Friday, October 2, 2015

A Blip about Gun Control

So, usually I am pretty quiet about my personal opinions on "hot" topics on Facebook*. However, for some reason I am feeling a bit... intense about the gun control debate that will come up even stronger now after the events of yesterday.

Many people claim that the United States violent crime rate is largely due to the easy access that U.S. citizens have to guns. They say that when you look at other countries, you do not see the violent crime rate and this is because of their strict gun laws. Sounds reasonable, right? Honestly, it kind of does. Until you start to look at more numbers and really understand things. Most people do not look at other information, they simply look at violent crime rates and gun laws and make this decision. They then decide we would be "safer" if we had much stricter gun laws, that this would make all of those violent crimes go away.

Let's make guns illegal? Let's make it so that only the President's guards can have guns? Let's make it so only officers can have guns? Will that make our country a better place? Let's say that guns are "done away" with. So no more mass killings, no more serial killers, no more shootings. Obviously guns are the only problem. Right?

How about we compare the number of serial killers that the United States has to the the rest of the world. The numbers, by decades according to the FGCU serial killer database, 1900: U.S. has 19 , Internationally 13. 1910: U.S. 34 Intl.16. 1920 34/29 1930 39/24 1940: 37/40 1950 50/35 1960: 168/65 1970: 512/145 1980: 680/192 1990:572/269 2000:318/229 As of a yearish ago 2010:73/53. The first decade, not a bad difference in numbers, unless you remember, this is 1 country versus the rest of the WORLD. How about the 70's? 512 in the United States alone versus 145 in the rest of the world. A bit scary. All total, the United States has had 2,625 serial killers. The next highest? England with 142.

Well, if we got rid of guns, you say, that would have not happened. Well, what if I told you that most serial killers did not use guns to commit their murders. I am not saying that few, or no serial killers killed their victims by shooting, I am saying that less than half, the highest percentage I have seen is 41% used a gun as a method of killing their victims. This is still a lot you say? It is, i agree. But that means that 49% of serial killers in the United States did NOT use a gun to kill their victims. Do you know what the next highest method of killing was? Strangulation. Are going to ban hands, ropes, and other objects that can be used to strangle someone next?

My point here is that while guns are often used in violent crimes, they are not the CAUSE of violent crimes, they are simply the tool used. I believe that the numbers of incidents in the United States shows that even if guns were banned, we would still have extreme violent crimes, and more issues than other countries. There is a deeper issue here, and until that we figure that out, we will continue to see this type of violent crime in our country.

*Note that this originally started as a Facebook post.