America’s distinct gun violence problem, discussed in 16 maps and charts

America’s distinct gun violence problem, discussed in 16 maps and charts

After mass shootings in Odessa and Midland, Texas, and Mobile, Alabama, this weekend, Americans are confronting the country’s special relationship with guns.

It’s one of the couple of countries in which the right to bear arms is constitutionally secured.

These maps and charts show what that violence appears like compared with the remainder of the world, why it happens, and why it’s such a hard issue to fix.

1) America has six times as lots of firearm homicides as Canada, and almost 16 times as lots of as Germany

Javier Zarracina/Vox

This chart, assembled utilizing United Nations data gathered by Simon Rogers for the Guardian, shows that America far and away leads other developed countries when it comes to gun-related murders. Substantial evaluations of the research, compiled by the Harvard School of Public Health’s Injury Control Research study Center, suggest the answer is pretty simple: The US is an outlier on weapon violence because it has way more guns than other developed nations.

2) America has more guns than people

A chart showing civilian gun ownership rates by country.

Small Arms Study

Another way of looking at that: Americans comprise less than 5 percent of the world’s population, yet they own approximately 45 percent of all the world’s independently held firearms.

3) There have been more than 2,000 mass shootings since Sandy Hook

A map of mass shootings in the US.

Kavya Sukumar/Vox

In December 2012, a gunman walked into Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, and eliminated 20 children, 6 grownups, and himself. Ever since, there have actually been more than 2,000 mass shootings

The number comes from the Gun Violence Archive, which hosts a database that has actually tracked mass shootings since2013 However since some shootings go unreported, the database is likely missing out on some, in addition to the information of a few of the events.

The tracker uses a fairly broad definition of “mass shooting”: It includes not simply shootings in which four or more people were murdered, however shootings in which 4 or more individuals were shot at all (leaving out the shooter).

Even under this broad meaning, it’s worth keeping in mind that mass shootings comprise less than 2 percent part of America’s firearm deaths, which totaled nearly 40,000 in 2017 alone

4) On average, there is around one mass shooting for each day in America

Christopher Ingraham/Washington Post

Whenever a mass shooting occurs, advocates of gun rights frequently argue that it’s inappropriate to raise political arguments about gun control in the after-effects of a tragedy.

But if this argument is followed to its logical end, then it will almost never ever be the correct time to discuss weapon control, as Christopher Ingraham pointed out at the Washington Post Under the broader meaning of mass shootings, America has around one mass shooting a day. So if lawmakers are forced to wait for a time when there isn’t a mass shooting to talk weapon control, they might discover themselves awaiting a very long time.

5) States with more weapons have more gun deaths

A chart comparing US gun deaths with levels of gun ownership, by state.

Mom Jones

Utilizing data from a study in Injury Prevention and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Mother Jones created the chart above that shows states with more weapons tend to have even more gun deaths, consisting of murders and suicides. This has actually been found throughout the empirical research: “Within the United States, a large variety of empirical proof suggests that more guns in a community causes more murder,” David Hemenway, the Harvard Injury Control Proving ground’s director, wrote in Personal Weapons, Public Health

Read more in Mother Jones’s “10 Pro-Gun Misconceptions, Shot Down.”

6) It’s not simply the US: Established nations with more guns likewise have more gun deaths

A chart shows the correlation between gun deaths and gun ownership, by country.

Javier Zarracina/Vox

7) America is an outlier when it concerns weapon deaths, but not overall criminal activity

A chart showing crime rates among wealthy nations.

It would be one thing if the US occurred to have more criminal offense than other nations, but the existing data shows that not to be the case. America is just an outlier when it concerns homicides and, particularly, gun violence, according to information from Jeffrey Swanson at Duke University.

As Zack Beauchamp explained for Vox, a development analysis in the 1990 s by UC Berkeley’s Franklin Zimring and Gordon Hawkins found that the United States does not, contrary to the old traditional knowledge, have more criminal offense in general than other Western industrial nations. Instead, the US appears to have more deadly violence– which’s driven in big part by the occurrence of weapons.

” A series of specific contrasts of the death rates from property criminal activity and attack in New York City and London show how huge differences in death danger can be discussed even while general patterns are similar,” Zimring and Hawkins composed. “A preference for criminal offenses of personal force and the desire and capability to use guns in burglary make similar levels of home criminal activity 54 times as deadly in New york city City as in London.”

This remains in many methods user-friendly: People of every nation enter arguments and battles with pals, family, and peers. In the US, it’s much more likely that someone will get mad at an argument and be able to pull out a weapon and kill someone.

