Study: Black Boys Hospitalized 10 Times More For Gun Injuries

A gun sitting on top of school notebooksAccording to a new study published in Pediatrics, 20 children a day are hospitalized for gunshot wounds in the United States. The study also found that 9 out of 10 cases involved male patients, with black boys being hospitalized 10 times as often as white boys.

READ: Is Gun Violence A Health Disparity?

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Out of the over 7,000 hospitalizations of children, 453 died while in the hospital, according to Dr. John Leventhal, the study’s lead study and a Yale professor of pediatrics.

“Three firearms-related patients each day are younger than 15 years of age,” Leventhal said. “This is a tragedy. There are substantial injuries to these children that may have lifelong consequences.”

The most common types of firearm injuries were open wounds (52 percent), fractures (50 percent), and internal injuries of the chest, abdomen or pelvis (34 percent), the report showed.

“Those don’t necessarily heal,” Leventhal said. “Those children will struggle with these injuries for the rest of their lives.”

READ: Lessons From Sandy Hook: Guns & Black Mental Health

More than half of the gun injuries involved an attack on the child, but nearly one-third were unintentional, the investigators found.

  •  Three of four hospitalizations of children younger than 10 resulted from accidental injuries.
  • About 84 percent of these shootings involved teens aged 15 to 19.
  • Two-thirds of reported injuries were related to assaults.

“Some of these are school shootings, some are gang-related, some are related to fights or disagreements,” Leventhal said. “They all relate to access to guns.”

The authors of the study say parents should follow the American Academy of Pediatrics’ recommendations regarding firearms.

READ: How To Talk To Children About Gun Violence

“The AAP recommends that the safest home for a family is a home without guns,” said study co-author Dr. Robert Sege, a pediatrician and director of the division of family and child advocacy at Boston Medical Center. “If there is a gun in the home, the gun should be stored unloaded and locked, and the ammunition should be stored separately.”

Benjamin said society as a whole should place renewed emphasis on making guns safer.

“We’ve made cars much, much safer without outlawing cars,” he said. “A comprehensive strategy which makes firearms safer and people safer with their firearms would dramatically reduce firearm deaths and injuries.”

The new study was published online Jan. 27 and in the February print issue of Pediatrics.

Anthony Hamilton: “Anything Is Possible”

To many, Anthony Hamilton is best known for his award-winning songs that are laced with his signature soulful voice. Songs like “Charlene”, “Best Of Me”, and “Cool” are all laced with his feel-good, down-home scratchy vocals that sems to melt like butter. But to his six children–six boys to be exact–he is simply “dad.”

The Grammy-winning performer has released six studio albums, yet, despite his busy schedule–touring, recording, appearances, etc–Hamilton puts his family first.

As the patriarch of six boys who range in age from 2 to 25, Hamilton hopes to continue to provide the proper support and guidance to rear his six sons into strong and respectable men.

“I’ve seen it all,” Hamilton tells theGrio. “I’ve experienced every level of fatherhood you can imagine. And along the way, I’ve instilled the right type of fear and morals, it’s been beautiful.”

“Having children,” says the father of five, including year-old twins, “gives you another burst of energy, a new perspective. Back to Love (his 2016 album) stems from that energy.”

For Hamilton, fatherhood has been a blessing – a journey that he says has taught him how to be a better man, father and husband.

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“I’ve learned to have a lot of patience, I’ve also learned where I lack as a man and a father and where I’ve matured with each child,” he says. “I’ve seen my growth. Understanding myself and them is the most beautiful thing.”

Hamilton says that fatherhood has exposed him to many lessons that have helped to make him the man he is today– a dad who understands the importance of the influence he has on his children and how that will help shape the men they will one day become.

“The best part of fatherhood is seeing someone who resembles you and watching them sleep and be with you for however long God allows and we’re connected the whole time. It’s so beautiful to see, just watching them grow,” he says.

Aside from the experiences fatherhood has exposed him to, Hamilton says he hopes his children also pick up a few key lessons along the way.

“I hope that they learn that anything is possible and that they have faith in God and themselves and that that alone can help them exceed any expectations,” he says. “I hope that they learn…