MDs on Gun Violence: Ten Angry Answers

JANUARY 25, 2016
Gale Scott and Jared Kaltwasser
gun violence, MD Magazine poll, physicians and guns
More than 900 physicians who subscribe to MD Magazine’s email news took the time last week to answer a seven-question survey on whether physicians should take a role in curbing gun violence.
Here are the ten most passionate responses, taken from both sides:
Physicians opposed to gun control said:
  • “We need more concealed carry by physicians.”
  • “I have patients bring in concealed weapons. It's fine.”
  • “We have enough laws and lawyers.”
  • “There should be marksmanship training for all gun owners, to insure that predators are dispatched quickly, and effectively without endangering bystanders.”
  • “The initial laws passed by evil regimes are to outlaw private ownership of firearms (Lenin/Stalin, Hitler, Pol Pot, Mao etc.). Governments murdered orders of magnitude more unarmed citizens last century and currently than any current problem. A fully armed responsible citizenry is the safest possible place to live.”
Physicians in favor of gun control said:
  • “We see the aftermath of injuries from guns. We also have a broader responsibility given our Hippocrates oath. The 2nd amendment was authored at a very different time when gun slinging in the streets was necessary for personal safety. There is NO need for semi-automatic, military style weapons in the house and there is even less need for laxity on regulations as to who may own them legally. We have to be a part of the conversation to a solution which leads to fewer human wounds and deaths.”
  • “If we cannot decrease deaths from guns then there is no point in trying to prolong lives by treating cholesterol and other life prolonging measure.”
  • From a respondent who currently does not ask patients if they own a gun: “But if guidelines supported doing so, I would be willing to do so. I lost my high school best friend to suicide via shotgun. Without a gun at hand, my bet is that he could have received help and would be alive today.”
  • “No one needs an assault weapon for hunting or self-protection. If one wants to use such they should sign up for the military or the guard (which [by the way] is the well-regulated militia).”
  • “I have done postmortem on victims of terrorist attacks. It's unbelievable what humans can do to each other due to an alleged wrongdoing. In the 21st century guns and gun violence should be historical.”
The results, an analysis, and full comments are available here.

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