James B. Washington

Guns and why they matter

A letter to the next president on why Firearms are important.

Guns are bad! This is the cry of much of my generation believing that if you make something illegal people will not be able to obtain it. In this letter, I will examine the evidence of both adding more control on guns and not adding any more control on guns.

Let’s start with the first argument people usually come up with and that’s “look at Europe, look at Australia, gun control works!” Though it is true that those countries have gun control including the police not usually having guns they are often outgunned by criminals simply because criminals are just that they don’t follow the law they will always obtain them legally or illegally. In addition, Australia is overrun with guns people make by hand using everything from bed springs to plumbing parts. So, if you ban guns criminals will always have them but law abiding citizens won’t and that eliminates the ability for law-abiding citizens to protect themselves from armed criminals.

Next, let’s discuss the self-defense aspect of guns. Let’s start with the African-American population of the U.S. it is dangerous to be African American today you face racist police and people killing purely because of your race. Right now, 54% of African Americans own guns for protection, compared to just two years ago when it was only at 29%. Also, large numbers of the LGBT community concealed carry and own firearms in order to protect themselves.

Now on to the subject of the right to bear arms, this is expressed in the second amendment of the united states. This amendment reads "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." Let’s break this down. “A well-regulated Militia” A militia is a group of citizens ready or fit for military service, as far as being well regulated the amendment doesn’t specify who the militia should be regulated by and considering the circumstances that the amendment was written in one can draw the conclusion that it is civilians that band together to fight for their country. “being necessary to the security of a free state” the security of a free state can be secured by fighting for rights but should a foreign country declare war and step foot on American soil it’s the rights of American’s to protect their free state, to protect their freedom. “the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed” first let’s go over that its “the right of the people” and not a convenience just to be able to be taken away.

Your argument may be ‘but that was written when they only had single shot rifles and pistols not assault rifles or machine guns’ my rebuttal would be that anyone could legally own a cannon, pucker gun, or even bombs and mortars. The term assault rifle only applies to guns that are capable of fully automatic fire (ATF definition “capable of firing more than one round per trigger pull”) It is incredibly difficult to get these legally as it requires a $200 tax stamp then you must send in an application for the tax stamp then you have to actually buy a full auto which can cost $19,000 or more provided you can even find one as no more have been let in the country since 1986.

Now a semi-automatic rifle is in no capacity a machine gun, a semi-automatic rifle fires one round per trigger pull. “cop killer bullets” are more misleading words that politicians use to scare people “cop killer bullets” often refer to bullets that semi-automatic rifles fire when these are usually much smaller than those used by the average hunting rifle used to hunt deer and other similar game.

It is the right to keep and bear arms, not the convenience. Someone’s rights don’t go away just because they make you feel uncomfortable. Everyone has the right to protection. Minority groups such as LGBT and African American communities gun ownership levels are through the roof in the last few years following the trend of gun ownership is generally though the gun violence at their lowest since the early 1990s. 

The Community School

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