Gun Violence BY de13 An ongoing and highly debated social problem that continues to grow in our society today is the gun control epidemic. Gun violence in the United States is a national epidemic. Many people take advantage of guns using and manipulating the tool with hardly any thought. Countless lives have been lost due to fact that people have been able to obtain firearms legally or illegally and have taken the notion to be Judge, Jury and executioner in holding ones live in their hands. This is a common issue that will continue if action is not taken as a nation to try and stop it.
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Gun violence can lead many citizens to believe that no place is deemed safe anymore and recent tragedies that have taken place in United States holds up that statement. In our society today, the shootings that continue to take place seem to become more gruesome and far more heinous, becoming more painful and unbearable to listen, watch, and hear these tragic stories appear on the news. Too often it seems that we, as a nation, give little consideration to existing problems until they end in tragedy??”this should not be the way of life.
In 2012 alone there were five major shootings which took place ausing the nation to stop and reflect on the horror that has now become a precedent of what occurs in the United States today. In the wake of a series of unfortunate gun-related tragedies, the nation claims it has given its undivided attention to intricacies such as mental illness, violence and gun-control. Some examples of these cases is the horrific incident at Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in Newtown, Connecticut, that claimed the lives of twenty innocent children and the six courageous adults who tried to protect them.
Another is the horrendous ragedy that took place on July 20th 2012 when a masked gunman entered a movie theatre complex and opened fire on moviegoers which killed 12 and left 58 others wounded while they were watching the premiere of the Batman film “The Dark Knight Rises” in Aurora, Colorado. Incidents such as these make one think back to the violent tragedies that happen in years past. For instance the Virginia Tech shooting which occurred on April 16th 2007 in Blacksburg, Virginia, which still stands today as the deadliest shooting rampage to occur in U.
S. history in which the gunman Seung- Hui Cho killed 32 people and himself in the process. All these shooting incidents that were mentioned all have one thing in common and that is that the gunmen were labeled as mentally ill, why is that? Why does it take such tragedies and innocent lives being lost to see that these culprits may have had a problem to begin with. Though the gun law could not have cured Cho’s mental illness that brought upon his violence, but it could have denied him the weapon that enabled him to become a mass murderer (Henigan 2009).
The Brady Bill was passed in 1994 and was a waiting period where a background check is done on the costumer. A part of the restriction tates “the person must not have any reported mental illnesses” it seems to be a coincidence that mental illnesses of the murderers are found in the aftermath of these continuous massacres. Although we don’t realize until major shootings occur that gun violence is a problem. Gun violence is something which is very prevalent and occurs on almost a daily basis within inner city neighborhoods.
This something that is really terrible and innocent victims especially children are casualties because tney may nave Deen caugnt In a cross Tire 0T Dullets Detween rival gangs or Just opposing enemies. Firearms are readily available to kids, teens, and adults growing up within inner cities. There are so many criminal activities that occur in urban cities such as drug using or selling, formations of gangs, gang violence, robbery/theft, etc. Many civilians who live within these neighborhoods become products of their environment because they have no other choice (Deconde 2001).
You have cases where kids are growing up without their parents or have no type of parental guidance so their only choice is to walk the streets. You have other cases where school is not a big priority or a big motivator because the school itself may be run own and can only make the most out of the limited resources the school budget has allowed. In other cases you may have been influenced by peer pressure or friends as this is only option for a way of life. The second amendment states that right to keep and bear arms.
This law has been etched in the United States history for centuries thus creating the highly popularized debate whether they should be gun control laws. Members and advocates of the National Rifle Association would argue against gun control. Their aim is to shift the focus away from guns and their destructive otential but instead have people focus on the criminal and shift the argument to them being mentally incapable or suggest that there is a lack of security within schools (Henigan 2009).
Voices of the NRA do make valid points, however it prevents them from seeing the bigger picture. We as a society have drifted from the crux of the issue, which is, when put simply, guns are dangerous. In America, guns are extremely dangerous. Anyone who chooses to Google “gun violence statistics” and find the official research study done by the National Institute of Justice it would show ou that 15 of the 25 worst mass shootings in the last 50 years took place in America.
It also vividly reminds us of how guns are easily obtained. The mass shootings that took place in America over the last twenty years, more than 80% of shooters that used a firearm obtained the weapon legally. This is what is making guns in America so dangerous. But what makes guns so dangerous in America specifically? Well, for starters, owning a weapon that has the potential to take a life drastically changes the dynamics of conflict.
