A Solution to Gun Violence That Doesn’t Involve Gun Bans

Pro Publica: “A 2004 Justice Department-funded evaluation found no clear evidence that the decade-long [assault weapons] ban saved any lives. The guns categorized as ‘assault weapons’ had only been used in about 2 percent of gun crimes before the ban.”

Dan Gross, president of the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, offers a different view: “When you look at this issue in terms of the greatest opportunity to keep guns out of the hands of dangerous people and prevent gun violence, background checks are a bigger opportunity to do that.”

“While assault weapons do appear to be used more frequently in mass shootings, like the ones in Newtown and Aurora, Colorado, such shootings are themselves rare events that are only responsible for a tiny fraction of gun homicides each year. The category of guns that are used in the majority of gun murders are handguns.”

“Despite this data — and perhaps because many Americans do not have an accurate understanding of gun violence statistics — an assault weapons ban has continued to have broad public and political support.”

“Meanwhile, as gun control groups have moved their focus away from gun bans, Americans are buying fewer assault weapons than they did when a ban seemed imminent.”

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