrote the authors of another recent letter to the NEJM, contrasting the situation with that of firearms, where regulations have been loosened.
Holden Thorp, editor-in-chief of leading journal Science published an editorial Thursday calling for more research into the public health impacts of gun ownership to advance policy change.
"Scientists should not sit on the sidelines and watch others fight this out," he said.
"More research into the public health impacts of gun ownership will provide further evidence of its deadly consequences," he continued, arguing that severe mental illness, often blamed for mass shootings, was prevalent at similar levels in other countries that do not have regular mass shootings.
On March 15, 22-year-old Eden Montang of Ames, Iowa, made an Instagram post about red flags, a topic that, uncannily, is now being debated in Congress. “Stop treating red flags as challenges instead of warning signs,” she wrote, framing it as “Unsolicited relationship advice.” Most likely, although she didn’t
President Biden said in a statement he was "deeply disappointed” by the Supreme Court ruling, which he said "contradicts both common sense and the Constitution, and should deeply trouble us all.”
"While this bill doesn't do everything I want, it does include actions I've long called for that are going to save lives," he said at the White House before leaving for two major diplomatic summits in Europe.
When the Columbine High School massacre took place in 1999 it was seen as a watershed moment in the United States – the worst mass shooting at a school in the country’s history. Now, it ranks fourth. The three school shootings to surpass its death toll of 13 — 12 students, one teacher — have all taken place within the
Milan Fashion Week closed on Sunday after five days of mostly womenswear previews that celebrated diversity and renewal, with more designers of colour represented than ever.
GCC countries extended their greetings to the Saudi leadership on the occasion. Major landmarks and many official and private entities decorated their headquarters with Saudi flags and malls announced special events and activities for the occasion.
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