Guns Don't Kill People, Criminals Kill People

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In America, gun control has been a source of debate for decades. Recently, an increase in the frequency of mass shootings has caused the country to become extremely polarized in relation to the issue. America is often described as having a gun culture as a result of firearms being engrained in its history and perhaps, consequently, has among the highest rates of gun-related crime as well as gun ownership rates, among developed nations. There exists an abundance of scholarly work done in an effort to develop a solution to reducing America’s high levels of gun related crime; however, there exists no definitive answer to the problem and statistical data could support both arguments for and against guns. The general assumption among these studies, is that gun control, one way or another, will have some sort of effect on levels of violence. Studies done within America suggest that the prevalence of guns among citizens curtails violence (Lott, 1998, 5). However there exists research done on a macro scale which supports the notion that prevalence of guns is positively correlated with the level of violence (Bangalore & Mersserli, 2013, p. 873). It is however probable that both of these theories are deficient, with some researchers suggesting that violence need be the independent variable rather than guns (Kates & Mauser). Describe shortcomings vaguely.

One of the most relevant works regarding gun control, which perhaps heightened polarization on the issue, is John Lott’s More Guns, Less Crime. The author postulates that law abiding citizens wielding weapons will deter criminals from violent crime (Lott, 1998, p. 58). Lott (1998) analyzes an extensive compilation of statistical data to attest to his theory which claims that counties and...

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...ip and firearm-related deaths. The American Journal of Medicine, 126(10), 874-876.

Gius, M. (2013). An examination of the effects of concealed weapons laws and assault weapons bans on state-level murder rates. Applied Economics Letters, 21(4), 265-267. doi: 10.1080/13504851.2013.854294

Kates, D. B., & Mauser, G. (2007). Would banning firearms reduce murder and suicide?. Harvard Journal Of Law & Public Policy, 30(2), 649-694.

Killias, M. (1993). Guns ownership, suicide and homicide: an international perspective. Understanding Crime. Acts of the International Conference 289

Kovandzic, T. V., & Marvell, T. B. (2003). Right-to-carry concealed handguns and violent crime: crime control through gun control?. Criminology & Public Policy, 2(3), 363.

Lott, J. (1998). More guns, less crime: understanding crime and gun-control laws. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
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