We’re hardly two full months into 2018 and there have already been 18 school shootings—that’s roughly double the amount of the same time last year.
College News asks: when, if ever, will the horrific scourge of school shootings in America end?
Yesterday’s traumatic images from Parkland, Florida, are igniting once more the divisive debate of U.S. gun control.
Since 2013, there have been almost 300 school shootings in America—an average of about one a week, according to Everytown for Gun Safety, a gun control advocacy organisation.
While these figures may be shocking, the right to bear arms is enshrined in the American constitution.
For many Americans, tightening up on gun laws won’t change anything.
They’d ask: what would stricter gun laws do to stop mentally unwell people from committing heinous acts?
In fact, a recent study, published in the Harvard of Law & Public Policy, concluded nations with strict gun laws had higher murder rates than those who did not in general.
“For instance, Denmark has roughly half the gun ownership rate of Norway, but a 50 percent higher murder rate, while Russia has only one‐ninth Norway’s gun ownership rate but a murder rate 2500 percent higher.
“There is not insubstantial evidence that in the United States widespread gun availability has helped reduce murder and other violent crime rates,” the study said.
Still, this doesn’t hide the fact gun violence in the United States results in thousands of deaths and injuries annually; or that several of the deadliest shootings in modern U.S. history have taken place in schools.
In 2007, 32 victims were killed at Virginia Tech. The 2012 Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre left 26 dead.
Wednesday’s mass shooting at Majory Stoneman Douglas is the deadliest since Sandy Hook.
Michael Irwin, a parent whose son attended the school, told the Guardian newspaper: “All the regulation in the world wouldn’t have prevented necessarily what happened today. It’s something that’s tragic, but what regulation can you pass that takes away the guns already out there?”
John Crescitelli, a family doctor and parent whose 15-year-old child was caught up in the shooting, said: “These school shootings have to stop. This is crazy. My son’s football coach died. It’s horrible. It’s like Columbine across the street from my house.”
Sarah Tofte, director of research and implementation at Everytown, told CNBC: “We really do deserve to live in a place where children are free from gun violence in their homes, schools and communities.”
She added: “When you look at all the ways children are impacted by gun violence, you realize what a tremendous problem we have as a country.”
President Trump is a strong advocate of every American’s right to bear arms.
So where does this leave the nation? Will these school shootings ever stop?
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