Yeah, that makes sense.
Courtesy of NYT:
The decision to buy a handgun for the first time is typically motivated by self-protection. But it also raises the purchasers’ risk of deliberately shooting themselves by ninefold on average, with the danger most acute in the weeks after purchase, scientists reported on Wednesday. The risk remains elevated for years, they said.
The findings are from the largest analysis to date tracking individual, first-time gun owners and suicide for more than a decade.
The study, posted by The New England Journal of Medicine, does not greatly alter the prevailing understanding of suicide risk linked to gun ownership. Previous research had suggested a similarly increased risk, due largely to the ease of having such a lethal option at hand.
But experts said the new evidence was more powerfully persuasive than any research to date. The study tracked nearly 700,000 first-time handgun buyers, year by year, and compared them with similar non-owners, breaking out risk by gender. Men who bought a gun for the first time were eight times as likely to kill themselves by gunshot in the subsequent 12 years than non-owners; women were 35 times as likely to do so. (Male gun owners far outnumbered women owners in the study.)
I think the vast number of people either buy a gun for protection or to take themselves out.
The NRA would like to paint a picture of the typical gun owner as some pistol-packing defender of the American way, but sometimes it is just a person in great pain looking to find the way out.
This is why background checks and psych evals are so important.
There are a lot of people walking the earth today simply because they did not have access to the means to end their lives when they were at their lowest point.