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Josh Sugarmann
A native of Newtown, Connecticut, Josh Sugarmann is the executive director of the Violence Policy Center (VPC), a national 501(c)(3) tax-exempt national educational foundation working to reduce violence in America ( he founded in 1988. He is the author of two books, National Rifle Association: Money, Firepower & Fear and Every Handgun is Aimed at You: The Case for Banning Handguns. His articles and op-eds have appeared in numerous publications, including the New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, Los Angeles Times, Mother Jones, Rolling Stone, The Nation, and Washington Monthly.

Entries by Josh Sugarmann

Glock Pistol Used in Church Massacre a Favorite of Mass Shooters

(5) Comments | Posted June 19, 2015 | 2:19 PM

The Glock pistol reportedly used by alleged South Carolina mass killer Dylann Roof stands as a stark example of the gun industry's marketing of increased lethality. Since the mid-1980s, increased firepower and capacity have defined the products of the gun industry -- of both U.S. and foreign manufacture.

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Fewer and Fewer Americans Own Guns

(304) Comments | Posted May 21, 2015 | 1:48 PM

Household gun ownership in America is on a steady, long-term decline.

That's according to data from the latest edition of the General Social Survey (GSS), which is conducted by the National Opinion Research Center (NORC) at the University of Chicago.

My organization, the Violence Policy Center,...

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As NRA Meeting Opens in Nashville, Gun Deaths Surpass Vehicle Deaths in Tennessee

(488) Comments | Posted April 10, 2015 | 5:32 PM


Another year, another NRA annual meeting, which each spring comes with its own set of questions teetering from the merely absurd to the truly grotesque.

Will the NRA reveal the findings of its "ethics investigation" into whether right-wing stalwart and NRA...

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The Battle Over the Armor-Piercing AR-15 Bullet Is a Problem of the Gun Industry's Own Making

(32) Comments | Posted March 4, 2015 | 2:04 PM

The gun lobby and its supporters on Capitol Hill are in full-blown Armageddon mode in the wake of a proposal by the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) to ban the availability of a type of ammunition originally designed for use in AR-15 assault rifles...

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Black Americans Are Four Times More Likely to Be Victims of Homicide

(17) Comments | Posted January 28, 2015 | 11:22 AM

Gun violence in America is a public health epidemic. And while this epidemic affects everyone, it has a disproportionate impact on black Americans -- men and women, teens and adults.

My organization, the Violence Policy Center, educates the public about this epidemic through our annual report, Black Homicide Victimization in...

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Behind Closed Doors in Vegas, Militarized Gun Industry Sells, Sells, Sells

(115) Comments | Posted January 21, 2015 | 10:13 AM

Last week, a man was arrested in Ohio for an alleged ISIS-inspired plot to attack the U.S. Capitol with gunfire and pipe bombs. According to the government's criminal complaint, to prepare for the attack Christopher Cornell bought two AR-15 style semiautomatic assault rifles manufactured by the...

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Five Reasons the NRA Is Losing, Two Years After Newtown

(0) Comments | Posted December 12, 2014 | 11:13 AM

Two years ago this Sunday, 20 children and six educators were brutally gunned down in Newtown, Connecticut, the town where I grew up. Our nation rightfully has not been able to forget that day. Nor have we stopped fighting for effective policies that would dramatically reduce gun death and injury.

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Gun Violence: A Public Health Crisis for Black Women

(2) Comments | Posted October 30, 2014 | 12:46 PM

It is a sad and unfortunate fact that the gun violence epidemic -- which kills tens of thousands of Americans every year -- has a disproportionate impact on the black community. This is true not only for men, but for black women as well.

I lead a gun violence...

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For California Youth, Most Murder Victims Killed With Guns

(1) Comments | Posted October 8, 2014 | 10:27 AM

Homicide is the second-leading cause of death for Californians ages 10 to 24. And in a new, comprehensive study, we found that guns are nearly always the weapon of choice to murder California's youth.

Recently, my organization, the Violence Policy Center, released the fourth edition of our annual...

