The debate on gun control has raised certain issues that need to be addressed in order to lower the deaths of American citizens from gun shots. This term paper discusses the issue of the gun control policy. The topic has raised many questions, because there are people who oppose any action taken by the government to abolish possession of the fire arms, while others support the gun control policy. However, thinking of the issue carefully, you will agree with me, that there is need for the government to control the possession of guns.
Last year in June, the Supreme Court ruled that Americans had a right to keep guns at their homes, but only for self defense. It also ruled in favor of the possession of hand guns, saying that they are easier to handle, and that the party defending himself could point it towards the burglar, while he uses the other hand to dial up the police. Am not saying that the possession of the guns is a bad idea, but looking at the negative side of it, the crime rates will probably increase as the years move on. Why?
Because if the government does not do anything to control the guns situation, dangerous criminals will have easy access to guns, which will obviously translate to an increase in the crimes committed. It is also surprising to note that even the gun control activists no longer put much effort in the campaign as they are expected to by the Americans. A good example s the school shooting incidences that occurred in 2001, on the month of March, where there were shooting incidences at two schools in Pennsylvania and California.
People expected the then New York senator Charles E Schumer, who was a supporter of the gun control policy, to take serious actions on this incidence. But to the shock of many supporters of the policy, he simply suggested that the gun owners should set a ‘code of ethics’ on a voluntary basis on the use of guns. This was a very cold response from a supporter of the gun control movement, which in 2000 almost had the government change the law on guns. Sarah Brandy, a member of the Hand Gun control had once addressed millions of people at a march.
She told the Americans that if they had to make the future better, then they had to force the government to change the law on gun use. She also suggested to the people that if the government didn’t consider changing the laws, then in the coming, election, (the 2001 November election), Americans would elect in a government that would see the gun control policy changed into a law. However, this dream never came true. The former president Bush was elected in, and he was a supporter of the anti gun control policy. The election of Mr. Bush, who had been an ally with the N. R.
A, brought down all the hope and the possibilities of ever changing the gun policies that were in use then. The former president, as the Texas senator went ahead to sign laws that made it hard for the Americans to sue the manufacturers of weapons like guns, and those that made it legal for people to walk around with guns. (Dao James, 2001) It is not until the election of a new president, President Obama, that Americans have had the hope of seeing a change in the gun policies. The new president supports the gun control policy. Te issue on the gun control was a big debate, as his running mate Mc Cain supported Mr.
Bush’s gun policies. He said that he did not see ant problem with the Americans keeping guns. President Obama said that he saw a number of American homes with guns, but he did not see the need for the Americans to keep the guns in their homes. There is some hope that he won’t destroy the hopes of his many fans and supporters. The gun control history has been dated from as early as the 1700s. The 1700 amendment on gun policies did not ever change the practice that was there in the past of keeping guns away from the wrong people. Moreover, it did not keep the militia from owning the guns.
Americans who could buy the custom made guns for their personal uses continued to do so with much ease as the gun control regulations had been lessened and favored them. Te need to keep the fire arms for militia use was not the priority of the American men. The second amendment on the gun control saw the total number of the people that owned the guns increase rapidly. Even then, the constitutional analysts disagreed with the laws that allowed the citizens to own fire arms, especially if they were not in the military. Coming to the 1900s, guns control was still an issue, not only in America, but also in other countries like England and France.
There is a need to make strict or to take serious, the two Acts; the 1934 National Forearms Act and the 1968 Gun Control Act, which were big steps towards establishing policies on gun Act. These two would provide good guidelines to making policies that can be effective. The 1934 Act made a strict law that anyone with a gun had to register with the authorities. There was also a tax charge on the ownership of short barreled guns and machine guns. On the other hand, the 1968 Act put an end to the sale of guns through the mail order services. There were also changes that the interstate selling of guns and fire arms be illegal.
It was also illegal for minors to own or handle any sort of fire arms in any way. There was a limited access to the then newly manufactured weapons. The manufacturers, weapon dealers and those who carried out any activities on the sale of the weapons had to obtain a license from the responsible authorities. Other efforts that have been made on the gun control policy implementation were by the 106th congress. The congress suggested that there be a background check at the gun shows to ensure that no selling activities are done during the shows. It also enforced the use of fire arm locks, in order to prevent any gun shot accidents.
