Debate Rounds (3)
Gun control is defined as the "regulation of the purchase and ownership of firearms in an effort to reduce their criminal or unsafe use" (Funk & Wagnalls, 1). There have been debates throughout time regarding the 2nd Amendment and its meaning. Advocates of gun rights have maintained that the 2nd Amendment gives individuals a fundamental right to own firearms, while federal courts for much of the 20th century generally assumed that this right was collective (for purposes of forming a militia) rather than for individuals. This dispute was resolved when the Supreme Court struck down a District of Columbia ban on handgun ownership in D.C. v. Heller (2008). The justices ruled (in a 5-4 majority) that the 2nd Amendment protects the individual right of "law-abiding, responsible citizens to use arms in defense of hearth and home." This decision did not overturn any previous, longstanding limitations on the possession of firearms by felons and the mentally ill. In this piece, I will discuss why gun control legislation is so detrimental to our society and to those of us who own firearms and respect their purpose.
Most importantly, the public needs to understand that banning guns does not prevent crime. Decreasing the availability of something rarely decreases a market for it. Take prohibition for example. Did banning alcohol prevent Americans from consuming alcohol? No. Most politicians in Washington strongly supported the imposition of the ban of alcohol. Regardless of the law, those producing alcohol continued to do so. The same theory can be applied to guns, except the rebellion associated with guns would be much deadlier. Everyone has heard about Chicago"s handgun ban, this ban was in effect from 1981 to 2014. In 2013, prior to the bans being lifted, Chicago had a total of 2,185 shootings, 455 of which were homicides. In 2014, Chicago had a total of 456 homicides. As shown by those statistics, banning guns didn"t prevent crime in Chicago. What makes gun control advocates think it would work anywhere else?
Gun laws don"t matter if they aren"t followed. Gun laws are founded on the principle of making a nation safer by limiting its civilian population"s access to guns, but laws against murder and violence don"t apply to those who commit those offense. Murders don"t care that murder is illegal. They sole thing the criminally-minded care about is not getting caught.
Advocates of gun control need to understand that banning guns does not prevent mass murders. The only time the majority of the public starts talking about gun control is after a horrific event, such as a school shooting. They seek changes to laws that a majority of the public supports"expanding background checks, an assault weapons ban and limits on high-capacity ammunition. "Tighter restrictions on gun-buying, eliminating multiple gun sales and closing the gun-show loophole may reduce America"s gun violence problem, but mass murder is unlike any other form of violent conflict," says James Alan Fox of CNN. Mass killers are "determined, deliberate and dead-set on murder." Taking away their ability to purchase an "assault rifle" will just steer them in another direction. They are methodical and irrational.
Gun control legislation won"t prevent bad things from happening. It won"t stop murder. It won"t stop violent crimes. However, what it will prevent are law-abiding citizens from being able to protect themselves when they are the victims of violence. I believe in gun-safety and gun education. Learning about guns and understanding them is vital to being a responsible firearm owner. Taking away something specifically laid out by our constitution is unimaginable to me.
Gun Control. (2014). Funk & Wagnalls New World Encyclopedia, 1p. 1.
James Alan, F. (n.d.). Gun control or carry permits won't stop mass murder - CNN.com. Retrieved April 27, 2015, from http://www.cnn.com...
Illustrating Chicago Crime, Murder and Mayhem. (n.d.). Retrieved April 27, 2015, from http://heyjackass.com...
The United States accounts for nearly 75 percent of all children murdered by guns in the developed world. Children between the ages of 5 and 14 in the United States are 17 times more likely to be murdered by firearms than children in other industrialized nations. One statistic showed that every day, eight kids are fatally shot or wounded by guns in the U.S. This will only be prevented if there were no guns allowed in households.
Another case for gun control is the fact that it is just way to easy for criminals to legally buy guns and and turn around and use them to commit crimes. Strict and extensive background checks and required waiting periods would significantly help this problem.
Let"s look at another common way children die: window coverings. The Consumer Product Safety Commission (a more reputable source than Slate.com who does not reference their sources for statistics) states that approximately 349 children died between 1981 and 1995 due to strangulation from window covers/blinds. These children were left in a safe place by their parents/guardians, such as a crib or bedroom, and died anyways. While those two things seem unrelated, when applied to gun control, should we outlaw window coverings just because they killed almost 350 children over a period of 14 years? That"s more children killed by blinds than guns.
I agree that there are ways for criminals to purchase guns illegally. However, extensive background checks are required for people who purchase guns LEGALLY. Have you ever purchased a firearm? I have. You stand in the store for approximately 30-45 minutes while the licensed firearms dealer runs your background to see if you are a felon. In some states, it"s even more complicated than that wait time! The only combat to criminals purchasing firearms is to patrol heavily and crack down on previously known illegal distributors of firearms. Gun shows, which aren"t even addressed in your rebuttal, are the most common ways that criminals obtain firearms. I disagree with their existence and although they are huge revenue producers, they should require background checks.
Gun control laws are an issue because it violates the 2nd Amendment. The Supreme Court ruled in 2008 that possessing firearms is not just the right to form a militia. It"s the right to keep guns in your home, the right to carry a firearm in places that allow, and it"s the right to protect yourself from anyone who tries to hurt you. Gun control is an issue because it DOESN"T WORK. Taking away the rights of law-abiding Americans is wrong and in a country that was founded on freedom, it seems to me that everyone would want to protect that freedom as much as they can. Gun control laws don"t hurt criminals. They hurt the people following the law.
"The Number of Children Who Strangle in Window Cords Has Been Under-reported According to a New Study in JAMA." U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission. 3 June 1997. Web. 28 Apr. 2015.
