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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 93178 Find in a Library
Title: Gun Control To Prevent Homicide and Suicide (From Huamn Side of Homicide, P 209-221, 1982, Bruce L Danto et al, eds. - See NCJ-93170)
Author(s): B L Danto
Date Published: 1982
Page Count: 13
Sponsoring Agency: Columbia University Press
New York, NY 10025
Sale Source: Columbia University Press
562 W. 113th Street
New York, NY 10025
United States of America
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Studies on the effects of gun control indicate that when gun ownership is banned or severely limited, homicides and suicides will be perpetrated by other means. Preventing irresponsible persons from purchasing guns and requiring firearms safety training prior to the purchase of a gun is the best approach.
Abstract: Although it is undeniable that firearms are the weapons most often used in suicides and homicides, it does not follow that gun possession causes these incidents nor that a ban on gun ownership will prevent homicides and suicides. In Israel, Canada, and Switzerland, homicide and suicide rates are relatively low despite sizeable ownership of firearms, and in Great Britain, where legal handguns ownership if rare, the incidence of homicide by bombing and poisoning is higher than in the United States. Further, passionate advocates of bans on handguns fail to appreciate that rifles are far more lethal. Legislation should control safety in the use of firearms, particularly handguns. It is reasonable to ask any potential handgun owner to submit to screening procedures when applying for a gun purchase. Quickly administering a psychological test could detect signs of impulsivity and aggressiveness as well as warning signs of homicidal or suicidal impulses. Applications from persons with known criminal or mental illness histories could be rejected. In addition, before purchase of firearms, applicants would be required to produce a training certificate from an approved program that teaches the safe and proper use of firearms. A refresher course might be required before each license renewal. Nineteen references are provided.
Index Term(s): Crime specific countermeasures; Gun Control; Homicide; Suicide
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