Demonstrated by statutes such as Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” aw, that allows a person to use force in self-defense when they feel legitimately threatened, the tendency of our country to favor a “shoot first, ask questions last” mentality is a serious issue (Yancy & Jones 2013). In an increasingly violent world, where disputes are no longer settled with harsh words or silly fistfights afterschool, we must assess the effect of this attitude on our country. While the NRA would have us all believe that a gun is a necessary evil that must be used for protection, this is just not the case.
Despite the NRA might think, giving a good guy a gun isn’t the only ay to stop a bad guy with a gun. In fact, research conducted at the turn of the century by the Center for Disease Control proves otherwise. The statistics that resulted from the CDC’s research efforts reveal that the homes of gun owners were not safer, and that they showed increased rates of homicide and suicide. Although, we slowly make strides to combat gun violence, there is still an enormous cry to aggressively tackle this social problem because clearly is has become out of hand.
The government see the importance and efficacy of having gun-control laws because ithout it the innocent lives we continue to be lost and the bright futures that people wou a nave areamea 0T are arastlcally cut snort. However, tne government cannot stop there because the problem is not only the unlimited access we have to guns, and while NRA and politicians alike would argue that about the efficiency of pre- existing gun-control laws, or the need for new, more restrictive ones, the heart if the issue gets lost in the shuffle, and the whole nation suffers (Henigan 2009).
The government produces an illusion of progress with gun-control reform that limits the mount of ammunition that can be purchased for a weapon that can kill with one shot, or reform that makes incredibly dangerous firearms, such as a . 50 caliber sniper rifle, less accessible, but how about putting the those resources to use in making people less dangerous? This brings up the old saying that “guns don’t kill people, people kill people,” however clich?© it may seem, it is very significant in this day and age.
Chronic mental illness is now a very prevalent issue within our society and it is being used now more than ever as the backbone behind the major gun violence’s hat have occurred and will most likely be the foundation of any future catastrophes that have yet to take place. With supporting evidence it is clear that the second amendment cannot be fulfilled by the citizens of the United States. Giving one the complete freedom to bear arms whether it be for protection or not, that every citizen is trusted to be able to hold a weapon responsibly.
This can easily be the reason that shootings increase each year. It can be looked at in two ways, give the country complete freedom to bear arms or completely take away a citizen’s right to rotection. In this case not all citizens are fit to own a gun and not all guns should be held by common citizens. Thinking of ways to control this problem is difficult but we as a nation must start somewhere, because it seems that the nation has been given the go ahead to do as they please with these guns.
Other than governmental reasons to possess a guns, they are also sold to citizens as a hobby (such as hunting and indoor target ranges) or protection and having a mandatory waiting period should always be taken advantage of to make sure it is not placed in the hands of an ll minded person. In a perfect world it would be great for all assault weapons to be banned and placed only to those in authority but in actuality we have criminals who will steal them causing people to have to protect themselves.
Guns should be regulated by the government and the distribution of them should also be monitored. Firearms should be registered by make, model and serial number in order for the police to be able to run checks; keeping a directory of gun and the owners. The problem with this is that there are always going to be criminals stealing those guns rom the rightful owners which is why more police enforcement is needed especially with the rapid increase in gun violence. These criminals need to be found and locked up for the safety of our citizens.
Laws have been passed in order to protect society and the violence still continues, it is apparent that though laws are made to try and adjust human behavior it is unfortunately unable to change human nature. It is not enough to protect people from aggression, one can only hope that a firearm is on the possession of a trusted and responsible citizen who will use it properly and safely. ltimately the criminals behind the weapons must be caught it is not that the weapon is not necessarily the problem.
The gun does not shoot itself there is someone behind it pulling the trigger. Deconde, Alexander. Gun Violence in America: The Struggle for Control. Boston: Northeastern UP, 2001. Henigan, Dennis A. Lethal Logic: Exploding the Myths That Paralyze American Gun Policy. Washington, D. C. : Potomac, 2009. Yancy, George, and Janine Jones. Pursuing Traynv’on Martin: Historical Contexts and Contemporary Manifestations of Racial Dynamics. Lanham: Lexington Boos, 2013. Print.