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Gun control has become one of the most controversial topics in America, primarily after the many shootings that have occurred in the last twenty years. The question is, will more gun control be the answer to our problems? Will banning certain types of firearms, such as assault style weapons, really solve America’s gun violence problems? I think there are many other solutions to gun violence or mass shootings than implementing gun control laws. The Washington Post writes “The district’s best option, school leaders decided, was to form a volunteer cadre of armed teachers and other employees.
It was the most feasible school security option, they figured, for a community pinched by lean school budgets” (Truong). Police or armed teachers in schools would be a good option for schools with a budget as well. I don’t think that gun control help solve America’s gun violence problems.
I don’t think that gun control help solve America’s gun violence problems because it would just one more law criminals would break.
Also, if firearms were restricted or outlawed, then criminals would resort to illegal ways of buying them, and would not change anything. It would be the same with firearms if gun control was implemented and really isn’t going to change anything except take away a potential way non-violent citizens protect themselves.
My 1st reason I think gun control will be ineffective is that gun control laws do not deter crime, gun ownership deters crime. It may seem logical that more guns means more gun violence, but according to the statistics it’s actually the opposite.
A Nov. 26, 2013 study found that, between 1980 and 2009, ‘assault weapons bans did not significantly affect murder rates at the state level’ and ‘states with restrictions on the carrying of concealed weapons had higher gun-related murders’ (Gius). This shows that just because there are more laws against firearms, in this case assault weapons, doesn’t mean there is less gun violence. Also, John R. Lott Jr., PhD, author of More Guns, Less Crime: Understanding Crime and Gun Control Laws, stated ‘States with the largest increases in gun ownership also have the largest drops in violent crimes.” and “The effect of concealed gun laws on these crimes, where two or more people were killed, has been dramatic. When states passed these laws, the number of multiple-victim shootings declined by 84 percent. Deaths from these shootings plummeted on average by 90 percent and injuries by 82 percent.’ This shows that the solution to gun-related violent crimes isn’t taking firearms away, it’s promoting them that will actually lower gun-related violence.
My second reason I think gun control will be ineffective is that people aren’t educated on firearms. 95% of all US gun owners believe that children should learn about gun safety. After all, guns don’t kill people; people kill people. People need more firearm education and mental illness screening to prevent mass shootings. The Sporting Arms and Ammunition Manufacturers’ Institute stated, ‘Whether in the field, at the range or in the home, a responsible and knowledgeable gun owner is rarely involved in a firearms accident of any kind.’ Heidi Cifelli, Former Program Manager of the NRA’s Eddie Eagle GunSafe Program, stated, ‘Gun education is the best way to save young lives.’ The NRA states that the Eddie Eagle program is not meant to ‘teach whether guns are good or bad, but rather to promote the protection and safety of children by teaching them about everyday dangers such as swimming pools, electrical outlets, matchbooks, household poison, and guns are all treated simply as a fact of everyday life.’ According to Kyle Wintersteen, Managing Editor of Guns and Ammo, studies show that ‘children taught about firearms and their legitimate uses by family members have much lower rates of delinquency than children in households without guns’ and ‘children introduced to guns associate them with freedom, security, and recreation—not violence.’ I believe this would be a much better solution to gun violence than gun control and it wouldn’t violate the second amendment in any way.
My third reason I think gun control will be ineffective is that gun control laws infringe upon the right to self-defense and deny people a sense of safety. According to the National Rifle Association, guns are used for self-defense 2.5 million times a year. The police cannot protect everyone one hundred percent of the time. A survey taken by Pew Research Center shows that 61% of men and 56% of women surveyed said that stricter gun laws would ‘make it more difficult for people to protect their homes and families.’ Nelson Lund, JD, PhD, Professor at George Mason University School of Law, stated, ‘The right to self-defense and to the means of defending oneself is a basic natural right that grows out of the right to life’ and ‘many gun control laws interfere with the ability of law-abiding citizens to defend themselves against violent criminals.’ Constitutions in 37 US states protect the right to bear arms for self-defense, most with explicit language such as Alabama’s: ‘every citizen has a right to bear arms in defense of himself and the state.’ Wayne LaPierre, Executive Vice President of the NRA, stated, ‘The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun.’ A May 9, 2013 48% of convicted felons surveyed admitted that they avoided committing crimes when they knew the victim was armed with a gun. A Pew Foundation report found that 79% of male gun owners and 80% of female gun owners said owning a gun made them feel safer and 64% of people living in a home in which someone else owns a gun felt safer. Even Senator Dianne Feinstein, a gun control advocate, carried a concealed gun when her life was threatened and her home attacked by the New World Liberation Front in the 1970s.
My fourth reason gun control laws give too much power to the government and may result in government tyranny and the government taking away all guns from citizens. 57% of people surveyed by Pew Research in Feb. 2013 said that gun control laws would ‘give too much power to the government over the people.’ The NRA’s Wayne LaPierre stated, ‘if you look at why our Founding Fathers put the Second Amendment there, they had lived under the tyranny of King George and they wanted to make sure that these free people in this new country would never be subjugated again and have to live under tyranny.’ Alex Jones, radio host, in a Jan 7, 2013 interview with Piers Morgan, stated, ‘The Second Amendment isn’t there for duck hunting, it’s there to protect us from tyrannical government and street thugs… 1776 will commence again if you try to take our firearms!’
