Pro: Neverending Debate on Gun Control

In light of the recent tragic shootings, the always controversial topic of gun control has once again taken center stage.

Once again, debates regarding gun control have developed following the tragic mass shootings at both the Century Aurora movie theater in Colorado and Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut. Realistically, stricter rules and regulations would be created in response to the heartbreaking events. Still, for some bizarre reason, our country has delayed taking greater measures to implement such laws because opponents of gun control continuously fall back on the same excuse as to why our country shouldn’t have rules regulating guns—the Second Amendment.

The United States is a civilized country and should know when to make exceptions to the Bill of Rights, especially if it involves the public’s safety. Our freedom of speech doesn’t give one the right to yell “fire” in a movie theater, so why should the Second Amendment give the common man the right to own a killing machine? About 16,000 murders were committed in the United States during 2008 with about 11,000 of them involving firearms. With 68% of crimes involving guns, the U.S. must immediately start implementing stricter gun control laws in an effort to rectify such an appalling statistic.

The Second Amendment states that “A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.” Many consider this to mean that an individual has the right to obtain a weapon. What we have to consider, though, is that times have changed since the amendment was written. Back then, we didn’t have an efficient police force to protect us. Communication was poor and it was very difficult for individuals to reach out for help in times of danger. Today, technology has allowed us to contact the police almost immediately during a crime.

A key argument against stricter gun control is that it gives an individual self-protection against criminals or other dangers. What many leave out is the fact that gun owners are unqualified to own one. Instead of giving someone extra protection, having a gun causes others more harm than good. Not only is the risk of hurting others intensified, but having a weapon would also increase the chance of a petty criminal striking out in self-defense when faced by a gun-owning individual.

Probably the most ridiculous argument is that banning firearms from individuals will change our government from democracy to dictatorship. It’s hard to believe owning weapons that belong on a battlefield protects the rights of common citizens from government control. Over 60% of homicides have been committed with a stolen firearm, giving us an idea of how dangerous it is to own a gun.

The tragedies that have resulted due to guns have haunted many people throughout our history. Innocent lives have been lost and the feeling of security in our country has been shattered. We can’t erase the past but we can correct our mistakes so that future generations don’t experience the horrors that we have faced. With stricter gun regulations, we can create a safer world by reducing the violence and fulfilling the true intent of the Second Amendment of keeping America safe.