Gun Control in America
I am a 16-year-old boy from Saint Martinville, LA, and I am a firm believer that creating laws banning guns in America is not only a violation of constitutional rights, but can become detrimental to the safety of the American people as well.
16 November 2016
Dear Future President:
Gun control laws have been a long-standing issue in our nation, and it is time our government leaders officially put the issue to rest. Although gun violence still causes trouble for Americans, enforcing stricter gun laws is not the best way to handle the situation. The issue is much more complex than it appears on the surface, and needs to be dealt with in such a manner. Creating stricter gun laws will not be as effective as gun control advocates believe; harsh gun laws are unnecessary.
One of the main arguments Americans hear in regards to the gun law controversy is the high rate of gun-related deaths that occur in America each year: 36 per day on average in 2015. However, a gun, like a knife, bat, or hammer, is no more than a tool, and like any tool or weapon, there is only as much power behind it as there is intent in the person wielding it. Although gun injury/death rates may be higher than the rates of that of bladed weapons and others, restricting gun access would only increase the violence rates of other weapons. Killers will always find ways to kill.
Another problem with this idea of enforcing stricter gun laws is the violation of our rights, as American citizens, listed in the U.S. Constitution, the supreme law of the land. Our right to bear arms as United States citizens is a part of our Bill of Rights, the list of unalienable rights given to all U.S. citizens upon receiving citizenship. Taking away those rights given to us in the second amendment is the beginning of a slippery-slope effect. If Americans believe repealing even one of our basic rights is okay, then which rights will follow? Even if gun control advocates are able to convince our leaders to ban only few weapon classes at first, it will not be long until all of our self-defense weapons are gone.
In my life, guns have had a fairly large impact. My older brothers have been involved in military service jobs all of their lives. My eldest brother was a member of the army, a detective in the St. Martin Parish police force, and now has a military/government job I have been encouraged not to speak about. The other also served in our nation’s army for many years. He was recognized as one of the Governor’s top 20 shooters in the state. He now lives with his wife and two young children, and continues his service as a military recruiter. They taught me the importance of gun safety at a young age, and I have seen the same lesson taught to my 4-year-old nephew, who knows now that if he sees a firearm anywhere, his first reaction is to step back and alert his father, and he does so with proper cause.
Living in the sportsman’s paradise, hunting and fishing are a way of life, so guns are inevitably involved in his life, as well as my own. However, I do not mean to say the only necessary weapons are hunting rifles. Even if it may not seem as such, the American public needs access to many of the more powerful weapons our armed forces have access to. Suppose that some radical gun control advocate group gets their way. Not only are high-powered firearms removed from the hands of the American citizens, but all guns. Suppose a few presidential terms later, a man or woman rises to power, managing to alter our government and law enforcement through some back doors he or she may have found in our constitution and other legal documents. Suppose American citizens are forced into a totalitarian dictatorship. What do they use to defend themselves and their rights? Their guns are gone. We need to protect these weapons rights, so that, should our powerful government become corrupt, we can fight back against it with weapons of equal caliber to theirs.
Gun rights are important to the majority of Americans who, unfortunately, cannot feel safe even in their own neighborhoods and homes in today’s world. We, as an American people, cannot stand for the violation of our second amendment rights because that is when we have truly lost our power as a nation. Congratulations on achieving the position of the most powerful person in the world. Please use this power to the best of your abilities, and make the right choice when it comes to protecting the rights of your citizens over the next four years.
DeFilippis, Evan, and Devin Hughes. "5 Arguments against Gun Control- and Why They Are All Wrong." Los Angeles Times, 8 July 2016, www.latimes.com/opinion/op-ed/la-oe-defilippis-hughes-gun-myths-debunked-20160708-snap-story.html. Accessed 10 Nov. 2016.
Hamblin, James. "Why We Can't Talk about Gun Control." The Atlantic, 29 June 2014, www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2014/06/how-to-interpret-the-second-amendment/373664/. Accessed 11 Nov. 2016.
Kyle, Taya. "'American Sniper' Widow: Gun Control Isn't the Answer." Cable News Network (CNN), 8 Jan. 2016, www.cnn.com/2016/01/07/opinions/taya-kyle-gun-control/. Accessed 11 Nov. 2016.