Guns Are a Public Health Risk

There has been one confirmed case of Zika virus death in the United States and its territories. We know this thanks to the CDC (Center for Disease Control), which provides nuanced data that can help policymakers predict and respond to threats to public health.

More than one person has died from gun shots this year, but detailed statistics have been unavailable for more than 20 years, thanks to Congress.

Knowledge is power–which may be why gun lobbyists have helped to ensure severe limits on even the data that the CDC can collect. Yesterday the American Medical Association weighed in on this in a big way, stating unequivocally what probably should have been evident already: firearms, whatever else they are, are also “A public health crisis.”

Here at Vital, we’ve written about the importance of knowledge, research, and interpretation. What happens when we can’t even collect data in the first place?

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