DAY FIVE: Gun Violence – A Widespread Crisis and Challenge

Gun violence is more widespread than we might realize, affecting communities in every state of
our nation. Awareness and knowledge are important tools for helping us discern how to respond
and take action as people of faith.

In 2018 there were 57,235 gun-related incidents in the United States (including 340 mass
shootings), which resulted in 14,746 deaths and 28,202 injuries, according to data compiled (as
of May 2019) by Gun Violence Archive, an independent research group.

Of the total fatalities, 667 were children (up to age 11) and 2,843 were teenagers (ages 12 to 17).
Maps, charts, and statistics of gun violence—past and present, from across the country—are
accessible online at Gun Violence Archive. Search under the “Chart & Maps” and “Reports” tabs.

This post is part of the ELCA’s “60-Day Journey Toward Justice in a Culture of Gun Violence.” 

Nativity Comment: An update for 2021 using the same Gun Violence Archive shows a horrifying trend. In 2021, gun violence skyrocketed between 2018 and 2021 with gun-related deaths soaring from 14,746 deaths in 2018 to 45,013 deaths in 2021. The same pattern held for mass shootings, with 340 in 2018 and 692 last year. There have already been 247 mass shootings in 2022.