Gun Control

This essay has a total of 1697 words and 6 pages.

Gun Control


By: Jason
E-mail: brulover@hotmail.com

: The failure of Gun Control Laws Americans are faced with an ever-growing problem of
violence. Our streets have become a battleground where the elderly are beaten for their
social security checks, where terrified women are viciously attacked and raped, where
teenage gangster shoot it out for a patch of turf to sell their illegal drugs, and where
innocent children are caught daily in the crossfire of drive-by shootings. We cannot
ignore the damage that these criminals are doing to our society, and we must take actions
to stop these horrors. However, the efforts by some misguided individuals to eliminate the
legal ownership of firearms does not address the real problem at hand, and simply disarms
the innocent law abiding citizens who are most in need of a form of self-defense. To fully
understand the reasons behind the gun control efforts, we must look at the history of our
country, and the role firearms have played in it. The second amendment to the Constitution
of the United States makes firearm ownership legal in this country. There were good
reasons for this freedom, reasons which persist today. Firearms in the new world were used
initially for hunting, and occasionally for self-defense. However, when the colonist felt
that the burden of British oppression was too much for them to bear, they picked up their
personal firearms and went to war. Standing against the British armies, these rebels found
themselves opposed by the greatest military force in the world at that time. The 18th
century witnessed the height of the British Empire, but the rough band of colonial freedom
fighters discovered the power on the Minuteman, the average American gun owner. These
Minuteman, so named because they would pick up their personal guns and jump to the defense
of their country on a minute's notice, served a major part in winning the American
Revolution. The founding fathers of the country understood that an armed populace was
instrumental in fighting off oppression, and they made the right to keep and bear arms a
constitutionally guaranteed right(The Gunin American 14-25)Over the years, some of the
reasons for owning firearms have changed. As our country grow into a strong nation, we
expanded westward, exploring the wilderness, and building new towns on the frontier.
Typically, these new towns were far away from the centers of civilization, and the only
law they had was dispensed by townsfolk through the barrel of a gun. Crime existed, but
could be minimized when the townspeople fought back against the criminals. Eventually,
these organized townspeople developed police forces as their towns grew in size. Fewer
people carried their firearms on the street, but the firearms were always there, ready to
be used in self-defense(27-39) It was after the Civil War that the first gun-control
advocates came into existence. These southern leaders who were afraid that the newly freed
black slaves would assert their newfound political rights, and these leaders wanted to
make it easier to oppress the free blacks(41) This oppression was accomplished by passing
laws making it illegal in many places or black people to own firearms. With that effort,
they assured themselves that the black population would be subject to their control, and
world not have the ability to fight back. At the same time, the people who were most
intent on denying black people their basic rights walked around with their firearms,
making it impossible to resist their efforts. An unarmed man stands little chance against
and armed one, and these armed men saw their plans work completely. It was a full century
before the civil rights activists of the 1960's were able to restore the constitutional
freedoms that blacks in this country were granted in the 1860's(46). Today's gun control
activists are a slightly different breed. They claim that gun violence in this country has
gotten to a point where something must be done to stop it. They would like to see
criminals disarmed, and they want the random violence to stop(Edel 77). I agree with their
sentiments. However, they are going about it in the wrong way. While claiming that they
want to take guns out of the hands of criminals, they work to pass legislation that world
take the guns out of the hands of law abiding citizens instead. For this reason the
efforts at gun control do not address the real problem of crime. The simple definition of
a criminal is someone who does not obey the law. The simple definition of a law abiding
citizen is someone who does obey the law. Therefore, if we pass laws restricting ownership
of firearms, which category of people does it affect? The simple answer is that gun
control laws affect law abiding citizens only. By their very nature, the criminals will
continue to violate these new laws, they will continue to carry their firearms, and they
will find their efforts at crime much easier when they know that their victims will be
unarmed. The situation is similar to that of the disarmed blacks a century ago. Innocent
people are turned into victims when new laws make it impossible for them to fight back. Am
unarmed man stands little chance against an armed one. An interesting recent development
has been the backlash against the gun control advocates. In many states, including Florida
and Texas, citizens have stated that they want to preserve their right to carry forearms
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