My fifth reason I think gun control will be ineffective is that MORE gun control is unnecessary because relatively few people are killed by guns. According to the Center for Disease Control and prevention’s ‘Leading Causes of Death Reports,’ between 1999 and 2013, Americans were 21.5 times more likely to die of heart disease (9,691,733 deaths); 18.7 times more likely to die of malignant tumors (8,458,868 deaths); and 2.4 times more likely to die of diabetes or 2.3 times more likely to die of Alzheimer’s (1,080,298 and 1,053,207 respectively) than to die from a firearm (whether by accident, homicide, or suicide). The flu and related pneumonia (875,143 deaths); traffic accidents (594,280 deaths); and poisoning whether via accident, homicide, or suicide (475,907 deaths) all killed more people between 1999 and 2013 than firearms. Firearms were the 12th leading cause of deaths for all deaths between 1999 and 2013, responsible for 1.3% of deaths with 464,033 deaths. Internationally, the claim that the United States has a major problem with firearm homicide is exaggerated. The United States is ranked 28 in international homicide rates with 2.97 gun murders per 100,000 people in 2012.
A 6th reason I think gun control will be ineffective is that gun control laws and lower gun ownership rates do not prevent suicides. Lithuania has one of the world’s lowest gun ownership rates, 0.7 guns per 100 people, but its suicide rate by any method was 45.06 per 100,000 people in 1999, the highest suicide rate among 71 countries with available information. Japan has a low gun ownership rate at 0.6 guns per 100 people and a high suicide rate of 18.41 suicides per 100,000 people in 1997, ranking it 11 out of 71 countries. South Korea has a low gun ownership rate, 1.1 guns per 100 people, but has a high rate of suicide and the highest rate of gun suicides, 12.63 per 100,000 people in 1997. By contrast the United States had the 26th highest suicide rate, 12.3 suicides per 100,000 people, in 2011 and the highest gun ownership rate, 88.8 guns per 100 people. Jim Barrett, author for TheTruthAboutGuns.com, stated, ‘the theory that the restriction or elimination of guns would have a positive effect on the overall suicide rate in the U.S. does not hold up under scrutiny.’
A 7th reason I think gun control will be ineffective is that gun control laws would prevent citizens from protecting themselves from foreign invaders. As unlikely as this seems, if the time ever came citizens would be left defenseless. The Libertarian Party stated, ‘A responsible, well-armed and trained citizenry is the best protection against domestic crime and the threat of foreign invasion.’ The NRA stated, ‘It is evident that the framers of the Constitution did not intend to limit the right to keep and bear arms to a formal military body or organized militia, but intended to provide for an ‘unorganized’ armed citizenry prepared to assist in the common defense against a foreign invader or a domestic tyrant.’ US Senator Marco Rubio, speaking about gun control laws during his 2016 presidential campaign, stated, ‘If God forbid, ISIS visits our life, our neighborhood, our school, any part of us, the last thing standing, the last line of defense could very well be our ability to protect ourselves.’
An 8th reason I think gun control will be ineffective is that strict gun control laws do not work in Mexico, and will not work in the United States. Mexico has some of the strictest gun control laws in the world and yet, in 2012, Mexico had 11,309 gun murders, which is 9.97 gun homicides per 100,000 people, compared to the United States that had 9,146 gun homicides, 2.97 per 100,000 people. The country has only one legal gun store, the Directorate of Arms and Munitions Sales, compared to at least 63,709 legal gun stores and pawn shops in the United States as of Feb. 10, 2014. Also, Mexico’s gun store is on a secure military base and customers must present a valid ID, go through a metal detector, and turn over cell phones and cameras to guards. To actually buy a gun, customers have to show proof of honest income, provide references, pass a criminal background check, prove any military duties were completed with honor, and be fingerprinted and photographed. If allowed to purchase a gun, the customer may buy only one gun, with a choice of only .38 caliber pistols or lower, and one box of bullets. Between 2006 and 2010, Mexico’s one gun shop sold 6,490 guns, yet as of 2012, Mexicans own about 15,000,000 guns, or about 13.5 guns per 100 people.
A 9th reason I think gun control will be ineffective is that gun control laws are racist. Current gun control laws are frequently aimed at inner city, poor, black communities who are perceived as more dangerous than white gun owners. Charles Gallagher, MA, PhD, the Chair of Sociology at LaSalle University, stated that some gun control laws are still founded on racial fears: ‘Whites walking down Main Street with an AK-47 are defenders of American values; a black man doing the same thing is Public Enemy No. 1.’ In the late 1960s, gun control laws were enacted in reaction to the militant, gun-carrying Black Panthers. Adam Winkler, MA, JD, UCLA Constitutional Law Professor, stated ‘The KKK began as a pro-gun control organization. Before the Civil War, blacks were never allowed to own guns’ so, after the Civil War, there was ‘constant pressure among white racists to keep guns out of the hands of African Americans because they would rise up and revolt.” In Virginia, in response to Nat Turner’s Rebellion, also called the Southampton Rebellion in which slaves killed 55 to 65 people in the most fatal slave uprising in the United States in 1831, a law was passed that prohibited free black people ‘to keep or carry any firelock of any kind, any military weapon, or any powder or lead and all laws allowing free black people to possess firearms were repealed.
A 10th reason I think gun control will be ineffective is that gun control efforts have proved ineffective. According to David Lampo, Publications Director of the Cato Institute, ‘there is no correlation between waiting periods and murder or robbery rates.’ Banning high-capacity magazines will not necessarily deter crime because even small gun magazines can be changed in seconds. The ‘gun show loophole’ is virtually nonexistent because commercial dealers, who sell the majority of guns at shows and elsewhere, are bound by strict federal laws. According to a Mar. 10, 2016 Lancet study, most state-level gun control laws do not reduce firearm death rates, and, of 25 state laws, nine were associated with higher gun death rates.
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