Mass shootings are only a fraction of gun violence but are in the news often. Criminal law covers gun violence, assault and murder in Greenville, South Carolina. Gun violence has been lowering for decades. During the pandemic, there was a 21% increase. The 50 largest cities in America had a 42% increase in fatal shootings. That statistic is an extra 1,923 gun deaths in those cities.
The largest singular rise in gun violence
Criminal law crimes like gun violence began rising at the start of 2020. The rise of gun violence between 2019 and 2020 was between 35% to 40%. That’s the biggest rise in a singular year. The media wasn’t talking about the rise in gun crime as much as it could. There are ways to curb gun violence, but the resources and tools work better with more attention.
Why gun violence rose after a quarter-century
Part of the reason for the rise of gun violence during 2020 was that the pandemic shut down gun violence curbing programs. The pandemic hit neighborhoods with economic trauma harder during 2020. Access to resources and programs was absent. The pandemic alone couldn’t cause the entire rise, but the economic desperation heightened stress and trauma already present. New traumas from losing loved ones to Covid-19 heightened the stress levels. Services and programs were absent during the pandemic. People stayed in place and away from loved ones, which stopped their support system.
The visible police violence and riots during the summer of 2020 also made people feel unsafe. Younger people who feel unsafe are more likely to carry guns and cause gun violence. The stressors of serious crimes under criminal law can resolve themselves. A person with economic trauma that has access to government resources and their support system is much better off. As stresses slowly improve, big-government policies won’t fix the issue. Community-based interventions are the best way to curb gun violence.