TED Conversations

AJ W.
  • AJ W.
  • Mill Valley, CA
  • United States

This conversation is closed.

We as a community ask Mr. Rosling if he would help us try to understand more about gun violence in schools with his amazing techniques.

If there was a way for people to see relationships between mental health statistics, economy problems, violent video games, gun law changes etc. and gun violence against children specifically; maybe we could find consensus. There is so much speculation, confusion and pain around this issue. Does anyone else second this idea? We as a society need insight and we need to see what may be hidden factors. Especially the factor of time, and how events occur at different rates during different periods of time. If you can suggest what data might be helpful to possibly provide context, please do so in the comments.

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  • Dec 20 2012: But the guy in Connecticut was crazy. This didn't used to happen. Population density doen't help. Why are we still growing America and increasing the stress after it was decided in the Nixon Administration that ZPG is a good thing. The more and more urban, poorer, and stressed this country becomes the worse this kind of stuff will get.
    • AJ W.

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      Dec 20 2012: Thank you George.
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    Dec 19 2012: I'm not an expert, but my impression is that even experts are hard-pressed to say what these relationships are.
    • AJ W.

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      Dec 19 2012: Thanks Greg. I agree with you, but one of the interesting things about Hans' talks are that when looking through the data, sometimes there are surprises. Things that are relevant appear and are uncovered in the search.
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    Dec 19 2012: .
    We actually have some of these stats, only not in one place.

    -We can compare statistics of any countries homicide rate using firearms in comparison to American rates.
    -We can also compare the statistics of gun ownership within the countries
    -We can take the homicide rates of a country in a time period before and after gun legislation was enforced

    Mr Rosling also uses a statistical database/graph called 'Gapminder Desktop' (free to download)
    and that includes a whole series of other statistics that may have some relevence to the subject.


    Ofcourse, seeling more Rosling in more TEDtalks is something we would all want.
    • AJ W.

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      Dec 19 2012: Thanks Xavier. One of the most amazing aspects of Hans' talks to me were the revealing of relationships of simultenaity that appeared in his results. The discovery of new information and new relationships that were not expected nor known in the hypothesis.

      For example:
      If there was a small correlation between the school shootings against children and the number of violent themed video games, in quantity per year for 5 years in a row. That info could be helpful. But if the data 5 years later showed that the correlation no longer maintained, one might disregard the correlation.

      But say if there were multiple statistical values being considered in the way Hans' does his work, we might see that the number of cases of mental health illnesses in children, in combination with video violence quantity seems to have a stronger connection to rate of occurrences of these types of strategies.

      I think Hans' work does show that expected parameters are relevant to the big picture but profoundly, when data is wisely managed and arranged, new relationships and both known and unknown factors' contributions can be seen and understood in ways that were previously hidden and could only be at best speculated about.

      Thanks again Xavier, I appreciate your comment.