8) States with tighter weapon control laws have less gun-related deaths

Zara Matheson/Martin Success Institute

When economic expert Richard Florida took an appearance at weapon deaths and other social signs, he discovered that higher populations, more stress, more immigrants, and more psychological health problem didn’t correlate with more gun deaths. He did discover one informing correlation: States with tighter weapon control laws have less gun-related deaths.

This is backed by other research: A 2016 evaluation of 130 research studies in 10 nations, released in Epidemiologic Evaluations, discovered that new legal constraints on owning and acquiring weapons tended to be followed by a drop in gun violence– a strong indication that restricting access to weapons can save lives.

9) Still, gun homicides (like all homicides) have decreased over the previous couple years

Fortunately is that firearm murders, like all homicides and criminal offense, have decreased over the previous 20 years.

One theory that scientists have extensively debunked is the idea that more weapons have actually deterred criminal offense— in reality, the opposite may be true, based on research put together by the Harvard School of Public Health’s Injury Control Center

10) Most weapon deaths are suicides

Although America’s political argument about weapons tends to concentrate on grisly mass shootings and murders, a majority of gun-related deaths in the US are suicides. As Dylan Matthews discussed for Vox, this is really one of the most compelling factors for decreasing access to guns: There is a great deal of research that shows higher access to guns significantly increases the risk of suicide.

11) The states with the most guns report the most suicides

12) Weapons allow people to kill themselves a lot more easily

Estelle Caswell/Vox

Possibly the reason access to guns so strongly adds to suicides is that guns are much deadlier than options like cutting and poison.

Jill Harkavy-Friedman, vice president of research for the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, previously discussed that this is why minimizing access to guns can be so essential to preventing suicides: Just stalling an attempt or making it less most likely to result in death makes a huge difference.

” Time is really key to avoiding suicide in a suicidal individual,” Harkavy-Friedman said.

She included, “[I] f we keep the method of suicide away from an individual when they consider it, in that moment they will not switch to another technique. It’s not like they say, ‘Oh, this isn’t going to work.

13) Policies that limit access to weapons have decreased suicides

Estelle Caswell/Vox

When countries decreased access to weapons, they saw a drop in the number of gun suicides. The information above, taken from a study by Australian scientists, shows that suicides dropped significantly after the Australian government established a mandatory weapon buyback program that lowered the variety of firearms in the country by about one-fifth.

The Australian research study found that buying back 3,500 weapons per 100,000 individuals correlated with up to a 50 percent drop in gun murders and a 74 percent drop in gun suicides. As Dylan Matthews discussed for Vox, the drop in murders wasn’t statistically significant (in large part due to the fact that murders in Australia were currently so low). But the drop in suicides most absolutely was– and the results are striking.

Australia is far from alone in these kinds of outcomes. A study from Israeli researchers found that suicides amongst Israeli soldiers stopped by 40 percent when the military stopped letting soldiers take their guns home over the weekend. The change was most pronounced during the weekends.

This information and research have a clear message: States and nations can substantially minimize the number of suicides by limiting access to weapons.

14) In states with more guns, more police officers are also killed on responsibility

Considered that states with more guns tend to have more murders, it isn’t too unexpected that, as a research study in the American Journal of Public Health discovered, states with more guns also have more police officers pass away in the line of responsibility.

Scientists looked at federal information for firearm ownership and homicides of police officers throughout the US over 15 years. They discovered that states with more gun ownership had more police officers eliminated in murders: Every 10 percent boost in firearm ownership associated with 10 additional officers killed in homicides over the 15- year study duration.

The findings might assistance describe why United States law enforcement officer appear to eliminate more people than cops in other developed countries. For United States police officers, the higher rates of weapons and gun violence– even against them– in America imply that they not only will encounter more guns and violence, but they can expect to encounter more weapons and fatal violence, making them most likely to prepare for and perceive a threat and usage fatal force as an outcome.

15) Assistance for weapon ownership has sharply increased because the early 2000 s

Over the past two decades, Americans have actually shifted from primarily supporting the concept of gun control to higher assistance for safeguarding “the right of Americans to own guns,” according to Bench Proving ground surveys This shift has actually taken place even as major mass shootings, such as the attacks on Columbine High School and Sandy Hook Grade School, have gotten more press attention.

16) Specific gun control policies are relatively popular

A chart shows high support for gun control measures.

Although many Americans say they wish to secure the right to own firearms, a lot of likewise back lots of gun control propositions– such as more powerful background checks, a database to track weapon sales, and prohibiting assault-style weapons, according to Seat Research Center surveys

This type of contradiction isn’t unique to gun policy problems. Although most Americans in the past stated they do not like Obamacare, many of them also said they like the specific policies in the health care law

For individuals who think the empirical evidence that more guns suggest more violence, this contradiction is the source of a lot of frustration. Americans by and large support policies that lower access to weapons.


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