On Monday evening, former President Barack Obama tweeted his response to the Nashville Christian school shooting by repeating the left’s false claim that guns are the number one killer of children.
On March 23, 2023, Breitbart News reported that actor Billy Porter made the same false claim, screaming that “the leading cause of death in children are guns” during an appearance on ABC’s The View.
Porter’s claim, which is now Obama’s claim as well, became a common one among leftists and non-fact-checking moderates in the summer of 2022 after a study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) was widely reported in late May that year.
FOX News ran a story titled “Guns now the leading cause of death for US children, per CDC.” The story noted that CDC figures show firearm-related deaths of people ages 0-19 totaled 4,368 in 2020, while motor vehicle deaths for the same age range totaled 4,036. And during a June 2, 2022, speech, President Joe Biden reacted to the CDC figures by claiming, “Guns are the number one killer of children.”
But Breitbart News dug into the CDC figures and ascertained that the only way to make the claim work is to count 18 and 19-year-olds as children. But if one does a custom search on the CDC website to adjust the category of children to include only those aged 0-17, only those below voting and military age, then the outcome completely flips.
One sees that the number of firearm-related deaths for children aged 0-17 was 2,281 in 2020, while the number of motor vehicle deaths for the same ages was 2,503.
Another important point to note is that the false parameters — treating 18 and 19-year-olds as children for the benefit of boosting reportable gun death numbers — actually works against the left. That is because CDC numbers for children ages 0-19 show that individuals are 27 times more likely to die in an accidental car death instead of an accidental gun death.
AWR Hawkins is an award-winning Second Amendment columnist for Breitbart News and the writer/curator of Down Range with AWR Hawkins, a weekly newsletter focused on all things Second Amendment, also for Breitbart News. He is the political analyst for Armed American Radio and a Turning Point USA Ambassador. AWR Hawkins holds a Ph.D. in Military History, with a focus on the Vietnam War (brown water navy), U.S. Navy since Inception, the Civil War, and Early Modern Europe. Follow him on Instagram: @awr_hawkins. You can sign up to get Down Range at breitbart.com/downrange. Reach him directly at [email protected]