|GUN CONTROL AND ITS RAMIFICATIONS
GUN CONTROL RAMIFICATIONS
The gun controversy on gun control has been an ongoing debate for decades. The new laws have not only affected the people who oppose firearms but more so, those who rely on it for protection. Even if numerous people have been harmed by the misuse of firearms, the government must not pass new gun laws because guns provide protection for self-defense of civilians. The Second Amendment grants the right to keep and bear firearms. The ethical reasoning here is that this is a right Americans have to bear arms. The ethical conflict that the Santa Clara University states is that the rights should respect the basic rights of other individuals. Thus, Formulating new laws will decrease people’s ability to use a gun. It will be difficult for citizens to use firearms for the purpose of self-defense. Stricter gun laws will not decrease crime rates so instead of making stricter gun laws and banning guns, smarter gun laws will help not only decrease crime rates but also equip citizens in protecting themselves from criminals.
The Second Amendment is the focus of this issue as it states that “A well-regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms shall not be infringed.” Arguments zero in on the interpretation of the law. The Second Amendment is seen as the main banner of gun rights activists. Gun control advocates state that gun control opponents misinterpret the law when they assume that the guns of private individuals are indicative of the absolute right to ownership. They state that the Second Amendment refers to gun ownership in a situation of “militia” and not for general purposes.
The positive effects of the strict enforcement of gun laws are immediately evident. The Brady Campaign believes that “background checks nationwide stopped over 600,000 felons and other prohibited purchasers from buying handguns from federally licensed firearm dealers.” Some say this is one big reason why there is a need to advocate gun control. America has turned into a violent nation as reports of violence are reported daily. This is aggravated by the television programs that depict only violence and chaos. These programs focus on gruesome murders which become normal incidences in people’s lives. Children usually imitate what they see on television and most of these programs are usually violent and inappropriate for their young minds.
Gun control has become a gross mistake and failure. As this research is written another gunning incident took place in Colorado, and of all places – a Planned Parenthood seminar. Guns have never really kept criminals from committing any crime at all. The efforts on prohibition have only been nuisances for those who are law-abiding ordinances. In fact, the effectiveness of guns have resulted in lives being protected, injuries being prevented, medical costs saved, crimes thwarted and properties preserved.
Criminals will always be present in society. These unscrupulous individuals will always find a way to find guns and other weapons. If a criminal is bent on committing a crime, he will always find a way to get a gun in order to accomplish his evil act. If a criminal knows that an ordinary citizen may have a gun in his home, then, he will always be on the lookout not only for the police but also for the person that he may want to do harm to.
Alexander writes, “Gun restrictions have not protected citizens in Atlanta, Washington, D.C., New York or Boston, much less anyone in Columbine or Red Lake. Nor did such laws protect Jews from Hitler or Stalin or Chinese peasants from Mao, etc., ad infinitum.” Alexander also advises politicians and gun controllers alike to look at the cultural aspects of the problem and not the instruments. The National Rifle Association of America has negated every effort by gun control proponents, especially the Brady Campaign group, whom they think will encroach on their rights under the Second Amendment. They maintain that gun ownership is their legal right, and they must not be limited to recreational purposes.
There are other weapons that people can use in crimes. A knife can also be used. Thus, if a person is intent on committing a crime, and is contemplating on using a weapon to help him carry out his crime to fruition, then banning of guns will not prevent any crime from happening. A lawless individual can simply resort to another kind of weapon that is available or accessible to him.
There is a need to design safety programs so that people are not clueless on how and when to bring out their licensed guns in order to protect themselves. This can reduce accidents and can make the gun owners empowered when a crime happens to them or within their location. These safety programs are supposed to give a thorough discussion of the measures they need to take when they are attacked. The topics that can be tackled during these orientation sessions are components of a gun, outdoor safety, why the need for a gun, and even hunting laws. Essentially, these programs are designed to help the youth on the important things they have to remember in gun safety. It must be noted that gun laws are founded on the main principle of making a country secured by limiting citizens from possessing guns. The main thing that a criminally-minded person assures is that he will never get caught. When they are given another chance, they will do their offense again. From this perspective, it is hard to imagine new stricter gun laws. The laws are in place anyway, and the sale of guns are not allowed in Chicago. It is considered the country’s murder capital and having and strict ordinance on guns did not reduce its murder rate at all.
