Gun Control Essay & Research Paper

Against Gun Control Argumentative Essay

Gun control is a law that controls how guns are sold and used, and who can own them. Allowing people to possess and use a gun with legal documents in the United States is legal. There have been arguments on whether or not is should be legal to own a gun as some people see it as beneficial and others do not. It is believed that guns are beneficial to have, and they are there because we need to be able to protect ourselves. We should not allow the government to have power over gun control for many reasons, including hunting, not being able to protect ourselves, and simply because of the second amendment.

Hunting has been around for as long as people have been on this earth and if that were taken away completely some people would lose that sense of nature. Hunting is people who kill animals for food, clothing, or sport. In 2011 13.7 million people, 6% of the U.S. population 16 years old and older, hunted. Big game like elk, deer and wild turkey attracted 11.6 million hunters. Hunting is something some people enjoy and find therapeutic.(Associated Recreation). The average hunters spend around $2,484 a year to hunt. In 2012 hunters and target shooters have paid more than $7.2 billion in taxes through the Federal Aid in Wildlife Restoration Act since its passage in 1937. Hunting is a sport that has been shown to have less than 1% of firearm fatalities, that’s less than someone getting hurt because of a vending machine. Hunters pay for most fish and wildlife conservation programs through license sales and excise taxes on equipment. Sportsmen and women pay nearly $8 million dollars a day to support wildlife and wildlife agencies (Wonders of wildlife). Gun control might not mean taking guns away completely at first, but taking them away slowly over the years.

The government may think that because they can control who owns a gun they can control the deaths or bring the death rates down. When in reality, the fact is if they do not allow everyone to own a gun they are actually hurting more people because they would not have any defenses. Criminals will always be able to figure out how to get hold of a weapon, so they are basically taking away a weapon from citizens. People who own guns in their homes usually only have the guns for emergency so having one can be beneficial. For instance, if someone is robbed and the government makes a law to where no one can obtain a weapon, then there is a good chance of them getting hurt. The robber would most likely have gotten a hand on some form of weapon, and used it to threaten or hurt someone to get what they please.

The Second Amendment says “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.” (Second Amendment). This is the main reason why the government should not take away our guns, we have the right to have guns to prevent us from getting hurt by people with weapons. The government made this a law back in 1791, so almost 230 years ago this law was here in our great country of the United States of America. This is our right and it should be here to stay.
Allowing the government to have power over gun control is a careless mistake, we use guns for many things, including hunting, not being able to protect ourselves, and simply because of the second amendment. Owning a gun is a privilege just as much as a right, so people should definitely use it responsibly. If people can not use it right then they should not own one, but everyone should be allowed or given the opportunity.

Persuasive Essay on Gun Control

In recent days, months and years, our world has witnessed some unthinkable events of violence slaughter and death. Whether it be school shootings, racially and hate fuelled attacks or plagues of terrorism, there is never a time when we switch on the news and don’t hear of another distressing account of annihilation. Who or what are the culprits? No-one knows for sure. But a main factor in America’s case is guns.

Since the Dunblane massacre of 16 innocent primary school children along with 1 teacher and the perpetrator himself of March 1996, shock resonated throughout the United Kingdom. The result: a ripple of gun control movements across the UK which led to a tightening of our gun laws and accessibility. Since then, there have only been 2 mass shootings in Great Britain: the Cumbria shooting of 2010 and the Spalding shooting of 2016. Meanwhile in America, there have were 372 mass shootings in 2015 alone – 64 of these were school shootings. America evidently has a massive problem, which can only be fixed by devoting our fullest attention on the source; guns.

Now some may argue that these statistics simply cannot be compared due to a disproportion in populous. When you compare the population of the UK and America, the United States has an 80% bigger population than Great Britain, so based on population alone, America is more likely to have a higher gun crime rate. However this claim can be easily dismissed as if America was scaled down to a population of 64.1 million to mirror the UK, on average there still would have been 74 mass shootings in 2015 alone. This is still a substantial figure in comparison with 2 mass shootings in the UK from 1996-2016 and as a result, can be very sobering to understand.

