Is Chicago proof that gun laws don't work?
via AP

Is Chicago proof that gun laws don't work?

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Chicago suffered record-breaking violence in 2016: 4,331 shootings and 762 homicides, more deaths than in New York and Los Angeles combined. Gun rights groups say Chicago's strict ordinances prove gun laws don't work—they just add to lawlessness and violence. But gun control advocates argue New York and Los Angeles actually have stricter gun laws than Chicago, and lax gun laws in nearby states flood Chicago with guns. What do you think? 🔫

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Gun rights advocates have said for years that gun control doesn't work because criminals don't care about laws, and Chicago's out-of-control gun violence proves it. As David Rittgers argues:

Strict gun-control policies have failed to deliver on their essential promise: that denying law-abiding citizens access to the means of self-defense will somehow make them safer....The simple, undeniable truth is that gun control does not work.

Chicago does have some of the most restrictive gun ordinances in the country. Gun shops and civilian gun ranges are banned, as are assault weapons and high-capacity magazines. But more than 15,000 of the guns traced by the police in the last decade came from just outside the city limits in neighboring towns that permit gun stores.

Gun control advocates argue Chicago's laws can't make up for the easy access to guns in the rest of Illinois, Wisconsin and Indiana. Gun violence is a national problem, not a local one that can be reduced to debates over a single city's gun laws.

Many continue to argue stricter gun control laws are not the answer.

But others say Chicago only proves that gun laws must be universal, and it is impossible for any city to eliminate gun violence when neighboring municipalities have loose gun laws.

And they point out gun violence in Chicago doesn't get the same recognition because it happens to people of color.

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