Guns: control the weapon or the hands that use it?

The U.S. is one of three countries with a constitutional right to gun ownership, with Mexico and Guatemala as the other two. The Second Amendment grants that power as part of the Bill of Rights, established in 1791, to provide a balance of power against a potentially strong federal government.

The right to own guns is as American as apple pie. The right to challenge the way in which gun ownership is practiced is also all-American.

So with massacres like Las Vegas, the right to own versus the need for restrictions imposed on ownership is being discussed. Let’s look at a few points on either side of the argument.

More gun control is necessary.

the U.S has the highest rate of deaths by gun violence in countries with similar GDP’s

America’s gun homicide rate is more than 25 times the average of other high-income countries (high income countries include UK, Spain, Italy, Germany, Sweden, France and about sixteen others).

In the U.S., there are 3.61 gun-homicide deaths per 100,000 people per year. The country with the next-highest number is Canada, with .5 deaths-by-gun per 100,000 per year. The numbers from other high-income countries decrease from there.

Read more here: Gun Violence by the Numbers (Everytown Research)

and more guns means more gun deaths

The American Public Health Association reports:
Gun ownership is a significant predictor of firearm homicide rates, showing that for each percentage point increase in gun ownership, the firearm homicide rate increased by 0.9%.

Read more here: The Relationship Between Gun Ownership and Firearm Homicide Rates (AJPH)

Gun control is not the solution.

Violent crime in America has fallen significantly.

Pew Research reports FBI statistics that show: violent crime has declined by 50% since 1993.

Read more here: 5 facts about crime in the U.S. (Pew Research)

we don’t rewrite the constitution

The courts have upheld the right to gun ownership.

In District of Columbia versus Heller, in a landmark case, the courts decided: the Second Amendment protects an individual right to possess a firearm unconnected with service in a militia, and to use that arm for traditionally lawful purposes, such as self-defense within the home.

maybe we need to address the cause of violence, not the guns that need hands to use them

70 percent of homicides are committed with guns but maybe those murderers would use something else to kill, right? It makes us ask: Why do we have so much violence?

According to Martin Daly, professor emeritus of psychology and neuroscience at McMaster University in Ontario and author of Killing the Competition: Economic Inequality and Homicide, inequality predicts homicide rates “better than any other variable.”

In equality, Daly says, is the biggest driver of violence.

And, according to the FBI, just over half of murders in which the precipitating circumstances were known were set off by what is called the “other argument” – not a robbery, a love triangle, drugs, domestic violence or money, but simply the sense that someone had been dissed.

 

Back to News Made Simple article here.

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