Opinion: Letter to the Editor: Gun Violence Isn’t Epidemic

Opinion: Letter to the Editor: Gun Violence Isn’t Epidemic

While I agree that there should be stricter laws in regards to the sale of guns in order to prevent these mass killings from happening, I do believe it's a bit naive to think that restricting guns will eliminate violence altogether.

The letter [“To End Epidemic of Violence” by the League of Women Voters of Virginia] talks about ending the "epidemic of violence" that plagues the country. While it is fair to claim that any incident of violence is one too many, I think it's important to know that the so-called "epidemic" isn't one at all. In fact there's data that suggests the national crime rate is going down; people just believe it's rising.

The reason behind these false perceptions of crime is due to where we get our news from: the media. Oftentimes, media outlets use the phrase “if it bleeds, it leads” in regards to crime; this phrase conveys the idea that more gruesome crimes get more exposure, as they attract more attention, and in turn will benefit the outlet. This inaccuracy depicted by the media stokes the fears of the public by exaggerating the amount of crime present in a given area. In reality, very few households experience violent crime in a year.

Kayleigh Pelkey