Opinions are at odds with regards to the issue of gun control. Surprisingly, both advocates and opponents of gun control policies show statistics to back up their stance. The Bureau of Justice Statistics reports that: According to the National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS), in 2003, 449,150 victims of violent crimes stated that they faced an offender with a firearm. Incidents involving a firearm represented 7% of the 4.9 million violent crimes of rape and sexual assault, robbery, and aggravated and simple assault. The FBI's Crime in the United States estimated that 67% of the 16,503 murders in 2003 were committed with firearms.
Advocates of gun control claim that the increase in violence is positively correlated with gun possession. However, there are organizations like the National Rifle Association of America (NRA) and other proponents of gun rights, oppose such view. Alexander believes that these arguments contradict other factual studies. He maintains that “cities with the most restrictive gun laws, like Washington, D.C., and Atlanta, Georgia, have the highest murder rates in the nation.”
When guns are regulated, then, there will be less and less crimes in society. Criminals will also have a difficult time finding guns that they can use on innocent people. Gun control supporters feel that gun possession by just anybody is a contributing cause of increased incidence of crimes in the United States. In Guns and Terror, Berger and Henigan present studies to support their statement that “Gun shows are a breeding ground for gun sales to terrorist [and that] nothing in federal law prevents terrorists from quickly amassing arsenals of weapons”. Opponents of the gun control movement also believe that there is not enough factual evidence to the other side’s claim that banning the sale of some kinds of guns result to lower crime rates. Alexander accuses gun control groups of ‘demagogue-ing’ the issue and maintains that the root of the problem is culture, and not the gun. He even notes that “many of the problems in question are the result of Leftist doctrines.”
With the strict gun laws, one may surmise that the violence can be controlled, but there are still thousands of guns that circulate in the criminal black market. Therefore, gun control is definitely not the answer to the increasing violence and brutalities in American society, nor it is a sure measure or protection of the citizens. It is wise to study other kinds of social control in order to prevent crimes. Gun-related violence as well as socio-structural factors like ethnic and religious hostilities, high unemployment rates, and financial inequalities, lack of resources, political instability, and economic deprivation increase the likelihood of violence must be examined and studied
With the thousands of incidents involving guns and other types of firearms, there is a need to support the national government’s imposition of gun control on every state of this country. This problem must be addressed using sound public policies on the controlled used of guns throughout the United States. Gun control is a definite solution to prevent gun violence in our society. Hence, it must be absolutely enforced and monitored. Gun control is an effective and legal measure to protect society and is a good factor in preventing more gun violence from happening.
Michael Bloomberg has steps taken to make Oregon involved in a campaign that will require gun sales to go through universal checks that examine the backgrounds of would-be gun owners. It hopes to put an end to many gun-related incidences such as the Columbine murders, Kip Kinkel incident, and other such related violence. The guns he used were bought by his parents who just wanted him to learn how to shoot. However, it turns out that the guns were used to kill and destroy. More and more, people need to be cognizant of the kind of mentality that we are instilling in everyone when danger lurks around every corner. The checks closely monitor dishonorably discharged veterans, convicted felons, drug users, and people who are illegally staying in the country.
There must not be any gun control restrictions because the law-abiding citizens are not the ones who use these guns for just a flimsy reason. They are equipped to handle guns in the right circumstances and in the proper way. They would not commit robbery, murder or domestic violence. Only guns at the disposal of criminals are capable of being used in the most horrendous crime. There needs to be criminal control and not gun control since criminals are able to procure guns in any way possible.
Alexander, M. The ‘Gun Problem. Townhall.com http://www.townhall.com/columnists/markalexander/ma20050404.shtml
Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence. Gun Laws Work, Loopholes Don't.
Berger, L., and Henigan, D. (2001). Guns and Terror. Ed. Brady Center and http://www.bradycampaign.org/pdf/facts/reports/gandt.pdf
Gun Control vs. Gun Rights (2004). http://www.opensecrets.org/news/guns/
Encyclopedia of Public Health: Gun Control. Answer.com Website. http://www.answers.com/topic/gun-politics
Krouse, W. (2002). Gun Control. Almanac of Policy Issues.
National Rifle Association of America. “NRA and the Second Amendment.” 11 June 2005.
United States. Dept of Justice. Office of Justice Programs. Bureau of Justice Statistics (2004). “Firearms and Crime Statistics http://www.ojp.usdoj.gov/bjs/guns.htm
Encyclopedia of Public Health: “Gun Contrrol.” Answer.com Website. http://www.answers.com/topic/gun-politics
National Rifle Association Website. (2008). “Legislation: Issues.” National Rifle Association. http://www.nraila.org/recmap/usrecmap.aspx