12 stats to help inform the gun control debate

The nationwide gun control debate resurfaced on Tuesday, after an 18-year-old shooter entered Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, and killed 19 students and two adults in the second deadliest school shooting in U.S. history. The mass shooting came just 10 days after another 18-year-old gunman opened fire at a Buffalo, N.Y. grocery store, killing 10 people and injuring three others.

In the aftermath, prominent voices have urged Congress to pass gun control laws and universal background checks, from Sen. Chris Murphy, who represents Connecticut where the Sandy Hook school shooting happened, to NBA coach Steve Kerr to the Pope. Meanwhile, some Republican lawmakers said they won’t back laws that limit gun rights.

While the push for accountability intensifies as details emerge from what happened in the hour after police officers arrived at the shooting up until they killed the gunman, let’s look at these statistics that help inform the gun control debate in the United States.


Number of people killed by guns in the U.S., every day


Number of children who die every day from gun violence in the U.S.


School shootings since Sandy Hook, including 27 school shootings so far this year.

18 to 21

Peak ages for violent offending with firearms

8 million

Number of AR-15s and its variations in circulation

9 in 10

Number of people who will die after attempting suicide with a gun


Percentage of mass shooters who are men


Percentage of gun owners who favor preventing the “mentally ill” from purchasing guns


Percentage of gun owners who favor background checks at private sales and gun shows


Percentage of gun deaths that are suicides; 43% are murders


Percentage of murders that involved a firearm


Percentage of people who defended themselves with their guns in violent crimes

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