Guns don’t kill people. People kill themselves.
That’s the story from the American Journal of Public Health, which reports that since Barack Obama was sworn in as president in 2009, the leading cause of injury death in America has been suicide.
During the entire administration of George W. Bush and earlier, motor vehicle crashes were the leading cause of death by injury.
But that all changed in 2009, with the rate of death by suicide rising by 15 percent over the past 10 years, while death by unintentional motor vehicle crash dropped 25 percent during the same period.
What’s the take-away here?
It would be easy to attribute the rise in suicide to the economy, and I have no doubt it’s a contributing factor. But there’s much more to this story than meets the eye.
Hearings are going on right now in Congress on whether to ban new classifications of firearms to prevent gun violence. But far more people are killing themselves than are killing others with guns.
Shouldn’t the government do something about this raging deadly epidemic?
Well, sad to say, the government has been working on this problem – literally throwing money at it to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars on suicide-prevention programs while the crisis grows.
It’s like Ronald Reagan said, “Government is not the solution to our problem. Government is the problem.”
Now I don’t mean to make light of a serious subject like the suicide epidemic literally ravaging our country right now. It’s a very real problem. But to think government has a solution is ludicrous.
So what is the solution? A better question is, “What’s the problem?”
It’s not that Americans don’t have enough toys and gadgets, food and shelter, amusements and diversions. While Americans are indeed hurting economically, I suggest the answer is much deeper than that.
I believe the trend reflects a deep and growing spiritual emptiness in a culture that is more depraved and sinful than at any time in its history.
Too many people just don’t find any meaning in life.
Think about it.
We are told from the youngest age in state-run schools that human beings are merely the result of billions of years of evolution from lower life forms and random mutations. There is no Creator God who loves us and to whom we are accountable. There are no laws higher than those government imposes on us – no sin, no ultimate, objective moral code. In fact, human beings are a blight on the planet. It would be better off without us – or at least with a lot fewer of us polluting the air with carbon dioxide and overheating the Earth.
Do I have that about right?
Furthermore, in those same government schools, prayer and Bible reading are prohibited, but explicit instructions on how to have promiscuous sex without consequences is mandated.
Abortion is subsidized, while adoption is prohibitively expensive – in the unlikely event you can find a child to adopt.
Increasingly, the state is sticking its nose into what we eat, what we say, how we raise our children – even our thoughts.
Government is fine with pornography. But purity and abstinence are discouraged.
In other words, right is wrong, up is down, black is white and left is right.
And we sit here and wonder why people are killing themselves.
Government doesn’t have any answers.
When government replaces God in the lives of people, their lives become empty. They become subjects of the state, rather than citizens endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights – among those being life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.
The easy way to explain this alarming suicide data would be tough economic times. But when government becomes the ultimate authority in our lives and practices lawlessness, disregarding routinely the Constitution from which it derives its limited authority, I would suggest to you this is a much bigger cause for despair and powerlessness and hopelessness.
There is a solution to this problem. But it’s not a top-down answer. It’s a bottom-up solution.
Americans need to get right with God.
They need to find out what He requires of them – why He created them and how much He loves them. They need to be in genuine repentance for having turned away from Him and whored after other false gods and pursuits.
If Americans did this, they wouldn’t be taking their own lives in record numbers.