Gun Violence
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The number of Americans killed since 9-11 by terrorism, it’s less than 100. If you look at the number that have been killed by gun violence, it’s in the tens of thousands.

— Barack Obama

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Probably fewer than 2% of handguns and well under 1% of all guns will ever be involved in a violent crime. Thus, the problem of criminal gun violence is concentrated within a very small subset of gun owners, indicating that gun control aimed at the general population faces a serious needle-in-the-haystack problem.

— Gary Kleck

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We have to tackle the plague of gun violence, which is a big contributor to a lot of the problems that we're seeing today.

— Hillary Clinton

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There is a problem here in America when it comes to police violence and gun violence, that I believe is being ignored by not giving the proper resources to communities.

— Jumaane Williams

Fact Sheet We Can Make a Difference!

 
  • 136,000 Americans are shot each year — over one million in the past decade.
    Giffords Law Center
  • Americans are 25 times more likely to be killed in a gun homicide than residents of other high income countries.
    Giffords Law Center
  • Across 29 high-income countries, 93% of children ages 0 to 14 years killed with guns are from the United States.
    Giffords Law Center
  • 36,000 Americans are killed by guns each year — an average of 100 per day — and 100,000 are shot and injured.
    Giffords Law Center
  • More than half of all suicides in the United States are carried out with a firearm. White men comprise 74% of gun suicide victims.
    Giffords Law Center
  • Gun suicides also have a disproportionate impact on young adults, older Americans, and veterans.
    Giffords Law Center
  • Access to a gun triples the risk of suicide death.
    Giffords Law Center
  • Gun homicides are concentrated in cities, and within cities, gun violence is further clustered among racially segregated, economically disenfranchised neighborhoods.
    Giffords Law Center
  • Each year, nearly 1,500 minors are killed by guns, and three million children are directly exposed to gun violence.
    Giffords Law Center
  • Economists estimate that gun violence costs the American economy at least $229 billion every year, including $8.6 billion in direct expenses.
    Giffords Law Center

Movies

This documentary frames gun violence as both a disaster and a public health issue through the eyes of its victims. It addresses the critical issue of gun violence prevention by moving the conversation away from the polarizing extremes that have long dominated the debate and lifting up the voice and experiences of those who seek common ground and a new way forward.

Where to Watch: Amazon Prime, The Roku Channel

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Love Justice

Under the Gun examines the events and people who have kept the gun debate fierce and the progress slow, even as gun deaths and mass shootings continue to increase. Through the lens of families impacted by the mass shootings in Newtown, Aurora, Isla Vista and Tucson, as well as those who experience daily gun violence in Chicago, the documentary looks at why politicians are finding it difficult to act and what is being done at the state and local levels. The film is executive produced and narrated by Katie Couric and directed by Stephanie Soechtig.

Where to Watch: The Roku Channel, Amazon Prime

Every year, almost 40,000 people are killed by guns in America. Each shooting devastates and forever changes the victim’s family and friends. The new feature documentary, Behind the Bullet, explores a side of gun violence that’s rarely talked about- the impact a shooting has on the shooter. The film answers the question, what does shooting and killing someone do to a person whose intentions are good.

Each subject in the film tells the story of how the pull of a trigger, changed them emotionally, physically, psychologically, and spiritually. The complexity of each scenario plays out as they describe the conflicting emotions and moral injury that comes after a self-defense shooting, an accidental shooting or an unintentional shooting.

Where to Watch: Tubi, The Roku Channel, Vudu

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Challenges

  • Legislation introduced which purports to control gun violence has historically focused on regulating high-capacity ammunition clips and certain types of semi-automatic firearms. Polling shows that these types of regulations are generally popular, and therefore proposals to ban the sale of these types of weapons and weapon accessories makes political sense. But legislation to control sales of weapons doesn't address the biggest hurdle to effective gun control -- the guns that are already in circulation.
  • "The biggest problem for gun control today is a number: 300 million," UCLA law professor Adam Winkler said. "That's roughly the number of guns there are in civilian hands today. Any new law you pass confronts the reality of 300 million guns already in circulation."
  • "You can outlaw assault rifles for instance, say that anyone who has one, it's illegal, you have to turn it in," Winkler said. "You could do that, but they won't be turned in. It's not that you can't outlaw them, it's just that practically speaking you can't get rid of them."
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Recent Successes

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MLive - A program that aims to help reduce gun violence is coming to Jackson.

At it’s Tuesday, Aug. 17 meeting, the Jackson City Council approved allocating $1.5 million of its federal American Rescue Plan COVID-19 relief funds to a Group Violence Intervention program.

The city will enter a two-year partnership with the National Network for Safe Communities at John Jay College for design and implementation of a program specific to the city. The funds will cover the contract, which costs $140,000 the first year and $90,000 the second year, and support police department staff, crisis intervention and project referrals.

WTNH - Governor Ned Lamont signed two bills into law Tuesday. They are aimed at reducing gun violence and increasing gun safety. House Bill 6355 strengthens gun control policies already on the books and would prevent people with protection orders against them from getting gun permits or ammunition.

That bill passed 20 years ago after the Connecticut Lottery shooting. This updated law now opens the door to getting guns out of the hands of people who may be mentally ill.

Love Justice
Love Justice

WLWT - Another step is being taken in the push to end gun violence in Cincinnati.

City leaders and community members said Monday that proposed legislation would help.

Cincinnati council member Greg Landsman is behind the legislation meant to crack down on gun violence, protect citizens and keep communities safe.

Landsman said it will empower community groups and leaders, offer training and problem-solving and will allow those groups to submit plans to the city.

How to Get Involved

Lawmakers can learn lessons from auto safety. To start, they can put in effect more rigorous requirements for owning firearms. “For the most part, it is much easier to be a legal gun owner in America than it is to be a legal driver,” says David Hemenway, director of the Injury Control Research Center at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.

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Love Justice

Researchers are also finding links between right-to-carry laws – which require governments to issue concealed - carry permits to citizens who meet certain requirements–and spikes in firearms crime. Another measure that has attracted lawmakers’ attention is extreme-risk protection orders, also known as gun-violence restraining orders. These allow family members or law enforcement to petition a court to temporarily bar an at-risk person from buying firearms. Evidence suggests that these orders save lives. A 2017 study in Law and Contemporary Problems estimated that in Connecticut, every 10 to 20 gun seizures averted a suicide.

Doctors can play a key role in educating families about gun safety, particularly when it comes to keeping guns out of the hands of young children. Studies show that some 3-year-olds are strong enough to shoot a gun. By the time they reach school age, about 75% can fire a weapon. As a result, the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that pediatricians start asking about firearms in the home when children are 3 years old and curious about the world – and objects – around them.

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