Gun Control
3/22/1999
A gun gives criminals the power of life or death over ordinary, innocent citizens, because of that reason there are countless robberies, rapes, and assaults carried out in the communities of America. Almost everyday you can look into the newspaper and see some kind of gun related accident. The easy availability of firearms to youths has become a serious problem to the school and the communities we live in.
There are many groups of people that strongly believe that they should have a gun. They think that gun ownership is an effective means of self-dense. The National Rifle Association Institute for Legislative Action said that "many more criminals are killed or wounded by armed citizens than by the police. This proves that owning a gun is possibly the most effective way to protect oneself form crimes"(Bender). BY having a gun people thinks that it is a good way to protect yourself from crimes, but what happens when an innocent person is killed by that gun. The fact people have the right to bear arms; you will find it that, "millions of American keep firearms in their homes or carry handguns for self-defense. Such actions protect gun owners from becoming victims of crime"(Bender).
Gun control on this country has been considered to be a state and local problem. The history of state and federal laws goes back to the nation's earliest days even before the Revolution, for example: "the Massachusetts Bay colony prohibited citizen from carrying certain kind of guns in public". The earliest gun laws were aimed at keeping slaves from owning guns. Many people feared that the slaves would revolt. Thus, "early as 1640, Virginia passed a law prohibiting slaves from owning guns".
In the United State each state deals with gun ownership differently. States in the Northeastern and midwestern parts of the U.S. have the strongest gun control laws.
The nation's most severe gun law is New York State's "Sullivan Law" which makes it difficult for an ordinary citizen to get a gun. Many cities, town and villages have voted to ban handgun ownership completely. "Morton Grove, Illinois, took this action in 1981. Village authorities passed and ordinance making handguns unavailable to everyone but certain groups of individuals, such as police officers, military personal, and licensed gun collectors"(Newton).
The first federal law concerning guns was not passed until 1934. The BATF is the federal agency that is primarily responsible for the enforcement of all federal laws dealing with guns. In 1934 and 1938 the U.S. Congress passed two acts, they limited the sale of machine guns. Neither of these laws was very successful. In 1968 Congress adapted the gun control act. This act stands out as the single most powerful national state of policy on gun control.
There are many different reasons for having a gun: reasons such as hunting, protection, to get more respect or even to have the feel of power. But no matter what the reason is, having a gun can turn into a big problem. One of the main problems is the killing of young kids, but it's even worst when it's another kid the same age doing the killing. For example: "Andrew Golden, age 11 pulls a fire alarm inside Western Elementary, then joins Mitchell Johnson, age 13, in the woods. The two boys open fire from their position in woods, 100 yards away from where everyone was coming out. Armed with three rifles and seven guns, they got off 22 shots in about four minutes. They wounded nine students and one teacher and killed four girls and one teacher"(Labi).
Both of these students got the guns for their parent's houses. So who's to blame? The kids or the parents. To be that young and being able to get access to that many guns is a very big problem for everybody, because you will never know when some other kid might get his father's hunting gun and decide to go on a killing spree.
Many men, women, and children are killed and injured by firearm everyday. Stories such as these are reasons why guns should be controlled. "Kenneth Griffith, aged thirty, was upset with the police in Bettendorf, Iowa. He had called to report a burglary. But the police told him to call the county sheriff instead. Griffith loaded his