According to a new article, more young black men die of murder than suicide, accidents and disease combined.
A professor at Florida Atlantic University, Charles H. Hennekens, put together the report, showing that murder was "by far and away" the most likely cause of death for a young black man.
It was published in the American Journal of Medicine, and also showed that non-black men, who are young, are most likely to die in accidents as opposed to murder or disease.
Hennekens described his findings as "the new American tragedy" and said it was a "devastating epidemic."
Compared to white men of the same age group, black men are six times more likely to die of murder and seven times more likely to commit murder.
He also said that while only one-eighth of America is black, half of the country's homicide victims are black, reducing their life expectancy by six years.
Henneken's findings covered deaths of young men between the ages of 15-34 between 1999 and 2009. He said there were 106,271 homicides, 85% percent of them being men and 49% of them being black.
He said the statistics are clear even in states that show lower levels of young black men being killed, as those areas still show that they are more likely to be murdered than to die of any other cause.
The professor is using his findings to support gun control measures in America. He found that 91% of the murders amongst black men were from guns. Hennekens is urging doctors to identify the risks of guns to public health and to tell policy-makers about their findings, "even if the threats are lawful."
He compared owning a gun to smoking cigarettes.
"For example, cigarettes are both lawful and popular, but public health support of laws controlling their exposure to the general population has contributed to the reduction of the premature mortality they cause," he said.
"Death is inevitable, but premature death is not, including among young black men."