From an editorial Friday by Bloomberg View:
Almost two decades ago, Franklin Zimring, a longtime researcher at the University of California, Berkeley, and a colleague, Gordon Hawkins, showed that the U.S. doesn’t have an especially high crime rate relative to other developed nations. But the U.S. is far more violent. Every conflict, from the mundane to the serious – not just domestic disputes and robberies, but traffic altercations and bar fights – is more deadly in the U.S. because of the presence of guns.
Crime control is necessary to contain violence. But so is an effort to deal honestly with guns. That begins with a realization that dangerous people – criminals, of course, but also the mentally unstable – should be prevented from possessing firearms, and that laws will have to be changed to advance that goal. That realization exists already, which is why Americans, including gun owners, overwhelmingly support comprehensive background checks for gun purchases.
In the 1990s, Americans proved they were willing to confront a crime wave. Now they must find the will to deal with the gun wave. The brief lives of Virginia TV journalists Alison Parker and Adam Ward are two more reasons not to give up.