There was also a proposal to increase the controls on the use and ownership of guns and other assault weapons. These were good proposals that would have changed the guns situation in America. Despite the mention of these proposals by the congress, none of them were enacted. Using the media to gain American’s support on the gun control policy The use of the media to promote the gun control campaign would be effective. All the Americans have access to the media, be it trough the news paper, the televisions, the radio, the websites or by use of the bill boards.
In my efforts to support the gun control campaign, I would set advertisements in the television media, all to be aired at the same time and regularly, especially at prime time when most people are watching. It is also important to post the advertisement at the most watched television channels like CNN or BBC. This would be expensive, so funds are needed to support the campaign. Inviting donors to support the media advertisements is a good way to fund the petition. Featuring the crimes and the deaths that have occurred as a result of the gun exposure to people is also an important step towards the gun control petition.
Another way to influence the media is to talk to the media owners and any other persons who might have an influence on what the media airs. Further more, advertising such a petition on the news papers would attract people’s attention on the issue. Creating websites and making cites where people can sign to show their support for the gun control petition is another way that might not only show the number of people that support the petition, but also to know the intensity at which the Americans support the petition.
The main aim of using the media would be to make those who are not aware of the campaign more informed, and to convince, persuade or to change the minds of anti gun control Americans. The media will also give people the reason as to why they should support the gun control policies. Influencing the law makers. These are the government officials and politicians who have an influence on the laws that govern the country. It is true that you can’t force the politicians to do what you want them
to do, but you can either gain or buy their influence on the issues that are of your interest and that will make you achieve your goals. To do this, you have to earn the trust of the politicians, and this can be possible through the things that you say or do to them. Building good relationships with those that have influence in the government decisions and policies, including those that are not in support of the petition. You may also want to look for a way to favor the decision makers, so that in a way, you are also favoring them while as well reaching your goals.
For example, helping them achieve their political goals may be a motivation to them to support the gun control petition. Respecting them and their decisions is also a way of acknowledging their superiority, which might lead them to listening to what you have to tell them, hence gaining their attention. Changes that I would like to see on the gun act The government should amend the current law on guns. It has made it very easy to gain accessibility to guns, just as it is easy to buy bread at the local store. That is why there should be implementations that will make it hard for criminals to get guns.
The police should prioritize the cracking down of illegal gun owners so that the number of youths with guns reduces, and this will also lead to a drop in the number of crimes carried out using guns. This exercise should also make it hard for the criminals to obtain guns and other fire arms. A recent study that was conducted through administration of interviews with gang members and illegal gun dealers said that if guns were harder to obtain, then definitely the number of crimes committed using the guns would decrease. The death rates of victims from violent and brutal attacks would also decrease.
Statistics have shown that out of the approximated 18000 annual homicides, only a third lacks a gun involvement. Research has also shown that gun violence costs the American society about 100 billion dollars per year. (Cook P. etal, 2000) If the government made amendments on the gun laws, then they would save America a lot of lives and money. Some States like Chicago have strict rules about gun controls. The law makers should ensure that such strict regulations are imposed and made in to law. The gun control policy should also consider allowing the hunters to keep their guns.
Most hunters do not keep their guns for purposes of committing crimes, but as sport equipment. One of the reasons why hunters should be allowed to have guns is because they help keep the deer population in control. If they are denied the right to own and keep guns, then the deer population is gong to increase. Banning the hunters from keeping the guns would be dangerous for the deer as the population increase would mean that the food would decrease. The second amendment law therefore needs to be kept. Also, if hunters are not allowed to keep guns, there will be a shortage of the funds used to maintain and conserve the wildlife habitats.
The licensing fee and taxes paid by the hunters for their guns is used to maintain the national parks. Statistics show that most of the funds come from the payments made on the guns. Should the hunters be restricted from hunting with guns, they will use other ways to hunt, like practicing drive hunts. This is hunting done by hitting the animals with the cars. It is a very dangerous way of hunting and could lead to huge accidents or worse, deaths. It should also be noted that hunting is also a good sport that is supported by most Americans.
