Guns Down Guns Down

Building A Future With Fewer Guns

February 5, 2019
Women & Guns More Guns = Less Crime Fewer Guns = Safer Communities
Youth & Guns Gun Control Helps Criminals Firearm Licensing
Suicide & Guns Good Guy With A Gun Regulating Manufacturers
African Americans & Guns Mental Health Problem Background Checks, A First Step
Guns & Self Defense 2A = Absolute Right Community Violence Reduction

Women & Guns

*4.5 million American women* alive today have been threatened with a gun by an intimate partner. Click to Tweet

Domestic assaults that involve firearms are 3x more likely to result in death than knives. Click to Tweet

In 2016: more than 1,800 women were murdered by men. The most common weapon used? A GUN. Fewer guns = fewer deaths. Click to Tweet

The presence of a gun in a home with a history of domestic violence increases the risk that a woman will be killed by 500%. Click to Tweet

FACT: Women are 5X more likely to be killed if their abuser has access to a gun. Click to Tweet

Women in the U.S. are 16X more likely to be killed with a gun than women in other high-income countries. Click to Tweet

Over 600 women are shot to death by an intimate partner every year, on average. Nearly 1,000,000 American women alive today have been shot or shot at by an intimate partner. Click to Tweet

From 2006 to 2015, the rate of domestic violence gun homicides of young women was 30 percent higher than for women of all ages. Click to Tweet

Youth & Guns

American teenagers are 82X more likely to die from a gun homicide than their international peers. Click to Tweet

Gun violence has surpassed motor vehicle accidents as a leading killer of young people in U.S. Click to Tweet

A young person is shot & killed by a police officer in the United States almost every day. Click to Tweet

One experiment found that a full 1/3 of 8-to-12 year old boys who came across a handgun actually pull the trigger — despite being counseled about how to safely behave around guns. Click to Tweet

Guns on campus will actually make colleges *more* dangerous. Click to Tweet

There is ZERO evidence that armed school guards would reduce school shootings. What we do know is that black students are 2.2X more likely to be either referred to law enforcement or arrested at school than white students. Click to Tweet

Multiple simulations have demonstrated that most people (including trained teachers), if placed in an active shooter situation while armed, will not be able to stop the situation. Click to Tweet

An analysis of video game expenditures & violent crime rates in 10 industrial nations and found no relationship between increased video game playing and increased real-world killing. Click to Tweet

Background Checks, A First Step

Background checks work. They’ve stopped 3.5 million sales and saved hundreds of thousands of lives. Click to Tweet

In 2017 alone, over 170,000 sales were denied thanks to background check —39% of them to convicted felons. Click to Tweet

22% of Americans who acquired a firearm within the past 2 years did so *without* a background check! Click to Tweet

Fewer Guns = Safer Communities

In 2016, a political scientist at the University of Alabama, had a simple question: why does U.S. have more public mass shootings than other developed countries around the world? His answer: we have too many guns & they’re too easy to get. Click to Tweet

The United States does not have higher crime rates than our global peers; our crime is just far more lethal, resulting in more deaths. That’s why we need to build communities with fewer guns. Click to Tweet

Each percentage point increase in gun ownership correlates with a roughly 0.9% rise in the firearm homicide rate. Click to Tweet

Need proof that fewer guns = safer communities? Australian researchers found that buying back 3,500 guns per 100,000 people correlated with up to a 50% drop in firearm homicides and a 74% drop in gun suicides. Click to Tweet

U.S. has an estimated 393,300,000 guns in civilian circulation, or 120.5 guns per 100 residents. Americans make up approximately 5% of the world population, but we have some 46% of the world’s civilian-owned firearms. Click to Tweet

Regulating Gun Manufacturers

Gunmakers are exploiting new technology & finding new loopholes in existing law in order to sell more-lethal weapons. Congress must crack down on this behavior and regulate the industry. Click to Tweet

Cars, toys, and aspirin all have to meet mandatory safety standards. Guns do not. Guns made in America don’t go through safety testing to ensure they include the most basic safety features. That’s unacceptable. Click to Tweet

