Gun Safety in the US and NJ Schools

Morristown Minute

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Every single state in our country has had at least one instance of a school shooting; any instance of discharging a firearm on school grounds counts as a school shooting.

37 states have had one or more instances of mass shootings, defined as a shooting where four or more people were killed.

California has had the most school shootings overall since 1970 with 164 incidents.

District of Columbia has the highest rate of school shootings per one million people with 32.74 school shootings per one million people.

New Jersey has the lowest rate of school shootings per one million people with 1.12 incidents per one million. Overall, since 1970 New Jersey had 12 school shootings and 65 mass shootings.

There is not one state in our country that has not seen a school shooting, and only 5 US states have no reported instances of mass shootings.

Between 2013 and 2019, there were over 2,100 mass shootings in the United States killing over 2,400 people and injuring over 9,000.

In 2021, there were 249 school shootings in the United States, defined as every time a gun is brandished, fired, or a bullet hits school property for any reason.

Of those 249, 9 were classified as an active shooter event, defined as a gunman seeking school attendee(s) for the purpose of murder.

In 2018, the US saw its highest number of active school shooters with 11 incidents.

According to a 2019 study, the United States was second in the world in 2019 for the highest total gun deaths with 37,038, only second to Brazil. The US was also second in 2019 for the highest rates of firearm-related suicide with 7.12 deaths per 100,000 citizens.

An analysis of 73 countries revealed the average rate of gun deaths per 100,000 citizens was 6.5 in 2021. Comparably, the United States saw 11.52 gun deaths per 100k citizens in 2021.

We are nine days into 2022 and gun deaths have already reached a rate of over 100 deaths per day in the US.

The United States has seen 959 gun-violence deaths so far this year. This figure includes 10 mass shootings.

1 out of every 3 homes with children owns a gun, and 1.3 million children live in a household with unlocked, loaded firearms.

Those who live in a home with a gun were more than three times likely to die from a gun-related death than those who did not have a gun in the home.

Among children ages 0-12 killed by firearms, 85% of them are killed in their own home by a legally purchased firearm owned by a family member or caretaker.

As the pandemic raged on in the United States, we saw a dramatic increase in gun purchases and a dramatic increase in gun-related deaths.

Since the pandemics start, threats of school shootings have increased dramatically.

The week of December 15th, 2021, a 14-year old New Brunswick High School student was charged with threatening to shoot his classmates and teachers.

The same week a similar threat against Dickinson High School in Jersey City spread on social media. The previous weekend a Dickinson High School student threatened another student on Instagram vowing to shoot them and their friends.

Once more in December of 2021, Ocean City High School was evacuated when a screenshot of a text message threatening a mass school shooting was shared with police.

Then again in December, a Snapchat circulated through Howell High School that threatened a shooting with the message, “HHS shooting 12/10/21” drawn on a bathroom wall. Howell High School had arrested a student the prior month for posting a threatening comment on Snapchat and posing with a rifle, which was later revealed to be an airsoft gun.

Still in December, early in the month, a 15-year-old student at Lawrence High School in Mercer County was arrested with a loaded firearm, prompting a school-wide lockdown and building search.

Then the following Tuesday in Gloucester County, Washington Township High School students were ordered to shelter in place after the school received a phone call threatening violence “within fifteen minutes.”

The above incidents all took place in New Jersey within one month, December of 2021.

These are just the numbers. How do you feel about these statistics? Do you have children in grade school? What should be done to remedy the increasing rate of gun violence in our country and schools? Let us know in the comments below.

For more information on gun safety visit: https://safeact.ny.gov/gun-safety

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