Gun Control


Since the days of the pioneers of the United States, firearms
have been part of the American tradition as protection and a means of
hunting or sport. As we near the end of the 20th century the use of guns
has changed significantly. Because of fast and steady increase in crime
and the fight for the right to own a hand gun, the introduction of
legislation for gun control, to try to reduce the crime in the United
States, has been a hotly debated issue in recent years.

Although many people feel that gun control violates the right of the
people, given in the second amendment "the right to bear arms", controlling
distribution and sales and the registration of guns and gun owners is
necessary because of the homicide rate involving guns and the violence by
criminals using guns.

Many people feel that gun control violates the right of the people
given in the second amendment the right "to bear arms". Opponents of gun
control, including the National Rifle Association, better known as the NRA,
argue that the "right To bear arms" is guaranteed in the second amendment
of the Constitution of the United States of America and licensing
restrictions penalize law-abiding citizens while in no way preventing
criminal use of handguns. It is also argued that by making it difficult
for guns to be bought and registered for the American public there is a
threat to the personal safety of American families everywhere.

However controlling the sale and distribution of firearms is
necessary because of the homicide rate involving guns. In 1988 there were
9000 handgun related murders in America. Metropolitan centers and some
suburban communities of America are setting new records for homicides by
handguns. Larger Metropolitan centers have ten times the murder rate of all
Western Europe. For example in Washington,D.C. there was an estimated 400
homicides including guns.

In addition gun control has been seen as necessary because of the
violence by criminals using guns. Gun control is wrapped in a series of
social issues such as crime and drugs. Guns have become closely linked to
drugs and murder in the public mind. Drug dealing and high tech weaponry
have escalated the warfare in cities between long established loosely knit
gangs. Predominantly guns of crime are used by gang members. Many police
officers are killed every year due to drug and gang related incidents
involving guns. For example in 1988 on February 26 rookie New York City
police officer Edward Byre was sitting alone in his police car guarding the
house of a drug trial witness in South Jamaica, Queens where he was shot
four times in the head and killed.

In conclusion there are valid reasons for why certain people feel
that gun control is unfair. People against gun control feel that it is a
violation of the Constitution to control the sale and distribution and the
registration of guns and gun owners. But it is necessary for there to be
certain limits on the way that firearms are handled in this country because
of the homicide rate involving guns and because of the violence created by
criminals using guns. If gun control legislation were to go through there
would be a significant decline in gun related crimes and fatalities.