Gun control


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Gun control

  1. 1. Spencer 1 Elizabeth Spencer FYS 100-204 Harold Blanco 2/8/14 Gun Control: Less Legislation One of the underlying issues within these articles is that it seems that us Americans do not know or can’t make a decision on where to draw the line with gun control. Either you are for the National Rifle Association or for the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence or somewhere in between.The article about trying to control guns more, they want them gone because of the violence and how powerful that guns bring. While the other article is about controlling gun violence. The article “Counterpoint: Gun Control Saves Lives,” is about enforcing stricter gun laws. They believe that when you make these stricter laws, they will help control the gun violence that happens in America. In the summary of this article, Ballaro writes, “Three major factors account for this phenomenon: the tremendous number of guns in circulation; the wide availability of very powerful types of guns expressly designed for killing people; and the lack of comprehensive, uniform gun laws.” Basically, they are saying that the problems is that there are too many guns out there that we cannot control, that the sole purpose of guns is to kill things, and that there are not enough laws to help control guns.They have the evidence that other nations have been able to use stricter gun laws to help prevent gun violence. In this article, Ballaro states, “England and Japan, which have some of the tightest gun control measures in the world, also feature some of the world’s lowest homicide rates…” They used this to show that it has worked in other
  2. 2. Spencer 2 countries, it could work in ours too. This article wants us to revisit the Second Amendment and reevaluate on who should be able to get guns and certain types of guns. This side is trying to control guns to help look out for the safety of the public. They want to try and prevent more mass shootings such as Virginia Tech and what happened in Aurora, Colorado. The other article, “Point: Controlling Gun Violence is More Important than Controlling Guns,” is about supporting the Second Amendment. Bowman states in the third paragraph of the summary, “However, guns are not the source of the troubling violence in our society; guns are merely tools that function according to the intentions of gun owners.” Bowman brings up the point that the guns are bad and turn into violence when they are put into the wrong hands. Bowman also breaks down the Second Amendment and how it has changed over the years. Our culture has changed the ways in which guns are viewed. Movies and song lyrics play a big role in the way guns are viewed. They make guns powerful and cool. Also people make money off of guns. Bowman says that politicians, whether they agree or disagree with gun control, both receive money from advocates. Bowman ends this article by stating, “With this right comes the responsibility to exercise it wisely. Instead of trying to control guns, perhaps the time has come for Americans to take a hard look at why so many of citizens feel the need to use guns irresponsibly.” The hasty of generalization is a fallacy that I think is a part of this debate. There have been a few mass shootings in America. Even though they are terrible things that have happened, that doesn’t mean it’s going to happen all the time. Or you cannot get rid of
  3. 3. Spencer 3 guns because others have ruined it. The slippery slope fallacy is also part of this debate. Because once you either go completely one way or the other, it will make things worse. The something that has been brought up is the federal ban on assault weapons being reenacted because it expired in September 2004. The government needs to look at other countries and see what works for them, because it could work for America. They can changed and make more laws controlling guns. Make states have certain laws on controlling guns. These laws should include background checks, mandatory child-safety locks, and concealment laws. The implications this debate has on families in this society, is looking out for the safety of others. In each of these three articles, shootings were brought up that has effected hundreds of thousands of people. Parents have lost their kids to violent crimes, and kids have lost their parents as well. The one thing that both sides agree on is that there needs to be a change. They need to make it safer for people to feel safe. The debate of gun control has been going on for years. In America, it is hard for them to make decisions because we have the freedom of speech and views to come up with a common ground. It is hard for the government to agree on things like gun control because most people fall into the category of republican or democrat and they cannot agree on it. Unfortunately, we live in a world that has violence. There have been many different mass shootings over the past fifteen years. Columbine High School got a lot of attention when two students opened fire in their school in 1999. Some other major shootings were the 2007 Virginia Tech, the 2011 Tucson shooting, the Aurora, Colorado movie theater shooting, and the Sandy Hook Elementary school shooting.