No federal agency oversees how firearms are designed or built even though improved safety standards might prevent many unintentional, accidental shootings, which killed 4,000 Americans and injured over 95,000 between 2005 and 2010. Click to Tweet

Firearm manufacturers are producing products & militarized firearm accessories that are be making guns more lethal. Click to Tweet

In Chicago, the average weapon caliber used in everyday gun violence has been going up and the number of people killed with high-velocity pistols is increasing substantially. Click to Tweet

Firearm Licensing

Background checks work best when they form the foundation for a larger gun licensing system that requires individuals to prove that they’re qualified and capable of owning a firearm in the first place. Click to Tweet

States with stronger gun licensing laws have lower rates of guns being diverted to criminals, lower rates of gun homicides, suicides, and fewer instances of law-enforcement deaths. Click to Tweet

After CT passed a gun licensing law for handguns, it experienced a 40% drop in gun homicides & 15% reduction in handgun suicides. After MO repealed its handgun licensing law, it experienced 23% increase in firearm homicides & 16% increase in handgun suicides. Click to Tweet 

More Guns = Less Crime

States with weak gun laws and higher gun ownership lead the nation in gun deaths. Alaska, Montana, Alabama, Louisiana, and Missouri have the highest gun death rates. Hawaii, Massachusetts, New York, Rhode Island, and Connecticut have the lowest. Click to Tweet

More guns = more crime. A 2017 Stanford University study found that states with loose concealed carry laws experience 13%-15% increase in crime. Click to Tweet

FACT: States with higher levels of gun ownership experience a gun murder rate that’s up to 114% higher than states with low levels of gun ownership. Click to Tweet

More Americans have died from guns in the last 50 years than in all of the wars in American history. Click to Tweet

The U.S. has more public mass shootings in America than in any other country in the world. Click to Tweet

The gun murder rate in the U.S. is 25x higher than in our peer nations. Click to Tweet

US’s civilian gun death rate is nearly 4X that of Switzerland, 5X that of Canada, 35X that of the United Kingdom, and 53X that of Japan. Click to Tweet

“In homes, cities, states and regions in the U.S., where there are more guns, both men and women are at a higher risk for homicide, particularly firearm homicide.” Click to Tweet

“The 10 states with the weakest gun laws collectively have an aggregate level of gun violence that is 3.2X higher than the 10 states with the strongest gun laws.” Click to Tweet

Suicide & Guns

Nearly 22,000 Americans die every year from firearm suicide. That means that nearly two-thirds of all gun deaths in the U.S. are suicides: an average of 59 deaths a day. Click to Tweet

Firearm suicide in the United States is only getting worse: the U.S. firearm suicide rate has increased by 19% over the last decade. Children and teens have experienced a firearm suicide rate increase of 61% in the past ten years. Click to Tweet

85% of Americans attempting suicide with a firearm will die while less than 5% of people who attempt suicide using other methods will die. Click to Tweet

People who live in U.S. states with high rates of household gun ownership are 4x more likely to die by gun suicide than in states where fewer households own guns. This holds true even when you control for other factors like poverty, unemployment, serious mental illness, and substance abuse. Click to Tweet

The U.S. firearm suicide rate is 8x higher than the firearm suicide rate in other high-income countries. Click to Tweet

Youth suicides rates are higher in states with high gun ownership rates. For each 10 percentage-point increase in household gun ownership, the youth suicide rate increased by 26.9% Click to Tweet

2A = Absolute Right

To the Founding Fathers, #2a was about citizens’ civic duty to defend their communities within the confines of a *militia.* Click to Tweet

FACT: If you search the phrase “right to bear arms” in the Congressional Record of the time period, you won’t find a single mention outside of the context of the military. Searching a database of all the writings and papers of the Founding Fathers reveals that “right to bear arms” only referred to the formation of militias. Click to Tweet

The rights in #2A are NOT absolute. As conservative Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia put it, the Second Amendment, “[l]ike most rights, … is not unlimited.” Click to Tweet

Guns & Self Defense

Self-defense gun use is rare. In 2015: for every justifiable homicide in the U.S. involving a gun, guns were used in 34 criminal homicides. (This doesn’t even count the tens of thousands of lives lost in gun suicides and unintentional shootings). Click to Tweet

