Dear Future President,
The second amendment of the US Constitution states the following: “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.” While gun control in the US is a major issue, it cannot merely be solved within the next few years by banning the possession of firearms. As something embedded within our constitution, a document with which much of America is keen on abiding by, gun ownership in the US is not likely to go away anytime soon. However, this does not mean that we cannot increase background checks or put restrictions on gun laws to help maintain the safety of our nation.
Studies show that anywhere from 36%-49% of US families own guns. Although it is sad to recognize that a majority of these gun owners feel that guns are necessary to protect themselves, it is the reality that we must face. Because of this, eliminating all gun possession does not appear at this time to be realistic. Guns play a significant role in defining American culture. All American icons, ranging from our founding fathers to the cowboys of the Wild West, are associated with guns, making the guns themselves in some ways a symbol of patriotism. In order to further protect Americans all across the country, we must look past these associations and understand that despite any counter arguments, the indisputable fact remains that guns kill over 600 Americans every week.
A study conducted by the FBI shows that between 2000 and 2007, there was an average of 6.4 active shootings per year in America. Between 2007 and 2013, that number over doubled, increased to an average of 16.4 shootings per year. Gun violence in America, particularly in the case of mass shootings, has become a more prominent issue in the recent ears that needs to be addressed. Looking at recent incidents prove the terrifying effects of gun violence: 50 Americans died in the Orlando shooting taking place this past June, 20 children between the ages of 6 and 7 died at Sandy Hook Elementary School in 2012, and 12 were killed and 70 injured at the movie theatre shooting in Colorado in 2012.
Another study done by economist Richard Florida in 2011 found a correlation between gun control laws and gun-related deaths in the US. His data showed that states with stricter gun control laws have fewer gun-related deaths than those that lack tight gun control.
I don’t ask that you ban all gun ownership in America, but rather that we acknowledge the fact that gun control in the United States is not nearly as organized or effective as it can and should be. We should not continue to let our societies be tainted by the horrors that irresponsible gun usage has repeatedly inflicted, and as the issue becomes more and more pressing, it is crucial that we address it as soon as possible. For the prosperity of our citizens and the safety of our country, let’s work to establish better gun control in the United States.