Sutherland Springs, a small town in Texas, US, suddenly came to the world’s attention following a tragedy there on Nov 5.
A police officer places flowers at the site of a mass shooting in Texas, US earlier this month. AFP
At least 26 people were killed and about 20 others injured during a mass shooting in a church in the town, reported CNN. The victims ranged in age from 5 to 72 years old. It was the “deadliest mass shooting in the history of Texas”, said CNN.
The attack came just around one month after a mass shooting in Las Vegas, the worst in modern US history, where 58 people were killed and more than 500 others injured, according to the Los Angeles Times.
These events made the US people think, once again, about gun control issues.
According to a Pew Research Center study in 2017, about 40 percent of Americans say they either have a gun or live in a household with one. And the US has the highest rate of killings related to guns in the developed world. Over 11,000 people in the US died as a result of firearms in 2016, reported the BBC.
The large number of deaths involving guns has led to increased support for stricter gun control among young people. According to a study published by website Abodo in October, about 80 percent of US people aged 18 to 35 believe the country has a major problem with mass shootings. about 78 percent of young people think it’s too easy to buy a gun and 59 percent believe that gun violence would decrease if there were stricter gun laws, according to the study.
Meanwhile, a GenForward survey published in 2016 found that about 90 percent of young American adults support criminal background checks for all gun sales.
“Human behavior is predictable to a level, but also unpredictable,” Saajan Bhakta, 22, from Kansas, told the Guardian. “Being on top of it from the beginning helps prevent unnecessary events.”
However, the road to stricter gun control will certainly not be a smooth one.
The right of US people to carry guns is protected by the US constitution. Any US citizen (公民) over 21 without a criminal background or mental health problems can buy guns, which are even sold in supermarkets in some states.
Meanwhile, owning guns has become part of American culture. Gun use can be traced back to the early days of colonization, when European settlers used guns for self-defense and hunting.
However, gun control is only part of the wider effort to prevent violence. As news site Vox put it, “Gun control can’t stop all violence. But it can help.”