Back to school American style…

September is the time of year when most parents breathe a sigh of relief when the kids go back to school. That is unless you are an American parent in which case you have school shootings to worry about. This new ad from Sandy Hook Promise gives a hard-hitting perspective on the issue.

YouTube video

The stats are a bit crazy, there have been at least 288 school shootings in the United States since January 1, 2009. They now average about one a week. The US has had 57 times as many school shootings as the other major industrialized nations combined.

From Everytown Research:

When it comes to how American children are exposed to gun violence, gunfire at schools is just the tip of the iceberg–every year, nearly 2,900 children and teens are shot and killed and nearly 15,600 more are shot and injured. An estimated 3 million American children are exposed to shootings per year. Witnessing shootings — whether in their schools, their communities or their homes– can have a devastating impact. Children exposed to violence, crime, and abuse are more likely to abuse drugs and alcohol; suffer from depression, anxiety, and posttraumatic stress disorder; fail or have difficulties in school; and engage in criminal activity.

On the general issue of guns in America the stats are terrifying, from Wikipedia:

“Americans made up 4 percent of the world’s population but owned about 46 percent of the entire global stock of 857 million civilian firearms.”[5] U.S civilians own 393 million guns. That is 3 times as many guns as the armed forces of the Russian Federation (30.3 million), China (27.5 million), North Korea (8.4 million), Ukraine (6.6 million), United States (4.5 million), India (3.9 million), Vietnam (3.8 million), Iran (3.3 million), South Korea (2.7 million), Pakistan (2.3 million), and all the other countries (39.7 million) combined.[6] American civilians own more guns “than those held by civilians in the other top 25 countries combined.”[7]

“American civilians own nearly 100 times as many firearms as the U.S. military and nearly 400 times as many as law enforcement.”[8] Americans bought more than 2 million guns in May 2018, alone.[8] That is more than twice as many guns, as possessed by every law enforcement agency in the United States put together.[8] In April and May 2018, U.S. civilians bought 4.7 million guns, which is more than all the firearms stockpiled by the United States military.[8] In 2017, Americans bought 25.2 million guns, which is 2.5 million more guns than possessed by every law enforcement agency in the world put together.[8] Between 2012 and 2017, U.S. civilians bought 135 million guns, 2 million more guns than the combined stockpile of all the world’s armed forces.[8]

Where do you begin to solve an issue so huge?

Photo by NeONBRAND is licensed under CC0

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