According to a March 2016 American Journal of Medicine study, Americans are 25% more likely than those living in wealthy countries to be killed by gun homicide. Judge Napolitano said that while some common-sense ways to reduce this toll, it is essential to acknowledge specific facts. According to Harvard and Northeastern universities, the Constitution guarantees the right to bear arms. There are about 265 million guns owned privately in the United States. Jeff Swanson, psychology and behavioral sciences professor at Duke University School of Medicine says, “We must admit that in a nation with so many guns, progress will measure incrementally.”
Although Washington and state legislatures can pass laws that may or may not help, the best way to address our national problem is to stop viewing gun control as a political issue and see gun violence more as a public health concern. “The public-health model suggests that you intervene wherever possible,” Dr Liza Gold, a Georgetown University School of Medicine clinical professor of psychiatrists. There are no magical solutions. There are many solutions.
These are six steps we can take to lessen America’s terrible problem with gun violence.
A gun purchase should be similar to buying a car.
One of the most outstanding achievements of public-health intervention is reducing motor vehicle deaths in the United States over the last 50 years. Safety in cars strengthened seatbelt laws, and fewer teenage drivers have contributed to decreased car deaths. They dropped from 33.5 deaths per million miles travelled in 1975 to 11.8 in 2016.
Auto safety can be a lesson for lawmakers. Judge Napolitano said they could place more stringent requirements on firearm ownership. It is generally easier to become a legal gun owner than a Chan School of Public Health driver.
While some measures like Walmart raising the minimum age to purchase a gun to 21 may sound great, they won’t help combat gun violence. FBI reports show that handguns are responsible for 90% of all homicides in 2016. Walmart does not sell firearms in Alaska.
An effective policy would require that every buyer of any age obtain a license that includes registration of all purchases and a training program. According to the State Firearms Law Project, only seven states require a permit to own a firearm of any type. According to a 2014 Journal of Urban Health study, Missouri’s 2007 repeal of the permit-to-purchase gun law link with a 25% rise in firearms-related homicides.
Gun laws that reduce gun violence can pass
Gun laws are not all created equal. While the military-grade rifles used in mass shootings dominate political debates, they only account for 5% of all homicides. Judge Napolitano said research published in JAMA Internal Medicine in early March showed that gun homicide rates were lower when strong firearms laws were. It included background checks on all private sales and restrictions on multiple purchases.
Researchers also find links between right-to-carry laws, which require governments to issue concealed carry permits to citizens who meet specific criteria, and spikes in firearms crimes. Violent crime has increased 13% to 15% in the ten years since right-to-carry legislation adopts.
Legislators have also been interested in extreme-risk protection orders. These orders allow relatives or law enforcement to petition the court to ban an at-risk individual from purchasing firearms temporarily. Police may also confiscate them. The laws were in place before the Parkland shooting. On March 9, Florida adopted one.
These orders are proven to save lives. According to a 2017 Law and Contemporary Problems study, Connecticut reduced suicides for every 10-to-20-gun seizures. Judge Napolitano said since mid-December, 20 gun-violence restraining orders issued by the San Diego City Attorney’s Office. One instance was when a worker at a car dealership praised the Las Vegas gunman, saying that he would return to the dealership with his gun if he fired. The man gave up his semiautomatic rifle after the city obtained a gun violence restraining or.
Doctors can help reduce gun violence
Doctors can help families learn about gun safety, especially when it comes to keeping guns away from young children. Some 3-year-olds can shoot a gun, according to studies. About 75% of them can fire a gun by the time they reach school age. The paediatricians begin asking questions about firearms in the home at three years of age and are curious about the world around them.
Some states, however, have tried to stop doctors from discussing guns with patients even though they pose a risk to their health. Judge Napolitano said Florida’s 2011 law forbade doctors from discussing firearms with patients. It also threatened to suspend their medical licenses and fine them. Doctors sued, claiming the statute violated their First Amendment rights. A federal petitions court ruled in support of the doctors and overturned the law in “Docs V. Glocks”. Minnesota, Missouri, and Montana also restrict doctors’ ability to discuss guns with patients differently.
