The world’s leading economic power is experiencing a complex social situation, with insecurity levels rising year after year. Kindergartens, schools, universities, churches, shopping centers, offices and recreational sites have been the scene of bloody events.
It is estimated that every day in the United States 93 people die from gun violence, while another 222 are shot and survive, equivalent to 33,880 deaths per year. For every ten inhabitants there are nine firearms, the highest proportion in the world.
These statistics are carefully recorded by the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, named after James Brady, who served as White House press secretary under President Ronald Reagan. In 1981, both were shot and wounded during an assassination attempt on Reagan in Washington DC. Reagan recovered but Brady was left in a wheelchair. For the next three decades, he became a leading activist for gun control in the United States.
Just a month ago, the bloodiest shooting in the modern history of the United States occurred. On October 1, a U.S. retiree killed 58 people and wounded 500 others during a country music concert in Las Vegas. Then on November 5, another massacre occurred. A former member of the U.S. Air Force killed 26 people, including several children, and wounded 20 others during mass at a Texas Baptist church.
The worst mass shootings prior to 2017 were that of a nightclub in Orlando, Florida, in 2016, in which 49 people we killed and 53 injured; in 2007, at Virginia Tech University, where 32 people lost their lives; and that which took place in 2012 at a primary school in Newtown, Connecticut, in which a total of 20 children and six adults were killed.
Despite this grim reality, the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution, approved in 1791, which states that the “right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed,” continues to be used to justify the lack of gun control in the country, with the massive support of the National Rifle Association (NRA).
Just as there is no shortage of violent acts or massacres, public opinion is not lacking to promote a real change to the unsustainable gun control regime in the U.S. However, the deliberate action of the NRA and other associated special interest groups continues to hold more sway, which “work” by providing generous contributions and threats of reprisals against any decision-making official on the issue within the government or Congress.
The largest organization defending firearms possession in the United States, founded in 1871, is one of the most faithful donors of congress members and presidential hopefuls, especially of the Republican Party. During the 2016 election campaign, this lobby group allocated more than 30 million dollars to help elect Republican candidate Donald Trump.
Once in office, on April 28, 2017, Donald Trump participated in the National Rifle Association Annual Meeting. He was the first U.S. President to participate in this event since Ronald Reagan, and expressed his gratitude for the NRA’s contributions, noting: “You have a true friend in the White House.”