“Scientific inquiry in this field has been systematically starved, and as a result almost no one does it,” said emergency room physician and University of California, Davis, professor Garen Wintemute, who signed the letter. He estimated that there were fewer than a dozen researchers in the country whose primary commitment was to firearm violence prevention.
Separate federal actions have stopped federal law enforcement officials from collecting, keeping and distributing gun ownership data. Wintemute said that made it much more difficult to effectively study gun trafficking.
Without the research, there is no clear evidence of what to do to curb gun-related violence, the scientists said. Gun rights advocates put the matter differently, saying there is no evidence that gun control works.—
NRA: “Look, you have no data that gun control works.”
Scientists: “Because you’re keeping ownership data away from us, so who’s being secretive now?”
NRA: “You are. You promote gun control under the guise of science.”
Scientists: “We put data out into the world, and add the accompanying analysis. We make it all available. Say again who’s being secretive, clandestine, and overall repressive?”
NRA: “YOU ARE! YOU ARE! GUN CONTROL IS MIND CONTROL!”
Scientists: *shake heads*
American public: “How come we can’t have a conversation about this? Where’s the data? Where are the facts?”
Scientists: “We’d love to tell you but -“
NRA: “DON’T LISTEN TO THOSE COMMIES WHO WANT TO TAKE YOUR RIGHTS!”