October 5, 2023 News & Press Releases

NEW REPORT: Children at Risk from Gun Violence, MAGA GOP Would Weaken Gun Laws

by Democratic Party of Virginia

RICHMOND, VA – The New York Times this morning revealed that gun violence among children under 18 has increased 87% from 2011 - meaning guns are now the top cause of death for young people, exceeding car crashes. 

“If these extreme MAGA Republicans take total control of state government, they’ll weaken gun laws and make this even worse,” said Susan Swecker, Chairwoman of the Democratic Party of Virginia.

They opposed red flag laws, blocked firearm safety, and opposed background checks. They’re trying to repeal penalties for illegally carrying dangerous weapons, allow guns into church services, allow guns into daycares, reopen loopholes in background checks, let people buy concealed handguns without a permit, take away gun-free school zones and much more. 

As WRIC reported last year, “A Republican push to roll back gun control policies came up short in the Virginia General Assembly on Wednesday...”  

NEW YORK TIMES: Gun Deaths Rising Sharply Among Children, Study Finds

But according to an analysis published on Thursday, the rate of firearm fatalities among children under 18 increased by 87 percent from 2011 through 2021 in the United States. The death rate attributable to car accidents fell by almost half, leaving firearm injuries the top cause of accidental death in children.

The finding underscores additional data showing that firearm injuries are now the leading cause of death among Americans under 20, after excluding deaths of infants born prematurely or with congenital abnormalities. [...]

Great strides have been made toward protecting children from car accidents and deaths, including mandatory seatbelts, booster seats and airbags, said Dr. Rebekah Mannix, the paper’s lead author and a pediatric emergency medicine physician at Boston Children’s Hospital.

“The opposite is happening with firearms,” she added. “It’s just getting worse, and kids are dying at higher rates from firearms.”

If extreme MAGA Republicans get total control of state government in this election, they will weaken gun laws.