Newsweek

How Gun Violence Literally Infects Communities

A new study provides the first evidence that gun violence spreads exactly like a blood-borne pathogen.
Residents, activists, and friends and family members of victims of gun violence march down Michigan Avenue carrying nearly 800 wooden crosses bearing the names of people murdered in the city in 2016 on December 31, 2016 in Chicago, Illinois. Nearly 800 people were murdered in the city last year and more than 4,000 shot as the city copes with its most violent year in two decades.
02_17_GunViolence_01 Source: Scott Olson/Getty

Gun violence is scorching the United States, and the wound is increasingly visible.  More than 11,000 Americans are killed in assaults involving guns annually, and at least 50,000 more are injured. Among people between the ages of 15 and 24, nine of every 100,000 lives end due to a gun homicide. About 65 of every 100,000 people in this age group are injured by gun assaults every year.

In the mid-1980s, public health experts began referring to youth violence as an epidemic because it was occurring in higher than expected numbers. Some experts took that notion further, insisting that youth violence isn’t just like a disease—rather, it is a disease, an infectious

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