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University of Wyoming launches center dedicated to non-partisan firearms research

UW Firearms Research Center.jpg
UW firearms research center
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As the debate over gun control in the U.S. continues, the University of Wyoming (UW) has launched a new center dedicated to all aspects of firearms research.

The new Firearms Research Center (FRC) seeks to bring together voices concerned with all aspects of firearms for in-depth research, collaboration, and discussions, and to create opportunities for learning. Dr. George Mocsary, Co-Founder and Director of the center, said the center will be a focal point for all gun-related practitioners, scholars, policymakers, and practically anyone doing firearms-related work or interested in firearms in general.

“We are starting the center to fill a need,” Dr. Mocsary said. “There is also a lot of misinformation and misunderstanding out there about the field. The discourse on what is truly a vast array of firearms-related subjects and stakeholders is narrowed down to just a few. So the industry, lawyers in the field, regulators, hunters, law enforcement, military, just to name a few, their voices go ignored. Journalists, politicians, and others regularly make false incorrect statements about all things firearms and their regulation. The center will support original research on topics involving firearms, and engage a broad array of firearm-relevant topics and stakeholders, in ways that produce knowledge. It is a place where someone can just go and get raw information about forearms-related topics.”

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George Mocsary - Firearms Research Center

Dr. Mocsary said the center hopes to bring to the conversation the background economic and commercial voices of the firearms industry.

“... everything from manufacturing to firearm trust, to legal compliance for federal firearm licenses, economic development, military and law enforcement, hunting, and conservation, shooting sports, criminal law from both the defense and prosecution standpoints, public health, culture, language and rhetoric, firearms technology from the intellectual property to the forensics folks, to 3D printing, to art and design, property rights... Anyone who uses, polices, makes, or regulates firearms is someone who we want to be involved with this. No one else does that at the moment”, Dr. Mocsary said.

The issue of gun control policy has divided America across political lines. A series of mass shootings last year from Uvalde, Texas to Buffalo, New York, and Colorado Springs, Colorado; fueled the debate over gun control and put pressure on various states and the federal government to enact laws towards gun control. Dr. Mocsary said the center is nonpartisan, and all views and stakeholders across the political and policy spectrum are welcome.

“There is no political element to this center”, Dr. Mocsary said. “It is a non-partisan center. Our goal is to bring together all kinds of voices from across the policy spectrum. We’d like to bring together folks from all views and all interests, and all stakeholders whose stake in the topics comes from all directions you can imagine. That’ll certainly mean that we focus on, and highlight, and publish the research of people with their particular views. But the center itself does not have a viewpoint.”

Dr. Mocsary also pointed out that the new Firearms Research Center is not funded by the University of Wyoming or the state of Wyoming. Funding is open to the general public and anyone can give to the center.

Friday Otuya is a master's student in International Studies at the University of Wyoming.
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