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For Women, Gun Violence Often Linked to Domestic Violence

(3) Comments | Posted October 1, 2014 | 11:42 AM

On the first day of Domestic Violence Awareness Month, here is a disturbing statistic: Of women murdered by men, 93 percent are killed by someone they know -- and the majority are intimate partners of their killers.

We present these uncomfortable facts in an annual report from my organization, the...

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Murder Rate for Hispanics Is Twice the Murder Rate for Whites

(26) Comments | Posted May 12, 2014 | 11:28 AM


America's gun violence epidemic has a destructive impact on Hispanic communities. New research shows the murder rate for Hispanics is more than double the murder rate for whites, and more than two-thirds of Hispanic murder victims are killed with guns.

These eye-opening...

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The NRA: Gun Industry Trade Association Masqerading as a Shooting Sports Foundation

(13) Comments | Posted April 25, 2014 | 11:49 AM

The National Rifle Association's 2014 annual meeting starts today in Indianapolis and, according to the NRA's website, it will feature "spectacular displays of firearms" and "products from every major firearm company in the country."

Such breathless gun industry rah-rahing is no surprise. The giant firearms industry trade show...

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Murder Rate for Black Americans Is Four Times the National Average

(32) Comments | Posted January 31, 2014 | 9:19 AM

Here are a couple of facts that every American should be ashamed of: Black Americans are four times more likely to be murdered than the national average. What's more, four out of five black homicide victims are killed with guns.

Our new Violence Policy Center report, "Black...

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Gun Industry Hawks Militarized Products at Vegas SHOT Show

(174) Comments | Posted January 16, 2014 | 9:04 AM


Mass shootings are on the rise. More than 31,000 Americans -- an average of 85 a day -- die each year from gun violence. And each year the gun industry puts a happy face on the weapons that...

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Remembering Newtown, One Year Later

(324) Comments | Posted December 13, 2013 | 8:47 AM

Long before the tragedy in my hometown of Newtown, Connecticut, I knew full well that gun violence could happen anytime, anywhere, and to anyone.

After all, research and advocacy to prevent gun violence has long been central to my professional life. Since I founded the Violence Policy Center...

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NRA 'Corporate Partner' Exploits JFK Death in American Rifleman Ad

(54) Comments | Posted November 20, 2013 | 9:17 AM

Fifty years ago on Friday, Lee Harvey Oswald killed President John F. Kennedy with a mail-order rifle he purchased from an ad that appeared in the National Rifle Association's American Rifleman magazine. The ad, from Klein's Sporting Goods in Chicago, was one of many that peppered the magazine back then...

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Black Women Face a Greater Risk of Domestic Violence

(23) Comments | Posted October 24, 2013 | 1:05 PM

The high toll gun violence exacts on black males is all too well known. Less known is the fact that black women also face a disproportionate risk of lethal violence.

That's what we found in a new study released by my organization, the Violence Policy...

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Guns Aren't the Answer to Domestic Violence

(104) Comments | Posted October 9, 2013 | 9:59 AM

The National Rifle Association and its paymasters in the gun industry may present guns as the default answer for a woman's protection, but as Domestic Violence Awareness Month begins this October, the facts tell a very different story about women and guns.

Every year, more than...

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NRA Video Promotes Ted Nugent's Fave Hobby: Shooting Feral Pigs From Helicopters

(243) Comments | Posted August 15, 2013 | 1:50 PM

Remember last month when National Rifle Association board member Ted Nugent bragged about shooting feral hogs in Texas with a machine gun from a helicopter -- and then "joked" about how he'd like to do the same to the residents of South Central (now South) Los Angeles?


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Hialeah: Only the Latest Mass Shooting by a Concealed Carry Killer

(307) Comments | Posted July 30, 2013 | 10:06 AM

This past weekend, in Hialeah, Florida, a man with a concealed handgun permit burned $10,000 in cash, set fire to his apartment, shot and killed six people, and then took two others hostage before the shooter, Pedro Vargas, was killed by police. An officer said it was "one...

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