The statistic shows the number of victims of the worst mass shootings in western democratic countries from 1966 to 2012. On December 14, 2012, a gunman killed 26 people - 20 of them children aged 5 to 10 - in a shooting at an elementary school in Newtown, Connecticut. He committed suicide afterwards.
Gun policy in the USA
Over the last few years, mass shootings and accidents with children at shooting ranges have shaped national debates about the gun laws in the United States.
According to the Gallup survey across the United States in January 2014, 40 percent of the U.S. population stated they are totally satisfied with the existing gun laws in the United States, while 31 percent of the respondents stated they are dissatisfied, they want stricter laws.
The survey among American adults, which was conducted by the Pew Research Center in 2012 shortly after the Aurora movie theater shooting, on what they consider more important – the right to bear arms or controlling gun ownership, shows that 47 percent of the participants said the control of gun ownership is more important than the protection of the right to own guns.
The attitude towards gun control varies from generation to generation, 55 percent of the Millennials stated that controlling gun ownership is more important than protecting the gun rights, while 44 percent of the Silent generation stated the same.
The number of homicides by firearms has decreased over the last few years, 11,040 homicides by firearm were counted in 2003, while 9,960 homicides by firearm were counted in 2010. Homicide takes several forms, for example murder but homicide is not always a crime, it also includes affirmative defense, insanity, self-defense or the execution of convicted criminals.
America’s gun policy makes it possible for the American population to have a gun in their home on their own property, all U.S. states have imposed their own firearm restrictions. The percentage of Americans who have a gun in their home shifted from 40 percent in 1996 to 47 percent in 2011.