US Gun Policies: Facts You Should Know (2012)

TITLE: US Gun Policies: Facts You Should Know (2012)
SOURCE: Morss Global Finance
AUTHOR: Elliott R. Morss, Ph.D.

NOTES: (1) The US ranks 1st against 177 other countries in the number of civilian guns owned – 270 million. (2) Of the countries that have more shootings than the US, most are from Central and South America where criminal elements developed to provide illegal drugs to the US. (3) In Japan, most kinds of guns are illegal…in 2008, there were 11 shooting homicides. Similarly, in 2009, only 18 people were murdered with a firearm in the UK. (4) In high income countries, guns are used primarily for suicides, not homicides. (5) Unintentional gun deaths are much higher where citizens own more guns.

A Market Driven Solution to Counter the Proliferation of Gun Violence (2012)

TITLE: A Market Driven Solution to Counter the Proliferation of Gun Violence (2012)
SOURCE: Good Men Project
AUTHOR(s): Mark Greene

NOTES: Outlines rationale for requiring liability insurance for gun owners. Similar to auto insurance, rate would vary based on type of gun, age of owner, etc. Shifts burden of “regulation” & background checks to insurance industry, which is very good at risk analysis, & more efficient than government.


The gun owner next door: What you don’t know about the weapons in your neighborhood (2012)

TITLE: The gun owner next door: What you don’t know about the weapons in your neighborhood (2012)
AUTHOR(S): Dwight R. Worley

NOTES: Interactive maps are also available via

How to reduce the toll from US gun violence (2012)

TITLE: How to reduce the toll from US gun violence (2012)
SOURCE: New Scientist
AUTHOR(S): Peter Aldhous

NOTES: in ‘10, there were 11,078 homicides & 19,392 suicides committed using firearms in the US.

Guns in homes pose greater risk to families than to intruders (2012)

TITLE: Guns in homes pose greater risk to families than to intruders, data show (2012)
SOURCE: Milwaukee Wisconsin Journal Sentinel
AUTHOR(s): James Rowen

NOTES: for every time a gun in or around the home was used in self-defense, or in a legally justified shooting, there were four unintentional shootings, seven criminal assaults or homicides, & 11 attempted or completed suicides. That’s one self-defense shooting for 22 accidental, suicidal or criminal shootings — hardly support for the notion that having a gun handy makes people safer. Other studies show that women & children are disproportionately the victims of such gunshots, & that when children commit suicide, guns in their home or at their friends or relatives’ homes are used.


American Gun Deaths to Exceed Traffic Fatalities by 2015 (2012)

TITLE: American Gun Deaths to Exceed Traffic Fatalities by 2015 (2012)
SOURCE: Bloomberg
AUTHORS: Chris Christoff & Ilan Kolet

NOTES: (1) Shooting deaths in 2015 will probably rise to almost 33,000, and those related to autos will decline to about 32,000, based on the 10-year average trend, (2) Every day, one of those killed by firearms is 14 or younger, (3) more than 200 people go to U.S. emergency rooms every day with gunshot wounds.

So you think you know the Second Amendment? (2012)

TITLE: So you think you know the Second Amendment (2012)
SOURCE: The New Yorker
AUTHOR: Jeffrey Toobin


(1) The Second Amendment is not only a matter of law, but a matter of politics. Conservatives put originalism aside to alter a long-held legal interpretation of the 2nd Amendment. (2) The text of the amendment is divided into two clauses and is, as a whole, ungrammatical. (3) Courts have found that the 1st part, the “militia clause,” trumps the 2nd part, the “bear arms” clause. As a result, the 2nd Amendment conferred on state militias a right to bear arms; it did not give individuals a right to own or carry a weapon. This changed after a post-coup d’état-NRA came into the picture in 1977.  A novel interpretation of the 2nd Amendment was then sought, one that gave individuals, not just militias, the right to bear arms. An uphill battle was fought and, eventually, won, but not without brute political force.  It wasn’t until the 2008 case of District of Columbia v. Heller that the Supreme Court fully embraced the individual-rights view of the Second Amendment.

Gun Control is a Pro Life Issue (2012)

TITLE: Gun Control is a Pro Life Issue (2012)
SOURCE: The National Catholic Review
AUTHOR: James Martin, SJ

NOTES: Editorial arguing that gun violence is a pro-life issue. Religious, moral argument “about the sanctity of all human life, no matter who the person is, no matter at what stage of life the person is passing through, and no matter whether or not we think that the person is “deserving” of life.”


Jesus, An Unwanted Christmas Present (2012)

TITLE: Jesus, An Unwanted Christmas Present (2012)
AUTHOR(s): Roger Wolsey

NOTES: For Christians, pointing out biblical grounds to NOT own guns: “live by the sword, die by the sword”; definition of Faith; turn the other cheek; commitment to suffer as Christ Himself suffered, etc. Despite massive persecution, Christ & early Christians/church remained steadfastly non-violent.


The Freedom of an Armed Society (2012)

TITLE: The Freedom of an Armed Society (2012)
SOURCE: New York Times
AUTHOR: Firmin Debrabander

NOTES: Uses logic to rebut NRA argument that ‘an armed society is a polite society.’ Some personal anecdotes, post-Newtown. Also rebuts idea that armed populace protects against despotic government.


No, Really, Regulate the Bullets (2012)

TITLE: No, Really, Regulate the Bullets (2012)
SOURCE: The Atlantic
AUTHOR(S): Philip Bump

NOTES: Highlights number of guns already in circulation, plus growing ability to “3-D print” manufacture guns, and 2nd amendment protection of right to bear arms. Argues that regulating bullets is a logical way to reduce gun violence: limiting bullet supply doesn’t infringe the Constitutional right, and avoids problem of securing or reducing number of guns in circulation.


10 Arguments Gun Advocates Make & Why They’re Wrong (2012)

TITLE: Ten Arguments Gun Advocates Make, and Why They’re Wrong (2012)
SOURCE: The American Prospect
AUTHOR(S): Paul Waldman

NOTES: No sources or links, but reasonable, thoughtful rebuttals to the most common pro-gun arguments.


The gun control that works: no guns (2012)

TITLE: The gun control that works: no guns (2012)
SOURCE: The Economist

NOTES: Having few guns does mean that few people get shot. In 2008-2009, there were 39 fatal injuries from crimes involving firearms in England and Wales, with a population about one sixth the size of America’s. In America, there were 12,000 gun-related homicides in 2008.

Chart: The U.S. has far more gun-related killings than any other developed country (2012)

TITLE: Chart: The U.S. has far more gun-related killings than any other developed country (2012)
SOURCE: Washington Post
AUTHOR: Max Fisher