One particularly emotive event took place on December 14th 2012. It caused a ripple effect that shook the world. It was the Sand Hook shooting. It left twenty 6 to 7 year-olds dead. They had been taken way too early. More recently, a shooting took place at Pulse, a gay nightclub in Orlando, on June 12th 2016. With 49 fatalities and 50 injuries, as well as the perpetrator holding numerous people hostage, this incident was labelled as the deadliest mass shooting of all US history. Both of these shootings had different motives, however they both had one thing in common: they resulted in the death of many innocent people who didn’t deserve the brutality that they were faced with. The American Government must take action.

Firstly, the presence of a gun will make a conflict more likely to become a violent offence. In 2013, the FBI found that arguments over money and brawls driven by drugs and alcohol resulted in 1,962 gun deaths, 60% of all violence caused deaths. A study published by the New England Journal of Medicine found: rather than providing protection, guns that are kept in the home are associated with an increase in the risk of homicide by a family member or housemate. One experiment carried out named ‘The Weapons Effect’ demonstrates this. Volunteers for the study were given electric shocks by research assistants and then given the chance to shock the assistants back, up to seven times. During the experiment, a table was present that held either nothing, badminton equipment, or several guns. Over a series of 100 volunteer experiments, it was demonstrated that the presence of guns increased the retaliatory shocks given to the research assistants even more than in the presence of the badminton set or the empty table. This discrepancy indicates that the presence of guns had a certain effect on the aggression level of the volunteers and made them more willing to inflict harm on others. This study proves that the presence of firearms is more likely to provoke violent attacks which are on the rise.

Additionally, countries with restricted gun control have lower gun homicide and suicide rates than that of the United States. Both Switzerland and Finland require gun owners to apply for a licence. As well as licences all potential owners must pass background checks on mental health and criminal records, among other requirements. In 2007 Switzerland ranked number 3 in international gun ownership rates, with around 3,400,000 guns in total. In that same year Switzerland had 24 gun homicides (roughly 0.31 deaths per 100,000 people) along with 253 gun suicides (3.29 deaths per 100,000 people). According to a March 2016 study, the gun homicide rates in the United States were 25 times higher along with gun suicides which were 8 times higher in other populous countries. These statistics clearly illustrate that having a tougher approach on gun control and gun laws, would greatly benefit the lives of many American civilians.

Finally, if gun control laws were to be introduced there would be a coinciding decrement in the associated costs of gun violence on the American Health System. The cost of gun homicides and violent attacks is not just monetary; it can affect the victim and perpetrators emotionally as well. In 2010 gun violence cost each American inhabitant roughly $564. It also costs the US Government $4.7 billion in court costs along with $1.4 billion in Medicare costs . These amounts are truly staggering and it is very difficult to believe that they are all the result of gun ownership. In 2010, there were 36,341 emergency room visits and 25,024 hospitalisations for gun injuries. This totalled to an estimated $6.3 million. According to the World Health Organisation, the cost of gun violence includes legal services, medical costs, policing, foster care, life insurance and psychological costs such as pain and suffering. Listed above has been just a snippet of all of the money-wasting costs of gun violence, all fuelled by a simple weapon with preventable access: a gun.

To conclude, the United States should consider putting stricter gun control laws in place because as a result, America will see a reduction in conflicts resulting in violent attacks. Gun homicide rates will decrease along with the rates of gun suicides as displayed by countries such as Switzerland and Finland. Finally, America will benefit from reduced costs, which are correlated with such a high rate of gun violence throughout the country, such as legal services and medical costs. For the sake of American humanity, why should America not consider more gun control? Because if we don’t act now, another 30 people will die from being shot tomorrow and the day after that…

Gun Control Research Paper

Gun Laws

48,938 incidents involving guns have happened in 2016 alone, of those, 12,652 of them have involved a fatality. 332 mass shootings have taken place all across the country at various locations. Our gun laws are outdated and must be updated because far too many people are getting a hold of dangerous, deadly guns, people who should not be trusted to own them.
It is far too simple to obtain a gun.

According to a video by youtube channel AJ+, “there are 90 guns for every 100 people in the United States” (Gun Control: America’s Got a Problem). It also states that 42% of Americans own a gun, and 47% of Americans believe the gun laws must be stricter. She claims that Congress does not want to go against the National Rifle Association (NRA), therefore, they do not pass stricter gun laws even though many Americans support it. Some even believe that our gun problem can be solved by more guns (Gun Control: America’s Got a Problem).

