Reducing Violence News Archive

  • Why are so many young people carrying guns?


    “True healing really requires vulnerability, which is next to impossible in situations of fear or intimidation.” Our researchers Basaime Spate and Rachel Swaner join Sheilah Kast about the findings in our youth gun-carrying report, adding to the timely discussion on gun violence in Baltimore. The relationships between fear, vulnerability, and the security of street networks are key themes on this episode of On the Record.

  • Putting the safety on: New gun violence blueprint takes better approach

    New York Daily News

    A new blueprint from the Mayor’s Office outlines a holistic, citywide strategy to curb gun violence in New York, one that works to address some of the underlying social factors—like education and economic opportunity—behind the crisis. This op-ed from the New York Daily News cites our recent study’s finding that young people in Brooklyn overwhelmingly carry guns for protection, making the case for more community investment and less reliance on law enforcement in the struggle to reduce gun violence.

  • Open | NYC Youth Gun Culture


    Center researchers Rachel Swaner and Basaime Spate meet with Brittany Aubain of BronxNet to discuss our recent study on why young people in Crown Heights, Brooklyn, carry guns. They talk through what they gleaned from in-depth conversations with more than 100 young gun-carriers—from widespread fear of dying to economic insecurity and distrust of police—and why our policies and programs need to take these young people’s perspectives to heart in order to succeed.

  • Why Some Young People Carry Guns

    The Brian Lehrer Show, WNYC

    The researchers behind our report on young gun-carriers in Brooklyn, New York—Basaime Spate, Elise White, and Javonte Alexander—walk through their study on Brian Lehrer’s radio show for WNYC. They touch on the themes of vulnerability and trust, central to understanding the reasons young people carry as well as their relationships with police. “This research here really opened the door…to be able to have those conversations, those vulnerable conversations that they wouldn't normally have when they are out on the block because of the hypervigilance that they are always in,” said Spate.

  • Slate's "Political Gabfest" Mentions "Two Battlefields"


    On Slate’s Political Gabfest podcast, Emily Bazelon discusses our recent report on why young people in Brooklyn, New York, carry guns. In the show’s “cocktail chatter” segment, Bazelon touches on the four types of gun-carriers identified in the study, the pervasive sense of fear that drives some young people towards guns, and other insights from the report.

  • Report shows most gun-carrying young adults in Crown Heights do so for protection of self and family

    News12 Brooklyn

    Researchers Basaime Spate, Elise White, and Javonte Alexander join News12 Brooklyn to discuss our groundbreaking report on why some young New Yorkers are carrying guns. Led by researchers with first-hand experience in the street networks of young gun-carriers, the study identified fear as the overwhelming factor behind the decision to carry. As Basaime Spate puts it, this was the first study of its kind to “have a shooter and a gang member talking about why they are part of a gang, why they are picking up a gun.”

  • Addressing some Baltimore teens’ belief they ‘need’ a gun is at the heart of efforts to reduce youth violence

    The Baltimore Sun

    As gun violence surges among young people in Baltimore, advocates and policymakers are looking for ways to address the underlying reasons that some young people turn to guns. The Baltimore Sun explores new, grassroots approaches to combating youth gun violence in the city and draws insight from our study of why 100 young people in Brooklyn, New York choose to carry.

  • Safety fears prompt more Brooklyn youths to carry guns, report finds

    New York Daily News

    Amid a spike in violence among youth, a team of researchers from the Center spoke to 100 young people living in Crown Heights, Brooklyn, about why they carry guns. Their answers singled out fear—for their own lives and the lives of their loved ones—as the main factor driving their gun-carrying. The New York Daily News quotes one 19-year-old boy who spoke with our researchers in the landmark study: “My biggest fear is somebody coming for me and they can’t get to me, they try to get to my family.”

  • Young People Carry Guns Because They Fear Death, Study Finds

    The Trace

    “It’s not about being cool or being tough. It’s just more about being safe.” In-depth conversations we had with 103 young gun-carriers in Brooklyn, New York (ages 15 to 24), reveal that they primarily carry guns out of fear. In its daily bulletin, The Trace discusses our new study—entitled “Two Battlefields”: Opps, Cops, and NYC Youth Gun Culture—and explores how its findings tie into other recent research on guns in youth culture.