FACTS ABOUT GUN VIOLENCE
WHAT OTHER COUNTRIES DO
Countries with more gun violence than the US are Brazil, Venezuela, Mexico, South Africa, Colombia, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Russia, The Phillipines and Thailand.
Countries with less gun violence than the US are Singapore, Japan, New Zealand, and Great Britain.
In Sweden, fully automatic weapons are only issued under special circumstances, to elite-level marksmen active extensively in a shooting club, and with the approval of Försvarsmakten, the Swedish Armed Forces.
The Japanese have the world’s fewest firearm-related deaths: 11 in 2008. An individual may only own a shotgun for hunting, skeet and trap and then only after a lengthy licensing process. Handguns cannot be owned by individuals. A prospective shotgun owner must attend class, pass a written test, shooting range test, shooting test, safety exam, mental exam, medical test, and background check.
GUN LAWS AND CRIME GUNS
A Brady Campaign analysis finds that the 31 states with few or no gun laws export nine times the crime guns as the six states with the strongest gun laws. California was awarded 81 points in the Brady Campaign’s 100-point Scorecard because of the state’s universal background check system, retention of purchase records, limiting of handgun purchases to one a month, and assault clip ban.
RATE YOUR STATE
Check out your state’s ranking. A four-star state has the strongest laws to combat gun trafficking, prevent the sale of guns without background checks, and reduce risks to children. California is the only state that qualified in 2011. New Jersey, Massachusetts, New York, Connecticut and Hawaii are three-star states.
Here are some resources for talking to your children about the school shootings.
Peggy O’Mara founded Mothering.com in 1995 and was its editor-in chief until 2012. She was the editor and publisher of Mothering Magazine from 1980 to 2011. The author of Having a Baby Naturally; Natural Family Living; The Way Back Home; and A Quiet Place, Peggy has conducted workshops at Omega Institute, Esalen, La Leche League, and Bioneers. She is the mother of four.