Before we start let's make it clear that America has always had guns. This sets it a part from the Old World Countries that were established before guns were invented. So beyond arguments about gun control and countries where banning guns work. We need to keep in mind that the U.S. gained its independence from Birtain, because of laxed gun control laws in settlers, on Britain's part.
That being said the gun problem is a people problem. America is #11 in violent crime and #14 in education, when compared to all of the developed and underdeveloped countries (Latzer, 2016;Skolnik, 2016). That means on average we know less and kill more. We can argue that other countries hide their statistics, but we also have issues with the data collected from self-report surveys.
What makes our crime more deadly are guns. Guns are used in 68% of homicides (Latzer, 2016). In 2012 alone the ATF recorded that over 190,000 guns were reported lost or stolen (Minitr, 2014). A recent YouTube video showed how a gun store was broken in to and over 50 guns were robed in under 2 minutes (Boyd, 2016).
Replicate this crime across the Nation and you get an idea if how many illegal guns are out there.
Why are Americans so violent?
This is something criminology has been trying to solve and can't find an answer to. But guns don't help with the rates bad guys can kill.
It's not the gun it's the people!
Most of the mass shootings are related to mental illness. So you have to ask yourself.
How did these mentally ill individuals get a hold of a gun?
Well just because someone is mentally ill doesn't mean they are not smart. Hitler was mentally ill but that didn't stop him from leading an entire nation to genocide. The point being that simply identifying those with a mental illness, is a problem in itself. People with a serious mental illness can easily get around some gun control laws.
What about countries that don't have guns?
I live in Japan and yes it works. They also have some of the lowest rates of violent crime (Latzer, 2016). I can walk down the street at night in the city and not have to worry about much. Compared to my hometown of Escondido, CA. Japan is like a Utopia. But this was only possible because Japan banned guns from the beginning and the only people with guns are hunters (shot guns only) and the government (law enforcement and military).
So what can America do?
Nothing. Guns are a part of American culture. At this point, even if the government banned guns, it would lead to the bloodshed Japan faced when disbanding the Samurai (Rader, 2001). Even if they succeed, there are just too many guns already in circulation. It would be better to focus on mental health programs, to avoid unneeded gun violence. But as far as gun control laws fixing the issue, it seems like a pipe dream.
P.S. I like guns but I am okay with not owning one.
Social Gelo with Angelo
Angelo Ferrer ( M.S. Psychology)
Boyd, J. (2016). Massive Houston Gun Store Robbery Caught on Surveillance Camera. Retrieved from Houston Chronical.
Latzer, B. (2016). The Rise and Fall of Violent Crime in America. Encounter Books.
Minitor F. (2014). Inside the Black Market for Guns. Retrieved from Forbes Magazine.
Rader Jr, L. M. (2001). Salvationist Samurai: Gunpei Yamamuro and the Rise of the Salvation Army in Japan. International Bulletin of Missionary Research, 25(1), 43-43.
Skolnik, M. (2016). What does the decline in the international ranking of the United States in educational attainment mean for community colleges?. Community College Journal of Research and Practice, 1-17.