PROBLEM

The United States of America has a gun violence problem. Consider:

  • Every year, 30,000 Americans die from gun violence.
  • Americans are 20 times more likely to be murdered with a gun than people in other developed countries.
  • Women in our country are 11 times more likely to be killed by a gun than women in other high-income countries.
  • From 2001 through 2012, 6,410 women were murdered in the United States by an intimate partner using a gun – more than the total number of U.S. troops killed inaction during the entirety of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars combined.
  • Every day in our country, eight children and teens under the age of 20 are killed by guns.
  • American children are 11 times more likely to die by guns than children in other high-income countries.

Gun violence is a complex problem – but one reason we have such a high rate of deaths and injuries from gun violence is because we have bad laws:

  • Federal law and many states don’t require background checks on all gun purchases, making it easy for dangerous people like convicted felons, the dangerously mentally ill, and domestic abusers to get guns – no questions asked.
  • We still don’t have strong federal laws that make gun trafficking a crime.
  • Under federal law, some convicted stalkers can still pass a background check and legally get a gun.
  • Many states don’t do enough to report records of dangerous people to our federal background check system – and a background check system is only as good as the data it contains.
  • Our laws haven’t been updated to include dating violence under the crimes that make getting and owning a gun illegal.
  • People on the terrorist watch list can pass a background check and get a gun.
  • Licensed firearms dealers aren’t required to do inventory checks and to run background checks on their employees.

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