Payton F. Washington

US Gun Control

Gun control in the United States is too weak. People are able to illegally buy guns too easily and we need to tighten laws and use new technologies to help reduce the number of gun related deaths a year.

Dear next POTUS,

All around the United States shootings are a big issue. But I believe that the bigger issue that leads to many shootings is the fact there are weak gun control laws. I believe that tightening gun control laws, having more intensive background checks and just making it harder in general to get a gun will help solve the problem, along with some other technologies that are being developed to help make guns safer. 

Some people say that tightening gun control violates their Second Amendment rights. But in reality it isn’t violating their second amendment rights, it’s making it harder to get a gun (and when they were writing the first ten amendments it took about 30 seconds to reload a gun, you only get one shot and you could rarely hit a guy standing across the street from you. But now it takes about ten seconds to reload a gun and in each clip you can have something like 30 bullets and you can hit a guy 2 blocks away from you. Times have changed and if needed I think it could be necessary to revise the second amendment).

Weak gun control laws have lead to many tragedies. For example, in the Newtown, Connecticut (Sandy Hook) shooting 20 year old Adam Lanza committed the crime with a semi-automatic rifle and  “the semi-automatic rifle Lanza used belonged to his mother” (Smith). But if they tightened gun control laws and put a law in place that made it so not only his mom who bought would have to take a test but he would have had to go through all of the same tests. The law would help prevent the family of a person who owns a gun from using their gun against them or against other people.

Also, in Boulder, Colorado someone is working to make guns safer. Kai Kloepfer lives in Colorado where gun violence has been a big issue, and he wanted to help stop it. So as a project in his school science fair he came up with the idea for “a new kind of smart gun that will fire only when a fingerprint it recognizes is on the grip” (Smith). This will help prevent people using stolen guns for crimes and it would’ve help prevented Adam Lanza from him being able to use the gun because to have his fingerprint added to the gun he would have had to have taken multiple tests to make sure he should be able to use a gun.

Gun control is needed to help stop gun violence in America. To be honest I am shocked that there is even a debate on this because “in 2004 almost 30,000 people died from gun violence, more than in any other country” (Greenhouse). People should not have to be persuaded to help save thousands of lives at the cost of them being able to carry a gun around, because once they realize that they aren’t surrounded by other people with guns they should be able to feel safe and suck it up for those thousands of lives that they are saving from gun violence.

All in all, I think that stricter gun laws and smarter guns together will help save thousands of lives a year that would’ve died from gun violence, making America a safer place for everyone. But to save these lives America needs to require more intensive background checks and a mental health check to help ensure that the people able to own guns are mentally stable and haven't committed felonies so the only people that own guns are the people that will use them responsibly.

West Seattle High School

6th period LA9H

Hopkins Honors Introduction to Literature

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