Newtown shooting reignites gun control debate

Eric Mueller places 27 wooden angels
Eric Mueller places 27 wooden angels he made in his yard down the street from the Sandy Hook School on Dec. 16, 2012 in Newtown, Conn. Twenty-six people were shot dead, including 20 children, after a gunman identified as Adam Lanza opened fire at Sandy Hook Elementary School.
Mario Tama/Getty Images

In the wake of the 27 deaths in the Newtown, Conn. school shooting, we'll look at the state of gun control in America. We'll look at our country's current policies and laws and discuss why the topic is so charged.

Pew Center on the States recently reported on renewed talk about gun control:

Speaking to Candy Crowley on CNN's "State of the Union" Sunday (December 16), [Connecticut Governor Dan] Malloy suggested Congress should have never let the 1994 ban on military-style assault weapons expire, as it did in 2004. The ban included several semi-automatic models of pistols, rifles and shotguns, quick-firing weapons used by gunmen in recent mass killings, including the one in Newtown.

"These are assault weapons. You don't hunt deer with these things," Malloy said. "One can only hope we'll find a way to limit these weapons that really only have one purpose."

Other recent shootings have done little to spur change to gun laws across the nation, as Stateline has reported. In fact, state lawmakers have largely sought to scale back restrictions, most recently in Michigan and Ohio.

Robert J. Spitzer, chair of the Political Science Department at State University of New York College at Cortland and the author of "The Politics of Gun Control," will join The Daily Circuit Tuesday, Dec. 18 to talk about the debate moving forward.

James Peterson, director of Africana studies and associate professor of English at Lehigh University, and National Journal Hotline Editor-in-Chief Reid Wilson will also join the discussion.

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READ MORE ABOUT GUN CONTROL DEBATE:

Another mass shooting revives debate on gun laws (Pew's Stateline)

Gun-control advocates say Connecticut massacre could be tipping point (Washington Post)

In town at ease with its firearms, tightening gun rules was resisted (New York Times)

Gun advocate on Connecticut shooting: Armed teachers could have minimized tragedy (Huffington Post)

In Newtown shooting's wake, divisions remain over gun control (CBS News)

The case for more guns and more gun control (The Atlantic)

Australia's 1996 gun law reforms: faster falls in firearm deaths, firearm suicides, and a decade without mass shootings (BMJ Journals)

A land without guns: How Japan has virtually eliminated shooting deaths (The Atlantic)