Given the cost of gun violence, why doesn’t the US Federal Government just pay gun manufacturers not to sell as many guns to civilians?

The US gun industry is a $49 billion dollar industry that in 2015 resulted in roughly 290,000 direct and indirect jobs. The industry also costs the American society about $229 billion due to fatal and non-fatal violence. This includes $8.6b in direct costs — emergency response, police investigations, prisons, etc (see video below). The total annual revenue of guns and ammunition manufacturers is about $14 billion ($1.5b profit); while gun stores and associated businesses typically record revenues above $3.1 billion ($479m profit).

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$49b amounts to about $154 per capita. The cost, at $229b, is about $720 per capita — more than 4.5 times the economic impact of the gun industry. If these figures are anywhere near the truth then the government should consider becoming an even bigger customer of weapons manufacturers. Or it could simply pay gun manufacturers money so they can limit their annual production of guns.