I’m sure by now your social media feed is oversaturated with opinions on gun laws in America--as it should be. Tragedies should birth opinions, and opinions should birth resolutions. The fact that there has been no resolution to ongoing gun violence in America (except thoughts and prayers) only fuels the flame.
After letting you into my life involving my own tragedies and dating fails, we’ve developed a type of online friendship. You’re from all around the world: Iceland, the UK, Sweden, India, Bangladesh, Iraq, Dubai, America, and we all have differing opinions--which in a way, is lovely. Whether you only read my dating blogs, or watch my IGTV videos on mute, you’re in a room or a coffee shop with headphones plugged in, and you’re reading this article. You’re ready to agree or disagree, and virtually shake hands after.
And after some deep thought in how I can make my opinionated essays as appealing to you as the dating blogs, I realize that I cannot. I can only write these as authentically as I can, using my voice, as I do when I tell you about my flaws and fuck ups. Whether it receives 20 readers or 100, the viewership number doesn’t matter.
The number that does matter? 40,000. That’s nearly how many people died from firearms in 2018 (only in the United States).
Statistics is king, but statistics related to gun ownership and gun violence is politically manipulated, so any kind of research online will always be different. Regardless, I did my best.
Obvious statistic No. 1: States with higher gun ownership have higher murder rates (I don’t need to tell you this, but I’m telling you this any way).
Obvious statistic No. 2: Own a gun? You’re at a higher risk of accidental death, homicide, and suicide. States with high rates of gun ownership have a higher suicide rate.
60% of gun related deaths in the US is suicide. I don’t care what anyone says, suicides are unnecessary deaths, and they still count.
Speaking of suicide: America’s suicide rate has increased by 25% from 1999 to 2015
¾ of gun deaths occur in only 15 countries.
Venezuela, El Salvador, and Guatemala (all in Latin America) are the top three countries of death by firearms: organized crime, and a corrupted criminal justice systems has everything to do with it.
1.7 million children in America live with unlocked and loaded guns. That’s literally 1.7 million kids with guns
89% of unintentional shooting deaths are at home, most when children are playing with a loaded gun.
Republicans are more than twice as likely as Democrats to own guns.
My favorite is when pro-gun activists blame violent video games on setting a poor example. But on-gong studies show that countries with lower homicide rates than the US also love violent video games. Who doesn’t love shooting up zombies at arcades, or playing the rifle game with fake guns? There’s no correlation between video games and gun murders.
The US also has the highest amount of privately owned firearms in the world.
I’m sure most of these were just reinforcements of facts you already know, and if you’re anti-gun control, you probably believe I have a liberal bias. Here’s the thing--we all have a bias based on our sociological make up. Did I do my research on conservative websites and Youtube channels? Yeah, I did. And it’s hard formulating an opinion when everyone is screaming their opinion. Should they be screaming their opinion? Totally, because people are dying and no one likes dead people caused by one whack job with a gun.
My favorite discussion about guns isn’t even pro-gun control. It’s with Joe Rogan and Ted Nugent, because 1) The only reason I would ever be on Youtube is to binge watch anything with Joe Rogan and Bill Burr, and 2) anyone, I don’t care what you believe in, has to be open to learn about the opposing view before outwardly and dramatically disagreeing with it.
So I did attempt to turn off my liberal bias brain off for a second to watch Ted Nugent chirp about how ignorant anti-gun America was, which was difficult because he’s pretty passionate about his hate towards liberals. But whatever, I still had a listen. Ted Nugent goes off to say “I have had universal access to fire power my whole life”, and called folks without guns in compromising situations (mass shootings) unarmed helplessness. That’s where, in my mind, I’m like, oh fuck. It really is unarmed helplessness. But it’s sort of silly logic because if guns were banned, there wouldn’t even be compromising situations where Americans would have to defend themselves. I mean what’s so wrong about using Japan as an example, where if you want to own a gun, you must pass an exam, shooting range test, mental health, drug test, and criminal record test. America can’t even do that. Or when Australia passed the buyback program in the late 90’s, which resulted in a massive decline in homicide for the last 25 years.
Like okay fine, America, keep your guns, but at least take some measures.
And sometimes you have to take a step back and wonder if there’s any point in arguing with stubborn America, where one end is trigger friendly over gun ownership and the other end is trigger friendly over MAGA hats. What if the first step to gun control is taking greater lengths to teach kids not just about how great America is, but the immoral and flawed measures our nation took to get to where we are now?
You can do an easy hashtag search on Instagram (#ndamendment, #nra #gunsdaily, #pistols) and find cute women holding rifles/pistols, hot women in bathing suits holding rifles, or the most questionable: hot women in bathing suits with confederate flags plastered on their tits, and holding rifles. Obviously guys with guns are mixed in too, but let’s not forget, Instagram is a marketing device.
The world has changed dramatically and we shouldn’t rely on the Bill of Rights, a document handwritten by a feather.
Unpopular opinion: Guns should be replaced with super soakers and archery equipment.