Yesterday NBC News published a story with this blazing headline:
When I saw that I knew I had to investigate. Here’s what they wrote:
More Americans have died from gunshots in the last 50 years than in all of the wars in American history.
Since 1968, more than 1.5 million Americans have died in gun-related incidents, according to data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. By comparison, approximately 1.2 million service members have been killed in every war in U.S. history, according to estimates from the Department of Veterans Affairs and iCasualties.org, a website that maintains an ongoing database of casualties from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Okay that does sound like a staggering statistic. I’m sure it’s getting a lot of play in gun control circles.
But is it true? Politifact says it is.
But you may be asking yourself how did Politifact fact check this NBC News article so quick? They didn’t. They were fact checking an article by Nicholas Kristof in 2015 who made the very same assertion after two TV journalists were gunned down in Virginia. So NBC News was just regurgitating Kristof’s argument that he got from PBS talking head Mark Shields in 2013.
But if it’s true, it’s true. So what’s the big deal?
Well there’s something that Politifact points out that NBC News doesn’t care to mention in their article:
These figures refer to all gunfire-related deaths, not just homicides. In fact, homicides represent a minority of gun deaths, with suicides comprising the biggest share. In 2013, according to CDC data, 63 percent of gun-related deaths were from suicides, 33 percent were from homicides, and roughly 1 percent each were from accidents, legal interventions and undetermined causes.
Suicides make up the majority of gun related deaths! Don’t you think that’s a crucial point to mention NBC News? There’s not one mention of it in the article!
Well I guess if your goal is to push a gun control agenda, then it’s probably not important. And that’s clearly what they are doing.
NBC News would rather have you believe that more Americans were murdered by guns than Americans killed in all US wars combined, than to tell you the truth that the majority of these people took their own lives.
I think this would indeed qualify as FAKE NEWS.