Country Wide Trends At A Glance
A useful way to research the effectiveness of strict gun control in regards to violent crime, is to view international homicide statistics in correlation with a country's gun laws. Do countries with stringent gun control have lower crime rates than those with loose gun laws? A study such as this will help elaborate America's position. Are we doing enough to quell gun-related crimes and deaths in the United States?
The answers for such questions do not have a direct A=B equation. There are numerous cultural and societal implications that must be weighed for a comprehensive conclusion to be reached. For example, the United States has a high gun murder rate, whereas a country like England with strict gun controls has almost no murders via firearms.
This small sampling would prove that gun control is effective in reducing murder rates, however, prior to any gun control laws, England's homicide rate was lower than the United State's. England's culture is thus non-violent when compared to America's. The problem with studying international crime statistics lies within the innate differences between cultures.
Sweden equips a majority of male citizens with a semi-automatic rifle, (as a necessary means to protect the country) yet has one of the lowest crime rates in the world. In order to create a reasonable study to determine the effectiveness of gun laws one must generalize and accept cultural differences. For clarity's sake, we will compare America's violent crime percentages to other developed countries with varying stances on gun control laws.
The United State's murder rates and violent crime statistics through gun use are the highest in the world for advanced nations.
The United States when compared to other developed nations with more stringent gun laws. The following numbers are based on firearm homicide per 100,000 people.
United States-39% of households possess firearms and there is a 3.72 firearm homicide rate.
Italy-16% of households contain guns and there is a 1.66 firearm homicide rate.
Canada-30% of households contain guns and there is a .76 firearm homicide rate.
Australia-20% of households contain guns and there is a .44 firearm homicide rate.
England/Wales-5% of households contain guns and there is a .11 firearm homicide rate.
Switzerland-28% of households contain guns and there is a ..58 firearm homicide rate.
Germany-8% of households contain guns and there is a .22 firearm homicide rate.
France-23% of households contain guns and there is a .44 homicide rate.
Norway-32% of households contain guns and there is a .23 homicide rate.
The list can be expanded but it's redundant. The common theme is that America has more guns and more murders via guns than any other developed country in the world. Some countries possess similar percentages of possession but the homicide rate in the US is staggering. This mainly can be attributed to cultural differences. For example, America has more urban environments which seemingly possess an infatuation with guns and violence.
Statistics show more of a correlation between violent crime and the stability of a nation's government. When compared to impoverished or unstable countries, America's gun statistics look rather meager.
United States-3.72 firearm homicide rate
There may be a direct proportion found in gun availability and murders but there other key contributors to the equation. The above countries have similar gun laws to the US if not stricter, yet there violent crime numbers in regards to guns are much higher. The contrast is found in a multitude of variables. Government unrest, poverty, societal stress between rich and poor, and drug trade are all determinants to explain why violence happens.
NEXT: Guide to Origins of Illegal Firearms