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New York Hospitals Now Asking Patients: 'Do You Have a Gun in Your House?'

By: José Niño

Gun control politics is coming to hospitals in New York.

At the end of September, Northwell Health staff at two hospitals in Long Island and a hospital in Staten Island will feature the following question in the screening process of emergency room patients:

Do you have a gun in your house?

According to a report from Newsday, “The question is part of a new screening program designed to analyze patients' risk for firearm injury.”

The program can count on funding from the National Institutes of Health, which provided Northwell a $1.4 million grant to study gun violence prevention.

According to Northwell, the grant forms a part of its "We Ask Everyone. Firearm Safety is a Health Issue" research study. This study tackles the issue of firearm injury risk in a similar way to other activities that are risky for health such as smoking, substance use, and car accidents.

"Gun violence is a public health issue," declared Michael J. Dowling, president and chief executive at Northwell Health. "This is the health industry's responsibility to talk about this and do something about it."

From the start, the study will use evidence-based screening and intervention methods at three of Northwell’s hospitals. These include Cohen Children's Medical Center in New Hyde Park, South Shore University Hospital in Bay Shore, and Staten Island University Hospital.

The three locations were chosen because of how they are situated in regions that supposedly need firearm injury and mortality prevention, according to the health system.

Northwell said it has plans to take this program to the national level.

Under this program, clinicians in the three hospitals’ emergency departments will ask patients if they possess firearms in their homes and assess their injury risk. The patients’ responses will be recorded and integrated into the patients’ electronic health record, which, in turn, will be used to determine the kind of guidance and care patients will subsequently receive.

The linkage of public health with gun control policy has been an ongoing development in the last decade. Back in June 2018, the American Medical Association (AMA) threw its weight behind gun control in its campaign to “confront gun violence.” The AMA even declared gun violence a “public health crisis” and urged lawmakers to pass a wide array of gun control.

The unholy alliance between the forces of gun control and the medical industry cannot be overlooked. Medical organizations such as the AMA would like nothing more than to boss people around and harvest their personal information. Turning doctors’ offices into de facto arms of gun control enforcement is one of their many goals.

Similarly, mental health is used by the ruling class to demonize gun owners and categorize them as “mentally ill” to justify coercive actions against them. Historically, this is nothing new. The Soviet Union used psychiatry to imprison dissidents and re-educate them as a means of making them more compliant to Communist Party strictures.

Governments have no right to pre-emptively infringe the Second Amendment rights of any individual who has not committed a crime. If gun controllers were serious about science, they would try to study other factors, not just gun control or lack thereof, that play larger roles. The science schtick they’re currently using is simply another way to provide a rationalization for gun-grabs.

But can you really appeal to the holy altar of science when the overwhelming amount of data shows that increased gun ownership has not led to rising crime? In fact, crime has continued to go down in light of more relaxed gun laws being rolled out across the nation in the last 50 years. The gun control crowd claims to be pro-science, but when confronted with the facts, they conveniently ignore them.

When you’re pushing for power grabs, the truth becomes nothing more than an afterthought.

José Niño is an American freelance writer based in Austin, Texas. Sign up for his mailing list here. Contact him via Facebook, Twitter, or email him at joseinpolitics@gmail.com. Get his e-book, The 10 Myths of Gun Control, here.

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