Tags: Gun Control | guns | gun ownership | anger | mental illness | study

Nearly 9 Percent of US Gun Owners Prone to Angry Outbursts: Study

By    |   Thursday, 09 Apr 2015 11:39 AM

Nearly 9 percent of Americans who have angry or violent outbursts have access to a gun, a new study has found.

According to a report in the Journal of Behavioral Sciences and the Law, 1.5 percent of people with anger issues carry firearms outside the home, and the researchers also found that 10 percent of angry people with access to guns have not been admitted for treatment for a psychiatric or substance abuse problem.

The findings suggest that proposals to reduce gun injuries and deaths should be less focused on those who are mentally ill and instead concentrate on those with a history of violent behavior, The Los Angeles Times reported.

"Gun violence and serious mental illness are two very important but distinct public health issues that intersect only at their edges," said study leader Jeffrey Swanson, a professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Duke University School of Medicine, according to the Times.

"The traditional legal approach has been to prohibit firearms from involuntarily committed psychiatric patients," Swanson said. "But now we have more evidence that current laws don't necessarily keep firearms out of the hands of a lot of potentially dangerous individuals."

The research also found that the 310 million firearms estimated to be owned privately in the U.S. are disproportionately owned by individuals who are considered to be prone to anger and impulsive behavior and have a tendency to keep firearms easily accessible.

The phenomenon is particularly pronounced for those who own six or more guns compared to those who own just one gun, the Times said.

In the wake of mass shootings, lawmakers have tended to focus on the relationship of gun ownership and mental illness, seeking to put protections in place to prevent the mentally ill from acquiring fire arms. But the new study suggests there is the need to focus on a different set of individuals.

For the study, the researchers from Duke, Harvard and Columbia Universities analyzed data from 5,563 face-to-face interviews of those with mental disorders so as to estimate the overlap between gun access and a history of angry, impulsive behavior, with or without a diagnosable mental illness, the Times reported.

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Nearly 9 percent of Americans who have angry or violent outbursts have access to a gun, according to a new study, findings that suggest that proposals to reduce gun injuries and deaths should concentrate on those with a history of such behavior, The Los Angeles Times reported.
guns, gun ownership, anger, mental illness, study
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2015-39-09
Thursday, 09 Apr 2015 11:39 AM
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