A Conversation about America’s Gun Culture, Mass Shootings, and Gun Laws

Author and MSU journalism instructor Amy Haimerl discusses gun laws and the implications of recent mass shootings.

The United States was founded by citizens taking up arms to gain their independence from the British Crown. The question is whether or not fighting to thwart tyranny is different than the gun violence we’re facing today.  On Detroit Today, host Stephen Henderson and his guest discuss America’s deep rooted gun culture and if any laws can be enacted to curb gun violence.

Henderson says that both childhood upbringing and environment play a large role in opinions about gun laws, which kicks off the discussion as our guests and listeners share their individual experiences and how it affects their opinions of gun laws and gun ownership. 

Amy Haimerl, author and MSU journalism professor, explains how she grew up around guns used for hunting purposes. She adds that although carrying a gun as a tool was fairly standard in her Montana hometown, she has never felt the urge to own one while living in the city.

“America is a very different place for different people,” she says. 

Contrary to Haimerl’s experience, W-DET producer J. Carlisle Larsen recounts her visits to the shooting range, where she shot hand guns with her father for sport. She expresses that, although gun culture was prominent in Nevada, she stopped shooting after she realized how lethal the weapons could be while target shooting. 

To listen to the entire conversation, please click the audio link above: