fire surgeon general gun violence

Does Replacing The Surgeon General Mean Open Season on Gun Control?


In A Rush?

  • The NRA helped influence the removal of Dr. Vivek Murthy as Surgeon General. Money talks.
  • I am by no means criticizing the choice of Sylvia Trent-Adams as acting Surgeon General. I hope she brings up gun control also!
  • Trump voters wanted to “drain the swamp” but this is about as swampy as it gets.


The latest public anti-health move by our fearful “leader”, the removal of the Surgeon General, is a quintessential example about how money and lobbying can negatively influence public health. From Zika-funding, to healthcare reform, to e-cigarette legislation, to vaccine mandates, and now gun violence, I think every American, regardless of your party, should be livid that political support means more than our health.

Although there’s no clear statement about why Donald Trump asked Dr. Vivek Murthy to step down as surgeon general last week, common belief is that it stemmed from Dr. Murthy’s stance on gun-control. It’s alarming to me, but not surprising, that gun control has become such a highly politicized topic. But regardless of your stance on owning AR-15’s and concealed hand-guns, we should mutually asks: are we just not supposed to talk about gun violence? The NRA has deep enough pockets to at least push for this approach. 

Almost 5 years later, analyze this tweet and tell me it isn’t true (I have 30.3 million reasons to believe it is).

Let’s play a numbers’ game!

On average day, 93 Americans are killed by guns.

There are nearly 12,000 Gun Homicides each year in the US.

Seven children and teens are killed, each day, by a handgun.

Background checks have stopped nearly 3-million prohibited folks from obtaining guns.

America’s gun homicide rate is 25 times that of other developed nations (Their healthcare plans likely aren’t such a partisan mess either).

Here’s a statistic on terrorism, which occupies way more political discussion:

In 2014, for every American killed by an act of terror either domestically or abroad, more than 1000 died because of guns. Over the span of 2001 to 2014, 369 Americans were victims of terrorism while 440,095 people died by firearms on US soil – nearly 30,000 per year. Roughly two-third’s of these gun deaths are suicide, with the other third being largely comprised of homicides.

Back in 2013 when the Obama administration first appointed Dr. Vivek Murthy, gun-rights advocates were fuming, especially the NRA. They were particularly upset that Dr. Murthy signed a letter calling “for Congress to pass stronger gun legislation immediately and for us to develop a comprehensive national plan to stop gun violence.” Yeah, I’m also confused about how they found this statement so alarming.

Fast forward and Murthy stated “far too many people die from gun violence [. . .] every single death from gun violence is a tragedy because it was preventable.” Public health is commonly defined as: “the science and art of preventing disease, prolonging life and promoting human health through organized efforts and informed choices of society, organizations, public and private, communities and individuals.” Stop me at the part doesn’t include gun violence.

Truth to be hold, Trump likely has an elementary understanding of gun violence and associated mental health issues. He’s simply defending his famous line: “I promise you one thing, if I run for president and if I win, the Second Amendment will be totally protected, that I can tell you.” And there a lot of dollars to ensure he does. He even went as far as signing a bill that made it easier for fugitives and the mentally ill to buy guns.
We really can’t stay silent. I’m not saying repeal the Second Amendment but recall our founding fathers used muskets. It’s okay to admit we have lots of people dying at the hands of firearms. I promise you’ll still be a proud, constitution-defending American in the morning.

What’s My Point?

This topic outright proves that politics sways progress towards combating public health issues. Our ex-Surgeon General, Dr. Vivek Murthy was open about the importance behind vaccination, legislation to control e-cigarettes, and gun control. Guess who didn’t fancy the discussions? You can buy off the president but you can’t hide epidemiological data. We still have way too many annual gun deaths in this country.