A new editorial in the Delaware County Daily Times, about Delco United’s march to prevent gun violence by implementing universal background checks for firearm sales, highlights the disproportionate level of gun violence in the United States. The march took place on Saturday and approximately 150 people walked 7-miles from Chester to Media. At a rally following the march the crowd swelled to about 250 people. The marchers were met along the way by a group of counter-protesters, who oppose universal background checks.
One of the counter-protesters observed that the homicide rate in America is lower than the homicide rate in many other countries. However, an analysis done by the National Institutes of Health found that America’s firearm homicide rate is 19.5 times higher than the firearm homicide rate in other highly populated, high-income countries. The analysis also found that the rate of unintentional firearm deaths in America was 5.2 times higher than in the other 23 countries in the study.
The editorial concludes that regardless of the exact statistics, there is simply too much gun violence in the United States, as exemplified by mass shootings over the last 20 years and a shooting in Chester on Friday. The victim of Friday’s shooting was the 16th homicide victim in the small town this year. In fact late last night, shortly after the publication of the editorial, another five people were wounded in a shooting in Chester. Over 80 percent of Pennsylvanians, including many gun owners, and most law enforcement officials support universal background checks for all firearm purchases as a means to ensure that these tragedies are few and far between.