On a chilly January morning, a dismal scientist's thoughts naturally turn to death.
The CDC reports that 31,513 people in the U.S. died in 2010 from guns, up from 31,347 the year before. Homicides involving guns were down (11,105 in 2010 from 11,493 the year before), as were homicides generally. Gun deaths from accidents and suicides accounted for the overall increase. A gun is still nearly twice as likely to be used in a successful suicide than in a homicide.
The cheerier news is that overall death rates decreased nationally, though the cheer will have to be reserved for other states--North Carolina's death rate actually increased.
Update: Figures for 2011 also show an increase in gun deaths.