Tuesday, May 27, 2014
Facts on firearm deaths
The map above charts firearm deaths for the 50 states plus the District of Columbia. Note that these figures include accidental shootings, suicides, even acts of self-defense, as well as crimes.
From urbanologist Richard Florida's piece:
Some might think gun violence would be higher in states with higher levels of unemployment and higher levels of inequality. But, again, we found no evidence of any such association with either of these variables.
So what are the factors that are associated with firearm deaths at the state level?
Poverty is one. The correlation between death by gun and poverty at the state level is .59.
An economy dominated by working class jobs is another. Having a high percentage of working class jobs is closely associated with firearm deaths (.55).
And, not surprisingly, firearm-related deaths are positively correlated with the rates of high school students that carry weapons on school property (.54).
Firearm deaths are significantly lower in states with stricter gun control legislation. Though the sample sizes are small, we find substantial negative correlations between firearm deaths and states that ban assault weapons (-.45), require trigger locks (-.42), and mandate safe storage requirements for guns (-.48).