The law makers should regulate the gun policies, but allow the hunters to keep the guns so as not to take away what some people enjoy doing. I would also like to see the new laws on guns allow the honest people keep their guns for the sake of protecting themselves. It is said that for every 13 seconds, an American uses a gun to defend himself against a criminal. New policies should see to it that ownership of guns for the purpose of protecting and defending oneself should not be confused with the intentions of the criminals and other bandits.
A good reason why the support for the guns for defense purposes should be is because Americans can not entirely be dependent on the police for their safety. It should be known that the police do not actually prevent the crime from occurring, but they only intervene after the crime has already been committed. It is in very rare occasions that the police have arrived at a crime scene before the crime is done. Another reason for the keeping of the guns for self defense is that a world where homes are not allowed to defend them selves with guns is more prone to death through shootings by criminals.
Restricting the use of guns for self defense in a society that is full of crimes involving guns is not doing the society any good. Instead, regulations should be set on restricting the criminals from accessing the guns. (Kleck G, 1997) Gun registration and court sentences There should be a national wide program to ensure that any person that purchases a gun is registered in the system. For example, a person who lives in New York, which has strict gun laws, is in need of a gun; he can go to a State with less strict laws on the guns, ask a friend who lives there to buy a gun for him and then smuggles the gun back to New York.
Even though that is an illegal practice, people still do it and the bottom line will be that the person will be in possession of a gun. There should be severe punishments for those who buy the guns for others incase they are caught. That would be enough to scare them. Also, if there were strict laws on gun purchases, then no person would purchase a gun for the other. I would also suggest that the waiting period during the purchase of the guns be extended instead of being one day as some people want it to. A thorough background check on the gun purchasers is also important.
Individuals involved in juvenile cases, any misdemeanors and any fishy backgrounds should not be allowed town or carry guns around. The sentences imposed on criminals who use guns should be increased to scare any criminals intending to commit a crime. Emphasis on measures to control crime, (education. ) Studies have shown that there is a direct relationship between crime offenders and lack of education. This occurs when the youth and teenagers are idle because they have no jobs or do not attend school. They tend to involve themselves in illegal activities, among them the possession of illegal fire arms and using them to commit crimes.
Parents have been advised to invest in educating their children because this will prevent them from becoming criminals and would also make the rate of the crimes to drop. A lot of money is spent in catering for the cost of the crimes committed with guns, including the hospital bills and buying the fire arms. Gun education should also be an important part of the gun act, where it can be a requirement for gun purchasers to undergo a special education to ensure that they are able to handle guns. Arguments against my position Although guns are an advantage, they too have serious disadvantages.
The obvious problem is that they make injuring or killing people very easy. There are different types of murders; the premeditated first degree murder, in which the killer could kill, whether there is the presence of the gun or not, or given more time to think of how to kill the person. Then, there’s murder during the process of committing a crime, murder among friends, lovers, or the careless murder committed by criminals just any how. There are also the injuries as a result of gun crimes, but are not sufficient enough to cause death.
Deaths because of gun wounds are decreasing, not because people are not killing anymore, but because the doctors are getting more equipped on treating gun wounds. The presence of a gun when committing the crime makes the crime more lethal. If the murder is that of an acquaintance or between any close people, then the presence of the gun makes it easier to kill, because it is fast. The person does not think of what he is doing, until after he has already killed the other. This is especially common with people who get angry easily and have an easy access to guns.
Although it is reasonable to keep guns for self defense, they may also be a reason to cause us harm. Guns are also an aid for people who want to commit suicide. Research shows that residents of homes that have a gun are likely to commit suicide five times more than of the homes where there is no access to guns. There are controversies on whether suicide is illegal or immoral, but that doesn’t change the fact that guns make the suicide much easier, especially when the victim is depressed, or is under drug influence.
Arguments against my proposal The imposition of more strict rules on the gun control act will not prevent the criminals from committing crimes. Why, because there are other available weapons which can be used to kill or injure other people. These are weapons such as knives, machetes, clubs or any other object that can kill. More recent studies have also shown that when murder is committed using a gun, the probability that it would still have occurred if a knife was used is twice that of the gun.