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The Pediatric Forum |

Correcting “The March of Science” Editorial

John R. Lott Jr, PhD
Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 2008;162(6):589. doi:10.1001/archpedi.162.6.589-a.
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Rivara and Christakis's editorial “The March of Science”1 is filled with outrageous errors. David Mustard, MSc, PhD, and I provided our data to any academic who asked for it even before my original research was published.2 In total, the data have been available to more than 200 academics as well as the National Research Council.

The coding errors to which Rivara and Christakis point were not in either edition of my book More Guns, Less Crime3 nor in any of my many published journal articles on this topic.4 The law review publication by Ayres and Donohue5 that Rivara and Christakis cite discovered a mistake in an article published by 2 academics who used my data for all the counties in the United States from 1977 to 1996 and extended them for 4 more years to 2000.6,7 The minor errors were in this extended data from 1997 to 2000 and did not affect their central results (p 1354). Yet, the article by Plassmann and Whitley6 also finds serious mistakes with the article by Ayres and Donohue.5

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