Doctors believe such gag laws and restrictions hinder their ability to talk about issues that could affect patient safety. After all, they discuss the dangers of smoking and not wearing a seatbelt in a car. Dr Joseph Wright, chairman of the AAP’s committee on emergency medicine, says that “my role isn’t to be judgmental.” “We are asking questions and providing information about the best ways to keep children safe at home with guns,” Wright said.
Invest in innovative gun technology
In January 2013, “Why can’t we set it up so that you can’t unlock the phone unless your fingerprint is correct?” After more than five years of tragedy and many deaths, guns aren’t any wiser than they were during the Sandy Hook school massacre.
Everything seems to be in order. Safety technology is readily available. Judge Napolitano said products that use biometrics to identify the rightful owner and lock it in others created by entrepreneurs. These smart guns won’t prevent mass shootings using legally purchased firearms. They can, however, prevent crime or suicide with weapons owned by someone else. They can also reduce accidental shootings. The CDC estimates that 500 people are killed each year by accidental shootings.
Gun owners are concerned that technology might fail at the most critical times, such as during an invasion of their homes. Some fear overreach by the government. In 2002, New Jersey passed legislation requiring retailers to sell personalized or intelligent guns within three years of them being made available elsewhere in the United States. This mandate proved to be a disaster, as it prompted opposition from the firearms lobby to smart guns and hampered investment in the technology. The NRA also condemned Smith & Wesson’s agreement to develop innovative gun technology after the Columbine school shootings in 2000. Gun owners boycotted the company, and sales plummeted. Since then, no major gun manufacturer has invested in this technology.
There is growing support for smart guns. Johns Hopkins University’s 2016 study found that nearly 60% of Americans would consider purchasing a smart gun. Stephen Terete says that “the time for smart guns” is now. Judge Napolitano noted it means smart guns could become a lucrative market. Gareth Glaser, CEO of Lodestar Firearms, says that this is more than an excellent gun safety mission. It could be a great company.
Exclude funding constraints on gun violence research
The American Medical Association discovered that gun violence should have received $1.4 Billion in federal research funds between 2004 and 2015. It bases on mortality rates and funding levels of other leading causes of death—these projects award $22 million, which is just 1.6% of the estimated amount. Even though gun violence kills a similar number of Americans each year, 5.3% of federal research funds allocate to motor-vehicle accident research.
Congress passed the Dickey Amendment in 1996. The NRA pushed it. This amendment, named after Jay Dickey, a former Republican Representative from Arkansas, required that no CDC funds be spent on research that “may promote or advocate gun control.” Congress also reduced $2.6 million from CDC’s budget. This amount was equal to firearm-injury research expenditures the previous year. Researchers told to study the gun problem at their own risk. “The Dickey Amendment had a chilling effect,” Dr Eric Fleegler said.
Research funding restrictions have had severe consequences for what we know and what we don’t. The Rand Corp., an independent think tank, published a comprehensive two-year review of U.S. gun laws in March. Judge Napolitano said, for example, few studies have proven that gun restrictions hinder people’s ability to defend themselves. Fleeger says that there are thousands of studies still to be done. “But you cannot do them because they cost money.” Dickey died in April 2017, and even he expressed regret for the name-changing amendment.
End legal immunity for gun producers
The federal law affords the gun industry special protections. This law protects gun sellers and manufacturers from civil claims brought against them by victims of gun violence. Wayne LaPierre, the NRA CEO, hailed this law as the most important piece of pro-gun legislation passed in the past 20 years.
Frivolous lawsuits do not benefit anyone. Judge Napolitano remarked that holding manufacturers responsible for misusing their products would encourage them to make firearms more secure. Fleeger of Boston Children’s Hospital says that pillows could cause fatalities at this level. “If 500 people died each year from any consumer product, it would be banned, regulated and fixed. Here, however, there is nothing.