  4. 4. Spencer 4 When it comes to if the government should make more or less legislation regarding gun control, I have to agree with less legislation. I know that the sole purpose of guns is to kill, but what happens when someone breaks into your house and they are trying to kill you and you need to protect your family? The problem with guns is based on who has their finger on the trigger. It is more dangerous to have a psychopath to have access to a gun than it is a police officer or hunter who is well trained. After every mass shooting that happens in America, the topic of gun control is everywhere you turn. They blame guns for doing these terrible things instead of blaming the person who is behind it. Our country went into a state of shock when two men pulled off a bombing at the Boston Marathon. They set off two bombs near the finish line and killed three people and injured hundreds more. This just goes to show that guns aren’t the only things that can kill people. These two men made these bombs to kill and injure people. That was their sole purpose. Any person can go online and learn how build a bomb from everyday products. I would argue that it is easier to get a hold of a bomb than it is a gun. You do not have to run a background check to make a bomb. Some people would bring up that there are countries that have low gun violence and they have strict gun laws. According to Don B. Kates who stated in the article “Debate: Gun Control in America”, said, “Yes, some small European nations that severely restrict guns have lower murder rates than the United States, but their minimal populations make them noncomparable. Russia, a more comparable country, banned handguns in the 1920s, yet Russian murder rates have always exceeded the United States. As of the year 2000, Russia murder rates were four times higher than the United States,” (Boylan 3934-3935).This is evidence that every country is different and you cannot compare apples to oranges. Dr. Kates was later asked in the interview
  5. 5. Spencer 5 “Do strict gun laws decrease the incidence of violent crimes or accidents?” Dr. Kates answered by saying, “After reviewing 253 journal articles, 99 books, 43 government publications and some empirical research of its own about gun crime, the National Academy of Science could not identify any gun restrictions that reduced violent crime, suicide, or gun accidents. In 2004, the CDC (which vehemently endorses gun bans), released its exhaustive review of the extant literature. The CDC could not identify any evidence that gun control (including Washington D.C.’s complete handgun ban) - had reduced murder, violent crime, suicide, or gun accidents,” (Boylan 3936). With this information it can show that government agencies did the research and could not find things getting better. Don B. Kates and Gary Mauser wrote in the Harvard Journal of Law & Public Policy about if gun control really does work. They discussed how studies show that most people who have been violent, have been violent their whole lives. “So it would not appreciably raise violence if all law-abiding, responsible people had firearms because they are not the ones who rape, rob, or murder. By the same token, violent crime would not fall if guns were totally banned to civilians. As the respective examples of Luxembourg and Russia suggests, individuals who commit violent crimes will either find guns despite severe controls or will find other weapons to use,” (Kates & Mauser 661). You can refer this last part back to the Boston Marathon Bombing. That guns aren’t the only weapons out there. I think people do not realize is that the making of guns is a business. People make money off of guns. Guns are scene as bad things, and I am not saying that they aren’t, but what about cars. Are cars dangerous? How many Americans have cars? Which is more dangerous cars or guns? David Kopel wrote an article about this. He stated, “The annual death toll from automobiles is roughly 8000 higher than that from firearms. In 1994, there were roughly thirty-two automobile
  6. 6. Spencer 6 deaths for every 100,000 automobiles in the United States. The same year, there were roughly fifteen firearm deaths for every 100,000 firearms in the United States,” (Kopel 1213). The point of using this was to show that guns aren’t the only things out there. We use cars all the time and they are still dangerous and kill people. Are you going to ban cars now too? Work Cited -Ballaro, BeverlyFinley, Laura. “Counterpoint: Gun Control Saves Lives.” Points of View: Gun Control (2013): 3. Points of View Reference Center. Web. 10 Feb. 2014. -Bowman, JefferyNewton, Heather. “Point: Controlling Gun Violence is More Important Than Controlling Guns.” Points of View: Gun Control (2013): 2. Points of View Reference Center. Web. 10 Feb. 2014. -Boylan, Michael, et al. “Debate: Gun Control in The United States” Clinical Orthopedics & Related Research 471.12 (2013): 3934-3936. Academic Search Edition. Web. 11 Feb. 2014. -Kates, Don B., and Gary Mauser. “Would Banning Firearms Reduce Murder and Suicide?” Harvard Journal of Law & Public Policy 30.2 (2007): 649-694. Academic Search Premier. Web. 11 Feb. 2014.
  7. 7. Spencer 7 -Kopel, David B. “Treating Guns Like Consumer Products. “University of Pennsylvania Law Review 148.4 (2000): 1213. Academic Search Premier. Web. 11 Feb. 2014. -Lee, M. Stingl, Alexander. “Gun Control: An Overview.” Points of View: Gun Control (2013): 1. Points of View Reference Center. Web. 10 Feb. 2014.