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Hawaii AG joins effort to fund research into gun violence

  • ASSOCIATED PRESS

    In this Oct. 8, 2013 photo, a sign marks the entrance to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta.

Hawaii Attorney General Douglas Chin joined with Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey and other attorneys general to urge Congress to fund research into gun violence.

Healey sent a letter to Congress today seeking direct funding to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to study the “causes and prevention of gun-related injuries and death.”

Healey says attorneys general need “evidence-based strategies to combat the epidemic of gun violence,” which she said kills more than 33,000 people each year in the United States.

Healey says federal funding for gun violence research by the CDC has been cut by 96 percent since 1996.

Healey was in Washington, D.C., to discuss Massachusetts’ efforts to combat gun violence.

Besides Hawaii, attorneys general from California, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Maryland, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, Washington state and the District of Columbia signed Healey’s letter.

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  • The reason the CDC saw its funding cut drastically for research on this particular topic is because of largely unanswered allegations it knowingly performed “advocacy research” funded by taxpayer dollars. Broadly put, the agency was felt to be conducting reasearch with a tacit bias against private gun ownership by U.S. citizens.

    If the CDC could be relied upon to conduct all its research into so-called “gun violence” (itself a loaded term) in a truly unbiased and physics-lab rigorous manner, then there’s no good reason for funding to not be restored. However, I can see problems if a push for restored funding is lead by attorneys general who support the wording of the following statement from this article:

    “Healey says attorneys general need ‘evidence-based strategies to combat the epidemic of gun violence,’ which she said kills more than 33,000 people each year in the United States.”

    Such a statement, admittedly taken out of context, is not reassuring that adequate controls against advocacy research will conducted by and expected from the CDC in the future.

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