I DON'T KNOW about you, but I'm going to spend my tax-refund incentive check to buy a gun.

Now that the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that individuals - and not just members of militias - have the right to bear arms, it's the least we can do.


I was going to buy a dining-room rug, but that won't boost the economy nearly as much as having more guns in circulation.

And I'm not just talking about the billions of dollars in profits made by gun manufacturers.

The health-care industry will continue to boom, thanks to the victims of gun violence.

One Philadelphia study estimated, for instance, that one person hospitalized with a serious gunshot wound requires $20,000 in medical care, which pays for everything from ambulance trips to nurses' salaries to IV tubes to heart monitors to those funky little booties they give you to wear.

One local hospital generated $1.1 million in medical care caring for gunshot victims during one year alone - and that study was done 10 years ago. You can imagine how much more is being spent now.

Of course, not everyone survives their gunshot wounds, so the funeral industry will remain robust.

As of yesterday, for instance, 130 of the city's 158 homicide victims were killed with guns.

What with a funeral costing an average of $6,500, according to a KYW report, that would be $1.7 million spent on funerals in our town this year, if fatalities remain steady for the next six months.

Then there are the fat payments to the shrinks who care for: the families of murder victims; the survivors of shootings who need help adapting to permanent disability; the guilt-wracked individuals who use guns for "protection" who accidentally kill or injure innocent victims; and the devastated families whose children accidentally kill themselves while playing with weapons.

Would it be petty to mention all the beef and beer sold at fundraisers to help families survive financially - if not emotionally - when the breadwinner is murdered?

All of this money is spent in the aftermath of a shooting, of course.

But preventing gun violence also keeps lots of companies in business: the manufacturers of metal detectors, bullet-proof vests, and Plexiglas shields for banks and cash businesses, to name just a few.

Then there're the incidentals: flowers, sympathy cards and stamps to send them; the balloons, candles and stuffed animals we leave at impromptu memorials, especially when a child - or a police officer - is murdered.

And speaking of law enforcement, guns are a major factor in keeping the law-enforcement economy afloat.

Philly cops are so busy, for instance, that they earned $69 million in overtime last year, according to a recent report by my colleague Bob Warner.

And guess who got the most OT?

Homicide detectives.

Then, there's the money spent on keeping shooters in prison. Last year, local prison guards made $30 million in overtime, Warner reported.

Let's not overlook the moving companies, which make a bundle relocating people from our inner city to safer towns outside city limits. More commuters means more gas to get to work or more fares spent on public transportation.

I'm telling you, the financial benefits of flooding the country with guns are endless.

Why, gun violence generates $90 billion to $100 billion in expenditures a year, according to a book published in 2000 called Gun Violence: The Real Costs.

Finally - although I'm sure I've overlooked something - there's the airline industry, which might benefit from yesterday's ruling by selling one-way tickets to Americans fleeing a country being destroyed by the lunatic fringe of an ideologically driven U.S. Supreme Court.

Me, I'm too patriotic for that.

I'm going to help my country's economy by buying a gun. I hear the AK-47 comes in pink.

E-mail porterj@phillynews.com or call 215-854-5850. For recent columns: