Why is gun crime rising again in America?

On Friday, April 8th, 16-year-old Angellyh Yambo was shot dead by a stray bullet as she walked home from school in the Bronx in New York city. The following Tuesday, at least 23 people were injured, five of them critically, when a man started shooting passengers on a subway train during the morning rush hour. New York has witnessed a surge in shootings in recent months. But this isn’t just a New York problem.

The rate of gun violence is increasing every year in the US – more than 5,700 Americans have been shot dead so far this year. In response, US president Joe Biden announced this month he was banning the sale and possession of so-called ghost-guns – untraceable weapons that are self-assembled in people’s homes. Biden also said he would make it a top priority to end gun manufacturer’s immunity from being sued over shooting incidents. But is it enough?

In reality, there is a “fundamental unwillingness to change the status quo” around gun ownership, Washington correspondent Martin Wall told the In the News podcast. And if the deaths of 20 children in the 2012 Sandy Hook elementary school mass shooting didn’t “jolt the system into looking again at how it deals with the gun issue, what could?” asked Wall. “The culture of the Republican party, the modern Republican party, is moving further and further to the right. And as it moves further to the right, the prospect of a bi-partisan agreement to tackle gun control issues gets further and further away.”

Today, on In the News: Will the United States ever fix its gun-violence problem?

Sorcha Pollak

Sorcha Pollak

Sorcha Pollak is an Irish Times reporter and cohost of the In the News podcast

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