Gun Control is too Plastic

by Vivian Diep in September 16th, 2022

Laws protecting gun owners even more are spreading across the U.S.

Mon Sep 12

If someone dies from a gunshot you fired, normally you’d be taken in for questioning, but a growing number of states have enacted “stand your ground laws” that would protect you from arrest in claims of self defense — even if you didn’t try to retreat first. Even worse, the case can’t be considered for trial unless there's clear and convincing evidence that the shooter was not in fear for their life. Legal experts say this is an impossible standard to meet, allowing more people to avoid charges for crimes as serious as murder.

And these laws now exist in 60% of the U.S., increasing since 2012 from 24 states to 38. The laws first appeared 17 years ago in Florida and five more states joined in the past year. While supporters of the law claim it improves public safety, a number of studies are shedding light on just how damaging they are instead. Across the two studies, researchers found that these laws:

  • Have been used to justify deadly force against roommates, in road rage incidents, in child custody disputes, and against vulnerable groups (including the homeless or those with mental illness).
  • Are linked to an 11% national increase in monthly homicide rates, or at least 700 additional homicides every year. Southern states such as Florida, Alabama, and Louisiana saw some of the highest increases in violent deaths.
  • Unfairly benefit white males while women in abusive relationships or people of color often fail in attempts to invoke stand your ground. The study also found the laws have successfully benefited cases where the shooter was the aggressor.

Some experts say the laws ultimately encourage the use of deadly force in place of non-life threatening alternatives. Unsurprisingly, the first wave of stand your ground laws were closely linked to groups such as the NRA. Their role has since been lost as the laws spread to more states.

BELOW THE FOLD BYTES

Iran Uses Facial Recognition to Enforce Hijab Laws

Morality police are being replaced (or at least aided) in Iran with a combination of surveillance technology, facial recognition, and social media monitoring. Women caught by the tech without a hijab, either while out and about in the city or on social media, will be fined. This is hardly Iran’s first step in big brother technology or even targeting women online. From deploying trolls against female activists to their biometric national identity cards, Iran is outfitted for modern repression but some are skeptical over their ability to use what they have, and more importantly, secure it against non-state actors.

>> Read More

Ghost Gun Rules Are Not Stopping Enthusiasts

A recent federal rule ensures that guns home-built from parts kits would be subject to the same regulations as traditional firearms in a bid to reduce the number of ghost guns, especially those landing in criminal hands. But gun enthusiasts quickly started offering open-source blueprints and retailers created parts kits that are technically not “readily convertible to firearms” when sold alone — a key trait to regulation. While this is a workaround, other issues may be helping to limit ghost guns. UPS and FedEx both have stopped shipping for ghost gun parts retailers. USPS, however, is still an option.

>> Read More


🎬 Action of the Week

As mentioned, many are already finding ways to get around the Biden administration’s latest crackdown on ghost guns. Ghost guns refer to homemade firearms that are privately assembly (often through parts kits) that are untraceable. Help take action against such guns through Sandy Hook Promise.

THIS WEEK'S SOURCES

  • Reveal News: Latest study 16 days old | 13 minutes long
  • JAMA Network: Earlier study by Oxford 7 months old | 30 minutes long
  • NCSL: U.S. Self Defense Claim 7 months old | 3 minutes long

ASCII-ING ABOUT THE NEWS

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Stop! Hand over the gun!

But officer, it’s just a kit - there’s only 80% gun here.

Art Credit: Joan G. Stark

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