The gun lobby is adept at distraction, misinformation, and fear-mongering—whatever it takes to make Americans (and more importantly, politicians) complacent in the gun violence epidemic.
We’re debunking some of the gun lobby’s favorite talking points below. Please share the downloadable graphics widely with your networks and take action to prevent gun violence!
MYTH: Arming victims with a gun will protect them from domestic violence.
FACT: There is NO EVIDENCE suggesting that gun ownership increases victim safety. Instead, research suggests that the presence of any gun increases the risk of homicide.
MYTH: Someone experiencing suicidal thoughts will always find a way to complete suicide, whether with a gun or by other means.
FACT: 9 out of 10 people who survive a suicide attempt do not go on to die by suicide. That is why securing access to firearms—the most lethal means—works to reduce suicide.
MYTH: Mass shooters target gun-free zones.
FACT: There is no evidence that mass shooters seek out places where guns are prohibited. In fact, most mass shootings occur in private homes or public locations where guns are permitted.
MYTH: Gun violence is a mental health issue.
FACT: Individuals with mental health challenges are far more likely to be the victim of gun violence than the perpetrator. Other industrialized countries experience similar levels of mental illness but significantly lower levels of gun violence.
MYTH: Gun laws aren’t effective because criminals don’t follow the law.
FACT: Strong gun laws have been proven to reduce gun violence.
MYTH: Armed school officials are the best way to prevent school shootings and keep students safe.
FACT: The best way to prevent gun violence is to keep guns away from those intent on causing harm in the first place. Armed civilians are almost never successful at stopping shootings and they can interfere with law enforcement’s ability to respond to an active shooter situation.
MYTH: Under federal law, all domestic abusers are prohibited from having guns.
FACT: The so-called “boyfriend loophole” does not prohibit abusive dating partners or convicted stalkers from possessing guns.
MYTH: The Second Amendment guarantees the right to form private militias.
FACT: Private militias are not protected by the Second Amendment nor are they authorized under federal or state law. They are unlawful in every state.
MYTH: High-capacity magazines are not that prevalent, so prohibiting them will not reduce gun violence.
FACT: Guns equipped with high-capacity magazines account for a large share of firearms recovered by police. Prohibiting them will save lives by reducing the scope of gun violence.
MYTH: Gun violence prevention is controversial.
FACT: Poll after poll shows that a majority of Americans support stronger gun laws. A whopping 90% of voters support expanding background checks to all gun sales.
MYTH: Restrictions on guns are unconstitutional.
FACT: Time and again, courts across the nation, including the Supreme Court have ruled that gun safety laws are constitutional and not in conflict with the Second Amendment.
MYTH: Hate-fueled gun violence is rare.
FACT: In an average year, more than 10,300 hate crimes in America involve a firearm – more than 28 every single day. The vast majority of hate crimes are directed against BIPOC communities, religious minorities, and LGBTQ+ people.
MYTH: Owning a gun is the best way to keep my family safe.
FACT: Having a gun in the home significantly increases the risk of homicide, suicide, and unintentional shootings, which is why safely storing firearms is so important.