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“Understanding Gun Violence” A Talk by Dr. Cassandra Crifasi

Nov 16, 2018
Cassandra Crifasi

Sunday, November 18, at 2:00 P.M.

Immanuel United Church of Christ, 99 S. Waverly St., Shillington

Cass Crifasi is an Assistant Professor of Health Policy and Management at Johns Hopkins where she serves as the Deputy Director of the Center for Gun Policy and Research. She is also the Deputy Director of the Johns Hopkins-Baltimore Collaborative for Violence Reduction. Dr. Crifasi’s research focuses broadly on public safety including injury epidemiology and prevention, gun violence, attitudes and behaviors of gun owners, and underground gun markets.

On a Friday morning in June, Cassandra Crifasi loads a 9mm semi-automatic pistol, takes aim, pulls the trigger—and 25 feet away, a paper target takes a hit to the chest. Crifasi peers through the gunsight, then pulls the trigger again, and again. The shots are deafening, bouncing off the concrete walls of this gun range tucked into a Severna Park, Maryland, strip mall. Neither the noise nor the kick from the gun rattles Crifasi. She shoots twice a month, so she’s used to it. When the magazine is empty she reloads.

This time she aims for the head. Because, she says, “you gotta prepare for the zombies.”

Crifasi—who goes by Cass—is an assistant professor in Health Policy and Management . . .and one of the few gun policy researchers in the nation who not only owns guns but regularly shoots for sport. . . . You don’t have to be a gun policy researcher to know that the debate over the right to bear arms is one of the most persistent divides in the U.S.—one driven less by evidence than rhetoric, fear and entrenched narratives. Crifasi, 34, is part of what she calls “the large moderate swath that is invisible”: those who believe the Second Amendment protects citizens’ right to have a firearm in their home, but also believe that right should be regulated by effective, evidence-based gun policy.

Event sponsored by the Higher Education Council of Berks County

A Follow-up Convening will be held in the Spring

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