Nearly as many Americans die from guns as from car crashes each year. We know plenty about the second problem and far less about the first. A scarcity of research on how to prevent gun violence has left policymakers shooting in the dark as they craft gun control measures without much evidence of what works.
In a story Aug. 11 about gun violence as a public health problem, The Associated Press reported erroneously that Daniel Webster of the Johns Hopkins Center for Gun Policy and Research in Baltimore said gun ownership sometimes goes up after a shooting in an area. Webster said gun-carrying sometimes increases, not gun ownership.
Is a gun like a virus, a car, tobacco or alcohol? Yes, say public health experts, who in the wake of recent mass shootings are calling for a fresh look at gun violence as a social disease.