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Gun crime is more prevalent in the US than in other rich countries

It’s a unique problem.

Dylan Matthews is a senior correspondent and head writer for Vox's Future Perfect section and has worked at Vox since 2014. He is particularly interested in global health and pandemic prevention, anti-poverty efforts, economic policy and theory, and conflicts about the right way to do philanthropy.

Gun homicides are considerably more common in the US than in peer countries.There were 35.5 gun homicides per million people in the US in 2013, compared to only 4.9 per million in Canada, and 0.93 per million in the UK, according to Global Burden of Disease study.

The following chart by Vox’s Javier Zarracina summarizes how America compared using earlier, 2012 figures:

Javier Zarracina/Vox

A big part of this is that the US just has many more guns per capita than any other country:

Javier Zarracina/Vox

Gun ownership rates don’t explain all the variation in homicide rates; lots of poor countries, particularly in Central America, have gun homicide rates many times that of the United States.

But among developed countries, both gun and overall homicide is much, much higher in the US, even after the great crime drop of the 1990s, as this chart comparing the US, Canada, and UK illustrates (other European countries also remain far lower):