You also made a comparison between child deaths by guns and window coverings. As I read your example I believe you forgot to consider one thing; these are both preventable deaths. But they do have differences. The child deaths due to window shades are just an unfortunate event but the odds of a child dying while playing with or around them is pretty slim to none. If a child gets there hands on a gun however, all it takes is one squeeze on the right spot and a child's life could be over. One study shows that from 12/15/12 to 5/7/13 there were 71 gun related child deaths and 40 of those were accidental. Now because both cases are highly preventable deaths, changes have to be made to limit or, even better, eliminate them. There there are many measures that can be taken the limit window covering deaths, whether its design or manufacturing improvements. But the only way to prevent unintentional child deaths by guns is to take the guns out of the household completely.
However, having a personal weapon doesn"t negate the need for police officers. I don"t think my argument suggests that in any way at all. It actually suggests the opposite. Criminals take the law into their own hands. Criminals are the reason that police officers have jobs. Criminals are the reasons why gun control would never work. Law abiding citizens need protection from CRIMINALS. I"m sure your father is familiar with the average response time in the United States for police officers to respond to an accident. In case you don"t know, it"s TEN MINUTES. It takes a determined/skilled criminal probably a tenth of that response time to bust out a window. Imagine this, you"re home alone and someone is breaking in. You call the cops, but they just keep coming. What if they have a weapon? What if they are there specifically to conduct violence and steal your personal property that you work for? Am I saying to take justice in your own hands and become a neighborhood vigilante? NO. However, if I found myself in that situation, I would be terrified and well within my rights to use deadly force to protect myself from the CRIMINAL entering my home illegally.
You"re completely right. Child deaths involving guns are TOTALLY preventable. They are preventable IF THE ADULTS ARE RESPONSIBLE. In my house, guns are never accessible to children. They aren"t left on tables, in drawers, or any place where a child has access to them. Those deaths are solely the cause of ADULTS being irresponsible with guns. The nonprofit groups Every Town for Gun Safety and Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America did a study of all the child deaths involving guns in the home from 2012 to 2013 and found the seventy percent (62 of 89) of deaths could have been prevented with proper storage of the weapon. Without proper education, children shouldn"t be exposed to them. Regardless of how many statistics you present about how many children die each year, it doesn"t change the fact that with guns don"t kill people or children. PEOPLE kill PEOPLE. IRRESPONSIBLE ADULTS who leaves guns accessible to CHILDREN kill CHILDREN.
Regardless of our personal feelings, how can we solve the problem of gun control? My only suggestion that doesn"t violate the 2nd Amendment is to put more strict requirements on gun purchasing and increased funding for police agencies to crack down on criminals purchasing guns. The knee jerk reaction to school shootings, the shooting at the movie theatre, the Fort Hood shooting and others is to ban guns, ban "assault" weapons, and make all guns illegal. However, criminals aren"t buying guns in licensed stores. They are getting them are gun shows and from illegal dealers. If we require background checks for ALL gun purchases and crack down on illegal firearms sales, the United States will see a drastic decrease in crime involving firearms.
This theory has already been tested and it doesn"t work. In England and Wales, handguns are banned. In the past year, crimes involving guns in England and Wales has increased by thirty five percent. Databases report that last year, 9,974 crimes involving firearms were committed there last year WHERE HAND GUNS ARE BANNED. I"ve made this point multiple times. Criminals don"t care about laws.
Pavilch, Katie. "Gun Crime Soars in England Where Guns Are Banned." Townhall.com. 12 Dec. 2012. Web. 29 Apr. 2015.
"Innocents Lost: A Year of Unintentional Child Gun Deaths." EveryTown.org. Every Town for Gun Safety. Web. 29 Apr. 2015.
"When Seconds Count, Police Are Minutes Away...Or Your 911 Call Goes to Voicemail - Freedom Outpost." Freedom Outpost. 19 June 2014. Web. 29 Apr. 2015.
But putting a ban on guns is not just for the criminals. It is mostly for the non criminals. It is for the everyday average individual. It is for the thousands of people who lost their lives to unintentional shootings over the past 10 years. It is for the 21175 people who committed gun suicides in 2013. It is for the 100+ children who were killed due to accidental shootings in 2013. Children who weren't even given a chance to live a full, happy life. Almost all of these cases occurred due to gun that can be found in a typical household. It is for the 20 children and 6 teachers who were mercilessly killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, CT in 2012. 156 ammunition rounds were used in this incident, and they were all legally bought and obtained from the suspects home.
A ban on guns will not stop all gun violence from taking place. There are still criminals out there that will do everything in their power to purchase and use guns. But ending gun violence isn't the purpose of gun control . The purpose of gun control is to limit the amount of unintentional loss of innocent lives. Taking guns completely out of households and banning its sales is the best way to accomplish that goal.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by salam.morcos 1 year ago
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Reasons for voting decision: Conduct, language and sources were good from both. I think Con made more convincing argument (even though I don't agree). He made several argument, but he claimed that people kill people, not gun. Con argued gun control won't reduce crime (gave example in uk). Pro gave some examples such as unintentional deaths due to access to guns. Con rebutted that it was the parent's fault. Pro made some argument, but missed on many arguments. Pro didn't emphasize that gun control means reduction of automatic, semi-automatic weapons (which have no purpose but to kill). He should have brought examples of law-abiding citizens, who go crazy and kill dozens in school's etc... Pro should have shown how Australia conservative government applied gun control and it reduced massacres. He could have said that gun control is not necessarily a full gun ban, so people could still have a gun at home to protect themselves. I vote con.
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