GUNS: The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly
Gun ownership and gun control are very controversial topics. If more people own guns then will there be more violence and more crime? If everyone is allowed to own guns then will there be negative consequences? Both of these questions are debateable and each of them has its proponents and opponents.
In this article we’ll take a look at some interesting gun statistics from an objective viewpoint. The point is not to argue for or against gun ownership and or gun control. With that said, let’s look at the good, the bad, and the ugly gun statistics.
Gun ownership in America – as a percentage of households – has been in a shallow decline since 1960. In 1960 almost 50% of households had a gun. In 2010 that percentage was down to around 40%.
Furthermore, the rates of firearm homicide deaths and non-fatal firearm crimes have also been falling steadily. From 1981 to 2010 those rates fell 45 and 75%, respectively.
Lastly, the incidence of intentional homicides per 100,000 people is lower in the US than it is in many other countries.
In sum, the rates of gun ownership and firearm homicides deaths and non-fatal firearm crimes have been in decline for a while. Furthermore, the intentional homicide rate in the US is relatively low.
The homicide rate in the US is higher than it is in most other developed nations.
Moreover, gun ownership per 100 people is higher in the US than it is anywhere else in the world.
Unfortunately, mass shooting casualties continue to be a problem for the US.
Homicide and gun ownership rates are down in the US, but relative to other countries, they’re still high.
In addition, annual mass shooting casualties are on the rise.
Spending on guns and ammo has risen with the gini ratio – a statistical measure of income inequality.
it’s also interesting to note that violent crimes are often committed by the same perpetrators.
If the US wants to reduce the incidence of violent crime then it should shift its focus away from incarceration / punishment…
…to treatment, rehabilitation, and prevention.
There’s no two ways about it – guns are dangerous.
That said, it’s not a question of “how many guns are out there?” – it’s a question of who’s holding them.
We live in a reactionist society. Often times, we don’t deal with important issues until we have to. If we can take a more proactive stance and concentrate on preventing gun crimes, on reducing the number of repeat offenders, and on the rehabilitation and reintegration of criminals into society then it’s likely that the rate of firearm homicides and the financial burden associated with incarceration would fall.