More Guns, More Shootings?
Martin explains further:
One thing people don't understand about gun violence is that it's not typically premeditated. Often, it's an impulsive response to a conflict when a gun was present. In other words, a conflict breaks out, a gun is present, and gun-violence ensues. If there is not a gun present in these situations, they likely don't result in death or serious injury.
Finally, Martin raises two additional (and grave) concerns: gun-related accidents and suicide. As he puts it:
You don't have to look too far to see examples of guns going off accidently (even when owned and operated by people who are well-trained). Likewise, college can be an extraordinarily emotional time (academic difficulty, relationship problems, career concerns and fears, etc.) with 10 percent of college students considering suicide at some point. Gun access is a risk-factor for suicide. So putting these findings together suggests college campuses are no place for guns.
The connection between impulsivity, opportunity, and gun violence underscores the logic of banning guns in places like churches and college campuses, with the exception of well-trained security detail. As we see again and again, guns can discharge accidentally, even when owned and operated by law enforcement and others well-trained in firearms.
Our churches and college campuses increasingly must have a plan in place for staff, students, and congregants in case there's an active shooter on the premises.
We cannot always predict what will drive someone down the path of darkness such that he or she will pick up a gun in order to take his or her own life or the life of others. But one way we can prevent greater injury and loss of life is by insisting on tighter regulations in churches and on college campuses.
Lord, have mercy.
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