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Expand chart
Data: Violence Policy Center; Chart: Will Chase/Axios

Nearly 3,000 Latinos each year have died from gunfire in the United States over the last two decades, making them twice as likely to be shot to death than white non-Hispanics, according to a study from the Violence Policy Center.

By the numbers: Almost 70,000 Latinos were killed with firearms between 1999 and 2019, 66% of them in homicides, according to the center’s data analysis.

  • The nonprofit found that in 2019 there were 5.15 Latino victims of homicides per 100,000 people, nearly double the rate of 2.62 per 100,000 for non-Hispanic white people.
  • Latinos were also more likely to be killed by strangers in circumstances like arguments or alcohol-related brawls, per the center, which advocates for gun control.

Yes, but: Latino communities are divided on gun control: A Pew survey from 2020 found 80% of Latinos who identify as Democrats favor stricter gun laws, compared to 42% who identify as Republicans.

Between the lines: The yearly rise in reported firearm incidents involving Latinos stems from campaigns that encourage them to buy guns, a separate analysis from the center found.

  • Some bought arms for self protection after a man drove to a Walmart in El Paso, Texas, with the expressed intention of killing "Mexicans." He is charged with killing 23 people, eight of them Mexican nationals, and wounding nearly two dozen more.

Driving the news: On Wednesday, a day after the second anniversary of that mass shooting, Mexico’s government filed a lawsuit against 10 gun manufacturers in the U.S.

  • Mexican Foreign Secretary Marcelo Ebrard said firearm companies have contributed to the mass bloodshed of Mexicans at the hands of drug cartels, since they use guns legally purchased in the U.S.and illegally smuggled across the border.

Yes, but: The lawsuit is mostly symbolic, since the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act safeguards the industry from almost all civil liability.

Of note: The Violence Policy Center study analyzed official databases, but its authors stress that the actual numbers "of Hispanic victims of gun violence is almost certainly higher than" reported.

  • Relevant agencies rarely capture reliable data on ethnicity, like Latinidad, and not all government reports include information beyond racial data.
  • Polls also show Latinos are less inclined to report crimes they witnessed or were victims of, either because of immigration status or general wariness towards officers.

Go deeper: An undercount of Latinos killed by police

Listen to Marina discuss the lawsuit on Axios Today.

Go deeper

Study: Unhealthy stress coping habits may help lower depression rates among Latinos

A study finds unhealthy habits like smoking help Latinos cope with depression. Photo: Photo by Inti Ocon/AFP via Getty Images

Latinos with an unhealthy response to chronic stress, like smoking or constantly eating junk food, tend to report fewer depression symptoms like hopelessness and restlessness in the long run than those with no dangerous coping mechanisms, according to an analysis.

Why it matters: Research has shown that stressors throughout life increase not only the body's wear and tear, known as allostatic load, but also the odds of having depression past age 60. But the study found the link was slightly weakened when Latinos engaged in an unhealthy coping mechanism.

Biden announces new strategy to reduce military and veteran suicides

President Biden speaks at forum on gun safety in 2019. Photo: Stephen Maturen/Getty Images

President Biden announced on Tuesday a new strategy to reduce military and veteran suicide that includes promoting safe firearm storage and guides for firearm dealers.

Why it matters: "Since 2010, more than 65,000 veterans have died by suicide — more than the total number of deaths from combat during the Vietnam War and the operations in Iraq and Afghanistan combined," the White House wrote in a news release.

Updated 59 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Supreme Court rejects Trump's attempt to shield documents from Jan. 6 committee

Photo: Melissa Sue Gerrits/Getty Images

The Supreme Court rejected on Wednesday night a bid by former President Trump to block the release of documents and records from his administration to the House committee investigating the Jan. 6 riot at the Capitol.

Why it matters: Trump asked the Supreme Court to step in and block the release of the documents last month after a panel on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit unanimously denied his attempt to prevent the committee from obtaining the materials.