Gun Control Not Simple Fix to U.S. Violence

Abigail Ramsey, Writer

Gun control has been a controversial topic in America for many years. Countries outside of the United States have already limited their firearms and are asking America when it’s going to catch up.

    Through the years, the notion to ban guns has always been shot down by a lot of Americans. The strongest voice in this matter is the U.S. Bill of Rights which states in the 2nd Amendment, “…the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.”

    This is the answer to the question of whether to take guns from the people. Or is it?

    The laws of the U.S. have been edited throughout the years, so what makes this subject any different? Facts and evidence supporting both sides have been brought to the table, adding pressure to the government to act. After every mass shooting and tragedy, there is an outcry for the government to regulate guns or even take them away completely.

    It seems like common sense to think that since many murders are committed with a gun, taking away the weapon would stop the crime from happening. It’s not that simple.

    There have been numerous studies on this subject. According to a study from CNN, from 1966 to 2012, among the countries with the most mass shootings, America ranks the highest.

    The percentage of American gun ownership is at its highest since the 1990s, with 42 to 46 percent according to Gallup and ABC News polls. More Americans are buying more guns, so does this make firearms the issue with all of our mass shootings?

    Many would say yes, but would that be going against our right to bear arms? Is our right to bear arms something that should be limited and strict?

    Though American gun ownership has risen through the years, our homicide rates have stayed relatively the same. According to the FBI database, violent crime has increased ever since 2014, with homicides adding only 1.4 percent to the overall 125,000 offenses.

    Approximately 17,500 murders across the country seems like a lot, and it is, but when compared to the 1990s and the 1980s, it is lower than almost all of those two decades. These rates seem much higher than any of the world’s countries, but when the fact that the U.S. is larger than any of the European countries is taken into consideration, then those murder rates don’t seem too abnormal.

    The U.S. also has more cities than any European country. According to a study conducted by Barkan Research, cities tend to have more violent crime than rural areas.  Even if we had our right to bear arms taken away to try and stop violent crime, it won’t go away.

    While the U.S. has more mass shootings than other countries, it ranks 11th in comparing death rates in mass shootings, according to a study done by Crime Prevention Research Center.

    Having guns taken away will only hurt the law abiding citizens. Criminals will find a way to smuggle guns into the country, just like they find a way to smuggle drugs. When the criminals get their guns, they won’t obey the signs saying gun-free zones just like they don’t obey the law.

    Criminals will find a way to hurt defenseless citizens, no matter what. We should be focusing more on keeping people out of crime than giving them a way to commit more. So is it the gun that commits the crime, or the person behind it?