This evening, I am frayed. After counseling another mother distraught
and sobbing about the death of her son from gun violence in Kansas City, Kansas there is little left to say. This week Family
Health Care (FHC) lost two of our own to gun violence and we treated two others with gunshot wounds. Social
determinants of health are strongly evident regarding gun violence. All these and the
police officer shot last week were within a few blocks.
Those readers who are ardent about the “2nd
amendment” and interpret it to mean everyone in our country should be armed to the teeth will want to stop reading now.
It is true that people kill people. It is also true that humans kill more efficiently with tools or weapons. The Neanderthals
learned that when they
to improve their hunting prowess.
The cost of terrible gun violence is great. Every day 31 people in the US are murdered by gun
violence. Every day 31 mother’s lose a son or daughter to a bullet. Sometimes it is because friends lose their temper
and fire off not only
deadly bullets. Without a gun they might hurt the other’s feelings, or even break a nose or split a lip, but it is far
less likely they will kill. The difference between an argument that becomes violent and stops with recoverable injury and
one that ends in death is often simply that a loaded gun is at hand. In three of the cases affecting FHC this week, the person
shot was dis-engaging from an argument. They were walking away when the shooter shot them from the back. Two of them will
never have another argument, they were hushed- forever.
More guns result in more death and more
lifetimes of regret for the survivors. Guns that fire off scores of killing
bullets in a few moments like at Sandy Hook or Aurora are
even worse. Keeping guns and ammunition from the hands of known crazy folks or known violent people is a moderate idea for
prevention of some of these deaths. Prevention is the work we do each day. I am saddened by these deaths and I worry about
who is next. FHC is taking up a collection to help with the burials. Both of the young men who died got their vaccinations
at FHC as children. But, there is no vaccine to protect them from gun violence. SLeeMD
Click here for more about Gun Violence