Gun Violence on the Rise

Madison Olson, Reporter

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One of the most dangerous and troublesome issues that the nation faces today is the rapid inclination of gun violence.  Complications with gun violence includes, but is not limited to: mass shootings, gun laws and/or prohibition, and suicides.


Recently, gun laws have been a major controversial topic within the United States.  These laws are known to be directly related to gun violence.  The question is, if gun prohibitions are enacted, will this reduce gun violence- or will it cause even more bloodshed?  


In the article, “Gun Crime and Gun Control: Firearm Laws Mapped Between States”, it quotes,“From 2014 to 2015, the United States experienced its largest annual increase in firearms deaths over the past 35 years, a 7.8 percent upturn in a single year.”  According to this text, thirty seven states allow adults to legally purchase firearms from private individuals without being required to have a background check performed.  With this information, we can conclude that gun registration laws need to be more strict- including private transactions.


Mass killings in the U.S are mostly carried out with firearms.  However, there is no universal definition of a mass shooting. Yet, one thing remains as the common denominator: guns.


The publishing, “The Math of Mass Shootings”, states, “The death tolls change, the places change: 26 at a church, 26 in an elementary school, 49 in a nightclub, 58 at a country music festival. The faces in the memorial photos change every time.”  Mass killings are mostly committed with handguns, and most of these have been obtained by the murderer legally.


In the recent event of the Las Vegas Country Music Festival shootings, the murderer owned a total of 292 guns.  When he was found in the hotel room, he had 23 in his possession.  No one knows how he acquired all of these firearms.  What law enforcement does know, is that he obtained 168 of these legally and 48 were obtained illegally.  Ultimately, his killing spree ended with the taking of his own life.  


It is a known fact that households with gun ownership have higher suicide rates.  In the text, “Guns and Suicide: A Fatal Link”, it says, “A study by the Harvard School of Public Health of all 50 U.S states reveals a powerful link between rates of firearm ownership and suicides. In the state of Wyoming alone, 63% of households owned guns and the rates of suicide were higher.”


We all struggle to make sense of unspeakable tragedies.  We all must remember that it’s not just about mass shootings.  We must all strive to prevent death by firearms in a few different ways.  First is general ongoing gun safety.  Appropriate mental health treatment and trauma reduction may limit the violence.  Having sensible gun laws in place and establishing and enforcing safe communities may also reduce firearm violence.


Though we may not be able to fully get rid of gun violence in the present and future, we can help limit the majority of such crimes that will occur over time.  Anything from suicide to mass shootings, they can all be reduced if everyone did their part to be responsible firearm owning citizens.

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Gun Violence on the Rise