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COLUMN: Gun Control Debate Rages

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Pop culture has mainstreamed them, politicians have demonized them, and our American citizens seem to be somewhere in the middle. No, I’m not talking about the Clintons or the Trumps. … I am talking about guns.

Due to a rise in gun deaths in major cities, as well as mass shootings around the world, gun control has become one of the most popular topics of debate in classrooms, work places and even homes across our country. There are three main arguments on this subject that include: making it possible for all law abiding citizens to get their hands on any weapons possible, cracking down on who can own guns and what type they can own, and banning guns in the hands of everyday citizens altogether. Some extreme groups even believe in disarming law enforcement, but we don’t need to address that here.

Personally, I belong to the first group. I believe that we have a human crisis, not a gun crisis. Bob Barr said it best when he said, “It’s not a gun control problem, it is a cultural control problem.” Criminals by there very nature break the law, so if you take away guns with laws, all you are doing is disarming citizens who use them as protection. And SPOILER ALERT: criminals will still obtain weapons and continue killing easier than ever before. Not to mention the fact that we have recently scene human beings use cars, trucks, bombs and many other tactics to commit these atrocities.

Now, I hate politicizing these human crisis events, but no one is asking for “car control” or banning all the ingredients used in explosive devices. Looking at gun control legislation: we see cities and states with the strictest gun control laws including Chicago and other metropolitan areas, and they have some of the highest gun violence totals we have ever seen. All of these arguments could have their own article, but to finish up, we have seen many fatal shootings in the last five or so years at military bases in gun-free zones, where law abiding citizens cannot protect themselves from the criminals that enter with weapons.

As for argument number two, there is also a large following. Many would like legislation passed to close gun show loopholes (getting firearms underage or without background checks) when not buying from a retailer. The other main part of this is making it so average citizens cannot buy fully automatic firearms, large volume magazines, or armor-piercing/incendiary rounds. I sympathize with this approach to a certain extent, as some weapons and people are just over the top with what they own. But then again, it is their second amendment right!

The third and final argument is a brave crowd who believes in taking away all guns from citizens. And some extremists want the government unarmed. Now it is ironic that many people that don’t trust the government want them to take all of our guns so that they are the only armed ones. I will say that some countries have successfully taken away guns or kept guns extremely limited so that you cannot conceal them. That includes countries like Australia, Scotland and Finland. These countries have experienced great success, according to theweek.com. However, let me introduce you to a few leaders who have either disarmed or attempted to disarm their citizens: Kim Jung Un, Fidel Castro, Pol Pot, Mao Tze Tung, Benito Mussolini, Joseph Stalin and Adolf Hitler. I understand that many people think guns are the problem, but I would challenge you to tell me which, if any, of those situations worked out well for anyone.

I am a law-abiding citizen, and I am legally licensed to carry a firearm. I take pride in being able to protect those around me. It is interesting to see the many viewpoints on this controversial topic, and I think it is something that needs to be talked about. We are experiencing a cultural crisis with this violence, but I think our time would be better spent making sure mental health and other issues are treated, because these are what lead to mass shootings. I am very opinionated on this topic, as it is one where there aren’t many people on the fence. But that does not mean there is a completely right or wrong answer.

I want to leave you all with this, my argument against gun control: Take a legal, fully automatic rifle and load it with bullets, and then set it on the counter in a room full of people. If no one touches it, tell me how man people the gun shoots. Then, give an angry or deranged person in that same room a knife or any sort of household weapon, then tell me if the gun is the problem or not.

 

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COLUMN: Gun Control Debate Rages