I know writing a blog post about my feelings to a small audience won’t accomplish anything to curb gun violence. What I could do today though was dig into statistics, distill them, and provide their sources. Whatever we do individually to educate ourselves and inform our actions can potentially have a collective impact.
Firearms became the leading cause of death for American children and teenagers in 2020.
This sad fact represents a major shift in risks for young people in the U.S. For over 60 years, car accidents were the leading cause of death for kids and teens. Car accidents are now number two, while drug overdoses are number three. —TIME MAGAZINE
45,222 firearm-related deaths in the U.S. in 2020
4,358 in total—were children
1994 the assault weapons ban went into effect—there were about 400,00 AR-15 rifles in America then.
In 2004 the federal ban on assault weapons expired.
Today, there are 20 million.
Assault weapons are military-style firearms intended to fire multiple rounds in quick succession – killing people quickly with little effort. They can be used with detachable magazines that can fire more than 10 rounds of ammunition. Assault weapons were primarily designed for use in war and battlefields. But because there’s no federal restriction on the sale of these weapons, civilians have been able to purchase assault weapons to carry out some of our nation’s deadliest mass shootings. —SANDY HOOK PROMISE
This is a hostage situation…Pew Research shows that 81% of Americans believe in some common-sense gun laws.
Here’s a link to the congressmen and senators who benefit the most by NOT supporting what their constituents want in gun policy.
GUNS AS LEADING CAUSE OF DEATH: https://www.npr.org/2022/04/22/1094364930/firearms-leading-cause-of-death-in-children
TIME MAGAZINE: https://time.com/6170864/cause-of-death-children-guns/
EDUCATION WEEK/27 SCHOOL SHOOTINGS THIS YEAR ALONE: https://www.edweek.org/leadership/school-shootings-this-year-how-many-and-where/2022/01
ASSAULT WEAPONS: —Heather Cox Richardson, Letters from an American, May 26th—Subscribe on Substack for a daily email that puts news from a historical perspective from a historian. https://heathercoxrichardson.substack.com/
SANDY HOOK PROMISE: https://actionfund.sandyhookpromise.org/issues/gun-safety/magazine-capacity-limits/?_ga=2.147810295.1346543022.1653831698-1939731440.1653831698
TEXT OF ASSAULT WEAPONS BAN BILL IN 1994: https://www.congress.gov/bill/103rd-congress/house-bill/4296/text
EXTREME RISK LAWS empower law enforcement and, depending on the jurisdiction, family members, health professionals, and school administrators, among others, to work with courts to temporarily remove firearms from those who pose a danger to themselves or others. Extreme risk laws have the power to prevent suicides, mass shootings, and interpersonal violence. (Note: only 19 states have these laws on the books.)
EXTREME RISK LAWS: https://everytownresearchorg/rankings/law/extreme-risk-law/
...The Pew polling found that significant majorities of Americans support background checks (81 percent), an assault-weapons ban (63 percent), and a ban on high-capacity ammunition magazines (64 percent); a majority also opposes concealed carry of weapons without a permit. Majorities of Republicans who don’t own guns shared those opinions, as did Democratic gun owners, by even more lopsided margins. Even most Republicans who do own guns said in the polling that they support background checks and oppose permitless concealed carry (which more red states, including Texas, are authorizing). Despite all of this, Republican elected officials, in their near-lockstep opposition to gun control, have bent to groups like the NRA in equating almost any restrictions as a sign of disrespect to the values of red America. https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2022/05/senate-state-bias-filibuster-blocking-gun-control-legislation/638425/
John Hopkins Center for Gun Violence Solutions: https://publichealth.jhu.edu/departments/health-policy-and-management/research-and-practice/center-for-gun-violence-solutions
FOLLOW THE MONEY $$$$$$$$$: https://elections.bradyunited.org/take-action/nra-donations-116th-congress-senators
FOLLOW THE MONEY: The majority of Americans support stronger gun laws — laws that are proven to reduce deaths. But in 2019, the NRA spent $3.22 million to benefit the political campaigns of senators who oppose gun safety legislation. In 2020, they spent $2.20 million. These senators refuse to support common-sense gun reform, like expanding Brady Background Checks and banning assault weapons. https://elections.bradyunited.org/take-action/nra-donations-116th-congress-senators