An Open Letter to the NRA from American Healthcare Professionals
Dear National Rifle Association,
On Wednesday night (11/7/2018), in response to a position paper released by the American College of Physicians (ACP) Reducing Firearm Injuries and Death in the United States, your organization published the statement “Someone should tell self-important anti-gun doctors to stay in their lane.”
On that same day, the CDC published new data indicating that the death toll from gun violence in our nation continues to rise. As we read your demand for us doctors to stay in our lane, we awoke to learn of the 307th mass shooting in 2018 with another 12 innocent lives lost to an entirely preventable cause of death–gun violence.
Every medical professional practicing in the United States has seen enough gun violence firsthand to deeply understand the toll that this public health epidemic is taking on our children, families, and entire communities.
It is long past time for us to acknowledge the epidemic is real, devastating, and has root causes that can be addressed to assuage the damage. We must ALL come together to find meaningful solutions to this very American problem.
We, the undersigned – physicians, nurses, therapists, medical professionals, and other concerned community members – want to tell you that we are absolutely “in our lane” when we propose solutions to prevent death and disability from gun violence.
As the professionals who manage this epidemic, we bear witness to every trauma resuscitation, regardless of outcome:
Our research efforts have been curtailed by your lobbying efforts to Congress. We ask that you join forces with us to find solutions. Help us in our non-partisan, physician-driven research efforts at AFFIRM Research.
We invite you to be part of the solution.
You dismissed the ACP’s position statement on preventing death and injury from gun violence by stating, “Most upsetting, however, the medical community seems to have consulted NO ONE but themselves.”
We extend our invitation for you to collaborate with us to find workable, effective strategies to diminish the death toll from suicide, homicide, domestic violence, and unintentional shootings for the thousands of Americans who will one day find themselves on the wrong side of a barrel of a gun.
We are not anti-gun. We are anti-bullet hole. Let’s work together.
Join us, or move over! This is our lane.