I don’t know how everyone else feels, but I think that since we have now spent time with our families and eaten lots of good food, we are all now a little more calm and level-headed and we can begin to address the debate surrounding the shooting that happened in Newtown Connecticut.
We all know the story. The whole world knows the story by now. I don’t need to go into the details, and I don’t want to. All that needs to be said is that a terrible and shocking event took place at that elementary school, and in no way are the views that I am about to express meant to diminish the loss that those families now feel. All of the people affected by this shooting are still in my thoughts and prayers.
This shooting is one of many that have happened recently throughout the United States. Gun control enthusiasts have called for everything from tighter regulation to gun bans, both of which are completely unconstitutional. The NRA has come under fire recently for being one of the most prominent advocate for gun rights in the United States and for always fighting against gun control legislation. I have, on multiple occasions, seen people directly blame the NRA for the attacks that have happened and it sickens me. For one thing, people fail to realize that in terms of expenditures and manpower (which are usually pretty good judges of size) the NRA’s biggest departments are not the ones that focus on legislation and lobbying politicians, but the ones that focus on gun safety and training. That is never mentioned though as the media tries to depict the NRA as an evil organization that plots to put a gun in the hand of every psychopath that wants to shoot up a school.
Let me go back to the root of my argument. Gun control laws are against the Constitution. The 2nd Amendment clearly states that we have a right to keep and bear arms, and that is not a right that is to be infringed upon. The Framers obviously thought that it was important enough to put it into the founding document for our nation, so who are we to question the ones who founded our country? The main argument against this is that the Constitution is outdated and we don’t really need to carry guns anymore. To those people I say: couldn’t you still kill someone with a musket? The answer to that is (from a pro-gun control point of view): a musket couldn’t kill multiple people at one time. The answer to that is: then just make technology go back to the 1770s and then everything will be fixed. Advances in machinery and technology have good and bad things associated with them. The fact that guns have become more and more powerful and advanced has actually helped us to remain a free nation and to keep out influences that would have worked to undermine the freedoms that we enjoy today, whether you like it or not. If we try to keep applying the Constitution to today as if we are different people than the Framers were, then we will start to decay the very fabric of our nation. Tastes, fads, populations, jobs, technologies, demographics.. those all change. People, at their very core, do not change. We are all given rights when we are born into a country that men and women have fought and died to protect, and those rights should be protected.
Another argument. If guns are banned, then gun violence will go down. This one always makes me laugh. First off, studies and statistics have shown that tighter gun laws lead to more deaths because people are now unable to easily defend themselves. The other countries who have tighter gun laws have lower numbers when it comes to gun violence because they also have less people than the United States. If the countries that we are being compared to had the same amount of people that we do, their murder rates would be off the charts. If you take guns away from law-abiding citizens, that doesn’t mean that they are gone. Banning guns or making them harder to get will only increase the black market demand for guns. It’s science. Things move from areas of higher resistance to areas of lower resistance. Anyone who has read a physics textbook in their life knows that. If we apply it to the gun laws, if there is less resistance coming from the black market and the legal route to get a gun is either so tough or impossible, then the path is obviously toward the black market, and there will always be a black market. Those who are trying to commit a crime will not take the time to go and get a background check and go through a waiting period and all that crap so they can legally obtain a gun that can be tracked to their name and address when they go and use it on someone. They are going to go and get a gun that doesn’t have a serial number anymore and cannot be tracked so they can just shoot someone, throw it down, and then get away or just shoot themselves when they are done.
Ok, let’s stop and assume that we can actually get rid of every gun in the United States and gun violence is completely eliminated. What abou knives? Baseball bats? Cars? Metal wires? Are we going to completely eliminate violence and stop people from killing each other? No. It’s impossible. By introducing gun bans and taking away guns from those who know how to use them and are law abiding citizens, you put them at a disadvantage when someone breaks into their house with a gun and all they have is the kitchen knife to defend themselves and their family.
So why don’t we just ban assault weapons? Why would you need an assault weapon? What’s wrong with having a rifle, a shotgun, or a pistol to protect the ones that you love? The problem is even though, in this case, assault weapons are banned, that person who is breaking into your house (once again) probably did not go through the legal and painstaking process to obtain the AR-15 that he now has pointed at your chest, and if you miss with that first rifle shot or don’t hit him in the right place, he’s going to take you down in a matter of seconds. If you have the same thing he has, you have an equal opportunity to take that guy down and make sure that he doesn’t harm you or your family.
In short, gun control is something that should not be a matter of morality. We cannot let an event or series of events could our judgement and make it so that we just try and legislate morality or try things that have been proven not to work. Keep the rights, and guns, in the hands of the ordinary citizen and these problems will soon start to become less and less frequent.