Friday, May 24, 2013

Why gun control is wrong: The American context

Why gun control is wrong: The American context Technology comes to make the work of man easy. Nevertheless, this same technology can be lethal to the life and existence of persons. This is very true when it comes to the issue of guns. Guns are made to defend people from enemies but currently they have been used to kill innocent persons. Following this there has been a call to introduce gun control. This paper discusses the issue of gun control in America and why this gun control is bad. In the US gun control has been at the centre of politics (Richman, pp 49). Following the recent massacre in Connecticut at an elementary school which left 20 children and 6 adults dead, the debate about gun control has gained momentum. President Obama has been in the warfront in pushing for gun control policies (Richman, pp 37). He has specifically called for the ban of ‘military style’ assault weapons. The ban of the ‘military style’ weapons commonly known as the assault weapons is not a new issue in the US. In 1994 through the Federal Assault Weapons Ban, the manufacturing, importation and the use of assault weapons was banned in the US (Richman, pp 40). However, this ban expired in 2004 and in 2013 Senator Diane Feinstein who was the author of the bill that led to the ban of assault weapons in 1994 proposed the reintroduction of the ban. This bill has led to divided views some supporting it while others opposing it. For those who support it, they see it as the starting point for reducing crimes related to the use of assault weapons (Richman, pp 29). They want to save life and deter crime. On the other hand, gun control is seen as bad since people feel that it contradicts the constitutional right of ownership (Richman, pp 51). Anything that contradicts the constitutional should not be allowed and the opponents of the gun control cite this as their main reason not to support the gun control policies. Gun control is also seen as attacking the gun owners and not the criminals (Richman, pp 43). Opponents of gun control argue that instead of being strict on gun owners, the law should be strict on criminals. The argument behind this is that it is not all the gun owners who are criminals and thus denying them the right to ownership of guns is unconstitutional (Richman, pp 32). One thing leads to the other and accomplishment of one task gives people encouragement to accomplish other harder tasks. Control of the assault weapons may lead to total extinction of gun ownership in America (Kleck & Patterson, pp 279). To make sure that this does not happen, even the smallest policies touching on gun ownership should be revoked. There are many causes of death. For instance, people die from alcoholism and road accidents. There emerges an argument that alcohol should be banned and the use of roads also prohibited. In fact, a ban should be introduced for all the factors that cause death. In this case, gun control is seen as discriminatory since these other causes of death are left untouched (Kleck & Patterson, pp 271). Criminals are also seen as people who are over-determined to commit crimes with or without the use of guns (Kleck & Patterson, pp 264). Gun control therefrom is not going to deter these criminals from committing crimes. An example is given of places where guns are not allowed to be in private hands but there are still criminals who kill people (Kleck & Patterson, pp 253). Gun control is not entirely a bad thing as the presence and availability of guns has contributed to criminality (Richman, pp 29). It is a fact that if there were no guns and more so the assault weapons then there could have not been deaths resulting from these guns. Gun control thus will reduce deaths originating from the use of these weapons. It is thus good to save life even if it means a single life by coming up with policies which make it hard for the criminals to purchase guns. References Gary Kleck, E. Britt Patterson. "The impact of gun control and gun ownership levels on violence rates." Journal of Quantitative Criminology (1993): pp 249-287. Richman, Josh. Assault Weapons: What Are They, and Should They Be Banned? San Jose: Mercury News, 2013.