These are wonderful steps in the right direction. What are some additional ideas you might have to prevent lives from being taken by firearms? (I'm guessing this question will be ignored)
I think if we improve the socio - economic situation in the US we could lower the number of violent crimes simply said invest in our future.The war on drugs and banning hand guns are attempts at quick fix of the problem. It will take years to improve the situation of the people that feel no sense of hope or chance in this country. This is not an easy thing to do, we would first have to get our fiscal house in order and then decide as a people what is important for us to spend OUR money on.
The biggest investment we can make is improving the education of our children, and with the most homicides being with 17 to 24 year olds its hard to argue that one.
In 2010 USA homicides, guns were the weapon of choice, especially for multiple homicides.
During the 1980s and early 1990s, homicide rates surged in cities across the United States (see graphs at right). Handgun homicides accounted for nearly all of the overall increase in the homicide rate, from 1985 to 1993, while homicide rates involving other weapons declined during that time frame. The rising trend in homicide rates during the 1980s and early 1990s was most pronounced among lower income and especially unemployed males. Youths and Hispanic and African American males in the United States were the most represented, with the injury and death rates tripling for black males aged 13 through 17 and doubling for black males aged 18 through 24. The rise in crack cocaine use in cities across the United States is often cited as a factor for increased gun violence among youths during this time period.
Gun-related death rates in the United States are eight times higher than they are in countries that are economically and politically similar to it; however, most countries similar to the United States have a more secure social network. Higher gun-related death rates can be found in developing countries and countries with political instability. However, developed countries with strict gun laws have essentially eliminated gun violence.
Prevalence of homicide and violent crime is greatest in low income urban areas of the United States. In metropolitan areas, the homicide rate in 2005 was 6.1 per 100,000 compared with 3.5 in non-metropolitan counties. In U.S. cities with populations greater than 250,000, the mean homicide rate was 12.1 per 100,000. According to FBI statistics, the highest per capita rates of gun-related homicides in 2005 were in D.C. (35.4/100,000), Puerto Rico (19.6/100,000), Louisiana (9.9/100,000), and Maryland (9.9/100,000). The Bureau of Justice statistics from 2004 do not include D.C or Puerto Rico.
Homicide rates among 18- to 24-year-olds declined since 1993, but remain higher than they were prior to the 1980s. In 2005, the 17 through 24 age group remains significantly overrepresented in violent crime statistics, particularly homicides involving firearms. In 2005, 17- through 19-year-olds were 4.3% of the overall population of the United States. This same age group accounted for 11.2% of those killed by firearm homicides. This age group also accounted for 10.6% of all homicide offenses. The 20- through 24-year-old age group accounted for 7.1% of the population, while accounting for 22.5% of those killed by firearm homicides. The 20 through 24 age group also accounted for 17.7% of all homicide offenses. Those under age 17 are not overrepresented in homicide statistics. In 2005, 13- through 16-year-olds accounted for 6% of the overall population of the United States, but only accounted for 3.6% of firearm homicide victims, and 2.7% of overall homicide offenses.
People with a criminal record were also more likely to die as homicide victims. Between 1990 and 1994, 75% of all homicide victims age 21 and younger in the city of Boston had a prior criminal record. In Philadelphia, the percentage of those killed in gun homicides that had prior criminal records increased from 73% in 1985 to 93% in 1996. In Richmond, Virginia, the risk of gunshot injury is 22 times higher for those males involved with crime.
In 2005, 75% of the 10,100 homicides committed using firearms in the United States were committed using handguns, compared to 4% with rifles, 5% with shotguns, and the rest with unspecified firearms. The likelihood that a death will result is significantly increased when either the victim or the attacker has a firearm. For example, the mortality rate for gunshot wounds to the heart is 84%, compared to 30% for people who sustain stab wounds to the heart.
The incidence of homicides committed with a firearm in the US is much greater than some other advanced countries. In the United States in 2009 United Nations statistics record 3.0 intentional homicides committed with a firearm per 100,000 inhabitants; for comparison, the figure for the United Kingdom, with where handguns are prohibited was 0.07 per 100,000, about 40 times lower, and for Germany 0.2. Gun Homicides in Switzerland however are similarly low, at 0.52 in 2010 even though they rank third in the world for highest number of guns per citizen.
The US Department of Justice reports that approximately 60% of all adult firearm deaths are by suicide, 61% more than deaths by homicide.
One would have to think better education leads to better jobs and healthcare would help lower the suicide rate. But on a personal note having a
family member who was Bi- Polar if it was not for our family there isn't much help out there. Many people with mental afflictions untreated self medicate. I can only imagine what its like to be three or fours days without sleep wasted in the manic phase of Bi-Polar.
Thanks for listening.