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Lincoln Memorial University Journal of Social Sciences

Abstract

The United States is a gun culture nation, and gun violence is a serious problem. Because there are more than 280 million guns in America with over 65 million handguns in circulation, the Republicans believe that there are too many guns in America to prevent criminals from illegally obtaining them. In addition, only law-abiding residents will honor gun-control laws. As a result, law-abiding residents will become defenseless, which will promote crime. Democrats, on the other hand, believe that the gun-related crime problem will never be solved until actions are taken to eliminate the availability of handguns. After all, it is hard to commit a gun-related crime if a person does not have the means to commit a gun-related crime. According to the Democrats, if the number of handguns in society is not reduced, then the gun-related crime problem will not be solved. According to the differential association theory, individuals become law violators when they are in contact with people, groups, and events that produce an excess of definitions that are favorable toward criminality. Criminal behaviors are influenced by the legal code and are learned via interactions with other people. Furthermore, a person’s behavior will be influenced by the frequency, importance, duration, and intensity of the social learning experiences. By allowing or restricting the carrying of concealed handguns for law-abiding residents, Democrats and Republicans attempt to create the ambience they envision, which they believe will reduce social harm. If high school students carry concealed handguns, which is against the law, then this would indicate that they are learning to do so in that politically created social environment. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to determine if there is a difference between Democrat and Republican states in the percentage of female high school students who carry handguns in their respective jurisdictions. This study examined electronic second-hand data collected in 2013, 2015, and 2017 by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Although Republican states seem to have higher mean rates of female high school students who carried handguns than Democrat states, the results of the logistic regression for repeated measures indicate that there is no statistically significant relationship between female high school students who carry handguns and political party. This study is important because it demonstrates that neither political party is better than the other when it comes to creating a social learning environment that discourages female high school students from carrying handguns.

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