The Great Debate: Gun Control
America is a great nation, and that is certainly due to the freedoms that we possess. Recently, however, the second amendment has come under question as being one of those great rights. In light of these horrible shootings of late, calls for gun control are sounding louder than ever.
Let me first clarify my views on this subject. I firmly believe that the second amendment must be vehemently protected; I also believe that we can do so whilst keeping criminals from attaining firearms. Having said that, these shootings are happening too much, but I do not believe gun control is the way to solve this. Now one could say to me, “but shouldn’t we do whatever we can to try and help stop these events?” Yes we should, but like I said, I don’t see gun control as being one of those things that helps.
A recent Vox article makes various points that have been quite common amongst leftward anti-gun arguments. Much of this article cites how states and counties that have more guns have more gun deaths, yet there is very little clarification as to if these deaths are in self-defense or not; which is very important with this subject. In fact, another Vox article essentially said that the Right-to-Carry laws had little or no effect on reduction of crime. Thus when approached with a drop in gun violence, concurrent pro-gun laws, according to Vox, would have little effect. Even though Vox attempted to say that states with more guns can cause more homicides, the basis of that (as they mentioned) was merely on association, not causation. Most of Vox’s reporting on gun laws follow these trends, with the exception of suicide. Suicide appears to be more prevalent in gun-rich environments then those without guns. Vox advocates for gun control because this. Though in part, this is to be expected as guns are the easiest and quickest way to end a life, the problem isn’t the means of suicide and how easy or difficult it is, it is the fact the there are those that consider suicide and that they need help. Using suicide to advocate for gun control completely misses the point, taking away a means of suicide doesn’t make one happier, they need help not control.
Vox does good to point out that America’s total crime is lower than the worldwide average, they also mention that America’s gun crime is much higher. Yet it is not just gun crime that needs to be focused on, but crime in general. London has overtaken New York in terms of crime and as NBC points out, London almost has a knife crime epidemic. Gun crimes are even being reported as increasing, and in a city where only 90% of cops carry a gun, there’s little that can be done against that. On the other hand, CBS reports that Israel has had only had six terror attacks on their schools, and they have employed armed security guards in their schools. Whatever the means of crime may be, all the laws in the world cannot stop it unless there is an active movement to stop crime. Israel seems to have displayed this idea quite well.
As I mentioned earlier, I believe gun rights must be protected, but I also believe that active measures can be made to take illegal weapons from criminals and prevent them from legally acquiring weapons without harming our rights. However, gun control advocates simply want just that, gun control. This is a serious problem, we cannot expect to have a knee jerk reaction to a shooting and demand that the weapon or type of weapon that was used in the last mass killing should be banned and expect to effectively stop the next shooting. Sure if after there is a mass shooting with an AR-15 and we decide ban the AR-15 because of that everyone will feel good about themselves, but then what of something like an M1 Garand? It’s not an ‘assault rifle,’ but is has an eight round clip that automatically ejects so another can be loaded quickly. So ban it, then what? Lever actions can provide just as easy a stream of fire as a semi-auto if used properly, then there’s semi auto shotguns. Then there are axes, knives, and even hammers that can still do significant damage. Guns are not the issue, illegal guns and lack of security are. Israel provides a perfect example of how effect school security can be against terrorism. Vox even pointed out that their pro gun control propaganda was based more on association, and in another article they say an assault weapons ban would have little effect on crime. As I said, legal guns are not the problem, illegal guns are. Instead of making laws that only those that obey laws will follow, devote those resources on the criminals and get the illegal guns off the streets.