Background checks are not always in depth enough and they often miss important information that could bar some people from gaining a gun. It is actually easier to get a gun than to get mental health care for yourself.

Seung-Hui Cho, the man who shot 49 people at Virginia Tech, passed a background check and got a hold of a gun, even though he was declared mentally ill two years prior, doctors diagnosed him with a severe anxiety disorder. Because of this avoidable mess-up, 32 innocent people with families were murdered. It is a state’s responsibility to compile mental health records from hospitals, courts, or other sources, but it is not legally required, so many states neglect to, putting the lives of many in danger. Therefore, many mentally ill patients are able to access firearms (Scalzo).

A man named Aaron Alexis was found by the police to have “taken apart his bed, believing someone was hiding under it…” and they observed that Alexis “had taped a microphone to the ceiling to record the voices of people that were following him.” (Lysiak). Regardless of this revelation, he was somehow allowed to purchase a gun and, the next month, he massacred 12 people, killing them and injuring 3 others at the Washington Navy Yard.

Background checks can “just take minutes” to perform and less than a staggering 1% of people are denied. They are only required by law for in store purchases and not for gun shows or private transactions. According to CNN, the FBI has said on its website that “More than 100 million such checks have been made in the last decade, leading to more than 700,000 denials,” (Smith).
Many American citizens wholeheartedly believe that they absolutely need a gun to be able to protect themselves and their family from violence, should they ever need to, however, I believe if the gun laws were stricter, then we would not need guns to protect ourselves because the wrong people would not be able to even get a firearm. According to The Washington Monthly, “There is nothing beyond anecdotal evidence and one very flawed study suggesting that defensive use of firearms has benefits that outweigh the obvious social drawbacks” (Atkins). Only on very rare occasions have guns actually successfully been used to protect someone from an active shooter.
The Huffington Post says “Purchasing a gun may help enrich the firearms industry, but the facts show it is unlikely to increase your personal safety,” (McLaughlin). Many gun incidents even happen because people keep guns in their homes for self-defense. For example: accidental firings and suicides caused by guns kept around the house.

Criminals are easily getting guns through loopholes that should not exist, which is just one major flaw in our gun laws. People who would usually not pass a background check in a store, can easily obtain a gun from a gun show. This is often called the “gun show loophole”.

Gun shows are frequently put on all over the country in cities like Las Vegas to cities like Salmon. Idaho. While President Obama tried to pass a bill that would have required background checks at gun shows, Congress did not end up passing it (Smith).
While most dealers at gun shows are licensed, the people who purchase them usually are not and are able to purchase guns and use them for malicious purposes.

Some people claim that they need guns because they use them to hunt animals such as deer or bears. However, I believe that hunting is not as important than the hundreds of people dying because of careless people and faulty gun laws. These hunters will still be able to have their precious guns, just as long as they have no criminal past and have no history of mental illnesses. These heightened gun laws will not affect these hunters, but will keep many others safe from malicious, deadly guns.

Children are getting a hold of their parents guns that they keep for ‘self-defense’ and accidentally injuring and in some rare, unfortunate cases, killing themselves or others. Guns are often not kept safely in places that children would not be able to reach. “By the end of 2015, about 265 children under 18 picked up a firearm and shot someone by accident, and 83 of those shootings were fatal” (Lidgett). Children want to ‘play’ with the guns, but instead end up committing heinous crimes that ruin them and their families for the rest of their lives.

“Nearly 1.7 million children live in households where guns are stored either loaded or not locked away” (Lidgett). Guns must be held in locked safes so as to avoid children getting a hold of them and accidentally shooting themselves or someone else.
A child aged 3 named Lucas Heagren found his father’s gun, which was hidden under the couch, and shot himself through the eye (Luo). This is just one of the many examples of children injuring themselves or others because of careless parents who do not secure the guns in a safe place that is inaccessible to children. “American children are 9 times more likely to be killed by a gun than are kids in other developed nations.” (Lithwick).

The United States has a gun problem, a colossal one, and we need to start taking action against them, or more children will be accidentally killed. Too many people are suffering due to the easy access that we have to guns, how many people must die for us to realize there is a problem that we need to fix as soon as possible.

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