By Lee Williams
California is a violent place, despite having some of the most stringent anti-gun laws in the country.
A new study by the University of California-Davis Firearm Violence Research Center is damning. It reveals that millions of adults in the Golden State have had at least one exposure to what the anti-gun researchers call “experiences of violence” or EVs.
“Research on violence exposure emphasizes discrete acute events such as direct and witnessed victimization. Little is known about the broad range of experiences of violence (EVs) in daily life. This study assesses the prevalence and patterns of distribution of 6 EVs in an adult general population,” the study states.
The researchers defined their EVs as:
- The occurrence of gunshots and shootings in their neighborhood.
- Encounters with sidewalk memorials where violent deaths occurred.
- Direct personal knowledge of individuals who had purposefully been shot by someone else.
- Direct personal knowledge of individuals who had purposefully shot themselves.
- Direct personal knowledge of individuals perceived to be at risk of violence to another person.
- Direct personal knowledge of individuals perceived to be at risk of violence to themselves.
The researchers surveyed 5,018 California residents: 2,870 responded. More than 52% were female. The mean age of the respondents was 47.
The results show:
- Nearly two-thirds of the respondents reported at least on EV.
- More than 11% reported three or more EVs.
- More than 30% of African-Americans reported EVs involving people who had been shot by others.
- Respondents over 60 years old reported the most EVs involving people who had shot themselves.
- Respondents aged 18-29 reported knew the most people at risk to violence themselves.
By extrapolating the data, the researchers were able to estimate:
- More than 3 million California residents had three EVs per year.
- More than 5 million Californians know someone who was intentionally shot.
- More than 3 million Californians know two or more people who are at risk of getting shot.
“Experiences of violence in daily life are widespread in the general adult population; many occur in clear patterns that are unlike those seen for violent victimization,” the researchers concluded. “As with victimization, it is plausible that these experiences have durable and cumulative adverse consequences.”
California gun control laws
California requires a permit known as a Firearm Safety Certificate to purchase handguns, rifles and shotguns. The state requires registration of all firearms, and requires that any gun brought into the state be reported to the California Department of Justice. It bans “assault weapons” and standard-capacity magazines.
Technically, California is a “may issue” state for concealed carry permits, but in actuality, many jurisdictions have become “no issue,” unless the applicant is wealthy or a celebrity.
The state requires background checks for both private firearm sales and ammunition purchases. It restricts home-built firearms by requiring anyone who wants to make a firearm in their home to apply to the California DOJ for a serial number.
This study clearly shows that California’s vaunted gun control laws aren’t working. The state is infringing upon the Second Amendment rights of its 39 million residents for no reason, other than perhaps tradition.
California has always trampled on its citizens’ civil rights. However, data shows Californians are finally waking up. In 2021, the state suffered a net loss in population of 0.71, and a loss of 0.71 is projected for 2022.
While conducted by anti-gun researchers and touted by gun control groups, this study actually buttresses what the pro-gun rights community has been saying for decades: a disarmed populace is a vulnerable populace, which will always become a victimized populace.
The Second Amendment Foundation’s Investigative Journalism Project wouldn’t be possible without you. Click here to make a tax deductible donation to support pro-gun stories like this.
This story is part of the Second Amendment Foundation’s Investigative Journalism Project and is published here with their permission.