Despite what many would think, less guns does not equal less deaths.
At least, according to a new study released by Harvard.
The university recently published a study that looked at the relationship between gun ownership, gun laws, violent crimes and suicide rates across the world and concluded that less guns does not equal less deaths and more guns does not equal more deaths.
The study, conducted by Don B. Kates, an American criminologist and lawyer, and Gary Mauser, Canadian criminologist and professor, also found that while the United States has a higher gun ownership than other countries and also has high murder rates, it is not an accurate depiction of what is going on in the rest of the world.
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In fact, this is quite the opposite with other countries.
The study compares other developed countries with high gun ownership rates, including Norway, Finland, Germany, France and Denmark. These countries all have significantly lower murder rates than the U.S.
“In other words,” states Guns.com, “the high murder rate of the U,S. is the exception, not the rule, when comparing homicide rates to gun ownership rates.”
In a comparison between Russia and the U.S. shows that while Russia has a very low gun ownership in the 1990s, murder rates in that country were almost triple of those in the U.S.
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As for previous studies that brought up evidence of high gun ownership resulting in high murder rates, Kates and Mauser say that such evidence was acquired through incorrect or misleading information.
For example, one study that looked at England’s strict gun control in the 1990s and low murder rates failed to see that the country already had low murder rates prior to the strict gun control, according to Guns.com.
The study remains that while there is a correlation between higher gun control and crime rates, there are other factors to be considered. Violent crimes still occur, even with lower gun ownership as other weapons are used in the killings as substitutions.
This study is not the first to refute claims of stricter gun control leads to less violent crimes. The U.S. Center for Disease Control and the U.S. National Academy of Sciences also released studies in 2003 and 2004 respectively, with similar conclusions.
Sources: Guns.com, Harvard Law