Archive for February 7, 2013
Everyday it seems the news airwaves are filled with another story about yet another senseless act of violence involving a gun. These stories, which seem to be occurring with increasing frequency, add fuel to the already highly emotional pro gun control versus no gun control debate. Nearly every person has an opinion on pro gun control or anti gun control. And of those with an opinion, many want to voice it. Pro gun control proponents bring into question the rights of gun owners. As a result, gun advocacy organizations and lobbyists such as the National Rifle Association (and its lobbyist branch, the Institute of Legislative Action) and Gun Owners of America are fighting for what they deem as the rights of gun owners and American citizens. Gun control statistics are interesting and mixed, depending on which side of the argument you are on. In a 2010 survey, there were between 47 and 53 million American households with a gun. That equates to approximately 70 to 80 million gun owners. The basis of the pro gun control argument is if guns are outlawed, then nobody could get killed with a gun. Conversely, those who are not pro gun control argue that even if guns were outlawed, criminals would still find a way to get access to firearms. Those opposed to pro gun control measures also claim that limiting the rights of firearms owners is a serious violation of our Constitutional rights, specifically, the second amendment (the rights of people to keep and bear arms). In addition to aiming to protect the second amendment, gun advocacy groups are also trying to fight legislation that imposes more gun control and also fight for legislation that prevents people from frivolously suing the firearms industry. Pro gun control and their opponents cite statistics to strengthen their arguments. For example, pro gun control advocates correlate our lax gun laws with the fact that the homicide rate in the United States is 6.9 times higher than it is in 22 other high income, high population countries combined. On the other hand, gun control opponents show a relationship between states that allow citizens to carry concealed weapons and crime rates. According to this research, states that have conceal carry laws have a markedly lower crime and murder rate. A 60 percent decrease in multiple victim public shootings.