Can We Reduce Gun Violence?

Photograph by Peter Hapak for TIME

Our iconic 1968 "the gun in America" cover (with its striking illustration by artist Roy Lichtenstein) lamented the fact that while there were more than 20,000 local weapons laws on the books, there were only two federal statutes--one of which merely taxed interstate shipments of gangster-style weapons like machine guns. Gun laws, including the original one, the Second Amendment, have never been easy to pass, and they are rarely passed without controversy. The difference this time is that the massacre of 20 first-graders in Newtown, Conn., was so heinous and so shocking that it shifted the conversation about guns--and did so...

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