Valentina, we did some similar discussion about two years ago. However, that computer's hard drive had a stroke so I went digging for new data. I feel it important to separate homicide from suicide in these discussions. Folks who want to end their own lives will find a way to do so - with or without guns.
Let's take a look at some figures presented by the nice folks at Wikipedia. I'm going to assume that the data is real; however, I'm not going to go out and spot check all of it.The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) did a study of intentional homicide which it defines as "unlawful death purposefully inflicted on a person by another person".
The rate was calculated by taking the 14,827 homicides in the US and following this formula:
The rate was 4.7.
Comparing with other countries:
the US comes out at 111 of 218 if you sort for the highest homicide rate.
the US comes out at 108 of 218 if you sort for the lowest homicide rate.
I listed both so folks could look at the data in the positive/negative. Either way, the US is in the middle of the pack. If that doesn't sound good to you, remember that the US has the highest personal ownership of firearms per capita for any nation on the planet: 90 guns per 100 people in the US.
The data doesn't stipulate that these are gun homicides, just that they are homicides. Granted, folks who are determined to end another person's life will use whatever tools they can access. Just remember that they will use ANY tool they can get their hands on, up to and including their hands. So, this data is not all about guns.
Let's combine these two facts see what the number of gun homicides per gun is. After all, there are many people who genuinely believe that gun ownership is to blame. [EDIT] The homicide rates don't reflect gun-based homicides; however, let's assume they did.[/EDIT]
homicides/[(90 guns/100 people)*US population]
14,827 / [(90 / 100) * ~320,000,000]
= 0.0000515 homicides per gun
Hmmmm, let's multiply that 1,000,000 to make it easier to use. So, the US rating is 51.5 homicides per million guns.
Let's do the same for the UK:
homicides/[(90 guns/100 people)*UK population]
653 / [(6.6 / 100) * ~ 63 million] = 157 homicides per million guns.
So, are UK gun owners ~3 times more likely to commit homicide? Perhaps gang shootings kill ~3 times as many people in the UK as in the US? Whatever the problem is, lawful gun ownership