American Gun Violence on the Rise
By Space Coast Daily // November 20, 2020
While overall crime rates and violent crime rates have been low across the United States, homicides and shootings have been on the rise. Chicago, New York, Atlanta, D.C. Philadelphia, Houston, Charlotte and Minneapolis are just a few of the major cities that have seen a jump in homicides and shootings.
However, it is not only major cities being affected. Mid-size cities are also being affected and seeing an increase in gun violence.
Gun violence has been steadily increasing in America and 2020, in particular, has been exceptionally violent.
Cities across the United States have seen an influx in gun violence cases amid the global pandemic and police brutality protests. The victims of gun violence are generally adults, but children and teenagers are becoming accidental victims as well. These children and teens are often not the intended targets but can get caught up in the violence.
What’s Causing the Uptick in Gun Violence?
There are a few different factors causing American gun violence to continuously raise. One of the largest reasons for the uptick is that people are having increased access to high-powered weaponry.
There are three other factors at play which explain the uptick:
• Typical summertime spikes in shootings
• Nationwide social unrest.
The pandemic has highlighted the root causes of gun violence. Shootings are increasing as a direct result of the American upheaval over the current public health crisis that is having social and economic effects on people’s lives along with the racial justice movement that has been occurring.
Increases in gun violence and homicide has been nationwide. As of July 2020, homicides were up by 14% in Los Angeles, 30% in Philadelphia, 53% in New York City, 23% in Atlanta, and 53% in Chicago. The combination of these factors are creating a perfect storm and cities are having to deal with unprecedented violence.
The Effect on Children
Sadly, children have become victims to this violence. It does not matter if they are outside playing or inside their homes; they are still being harmed or killed by guns.
The rates of gun deaths and injuries for children and teens are shockingly high and exposure to these violent crimes can stunt lives and have lifelong impacts.
Firearms are the leading cause of death for children and teens. Compared to other countries, American children are 21 times more likely to be killed with a gun. Every weekend another child is being harmed from gun violence and this trend does not seem to be decreasing at any time.
People are outraged over these deaths of young people which is contributing to the cycle of violence as well.
In a study from the Violence Prevention Research Program at the University of California-Davis, it was shown that a significant increase in firearm violence in the United States was directly related to the coronavirus-related surge in firearm purchasing.
Between March and May 2020, over two million firearms were purchased. That is a 64.3% increase in the typical amount of firearms purchases during that time of year. This led to a 17% increase in gun violence-related injuries in May 2020.
If you are a gun owner it is extremely important to have an understanding of the gun laws in your state.
“Gun owners are expected to carry their firearms in a respectful and responsible manner and almost every state has different laws and regulations relating to owning firearms,” says attorney Brian Leifert of Leifert & Leifert.
“If you own a gun, make sure you have the proper license to carry. Even with the license, you are not allowed to intentionally display your gun in a threatening manner.”
Committing an act of gun violence is considered a serious crime. It is no surprise that with an increase in gun purchasing there has also been an increase in violent gun-related crimes.
If you are a gun owner or are considering purchasing a firearm, make sure you have the proper licensing and are prepared to accept the responsibility that comes with it.