To end more than 100,000 Americans Killing and Maiming Themselves with Guns each Year.*
To educate Americans--including gun owners and people-at-risk--about the effects of gun violence on human beings, through first-hand accounts and portraits of survivors.
Oral histories of gun violence survivors have special relevance for gun violence victims and their families, for people with guns in their homes, for youth, policy makers and legislators, for political activists, for mental health and social service workers, for medical staff, for military personnel and their families, for humanitarians.
We invite perpetrators of gun violence, gun manufacturers, and gun dealers to read these oral histories to deepen their awareness of the cost of gun violence to individuals and their families, and to communities around the country.
Wounded in America will be exhibited at the Northwestern Mutual Art Gallery at Cardinal Stritch University, Milwaukee, WI from September 11, 2009 through November 1, 2009. The opening reception will be on Friday, October 16, 2009, from 5:30-8:30 pm. On September 24 from 6:30-8:00 pm there will be an in-gallery presentation by Stephanie Arena and Robert Drea.
Wounded in America was exhibited at Chico State University, CA. from May 4th to May 31st, 2009.
Wounded in America was exhibited at Grace Cathedral, San Francisco, from January 13 to March 27, 2009, 30,000-40,000 people visited the exhibit.
From September 16-December 8, 2008 WIA was displayed at the John F. Kennedy Memorial Library, California State University, Los Angeles.
From June 25-July 19, 2008 Wounded in America was displayed at VIVA Gallery, Valley Institute of Visual Arts, Sherman Oaks, California.
VIDEO A piece on the exhibit aired on CNN's American Morning cnn.com/video/#/video/us/2008/07/14/anderson.wounded.in.america.cnn?iref=videosearch
Excerpts from Wounded in America were exhibited at Los Angeles Valley College, from April 7 through May 8, 2008, Valley Glen, California.
The Wounded in America exhibit was displayed at the National Civil Rights Museum in Memphis, Tennessee, from August-December 2006, where approximately 14,000 people viewed it.
The museum's Director of Curatorial Services, Barbara Andrews, remarked,"The exhibition continues to resonate in a powerful way with visitors. If one were using this exhibit to explore the viewing time people spend in such settings, we'd have to write a new chapter, they are so engaged."For information about exhibiting WIA, or to give feedback please contact us at: firstname.lastname@example.org
During the past 100 years more Americans have been killed by gun violence within the United States than died from combat wounds, disease, and accidents in World War I, World War II, the Korean War, the Vietnamese War, and the Gulf and Iraq War combined. (National Center for Health Statistics and the Department of Veteran Affairs)
In the United States gun violence is one of the leading causes of injury, and death by injury. We need to wage a war on gun violence in the United States It kills many more Americans each year than are killed in foreign wars or in other acts of violence inside or outside the United States.
In the U.S. many more children and adults are injured and killed by gun violence than in any other nation with a comparable standard of living.
The more than 100,000 people injured or killed in the U.S. annually in shootings* make gun violence second to car accidents in causing injuries, permanent disabilities such as paralysis and brain damage, and deaths.
Every 6 minutes an American is shot. Gun injury from assault and homicide affects all Americans but is highest among the poor. Gun suicide is highest among older white males living in rural communities, and among teenagers. In the year 2005 in the United States there were approximately 30,694 shooting deaths, and in 2006 71,417 non-fatal shooting injuries.*
Gun violence is defined as gun suicides and attempts, gun assaults and homicides, and gun accidents.
(*Statistical data is from the Centers for Disease Control's National Center for Injury Prevention and Control.)
Guns make it easier, faster, and more efficient for one person to harm another person--they are designed for this capability.
Guns confer tremendous power to the people who wield them. This power can be out of all proportion to people's real power or status unarmed.
Support federal background checks for all gun sales. About 40% of gun sales occur outside the federal system of background checks.
The Federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms estimates that two million secondhand guns are sold in the U.S. each year and that they are largely untraceable.1
Close loopholes that allow criminals, the mentally ill, substance abusers, and buyers with a history of violent or abusive behavior access to guns through undocumented firearm sales at gun shows, garage sales, and through other secondhand sales between private parties. Make sure children and teenagers never have access to guns in the home. Teens have a high rate of suicide; any access to guns, especially loaded guns, make teen suicide more likely.
Advocate a federal picture/number I.D. for all gun owners, and a title for every gun sold (just as there is a title and license for every car bought or sold, there must be a title and license for every gun bought or sold in the United States, otherwise too many guns change hands without proper background checks and fall into the hands of criminals.) Work toward the goal of computer tracking all guns and all gun sales. Support shutting down gun shops that are known sources for illegally bought and sold firearms. End secondhand selling practices that allow gang members and other criminals to buy guns casually out of the trunks of cars with no questions asked; make it impossible for teenagers-at-risk to get guns. End the epidemic of urban teenage boys dying and becoming paraplegic and quadraplegic from gun shot wounds.
Advocate and use non-violent solutions.
In the overwhelming majority of crime encounters victims do not use firearms for defense.
In 99.3 percent of documented crime encounters victims did not use a gun for defense (Bureau of Justice Statistics).2
Groups most affected: White men; Poor Americans; Youth of all races; African Americans from all income levels (9 times the risk of whites); Hispanics; Native American Indians.
Gun violence is one of the leading causes of death for African Americans, Hispanics, Native American Indians, male youth, and white males between the ages of 15-64 years. 3
American children are more at risk from gun violence than children of any other nation with a similar standard of living. In one year, firearms killed no children in Japan, 19 in Great Britain, 57 in Germany, 109 in France, 153 in Canada, and 5,285 in the United States. 4
Who pays for the 100,000 shooting injuries and deaths in the U.S. annually?
Taxpayers and the insured. The total cost of gun violence was estimated at $100 billion in 2001. We pay through acute and long term medical care for both the insured and uninsured, through crime victim assistance programs, lifelong disability payments and services to survivors and families.
The Freedom Issue: We ask the members of our community to work for freedom from gun violence and the suffering it causes for human beings. To work to free our society from the crippling cost of gun violence. To contribute to America by putting the public's good first.
The Wounded in America project was made possible in part through the support of the Chicago Chapter of PSR and its funders, the Pike's Peak Community Foundation and the Medical College of Wisconsin. The WIA website is solely operated and owned, written and edited by the authors of Wounded in America, writer, Stephanie Arena, and photographer, Robert Drea, and is their copyrighted material. The website, the fifty stories and portraits of gun violence survivors, and the name Wounded in America, is the sole copyrighted material of Stephanie Arena, and Robert Drea, 2001-2008.
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