Gun Control Legislation Essay, Research Paper
The question of weather or not to have tougher gun control laws is a major issue for the American society. Violence with guns in the United States seems to be ever growing. Gun violence claims the lives of an estimated 34,000 Americans each year. It is evident that some people should just not have the right, or privilege to own a gun. Such was the case of Colin Ferguson, who boarded a Long Island Railroad train in New York City. Ferguson proceeded to pull out a 9-millimeter pistol and walk down the aisle shooting anyone he saw. At the end of his shooting spree six passengers where dead and nineteen where wounded. The question remains of why a man like Ferguson would consider doing such a horrible act, or how even a man like Ferguson obtain a firearm.
In 1994 after high debate from anti gun control activist’s congress passed the Brady Bill along with the ban of assault weapons. The Brady law established a national five-business day waiting period for the purchase of a firearm. This law provided a waiting period for local law enforcement to conduct background checks on firearm purchase. Unless law enforcement notifies the dealer that the sale buyer is violating a law, the sale may proceed five days after the purchaser signs the statement for the firearm. Colin Ferguson purchased his nine-millimeter handgun in 1993 in a hunting store in California. California at the time had a fifteen-day weighting period for the purchase of a firearm. Since Ferguson had no Criminal background he had no problem purchasing the weapon.
Looking at gun control in countries such as the United Kingdom, men like Ferguson would never have been able to purchase a gun, because they are illegal. In the United Kingdom gun violence is ultimately none existent. If one had such a hope of passing the same type of gun legislation in America today it would be impossible. America was brought up own the privilege of the second amendment which allows its citizens to bare arms. There is an estimated two hundred million guns in circulation in the United States alone.
One of the main problems for gun control legislation is keeping guns out of the hands of criminals. In fact it is impossible to keep criminals from obtaining them. They can either steel them or purchase one on the black market. Most of the criminals tend to be teenagers. These kids have grown up thinking that carrying a gun will protect them. Mix a teenager with a gun and alcohol and the results can be deadly. Gangs find it most convenient to deal with their rivals with guns. It is here where innocent people tend to find themselves in the wrong place at the wrong time, and even without a gun to shoot back.
Young people conduct most of the serious gun related crimes. Owners of guns should keep their guns away from children. Children tend to find these guns and play with them. These children end up either shooting themselves or a friend. They might even take a gun to school with them one day. Children evidently can not grasp the fact of how dangerous guns really are. Parents that own guns must teach their children proper gun safety.
It is evident that gun control legislation needs vast improvement. More and more Americans are being killed by gun violence each year. Gun legislation should be directed to looking for ways to put safety before guns. This means making it harder for criminals to use guns, and making the actual owner more responsible for them. The responsibility for owning a gun should be a privilege that comes with high consequence.
Gun control laws should place more specific guidelines on the ownership of a gun. It must be mandatory to have ever gun owned by an individual registered to them. In order to have tougher gun control laws. Pollicies should be directed to the safety of the people who have to live around guns. Owners should be responsible for who uses their gun, which they sell it to, and where it is kept. Families with children that own guns should stress gun safety, and keep their guns stored away.