Gun violence does not discriminate. Guns have symbolic, cultural, and economic significance in the United States and various applications. Many Americans treasure hunting, sport shooting, gun collecting traditions, and the security and safety they may bring. Many communities rely on hunting as a significant economic engine. The gun industry employs hundreds of thousands of Americans, including instructors and shooting range operators, hunting equipment providers, makers, distributors, and dealers of weapons and ammunition.
Research Question Analysis
However, Following the school killings in Parkland, Florida, and other towns, gun violence has remained a very contentious subject. This literature review aims to determine the effectiveness of gun control policies and the impact of mental illness on gun violence. The following research questions were formulated.
- Are gun control laws effective?
- Which specific gun laws are effective?
- How is mental health access related to gun violence?
After thorough research, two articles were selected. This selection was due to a high rating in CRAAP details and being peer-reviewed. The articles are in-depth and effectively address the three guiding questions. In addition, they are recent publications and present the latest data on the research topic.
Research Evaluation & Review
Gius, M. (2018). The effects of state and federal gun control laws on school shootings. Applied economics letters, 25(5), 317-320.
Gun control measures include limitations on the weapons that may be manufactured and marketed, the size of ammunition magazines, and where and who can carry a handgun. According to Gius (2018), school shootings are the most publicized homicide in the United States and the most uncommon sort of murder. There were 17 firearm homicides committed at schools and colleges in 2014 (Gius, 2018). The current study seeks to ascertain the association between school shootings and state and federal gun restriction legislation.
Although the source is rated high in all CRAAP dimensions, it focuses primarily on school shootings and does not provide an overview of the national problem. The source is a direct answer to the question of gun control effectiveness. The source verifies this effectiveness using a Poisson two-way fixed effects model, and it was discovered that assault weapon prohibitions reduced the number of school shooting casualties by 54.4 percent (Gius, 2018). Other gun control measures had no statistically significant effect on school shootings. As a result, it is uncertain if gun control is the most appropriate strategy to minimize the number of school shooting casualties.
Smith, J., & Spiegler, J. (2017). Explaining gun deaths: Gun Control, mental illness, and policymaking in the American states. Policy Studies Journal.
Proponents of stricter gun control in the United States claim that restricting gun availability will save lives and reduce crime; opponents contend that it prevents law-abiding individuals from defending themselves against armed criminals. As the title suggests, Smith and Spiegler (2017) focus on the link between mental illness affects policymaking in the American states (Smith & Spiegler, 2017). Proponents argue that providing mental health services will reduce the likelihood of persons with mental illnesses becoming violent.
After going through these articles, I have realized that assault weapons bans are the most and only effective gun law, and mental health access prevents gun suicides. Both articles and additional research revealed that Gun control works in reducing gun violence. However, the authors could have explored mass shootings in general and specifically assessed mental health access effectiveness in itself. I want to focus future research on the mental health impact of gun violence.
Gun control will remain a controversial topic in US politics. Nevertheless, common trends indicate that gun control on assault weapons should be implemented. This is because gun control significantly reduces shootings, and mental health access must be provided alongside it.
Gius, M. (2018). The effects of state and federal gun control laws on school shootings. Applied Economics Letters.
Smith, J., & Spiegler, J. (2017). Explaining gun deaths: Gun control, mental illness, and policymaking in the American States. Policy Studies Journal, 48(1), 235–256. Web.