By: José Niño
The American Medical Association (AMA) recently endorsed gun control as part of their campaign to fight the “public health crisis” of gun violence that is supposedly sweeping the nation.
According to the Associated Press, the AMA supports the following gun control measures:
- Banning people under 21 from purchasing or possessing guns and ammo
- Laws mandating licensing and safety course for gun owners
- Firearms registration
Although the news may come as a shock to many casual political observers, seasoned gun rights activists know all too well that the AMA is a reliable ally of gun controllers.
Robert B. Young, editor of Doctors for Responsible Gun Ownership, wrote about how the AMA’s latest anti-gun positions are nothing new:
“This is not really unprecedented, as the AMA has been advocating anti-gun measures for three decades now, along with many co-conspirator specialty associations. But it is a way for it to jump on the current popular bandwagon for restricting guns since some of the teenagers from the Marjorie Stoneman Douglas Valentine’s Day shootings have become media celebrities.”
Big Health’s Anti-Gun Tactics
It’s unsurprising that organizations like the AMA would join in the anti-gun hysteria that’s so in vogue these days. The AMA has a penchant for using heavy-handed state solutions to tackle whatever problems it faces, the most notable being its endorsement of Obamacare. And as far as the health field is concerned, the AMA is not alone in its efforts to promote the narratives perpetrated by gun control advocates.
The Centers for Disease Control, America’s top public health institute, was caught publishing misleading statistics on accidental gun deaths. In 2016, Dr. John Lott found an error in the CDC’s records on accidental gun deaths for 2014, which inflated the number of accidental gun deaths by 100, raising the total number from 486 to 586. This was no trivial error, as it had a substantial impact on the national number of reported deaths in 2014.
Firearms Deaths on the Decline
Despite the medical field’s anti-gun sensationalism, gun-related homicides have actually been decreasing over the past few decades.
In a 2016 interview with Reason Magazine, Lott explained how the gun murder rate went down from 7.0 per 100,000 people in 1993 to 3.5 in 2013. What the anti-gun media and their gun control shock troops overlook is that during this time period, gun ownership has not only increased substantially, but the United States has witnessed unprecedented levels of gun liberalization in areas such as concealed carry permitting and Constitutional Carry.
Anti-gunners don’t like dealing with facts, however.
By the AMA’s sensationalist standards, they should be raising the alarms on medical malpractice which is the third leading cause of death in the United States. Conservative estimates from John Hopkins University say 250,000 people die from malpractice, whereas a report from the Journal of Patient Safety estimates that more than 400,000 people die from errors made my medical professionals each year. In contrast, there were only about 38,000 firearms-related homicides in 2016, and a substantial portion of these deaths consisted of justifiable homicides.
Even with medical malpractice dwarfing firearms deaths, not a peep is heard from the mainstream media, and as is the nature of contemporary gun control debates, raw emotion is the order of the day.
The Public Health Trojan Horse
Despite mounting evidence of decreasing rates of gun violence in the U.S., health institutions insist on pursuing anti-gun agendas.
Historically speaking, the manipulation and use of public health as a pretext for government control is not a novel strategy; it’s straight from the Soviet playbook. When Soviet authorities experienced dissent, they would label their detractors mentally unstable or unhealthy. As a result, thousands of government critics went through coercive psychiatric treatments in order to be re-educated.
The Soviet Union collapsed two decades ago, but its tactics still live on.
Gun Control on All Fronts
From banks no longer lending money to businesses that manufacture semi-automatic rifles, to the AMA’s latest anti-gun statements, the gun control crowd is using every means possible to spread anti-gun propaganda.
Make no mistake about it, the AMA’s latest announcement has the potential to target millions of law-abiding gun owners nationwide. If they can’t succeed through conventional political means, gun controllers will storm into the boardrooms and halls of civil society instead.
José Niño is a Venezuelan-American political activist based in Fort Collins, Colorado.