U.S. Gun Crime Research

Most people should probably brush up on gun facts before they try to enter gun debates on Facebook since many people expose their ignorance and confusion on the topic - whether they are for or against gun control. I haven't seen any surveys yet, but my impression is that not even most gun owners have ever read the Second Amendment. Essentially it was written for "well regulated militias" to defend the people ... long before machine guns were invented.

As much as mainstream media adds to the emotional chaos of gun violence by misreporting the facts (as in the recent Dallas incident), it does provide charts, statistics and surveys. The headlines depict a nation falling apart, but FBI and Pew Research statistics show that violent crime has dropped dramatically since the 1980s. Only in the past decade have mass shootings become frequent stories in the news, yet the overall violent crime rate is still much lower than last century.

Mainstream media actually promotes gun violence by over-reporting it, leading to surges in more gun sales. Another point that rarely makes the headlines is most gun deaths in America are suicides or that Walmart, the nation's top gun retailer, makes it easy to buy guns, especially in states with very loose gun laws. Obviously, there are answers to preventing mass shooting tragedies if we study the geography of gun laws and gun violence. Hawaii has strict gun laws and low gun crime. Louisiana has loose gun laws and high gun crime. That's not always a direct correlation, but in general that's the pattern. Sparce populations tend to have low gun crime per capita.

Gun criminals tend to be painted as mysterious by media, as not much emphasis is put on why these crimes happen. But it doesn't take much thought to conclude that anyone who wants to shoot several people at once for no reason is deranged and should not have access to a deadly weapon. It's a proven fact that gun movies can sell guns, which gun makers and Hollywood learned together when the Clint Eastwood film Dirty Harry popularized the previously unpopular Smith & Wesson .44 Magnum handgun. With the success of the movie, suddenly .44 Magnum sales skyrocketed in 1971, even after the price doubled.

My guess is that gun criminals have several problems mixed together, which may include low self-esteem, lack of social status, abuse of pharma drugs, hard street drugs and alcohol and fascination with how guns are portrayed in pop culture. Whether a gunman in a film is treated as good or bad, there will always be a certain percentage of the population that are entertained by gunfire that fuels egotistical fantasies about getting back at the world. The same may be even more true for violent video games.

If you're a journalist, blogger or researcher who writes about gun crime, I've put together a research tool and a sample 650 word article. This "mini-ebook" is aimed more at professional writers to help speed up your search for quality articles when researching this topic. I will be creating many more of these digital products for 99 cents to help the writing community, since I know how frustrating and time-consuming it can be to try to find quality articles by credible sources in Google. It may be the greatest search engine, but it doesn't always serve the best links.

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