4th, November, 2016
The Next President of the United States
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, D.C. 20500
Dear Next President:
From Newtown, Connecticut to Orlando, Florida, there seems to be a new shooting every month. Yet there are so many more that go unreported. Shootings today seem to be so common that when we, as a nation, hear of them, we are saddened but not surprised. Shootings today seem to be the norm, and that, to me, is deeply troubling and indicates something is very, very wrong.
As our next President, I hope you will work hard to curb gun violence. Statistics are grim: 30,000 people die from gun related deaths every year, and thousands of those killed are children. Seven out of the top fourteen deadliest massacres around the world have occurred in the United States. The US is ranked twelfth out of 112 countries in terms of having the most gun violence. In our country, it is all too easy for people who should not be able to buy guns to purchase them. Omar Mateen, who was on the no-fly list and had been interviewed for possible ties to terrorism was still able to buy a semi-automatic rifle. This resulted in the deaths of forty nine people.
In countries that have strict regulations on firearms, gun related deaths are much lower. England and Japan have extremely tight laws on gun ownership, and their number of deaths from gun violence are 0.04 and 0.03 per 100,000 people respectively. The US’s deaths from guns per 100,000 people is 3.42, about 100 times greater than those in previously mentioned countries. Contrary to what many believe, these statistics show that limiting guns themselves to actually reduce gun violence.
Many people cite the second amendment, which allows citizens the right to bear arms, as a defense against gun control. But the second amendment was ratified in 1791, a time when guns were not as advanced and lethal as they are today. I view the constitution as a work in progress as our society is not the same today as it was in 1787, and parts of it need to be updated to fit modern times.
Though it’s impossible to completely eradicate gun violence, there are ways to curb it. One way would be to have tighter background checks. People who have committed high level crimes, are on the no-fly list, in unstable conditions, or have had ties to terrorism absolutely should not be able to get guns. The ‘Charleston Loophole’, which allows people to buy guns despite insufficient background checks, should be closed. Military grade weapons such as assault rifles and semi-automatic guns should not be available to the public. Weapons such as these are made for one purpose, to kill. You don’t need an assault rifle to hunt!
With tighter control on pistols and rifles, deaths by gun violence will almost surely fall. Statistics show that in states with tighter gun control, there are less violent deaths from guns, and if all states adopted stricter gun laws, deaths will surely fall. Streets will be safer, and less people will lose friends, family, and loved ones due to gun violence.
As president, I hope that you will work with Congress to make sterner regulations on guns and who buys them. Regardless of whether you are Democrat or Republican, work together with both parties. Put aside your different values and beliefs to pass laws limiting gun violence, as it will save many lives. Stress to the American people the importance of gun control, but let them know that if they pass background checks, they can still purchase pistols and hunting rifles. Be clear that you are not abolishing the Second Amendment.
Please, Mr./Mrs. President. I want to live in a world where shootings are not ‘the norm’. I want to live in a world our leaders and politicians stop making excuses for guns when the statistics are right there . And I want to live in a world where my school, a place where I’m supposed to feel safe, is not threatened by the idea of a possible shooting.
Thank you so much for taking your time to read my letter. I hope that we, as a nation can come together and stop gun violence.
Lee, M., and Alexander Stingl. "Gun Control: An Overview." Point Of View: Gun Control (2016): 1. Points of View Reference Center. Web. 4 Nov. 2016.
Lee, M., and Alexander Stingl. "Gun Control: An Overview." Points Of View: Gun Control (2016): 1. Points of View Reference Center. Web. 4 Nov. 2016.
"Delaware Moms Praise State Lawmakers For Advancing Legislation That Would Close Charleston Loophole." PR Newswire US 20 Apr. 2016: Points of View Reference Center. Web. 4 Nov. 2016