Society

Study Finds Guns Lead to Gun Violence, Video Games Don't

| by Dabney Bailey
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A new study by Texas on the Potomac has concluded that gun access and poor mental health leads to violence, but video games and other violent forms of media have no impact on violence.

The group took a look at homicide rates in America compared to other countries, primarily pointing to the fact that America has nearly four times as many homicides as countries like Germany, Canada and Australia.

“Guns per capita had the strongest correlation with homicide rates," according to the study. "Among the six countries, gun ownership rates had a nearly perfect correlation with homicide rates.”

The group does acknowledge that correlation does not necessitate causation, but it is hard to overlook such powerful statistics.

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Mental health issues might also have something to do with the violence, but the data suggests that mental health is not nearly as important as gun access. France and German outspend the United States on mental health issues and they also enjoy significantly lower homicide rates. The United Kingdom, Canada and Australia spend approximately the same amount of money as the United States, but the United States has significantly higher homicide rates than these other countries.

Video games and violent movies, however, have been vindicated by the statistics. Violent movies by Quentin Tarantino actually perform better in countries with very low rates of violence. Violent video games have a negative or zero correlation with violence.

This study gives ammunition to liberals and other gun control advocates. Gun control crowds tend to point at guns as the biggest reason for violence in America, while gun rights advocates often shift the blame to violent media and mental health issues. The pro-gun crowd might have a valid argument when it comes to mental health, but this study provides contrary evidence about video games leading to gun violence.

The data is subject to interpretation, but ultimately the study does not make guns look good. It is difficult to argue with such a powerful statistical relationship between gun access and violence.

Do you agree with the researchers' interpretation of the data?

Source: My San Antonio