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Western Civilization

In: Historical Events

Submitted By Frenchie
Words 1110
Pages 5
Paul French
Professor Keefe
English 063
12.5.13
GUN CONTROL
Is there a way to control gun distribution? I’m not sure. The control of guns has been an ongoing issue going back before the 2nd Amendment was introduced (December, 15, 1791). Prior to this Amendment people that owned guns basically made up their own laws. They were able to carry and use guns in a way that fit their life style. For the most part they would use them for hunting and self-protection being able to carry their guns either concealed or in the open was a decision they were able to make themselves. As stated, people could use their guns for hunting which provided food for their family or possibly an income if they could sell the game killed. But there were some people that would use their guns in more destructive ways. They would use their guns as a source of power to control different situations. Some examples would be, bank, train, or stagecoach robberies, territorial fights for land (The Hatfield’s and McCoy’s) the fight for political power. In each of these examples if things went wrong or if someone died there is a very good chance that guns were involved. It was only a matter of time that manufacturing of firearms for the purpose of distribution needed to be controlled. Hence the 2nd Amendment, whereas the people of this great nation have the Right to Keep and Bear Arms through the eyes of the law. Though this amendment is a big part of our constitutional right as people of this land we must abide by the decision made by the United States Supreme Court. Whereas the right to keep and bear arms is not granted by the constitution; neither is it in any manner dependent upon that instrument for its existence” and limited the applicability of the Second Amendment to the federal government. (United States v. Cruikshank (1876). Then in 1939 a new ruling was passed by the Supreme Court. Besides already given the federal government the power to control gun distribution it also included that every individual state do the same in working with the federal government. (United States v. Miller) Though this rule by the Supreme Court is still in existence today, there have been many laws pertaining to gun control implemented since this court’s ruling. Even with these and the laws that have been added since, there is still an overabundance of gun related accidents or crimes here in the United States. As sad as it is, even after the assignations of three very influential men in the 1960s (President John F. Kennedy, His brother Robert Kennedy, and civil rights leader, Dr. Martin Luther King) and today with the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School here in Connecticut where we lost over 20 children and adults (December 16, 2013). There still seems to be some question to who really controls our gun laws. Here in Connecticut we have some of the toughest gun laws in the nation. Mostly now due to the unfortunate tragedy at Sandy Hook. Can these tragedies ever be completely avoided or stopped before they happen? Unfortunately as hard as it is to accept, sadly it is up to us, regular citizens who do follow the law to be aware of this problem. This problem is real, it’s in our lives every day and as sad as it is to say we tend to ignore or face the reality of it. We hear about it all the time someone gets shot and dies, it is then when the community or the victim’s family or even some law makers come together as one. It is evident that because of these incidents every state in our nation is trying to implement what they think is a fair solution to these misfortunes. But unfortunately there is much more that has to bed done. There have been many new laws added over the years. Take the Brady Act for example, which was put into law in 1994, implementing a more in depth background check on citizens wanting to purchase handguns. It took President Reagan being the target and one man nearly losing his life (Senator Brady, who to this day is in a wheel chair) for the states and federal government to really start looking into the control of handguns. There are still too many loop holes in the system and it is usually long after a tragedy that a change is made. Now I can go on and talk about many more of the shootings that have occurred here in the United States. But to be quite honest with you, thinking about it makes me sick. With the amount of technology that we have today you would think we would have a better way of controlling distribution of firearms. There are some things that I would like to see happen that may or may not have been thought about. 1. Increase the age of being able to purchase any gun to 21yrs old. These young adults need to be more educated about the safety and dangers of owning a firearm. There should, especially now be some type of psychological evaluation included in the education. 2. The so called grandfather clause; which only means that if you are at a certain age or have had an ongoing renewal of your permits, that you no longer need to be re-educated. This is one that should be looked at long and hard. It is a proven fact that the older we get the longer it takes to comprehend.
Look, I’m no expert on the laws nor am I in a position to point fingers. But if we as Americans don’t join together in a more solidified way we cannot expect these tragedies to just disappear.
I have been a gun owner for nearly my entire life and have always abided by the law. Even for me change is something that at times is hard for me to accept. But if it means saving lives, then change is inevitable.

Works Cited
1. Gallop Poll News, U.S. Divided Over Stricter Gun Laws; 25 Oct 2013. Galegroup.com
2. Somers, Meredith. “Drawing a bead on states new gun-law; supporters celebrate passage while opponents plot a hoped-for reversal.” Washington Times (Washington, DC) 17 May, 2013 Galegroup.com
3. Watkins, Christine. Guns and Crime. “Stronger Gun Control Laws Will Save Lives”
Detroit: Greenhaven Press, 2012. At Issue. Rpt. from “Ten Myths About Gun Violence in America. “ LCAV.org. 2009. Opposing Viewpoints in Context. Web. 4 Dec.2013.
4. Wikipedia, Info on Second Amendment. 5 Dec. 2013…...

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