Gun Control Essay, Research Paper
Justin WilsonMrs. Wells9th Grade EnglishMay 19, 1999Gun Control I say all guns are good guns. There are no bad guns. I say the whole nationshould be an armed nation, Period (Foss NP). Former Governor Joseph Foss, aformer fighter pilot for the US Air Force, is the current President of the NRA, or NationalRifle Association (Lacayo 16). The NRA is a special interest group known by many. Itsmembers are stereotyped to be a group of truck-driving huntsmen. In fact this ispartially true, as 97% of all NRA members are suburban men. Because the organizationis a more Domestic Blend, it is a surprising fact that the NRA is a powerful lobbyistorganization, and skeptically viewed upon by many people (Lacayo 19). As a lobbyistorganization, the NRA has a current main objective of protecting American citizensrights, to possess and operate a firearm, from being violated by gun control laws. One of the NRA s main weapons in this crusade is the second amendment ofthe Constitution of the United States of America. The amendment s translation in theeyes of the NRA and many American citizens, clearly protects the individual rights of allcitizens to possess and operate firearms. This would easily make any and all guncontrol laws unconstitutional and therefore illegal. This translation, however, is notaccepted by all people, including the United States Government. They believe that theamendment guaranteed no right for individual citizens to possess weaponry, but merelyallowed for the government to form and maintain an armed service an example of thiswould be the United States Army and US. Navy. Because of the different translations of our Constitution, gun control can beviewed by different people in different ways (Lacayo 20). Some of the many gun controlbans and laws wich are under constant hellfire from the NRA are those pertaining toself-defense (Lacayo 20). Under current laws, like those of Texas, require that peoplemust retreat and be pursued by the intruder before any means of force could be takenupon the would-be attacker. Unfortunately, arguments of criminal s rights, andexcessive force, put to rest thoughts of a possible veto of some bans. With some effortfrom anti-gun control groups, such as the NRA, some of these laws have been lifted. Also, laws pertaining to self-defense and property protection have come to be passed aswell. Some laws also help to protect homeowners form civil suits made by wounded,would-be attackers or intruders (Ward F3). Another example of unwanted gun violence restriction laws was the famousAK-47 crisis. Due to governmental handgun bans, the military issue AK-47 becameeasily accessible, due to the extended barrel, which allowed the assault weapon to fallunder more lenient gun bans (Hancock C1). The weapon quickly became a favoriteweapon of thieves and one which created many a drive-by-shooting victim. In one suchcase, an AK-47 was used in the massacre of many school children. The rifle hadbeen attained legally. One can begin to wonder just how many of these violent crimescould have been prevented by a self-defense weapon. The attacks by the automaticassault weapon eventually led to more strict assault weapon bans (Hancock C2). Nevertheless, the percentile of assault weapons related to violent crimes has in factdecreased only a minuscule amount, which tends to lead experts to believe that manyassault weapon related crimes were done with illegal weapons. After all, it would besomewhat illogical of people to commit crimes wich were easily traced backto them by means of a simple background check of assault weapon owners (Hancock
C2). It should be noted that not all forms of gun control are intolerable. Seventy-threepercent of the 70 million gun owners in America declared that mandatory gunregistration exist. Eighty-seven percent of the voters stated that background checks berequired (Lacayo 17). One form of gun control which was very minutely argued, was the A Toys forGuns, incentive. The incentive allowed for $100 in toys, to be given to anyone whoturned in a weapon. It was viewed as a safe way to get guns off the street. It was,however, considered an unsuccessful action. The guns recovered were not consideredto be those that were being used in violent crime, which were the weapons the incentivewas aimed at. Only 317 weapons were recovered (Silvers C11). The past few actionswere relatively unopposed by the NRA, as they were not active attempts to restrict theindividual rights of firearm possession. The acts below, however, are examples ofundesired gun control methods. In recent years, councilmen passed acts to limitweaponry. New restrictions not only allowed for the sale of personal weaponry to be soldfurther in an attempt to keep firearm levels at a constant, but also to have particularweapons to be collected from homes, and removed from the city and destroyed(Spielman C1). Transportation of weaponry also came under fire. Firearms could notbe brought to gun stores or clubs, unless the weapons were disassembled and madeinoperable. Any vehicle containing a weapon was immediately seized and searched.The vehicle then was available to the owner again only after severe penalties were paid(Speilman C1). Some bills which had been attempted to have been passed called for theforbiddance of sale of firearms to known gang members. These bills also called for theright to search for weapons on the persons of anyone who was loitering. Through someeffort of anti-gun control campaigns and petitions, the bills were vetoed (Spielman C1). Although the ban of guns and gun related items will indeed help to lower violent crime, itcan also lead to an increase. If a criminal with an illegally attained firearm, attempts aviolent crime, they are reassuraned of thier own safety because the person they tends toinjure will not be able to defend themselves (Spielman C3).Then the crime would morelikely be more violent. By taking guns away from the people, the law takes away someof the defense that a person has for his or her family, property, and life. Self-defense isa great cause for the purchase of a weapon. In the run-around of gun control lawsbetween the NRA and Mr. Brady, the issue seems to not be as important as who wins. I believe that common sense should be used more in these issues, instead ofstatistics (Foss NP). Guns were invented hundreds of years ago. The purpose of theweapons were to allow a small man to be as powerful as a big man. They were built toprotect the weak from the strong. Guns restriction merely allows the stronger to conquerthe weak, as was done in the day of the sword and spear (Peterson 10).
Ward, Mike. A Proposals Give More Leeway for Self-Defense.Austin Texas: Austin American- Standard 7 Mar.1995 :F3. Hancock, David. A Handgun Is Harder To Buy Than AK-47. Miami Herald 24 Jul. 1992: C2-C3. Peterson, Harold L. A History of Firearms. New York: Charles Scribner s sons, 1961. Lacayo, Richard. And who is the NRA? Time 29 Jan. 1990: 16-24. Speilman, Fran. A Council Approves Tougher Gun Laws. Chicago Sun Times 8 Jul. 1992: C1. Silvers, Susan. A Landmark Norwalk Kids Store Offers Toys-for-Guns Incentive. Connecticut Post 30 Dec. 1993: G11. Foss, Joseph. The NRA. New York: Charles Scribner s Sons, 1993.