The St. Louis Post-Dispatch Can’t Read Statistics

Posted on March 15 2013 in Media malpractice, Missouri, Second Amendment

The St. Louis Post Dispatch published an opinion piece where they counted suicides with homicides without disclosing such to readers and hysterically headlined that gun deaths are now the nation’s biggest health crisis. If the Post counted homicides alone, they would have had to report that gun deaths are on a decline:

At the same time, violent crime and murder rates have fallen in the U.S., said Daniel Webster, director of the Johns Hopkins University Center for Gun Policy and Research in Baltimore. Homicides may be up this year, though the murder rate from 2006 to 2011 fell 19 percent, to 4.7 for every 100,000 people, Webster said in an e-mail.

This is what the Post considers commentary worthy of print:

Mr. Kinder and his right-wing radio pals took about 30 seconds flat to turn that simple story into a government plot to create a secret gun database. This sort of fear-mongering plays right into the National Rifle Association-fed fantasy, which is that the ruthless dictator President Barack Obama is out to confiscate the legally obtained weapons of law-abiding citizens, so he can turn them over to illegal immigrants or communists from Venezuela, or the Muslim Brotherhood in Benghazi.

[...]

Lawmakers have a choice to make. They can seek to save lives, or they can audition for what Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., might call “wacko-bird” radio.

I broke the story in question on my program at the beginning of March, so I get the suspicion that the slight is squarely aimed at me. Despite the fact that the DOR already admitted to Missouri Senator Kurt Schaefer that they were using DHS grant money for facial recognition software and hardware in order to collect and store data on Missourians which they then shared with third parties, contrary to Missouri law, it’s “wacko bird” to report on it. Perhaps they’re just angry because in the illustrious recent history of the Post, new media has broken most of the stories they should have – and would have were they not too busy rewriting DNC press releases to pass off as original content.  I’m beginning to think that it’s incidents like this that caused the circulation-starved Post’s parent company to file for bankruptcy.

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