|Type of paper:||Essay|
|Categories:||Police America Gun control Gun violence|
Gun violence is one of the public health issues that lead to the deaths and injuries of tens of thousands of people in the United States of America every year. For instance, in the year 2013, nonfatal injuries that were caused by gun violence were 73,505, this was calculated as 23.2 nonfatal injuries per 100,000 people (Esposito & Finley, 2014). In the same year, up to 33,636 documented deaths caused by gun violence were also reported. Some of these deaths were homicides; some were suicides, while others were mere accidents and firearm discharge due to the negligence of the user. Only a few cases; about 281 recorded cases of deaths due to undetermined intents were reported. That means most of the cases of gun violence could be investigated and either reduced or stopped. One of the issues that have been widely debated as ways of addressing the issue of gun violence in the United States of America is the control and ownership of firearms (Esposito & Finley, 2014). One of the reasons the issue of gun violence has become more widespread and hard to control is that congress has denied CDC the rights to conduct research and give reports on the major causes of gun violence.
In as much as the issue of gun violence is a national issue in the United States of America, some specific areas are most affected. For instance, the poor urban areas in the country are mostly associated with gun violence, illegal ownership of firearms and wrongful use of such weapons that result in deaths and injuries (Karimu, 2015). More specifically, the issue of gun violence in the US is reported among young adult males or male juveniles from the poor urban areas. Issues of mass shooting have also been reported in many parts of the country over the last two decades. The cases of mass shooting are usually associated with mental conditions as it is not common to find cases where people in healthy mental state shoot others haphazardly (Esposito & Finley, 2014). Cases of mass shooting have been reported extensively in the media, especially between the year 2007 and the year 2013. During the 1980s, the cases of mass shooting were much higher than the years between 1994 and 2007 (Karimu, 2015).
Apart from rifle and handgun, one thousand nine hundred and thirty-nine murders were also reported with an unspecified type of firearm. In the year 2015, 13,286 people were killed using firearms and these excluded suicide. From 1968 to 2011, approximately 1.4 million people died as a result of firearms in the US (Karimu, 2015). As compared to other twenty-two nations who have a high income, the US has a higher rate of murder cases that occur as a result of the use of firearms. In fact, the number is twenty-five times higher than other nations. The percentage of gun deaths in the US is eighty-two percent (Rubens & Shehadeh, 2014). Ninety percent are women; ninety-one percent are children who are under the age of fourteen and ninety-two percent are young people who are between the ages of fifteen and twenty-four.
Some of the stakeholders who can help address the issue of gun violence in the country include the legislators at the local, state and federal levels. Such stakeholders can address the issue through various methods (Rubens & Shehadeh, 2014). One of the methods the stakeholders can use to address the issue is through restricting firearm purchases by people below the age of 35 and other populations considered as "at-risk" including juveniles, drug abusers and people from the "at-risk" places such as the poor urban areas (APHA, 2018). Another method is the establishment of programs that control gun buyback. It is also important that the waiting periods during the purchase of firearms be set so that the people who seek to make the purchase are properly vetted. Other methods include policing strategies and law enforcement, which require amendment of the constitution to include policies that regulate firearms access and use. This will also empower the law enforcers to act accordingly in regulating the use of firearms as well as apply stiffer sentencing for people who violate the rules and regulations that guide the way they should use such weapons (APHA, 2018). Of all the options available for addressing the issue of gun violence, treating the issue as a public health issue is the best. If the CDC is allowed to conduct their research, which seeks to address the issue of gun control, they can come up with a report that can help understand the major causes and possible solutions to the issue. The expansion of the CDC's NVDRS database would cost up to USD 12 million to include data from the fifty states on gun violence (Healthline Media, 2018). Some of the possible solutions that the CDC can come up with include community outreach programs and other programs that offer public education to children and parents from the poor urban communities as well as other parts of the country (APHA, 2018).
In summary, gun violence has been prevalent in the US. For instance, in the year 2012, the total number of firearms-related homicides in the US reached eight thousand eighty hundred and fifty-five. Out of this number six thousand three hundred and seventy-one are attributed to handguns. In that same year, sixty-four percent of suicides occurred as a result of gun-related in the US. However, in 2010, the number of suicides as per gun-related death was high as compared to 2012. The number in 2010 was 19,393, and the numbers for firearm-related homicides were 11,078. In the same year, three hundred and fifty-eight murders were reported that involved rifle while six thousand and nine murders were reported hat involves a handgun. The most effective solution to this is allowing the CDC to conduct relevant research on the issue and provide a report, that is because gun violence should be treated a public health issue in the country.
APHA. (2018). Gun Violence. Retrieved from https://www.apha.org/topics-and-issues/gun-violence
Esposito, L., & Finley, L. (2014). Beyond Gun Control: Examining Neoliberalism, Pro-gun Politics and Gun Violence in the United States. Theory in Action, 7(2), 74-103. doi: 10.3798/tia.1937-0237.14011
Healthline Media. (2018). Gun Violence: Why the CDC Doesn't Study It. Retrieved from https://www.healthline.com/health-news/why-cdc-isnt-studying-gun-violence#1
Karimu, O. (2015). Gun Violence in United States of America Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses. Journal of Challenges, 2(1), 1-13. doi: 10.18488/journal.85/2015.2.1/188.8.131.52
Rubens, M., & Shehadeh, N. (2014). Gun Violence in United States: In Search for a Solution. Frontiers in Public Health, 2. doi: 10.3389/fpubh.2014.00017
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