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Guns, Motor Vehicles, and the Deaths of Young People

What if we treated guns like motor vehicles?

Dan Romer, research director of the Annenberg Public Policy Center, wrote in The Hill that guns, like cars, are a major cause of deaths and injuries in the United States, especially for young people. Together, the two are the source of the majority of fatalities of young people in the United States.

“Yet,” Romer wrote, “we know so much more about deaths in young people caused by motor vehicles than guns. For nearly 20 years, Congress has prohibited the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) from conducting research that ‘may be used to advocate or promote gun control.’ And in June, the House Appropriations Committee rejected an amendment that would have permitted such gun-violence research.”

While gun deaths have stayed level since 2000, Romer said, motor vehicle deaths have dropped. If current trends persist, the total of motor vehicle crash deaths will soon drop below the number caused by guns.

Romer proposed that the Department of Justice and the CDC be given the mandate to study the causes of gun injuries and deaths. “If we are to reduce gun injuries and deaths, we will need accurate and useful data about the extent of this problem,” he wrote.

To read the complete op-ed on The Hill, click here.