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          Gun Safety

Gun Violence

The most effective and difficult longer-term action is to address the social conditions breeding crime.


  •  Over half of the total annual US gun-deaths per year (42,000) are suicide, the rest homicide --  horrific mass shootings are less than 2% of the total.

  •  Firearms have just become the leading cause of death for children.

  • “Over the last two decades, more school-aged children have died from guns than on-duty police officers and active-duty military combined” (Biden).

The pattern is distressingly familiar.  After yet another mass shooting, Democrats call for gun-safety measures. Republicans signal willingness to do something extremely modest or denounce the idea of acting at al.  Greg Sargent, WashPost.

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DEMS do not think tens of thousands of gun-deaths per year are an acceptable part of a free society. 


DEMS and a majority of all Americans including Republicans are  pro-gun-responsibility, NOT anti-guns.  



Only Democrats will pass commonsense gun-safety laws, supported by a majority of Americans (e.g., no assault rifle purchases until 21, close gun show loopholes, federally funded research), now blocked by congressional Republicans,* that would measurably reduce shootings. 


*On June 27, President Biden signed the bipartisan Safer Communities Act, the most "significant" gun legislation in three decades.  But only 15 of 50 Republican senators voted for its super-minimal gun-safety enhancements that the 15 watered down, testimony to their party's widespread opposition to comprehensive gun-safety measures.



Dems want to make it harder for potential mass-murderers, suicide-prone people, the domestic-violence prone, etc., for example, more red-flag laws,*  gun violence research, public campaign funding reform that stops  the NRA from buying politicians,  community policemen, address social conditions generating gun violence.

*A judge temporary orders firearms removed from those appearing to be a risk to themselves or others.

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All to the good if GOP-advocated policies* deter shooters and save lives, but their measures (e.g., hardening schools, tough sentencing, flooding the streets with cops, good guys with guns) save the barest few.  

*A police officer in school would cost approximately $3.2B/yr.  Schools with armed School Resource Officers (SRO's) had 2.83 times more attacks than schools without, suggesting they are incentive for many shooters who plan to die during their attack (research letter in JAMA, the Journal of the Am. Med. Association). Of nearly 200 identified incidents of school gunfire until 2018, only once has a resource officer gunned down an active shooter and only in a handful of times thwarted or helped thwart injury ( 2018 Washington Post analysis ).   The number of intruders stopped by a gun in the home is dwarfed by the number of in-home unintentional shootings by mistake, the astronomical increase in gun suicides, women killed by their intimate partners, intruders not stopped, and stolen guns. Stand-your-ground laws caused an 11% increase in gun violence. Uvalde's school district, before its tragic shooting incident, received $69,000 from a "state grant to enhance physical security" in January.  That investment — and the presence of numerous armed officers — that did not prevent 22 deaths (Popular Information).   While TX has been loosening gun laws, CA has been tightening them -- in 2020, CA had 40% fewer gun deaths per 100,000 population than TX.   Gun sales have exploded -- 11 million sold in 2020, a 300% increase. (Almost 400 million are in the US). Funny, that didn’t make us all safer (James Garcia, AZMirror).

Republicans blame Biden, conveniently not addressing:

  • Republican states have the nation’s highest rates of murder, violent crime, property crime and drug overdose deaths (The Red State Murder Problem, Third Way, a think tank).

  • The current surge in gun-deaths began the last year of the Trump Administration.

  • The false "threat" of impossibly taking away the 393M privately owned guns in the US  is contrived fear-mongering that, however, effectively sells more guns -- a record 21 million in 2020


Today’s unfettered proliferation of guns in our communities is a manifestation of the belief — the , really — by many in America’s still predominantly white, male power base that our God-given “greatness” is under attack by pretty much anyone who isn’t straight, white and (radical) Christian (James Garcia, 5/26/2022 ).


44% of Republicans believe mass shootings are what we have to accept as part of a free society.

BUT say it's more important to curb gun violence than protect gun rights.

The Republican Thoughts-And-Prayers Magazine


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It's urgent to slow down the epidemic of massacres and the many times more gun-deaths.  Majorities of Dems and Republicans agree on multiple  gun safety measures (e.g., mental health, red-flag laws, universal background checks).  The NRA still supports gun safety basics.  Senate Republicans enabled passage of the first major gun safety legislation in decades, an exception to Republican congressional and state legislator blockage.  Why can't both parties agree on more measures? 

  • Responsible gun owners really need to be part of the solution. 


  • Pass the passable. In Congress, in state legislatures. 


  • Marginally Effective Steps.  School security (e.g., locks, SRO's, single entries) has prevented the very fewest mass shootings despite a multibillion-dollar school security industry.  But any measure counts if it prevents an injury. 


  • Effective Other Measures - Early Alerts, Social and Police Reform - Mental Health.  Have counselors, teachers, students, parents, and internet users spot potential gun violence -- mass shooters overwhelmingly fit a profile* before they act.  Then track and mentor those found.


*In 133 school shootings just 16 of the shooters were aged 22 years or older. Many were current students (70%) or former students (15%) of the school, most male (98%) and White (76%). (JAMA).

  • Administration Actions - Executive Orders, Dept of Justice Rules. FBI Investigations.


  • Vote for Dems in Nov.  The only party that supports common-sense gun safety measures that data show collectively can meaningfully reduce gun violence.


  • Publicize the trauma.  Of the wounded, of haunted students, relatives, friends.  A 4th grade Uvalde survivor said:  "All my friends are dead.”  The only clues to the identities of two children, decapitated, whose bodies had been pulverized by the bullets, were the blood-spattered cartoon clothes. 

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SEN. SINEMA was on the bipartisan Senate group looking for "something" at least ten Republican senators would support and did.  NRA Rating 17%.   SEN. KELLY - “It’s fucking nuts to do nothing about this" re the Texas school massacre.  NRA Rating F.   REP.  SCHWEIKERT opposes " extreme restrictions" on law-abiding citizens and 2nd Amendment rights, for example, criminalizing  "low-risk" private transfer of firearms.*  NRA rating 92%.

*Some surveys put the number of guns acquired  from private individuals and many online dealers  without background checks upward of 22%.

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