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Defensive Gun Use Data Removed by the CDC to Satisfy the Demands of Gun-Control Supporters

The CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) was prominent in 2020, when a small man with a big ego made his way into the national spotlight. He was as camera-ready as skin is to a mosquito. He was not part of the CDC but instead belonged to an interconnected organization called the NIH (National Institutes of Health). Dr. Anthony Fauci was the director of NIAID (National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, part of the NIH), and bureaucrats from the CDC quickly shifted to offering suggestions on public policy instead of their stated mission, public health.

The CDC was established after the conclusion of World War II. It began as the “Office of Malaria Control.” It was so successful in controlling malaria that the federal government created the Communicable Disease Center, which was later called the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Its offices were opened in Atlanta, Georgia, and remained there for some time.

As per the CDC: “CDC is the nation’s leading science-based, data-driven, service organization that protects the public’s health. For more than 70 years, we’ve put science into action to help children stay healthy so they can grow and learn; to help families, businesses, and communities fight disease and stay strong; and to protect the public’s health.”

In spite of not having a lawful mandate to legislate or demand policies such as rent moratoriums when a pandemic is raging, the CDC has done exactly that. In the last three years, it appears that  the CDC is expanding its power. Gun-control advocacy seems to be an additional area that it has embraced, instead of just reporting information. In this regard, the CDC has deleted data so as to be more compatible with gun-control laws and gun-grabbers in order to influence the public's perception.

The CDC has a website that addresses gun violence. In the middle of the page, it states: “Although definitions of defensive gun use vary, it is generally defined as the use of a firearm to protect and defend oneself, family, other people, and/or property against crime or victimization. Estimates of defensive gun use vary depending on the questions asked, populations studied, timeframe, and other factors related to study design. Given the wide variability in estimates, additional research is necessary to understand defensive gun use prevalence, frequency, circumstances, and outcomes.”

A study that showed that up to 2.5 million instances of defensive gun use (DGU) occur each year was removed. According to an article by the Reload published on Thursday, the CDC permitted gun-control advocates to dictate policies, with the CDC having the study removed from its website. The advocates were unable to convince the CDC to sit down with them until the office of Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) forced the agency to arrange a meeting via a virtual platform. In the course of the meeting, and later in emails sent to officials of the CDC, Mark Bryant of the Gun Violence Archive (GVA) stated that this study was “damaging to the political prospects of passing new gun restrictions and should be eliminated from the CDC's website.”

Bryant sent an email to CDC officials afterward, stating: “[T]hat 2.5 Million number needs to be killed, buried, dug up, killed again and buried again…It is highly misleading, is used out of context and I honestly believe it has zero value—even as an outlier point in honest DGU discussions.”

An FOIA (Freedom of Information Act) document that the Reload reviewed showed some opposition by CDC officials. One of them was James Mercy. He questioned why different studies could not be considered. He wrote: “I mean all we say on the fact sheet essentially is that you get different estimates of defensive gun use depending on the methods you use to measure it and then point to the National Academy report.”

As per the Reload, the FOIA document had a fair amount of fully redacted pages, but it also contained a few revealing emails, including a reference to “plans to talk about potential changes ‘off-line.’” Was that to prevent a paper trail and provide plausible deniability for both gun-control advocates and officials at the CDC?

The CDC appears comfortable altering data in order to please gun-control supporters. The phrase “squeaky wheel” comes to mind.

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