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Guns Around the Country: Tougher State Laws Linked to Fewer Shooting Deaths

After last week's Oregon community college campus shooting, President Obama gave a speech calling for more gun control. He said that stricter regulations lead to fewer gun deaths, a fact that probably came from a 2015 National Journal investigation.

The investigation concluded that there was a direct relationship between loose gun laws and more gun deaths. But not every state fits neatly into the paradigm. Let's take a look at the research and the data and see how deep the connection between the two goes.

Almost a year after voting to legalize recreational marijuana, today is the first day that pot sales are legal in Oregon. (As if Portland needed to become more popular.)

But Oregon is still transitioning into a full-fledged marijuana industry, so here are a few things you should know about recreational marijuana sales in the state:

Is It Illegal to Smoke in a Car With a Child in the U.S.?

It has been a while since people could smoke in most restaurants or coffee shops or hotel rooms, but they could light up in cars. Not so if children are present -- at least not in the United Kingdom as of October 1st, 2015.

The new U.K. smoking law bans smoking in private vehicles with passengers under 18 in England and Wales. Violators will be subject to a fine of up to $80, as are drivers who allow smoking passengers. This move is part of an international trend and is based on an understanding that secondhand smoke is harmful

Are there similar laws in the United States or elsewhere around the world?

September 18 is National HIV/AIDS and Aging Awareness Day. One thing many people aren't aware of is how many ways being HIV positive is criminalized, or how it can lead to increased charges or more severe criminal penalties.

From state disclosure requirements to decades in prison for spitting, HIV criminalization is varied and may include some laws you've never heard of.

Psychedelic drugs like lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD), psilocybin contained in "magic mushrooms," and methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA) remain listed as Schedule I narcotics by the federal government. As a result, these drugs are illegal under the Controlled Substances Act (CSA).

But recent studies have shown that certain psychedelics, when paired with psychotherapy, can have positive impacts for patients suffering from anxiety, addiction, and post-traumatic stress disorders (PTSD). Does that mean your therapist can prescribe you acid, Molly, or some other psychedelic drug?

Just as the Second Amendment doesn't guarantee you the right to have arms made out of actual, live bears (thanks, framers of the Constitution), it also doesn't guarantee you the right to any type of weaponry. Generally speaking, state gun control laws can restrict the types of firearms citizens may own.

A recent case in Massachusetts may stretch the limits of state gun restrictions, specifically whether the right to bear arms extends to Tasers and stun guns.

The issue of sexual assault on college campuses has exploded in recent years and some states have responded with strict affirmative consent laws, also known as "Yes Means Yes" laws.

How do these laws work? How can they protect you from sexual assault and how can you make sure you have your partner's full consent before engaging in sexual activity?

Back in December 2014, the U.S. Department of Justice said that it would refrain from enforcing federal marijuana prohibitions on reservations. Then, earlier this month, officers from the Drug Enforcement Administration, Bureau of Indian Affairs, state, and local law enforcement raided two large-scale marijuana growing facilities on a northern California reservation.

While the U.S. Attorney's Office has yet to file charges in the case, it has left many wondering about the legal status of marijuana on Native American reservations.

Thousands of people are spending weeks, months, even years in Rikers in New York City for non-violent crimes, just because they couldn't pay their bail.

According to the New York Criminal Justice Agency, only 12 percent of defendants in New York City can pay bail. As part of a growing movement calling for bail reform after Kalief Browder's suicide, New York City recently announced that its judges will start offering bail alternatives to certain offenders.

Before states passed laws decriminalizing the possession of marijuana, thousands of people were arrested, convicted, and sentenced to jail for possession.

For many who were convicted for marijuana possessions, their crime is no longer a crime under new state laws, which allow adults to possess a small amount of marijuana. However, those already convicted are still in prison serving sentences for outdated law.

Is there any legal recourse for those who were convicted before marijuana possession became legal?