In 2020, the most recent year for which aggregated data are available, shootings (including homicides and suicides) replaced traffic accidents as the leading cause of death for children and teens in the United States for the first time, according to the CDC.
The data shows that in 2020, a total of 4,368 children and adolescents under the age of 19 were killed by guns in the United States, an increase of 29.5% over 2019, which is equivalent to an average of 54 deaths per 1 million American children and adolescents. That surged 63% the year before.
That same year, 4,036 U.S. teens and children under the age of 19 died in motor vehicle crashes.
The ABC reported on the 26th local time that this is the first time since the CDC began relevant statistics that shootings have replaced traffic accidents as the number one cause of death for people under the age of 19 in the United States.
In the 21 years leading up to 2020, traffic accidents were the No. 1 leading cause of death among children and teens in the United States, and shootings were No. 2.
The CDC says the gap in fatalities has narrowed since 2016.
Data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also shows that nearly two-thirds of child shootings are homicides and nearly 30 percent are suicides.
African-American children are four times more likely to be killed by gunfire than white children.
Recently, an open letter to the weekly New England Journal of Medicine in the United States wrote that since the 1960s, the United States has been trying to reduce traffic accident casualties, but has relaxed the management of firearms.
In the United States, traffic safety is primarily the responsibility of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, but there is no corresponding control agency for gun safety.
In addition, due to the partisanship between the Democratic and Republican parties, successive U.S. administrations have rarely funded research on gun safety management.
Holden Thorpe, editor-in-chief of the US "Science" weekly, published an editorial on the 26th, calling for more research on "how gun support rights affect public health" to promote policy changes.
Mass shootings are often blamed on the shooter's severe mental illness, however, in some countries where the prevalence of the disease is comparable to the United States, mass shootings are less frequent, he wrote.Keywords: