When I wrote this post about gun violence in the US yesterday, I intended to move on to another topic, but news of the assassination of former Prime Minister Abe of Japan broke here this morning and I was struck by the stark contrast in the level of gun violence in the two countries.
Part of the terrible shock to the Japanese public is that shootings are incredibly rare there. Firearm possession in Japan is highly regulated. Apparently, the gunman had built his own weapon, evading the strict process in place.
Last year in Japan, there were only ten shootings, eight of which were connected to the yakuza, an organized crime network. There was one death and four injuries from gun violence.
That’s 10 shootings in a country of 125 million people.
In a year.
The United States has 332 million people. I can’t even find the statistic for the number of shootings, but the statistics from Gun Violence Archive record 45,034 deaths and 40,585 injuries from guns in 2021.
Yes, America. Guns are the problem.