According to a recent study published by Penn State researchers, there has been a sudden increase of 31% in gun violence across 28 states of the US. Though the primary reason behind this sudden spike remains uncertain, researchers argue that the added stress and unpredictability of the unforeseen pandemic must have caused people to rush towards stores, get a gun, and have the illusion of ‘controlling’ at least some aspect of their life.
This study published in Scientific Reports researched the incidences of shootings that happen all over the country daily. It analyzed the causalities and deaths in all states of the US that occurred before the pandemic and those after the pandemic. The study included the data about gun violence from February of 2019 until February of the following year. The data was compared with the violence reported in March of 2020 to March of 2021.
The study also pointed out a considerable increase in the violence occurring from gun shootings during the pandemic across states of New York, Michigan, and Minnesota. These states showed twice the number of shootings during the pandemic compared to pre-pandemic. Conversely, Alaska was the only state that showed a decrease in the number of shootings during the pandemic.
In addition, the study recorded a 41% increase in gun sales during the pandemic, that is, from March of 2020. The researchers also concluded that domestic violence and anxiety must have been the primary reasons behind this unexpected rise in gun violence.
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