Seek common ground to reduce gun deaths
I’m trying to understand why so many Americans believe that more guns are the answer to keeping us safe. We have more guns than any developed country in the world. One study showed that the United States has 88 guns per 100 people and 10 gun-related deaths per 100,000 people, while Japan has six guns per 100 people and .06 gun deaths. In 2011, Japan had six gun-related deaths; the United States had 33,000.
It’s unfortunate that so few recent studies are available giving facts and figures about gun violence. People I know are shocked when I tell them that it is illegal for government agencies to fund these studies. What is the National Rifle Association trying to hide? I also want to know why Congress refuses to increase funds to agencies so that existing gun laws can be better enforced. How many times have we heard that we don’t need more gun laws – just enforce the ones we already have?
It’s time that we start looking for common ground to stop these shootings. I don’t want to read about any more 9-year-olds being shot by a toddler because someone left a gun out, or that 32 people were shot over the weekend in Chicago, or that another unstable person shot students in a school. It just can’t continue.