Paper Example on Gun Laws and Mental Health

Published: 2021-07-12
916 words
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8 min to read
Carnegie Mellon University
Type of paper: 
Research paper
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A Reuters articles in 2016 noted that "Gun violence kills roughly 33,000 people and injures another 81,000 every year in the U.S." (Rapaport). Horrific and recurring issues about gun misuse are common in the US. Rampant mass shootings have been on the rise. To make the situation even more complicated, the National Rifles Association has become even more powerful in the US. The article claims that besides the ease availability of guns, there could be other social factors that contribute to the rise in gun-related incidents.

Rapaport writes further "researchers looked for the presence or absence of mandatory background checks for all gun and ammunition purchases; the extent of gun ownership; mental health expenditure per capita; spending on public school education for kindergarten through high school; and the proportion of people living in towns and cities."

Recent developments including legislations in some states have been used to limit the misuse of firearms in the US. For example, following the Sandy Hook Elementary School shootings in 2012, the article states that "prompted an intense national debate about the factors that contribute to gun violence and the best prevention approaches."(Rapaport). As a result of the outcry, a law that mandates gun owners to have universal background checks was passed.

Sex Trafficking Cases

In September 2015, news broke out that a 17-year-old girl had been abducted by her older boyfriend. Though it was an act of eloping, she was cut off completely from her parents. Alvarez writes in the FBI Law Enforcement Bulletin that:

With meager funds and no education or work experience, the girl was told to use her body. Almost immediately, she began dancing at a strip club and having sex for money. Her body was sold on the Internet and in classified ads, at strip clubs and private parties, and on the streets, sometimes as often as 20 times per day. Years of emotional, physical, sexual, and psychological abuse and manipulation replaced her dreams of going to college and becoming a nurse. (1)

Sex trafficking is a multi-billion-dollar industry, rivalled only by drug trafficking. The article claims that the common victims of sex trafficking are the prostitutes. Alvarez provides methods of how to combat this menace. One such method is the nonjudgmental approach. He notes that the "Victims testimonies are crucial to law enforcement investigations and successful prosecutions." (2). He advises that trust between the interviewer and the victim should be built. A good rapport is also encouraged in this process.

Another approach Alvarez spells out is what he terms as BITE model (Behavior, Information, Thoughts, and Emotions). This model examines in depth the steps used by traffickers to control their victims.

The internet is a favorite spot to advertise victims and popularize trafficking. As a result, Alvarez writes "a university computer science lab developed Traffic Jam, a large-scale analytical system designed for law enforcement to provide an accurate, high-level, efficient analysis of online sex ads to identify traffickers and victims."(4). The system helps the enforcers to track down the sex criminals and bring them to justice.

Minimum Wage Debate

The debate about what and who the minimum wage affects, has been an ongoing topic for many years. It is good to note that most articles, research and publications centered mainly on the what the minimum wage affects. Belman et al. decided to interrogate who are impacted in the minimum wage in their article Who is Affected by the Minimum Wage?

The authors write that "there are two benefits of this approach," (Belman et al., 583). From a policy point of view, they note that the effects that are known are placed in a standard category. These effects could be in some industries and a group of people. The authors found out that most studies focused mainly on teenagers. The studies are carried out despite the fact that they "comprise less than one-fifth of workers who earn no more than the minimum wage and barely one-tenth of those who earn no more than 1.5 times the minimum wage." (583).

In their research, they noted that there were methodological issues present. These problems included errors in identification and biased or inconsistent standard errors. The authors further researched the effects on certain subgroups. They split these subgroups into age, gender, race, education, part time job/ full-time job, and the industry involved. The research finds out that for the less educated women, their employment opportunities were few. The authors found that increasing "the higher minimum wages raise wages in the lower tail of the distribution of wages for both genders." (612).

In their conclusion, Belman et al. wrote that "Perhaps the most important direction for future research is to focus on the low-wage/low-income groups that are the target for minimum-wage legislation." (615). The researchers noted in the concluding remarks that future studies should focus on the following groups; less educated women, minority groups and young laborers.


Works Cited

Alvarez, Larry and Jocelyn Canas-Moreira. "FBI -- a Victim-Centered Approach to Sex Trafficking Cases." FBI Law Enforcement Bulletin, Nov. 2015, pp. 1-6. EBSCOhost, Accessed 8 July 2017.

Belman, Dale, et al. "Who Is Affected by the Minimum Wage?." Industrial Relations, vol. 54, no. 4, Oct. 2015, pp. 582-621. EBSCOhost, doi:10.1111/irel.12107. Accessed 8 July 2017.

"Gun laws, mental health spending tied to fewer school shootings." Reuters, 13 Dec. 2016. World News Digest, InfoBase Learning, Accessed 8 July 2017.

Hodges, John Cunyus. Hodges' Harbrace Handbook. 16th ed., Thomson Wadsworth, 2007


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