Teen Deaths Due to Guns

1993  CDC Study:  Teen Gun Deaths Hit New High *S*

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Daily Report Card News Service
Thursday  March 25, 1993  Vol. 2  No. 195 

  An APN publication, supported by The Annie E. Casey Foundation     
       (c) 1993 by the American Political Network, Inc.       
Center for Disease Control STUDY:  TEEN GUN DEATHS HIT NEW HIGH
     U.S. teens are killing each other with guns at the highest
rate since the government began recording the deaths 30 years
ago, a new study shows (multi.).  Almost 4,200 youths ages 15 to
19 were killed by guns in 1990, or about 11 every day.  Lois
Fingerhut, an epidemiologist for the National Center for Health
Statistics:  "These are just the deaths.  We're not talking about
the kids who are shot and don't die." (Scanlan, PHILA. INQUIRER)
     The study, which was done by the federal Centers for Disease
Control, also shows that 25% of all deaths between ages 15 and 24
were the result of shootings.  And 39% more teens die from
gunshots than from disease.  And while the primary cause of death
for black males ages 10 to 34 was guns, the death rate among
white teens is increasing the most rapidly, according to USA
TODAY (Davis).
     Paul Blackman, research coordinator for the National Rifle
Association said:  "Those who do their homework, go to church on
Sunday, have proper family upbringing aren't being shot in any
particularly different numbers ... the rise is among those
involved in drug trafficking and other criminal activity."
     But the newspaper adds:  "That view contrasts sharply" with
a Va. woman's, whose 17-year-old son was shot and killed "after a
series of quarrels with an Eagle Scout."  The woman, Byrl
Phillips-Taylor said:  "There is a misconception by the general
population that murder happens to others, that the kind of
violence that turns into murder is only by people doing drugs or
one race against another ... The truth is ... it can happen to
your child as easily as it happened to mine." (all cites 3/24)
     Girls face "ongoing" sexual harassment by male students,
according to a study by the Center for Research on Women at
Wellesley College and the National Organization for Women Legal
Defense and Education Fund (Manning, USA TODAY).  The study was
based on 4,200 responses of girls ages 9 to 19 to a tear-out
questionnaire in the September 1992 issue of "SEVENTEEN"
     Researchers analyzed findings from a random sampling of
"about half of those who responded," reports the W.S. JOURNAL.
The study does not provide "a scientific look at the prevalence
of harassment in schools," writes the BOSTON GLOBE.
     Findings of "Secrets in Public" showed that "39% [of the
girls] reported being harassed at school every day last year,"
with another 29% being harassed once a week, writes USA TODAY.
Four percent said they were harassed by teachers, administrators
or school staff.  The paper writes that 89% of the respondents
reported sexual comments or gestures, while 83% said they were
touched or grabbed.
     But girls "are not suffering the sexual harassment in
silence," reports the GLOBE.  The newspaper writes:  "Of the
2,000 randomly selected responses that Wellesley researchers
analyzed, more than three-quarters of the girls said they told
somebody about the harassment."  But when girls told school
officials that they had been harassed, the "school did nothing in
45% of the cases," writes the paper.
     "The scariest finding is that so much of it goes on in
public," said Nan Stein, an author of the study and an expert in
peer sexual harassment, according to the DALLAS MORNING NEWS
     A poll scheduled to be released in June by the American
Association of University Women Educational Foundation, "will
measure the scope of the problem," writes the GLOBE (3/24).