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The manufacture, sale, and use of firearms by civilians are all governed by gun regulations in the US. While some states are lenient in their gun laws, many states have stringent ones. The Alcohol, Tobacco, weapons and Explosives Act (ATF) is responsible for upholding the Second Amendment's guarantee of the right to own weapons. (ATF). The rules that apply to gun owners depend on the state they are in, not just the state where they live. Licenses to possess firearms or guns may be distinct in that they may require different permissions and standards for self-defense shooting and hunting. (Cornell, 2008). Despite the enactment of gun laws, there are those that have been restricted from access to the firearms such those having a criminal record, those who are below a certain age and who art risk of harming themselves with the guns. Many states in the United States are in compliant with the gun laws with each having its statutes with who is permitted to possess the firearm. Some states allow the form of concealed carry whereas some states will enable the form of open carry where it is not illegal to have a gun in public.
The gun laws have fuelled a debate in the United States with some people criticizing the need for possession of fire rams while other are fully supporting the need to possess the arms. But according to the Supreme Court, a verdict was made in June 2010 were Americans in all states had the constitutional rights of retaining firearms for self-defence (Wolny, 2014). In a broader picture, there are few pros and cons of one possessing the guns. The advantages of gun control are mostly theoretical; there will be a decrease in shootings. Rates of homicides and suicides will lower at a significant rate. There is credence to the idea that most murders caused by criminals who possess the guns. They are more likely to be emboldened where they tend to believe that their victims are unarmed, so they take advantage of that and end up stealing or murdering them.
Many studies have documented that many people who commit suicides are in possession of a firearm where they tend to view it as a quicker method of killing themselves. Those who have a mental illness, children and teenagers would be no longer able to access the firearms from their parents or friends if it were cumbersome to purchase the gun (Swanson, McGinty, Fazel, & Mays, 2015).
The cons of gun laws are debated where people consider ownership of a firearm as a fundamental civil right. After the legislation of the bill, some people tend to claim restriction of firearms is misinterpreting the United States Constitution. Gun ownership is vital for civilians where they use it for legitimate objectives such as self-defense and also for hunting purposes and if one has the required license and permit the authorities should not interfere. Many gun owners have much belief that having a gun will at least give them a fighting chance, in any event, that burglar or an invader manager to get inside their homes. The fear of getting shot deters criminals from targeting homes that they believe they possess firearms. Some consider this as an act of reducing crime rates in the United States. Arguments emerge that if guns were restricted, then the women wouldn’t be able to protect themselves from aggressive men in times of marriage conflicts or rape and theft. Alternative weapons would find their way and start being used by the criminals and murderers hence placing the civilians in a complicated situation where they can’t help themselves but adhere to the offenders (Webster, Vernick, McGinty, & Alcorn, 2013).
Should firearms need greater regulations? This is a query that many people around the world are still discussing and many independent bodies have resolute to find more answers. Stricter rules on the gun control laws can be much useful if specific laws are efficiently and correctly implemented. The organization that governs the firearms policies the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms (ATF) have very few numbers of special agents who tend to deal with issues relating to tobacco and also alcohol. The same time the agents are expected to worry about firearms. With a minimal number of agents, not much will be prioritized in the firearms sector. A move by the government of increasing number of agents in the body would be much more efficient as there would be much more concern on firearms. The government and state agencies who deal with licensing of the guns should do a complete background on the individual planning to acquire the firearm, and strict measures of sharing the weapon should also be placed. Such rules if adhered to will assist in a high drop in homicides and crimes rates in the United States. A harsher sentence should be placed on individuals found on gun-related crimes. This should set an example for criminals or people found using guns for no valid reasons such as self-defense or hunting purposes. Confiscation and banning of firearms for people who don’t prove legitimate reasons for possessing the gun can also drive down gun crime. Another policy that should be implemented is rising the age of gun owners. Many teenagers and young people own the firearms and end up using for theft purposes; we end up finding ourselves creating an indolent generation (Hengan, 2009).
Many people tend to believe with the acquisition of a firearm tend to reduce crime rates. Many examinations prove that to be right. When firearms are used in self defense crime and murder rates can decline since the criminals are in fear of shootings or harsh sentences they are going to face when prosecuted. The civilians need to protect themselves from the criminals since if guns are confiscated from everyone they will start using weapons such as knives. This will still not reduce the crime rates since the criminals will again find a way of acquiring the firearms rendering the civilians helpless. Guns are considered for hunting. Some people use the guns as a way of living since they hunt for food for their basic needs. Entirely a few statesmen take advantage of the women assuming that they are helpless and end up robbing them or raping them. Such cases are seen to have gone down since the women have guns to protect themselves this ends up scaring the criminals. The problem the United States is worked up about is the use of firearms by felons to cause harm and destruction but also by banning the gun laws won’t assist the problem since they will not also respect the new regulations that will come around.
My stand, in this case, is that gun control regulations do not need much more onerous and strict rules. Banning or restricting guns are not the problem the handlers of the firearms are the problem. Countless evidence shows that where guns are prevalent, violent crime plunges. Criminals no longer have the luxury of being able to feed on the citizens with impunity. The gun is an equalizer which grants the owners the ability to defend themselves against a maniac who has no any value for human life. Many people tend to feel an armed society is a polite society (Hengan, 2009). Many times the gun is used by civilians for self-defense. Why most of these violent acts are taking place is a broader issue than just the firearm. The states should consider different policies of reducing gun-related crimes rather than gun control.
Lastly, on grounds of fair and balanced, the gun is an inanimate object which is unable to cause any harm of its own accord. It takes someone with no ethical compass to atrocities with this weapon. We need to put more concern on the morals and values of our citizens and also concentrate on the role the media is playing in glorifying violence and the lack of respect for the law. Change begins with us deciding what we are going to do to make the world around us better. The question is not whether or not we should ban guns but rather how do we learn to value human life?
Cornell, S. (2008). A well-regulated militia: the founding fathers and the origins of gun control in America. Oxford University Press.
Henigan, D. A. (2009). Lethal logic: Exploding the myths that paralyze American gun policy. Potomac Books, Inc..
Swanson, J. W., McGinty, E. E., Fazel, S., & Mays, V. M. (2015). Mental illness and reduction of gun violence and suicide: bringing epidemiologic research to policy. Annals of epidemiology, 25(5), 366-376.
Webster, D. W., Vernick, J. S., McGinty, E. E., & Alcorn, T. (2013). Preventing the diversion of guns to criminals through effective firearm sales laws. Reducing gun violence in America: Informing policy with evidence and analysis, 109-122.
Wolny, P. (2014). Gun Rights: Interpreting the Constitution. The Rosen Publishing Group
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