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Aspen Ideas Festival: The role of guns in America

The conversation around guns in America is never easy. But it is necessary.Those who support gun safety legislation, and self-proclaimed defenders of the second amendment, are divided on the role guns should –or should not –play in our lives. 

Gun violence is a problem. More Americans died of gun-related injuries in 2021 than any other year on record. That’s according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. This includes both murders and suicides involving guns.

Recent data from the Pew Research Center says on a per capita basis, there were 14.6 gun deaths per 100,000 people in 2021, the highest rate since the early 1990s. But that is still well below the peak of 16.3 gun deaths per 100,000 people in 1974.

Most Americans want some form of gun control. Some 64 percent of people support stricter gun laws. according to a recent CNN poll.

Why then is it so hard to get anything done when it comes to gun legislation? And how do we move a stalled conversation forward?It’s an important debate – and one we had at this year’s Aspen Ideas Festival. Today, we hear highlights from those who joined us on stage.

Copyright 2023 WAMU 88.5

Rupert Allman
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