One commonly cited statistic that 2.5 million people use them each year to defend themselves or their property is based on faulty analysis. A more reliable source of information pegs the number of people who use guns in this manner at roughly 100,000. Click to Tweet

Guns are nearly 2x as likely to be stolen than to be used for self-defense. Click to Tweet

A gun in the home doubles your risk of homicide, and triples your risk of suicide. Click to Tweet

Did you know that the likelihood of sustaining an injury during a robbery was nearly identical between people who attempted to defend themselves with a gun and those who took no defensive action? Click to Tweet

The odds of an assault victim being shot were 4.5X greater if an individual carries a gun. His odds of being killed were 4.2X greater. Click to Tweet

Gun Control Helps Criminals

Gun laws do work. 10 states with the WEAKEST gun laws have an aggregate level of gun violence that is more than 3x higher than the 10 states with the STRONGEST gun laws. Click to Tweet

States that require background checks for ALL handgun sales have lower rates of: intimate partner gun homicides of women; law enforcement officers killed with handguns; gun-related suicides. Click to Tweet

Mental Health Problem

FACT: Only 5% of violence is attributable to mental illness. Click to Tweet

People with mental illness are far more likely to be the victims of violence (they are 5x more likely to die by homicide than the general population & 2x as likely to die from suicide) than the perpetrators of violence. Click to Tweet

Having a mental illness does not make a person more likely to commit gun violence. A much better indicator is access to firearms, a new study finds. Click to Tweet.

Good Guy With A Gun

Did you know that since May 2007, concealed handgun permit holders were responsible for at least 1,300 deaths not involving self defense, including 22 law enforcement officers? Guns are unsafe in any hands. Click to Tweet

A gun in the home doubles your risk of homicide, and triples your risk of suicide. Click to Tweet

Stand Your Ground laws have been linked to a 7 to 10 percent increase in homicides. Click to Tweet

43% of homes with guns and kids have at least one unlocked firearm. So much for “responsible” gun owners… Click to Tweet

TSA seized 4,239 guns from travelers in 2018 from carry-on bags at airport security — a 7% increase over 2017 & and a threefold rise since 2008. 86% of the guns taken from airline passengers WERE LOADED. Click to Tweet

Armed citizens can worsen the outcome of a mass shooting. During the 2011 shooting in Tucson, Arizona, an armed bystander misidentified the perpetrator and almost shot the wrong person. Click to Tweet

An FBI study of 160 active shooting incidents found that: 21 active shooters stopped by UNARMED civilians, 1 stopped by an ARMED civilian. Click to Tweet

The psychological strength required to act quickly and effectively in a mass shooting comes from monotonous training that most gun owners lack. (That’s why the U.S. Army’s basic marksmanship training is 3 weeks long!) Click to Tweet

Gun ownership is declining. Number of American households w/ guns has fallen 19 percentage points from 50% in 1977 to 31% in 2014. Guns are concentrated in the hands of fewer people & NRA is helping gun makers find new markets. Click to Tweet

The overwhelming majority of gun owners actually reject the NRA’s extremist agenda and believe that guns should be significantly harder to get. Click to Tweet

African Americans & Guns

Black women are 2X as likely to be fatally shot by an intimate partner than white women. Click to Tweet

African Americans between the ages of 15 and 29 are 18x more likely than their white peers to be the victim of a gun homicide. Click to Tweet

While African Americans accounted for 15% of the population of young people in this age range, they comprise 64 percent of gun homicide victims. Click to Tweet

Out of the young people being shot by police officers, 34% were African Americans among which at least 40 were unarmed. Click to Tweet

Community-Based Violence Reduction

Community-based efforts to reduce gun violence work. An initiative called Cure Violence is active in more than 50 cities all around the world, where it has led to 41% to 73% drops in shootings and killings, transforming whole neighborhoods. Click to Tweet

Directly investing in underserved communities on the federal, state, and local levels is absolutely essential to address the root causes of urban gun violence. Click to Tweet

Community-based violence reduction programs have reduced homicide rates by 30% to 60% and would likely show even more success if they became a government priority and received a steady stream of federal funding. Click to Tweet