1600 Pennsylvania Ave.
Washington DC, 20500
Dear Mrs. President:
Today, many important and pressing issues face the United States of America. One issue, which is as old as the first laws passed for it in 1934, is gun control. This issue, like many other issues, has a big effect on my life and on other people around me. I believe that the government should decrease the number of gun restrictions and increase the intensity of background checks for buying guns because those restrictions are mostly counterintuitive towards domestic crime.
For starters, I understand that the government has the power to change what kinds of guns can be legally sold and manufactured in the United States. Although, I believe that the federal government can and should pass laws that specify who can buy any guns. For example, a law that outlines certain new requirements for buying a gun can be more effective than a law prohibiting certain guns from being manufactured and imported to the United States. Also, this law prevents people who are a danger to themselves from buying guns. In an article published to the American Public Health Association, Jonathan Metz states that “Reports suggest that up to 60% of perpetrators of mass shootings in the United States since 1970 displayed symptoms including acute paranoia, delusions, and depression before committing their crimes”(Metz 6). Metz is trying to say that many people who are the killer in public shootings have a mental disorder or illness. This problem can be combatted if, for example, they were prevented from buying a gun because of those illnesses. Mental issues are one major factor of gun violence and how it can be combatted in the United States.
Currently, many pro-gun-control supporters agree with strict and thorough gun control laws for anybody legally purchasing a gun. Lauren Breck, a writer for the website Voices, writes “ These people believe that stricter gun regulations should be made and enforced, and that people with criminal backgrounds or troubling psychological history should not be able to own a gun”(Breck, 1). These supporters believe that the background checks and stricter laws will help lower gun violence in the United States and restrict “dangerous weaponry”, such as handguns and assault rifles.
As somebody who thinks of guns as a responsible hobby and a reliable form of self-defense, I personally support looser gun laws so people can exercise their right to hunt and use guns for hobbies and competition. Although, guns are also very dangerous when handled by the wrong people, which is why I also support more detailed background checks for gun purchases and looser gun restrictions. In a report regarding the correlation between gun ownership restrictions and homicide/suicide in the United States, the authors Don B. Kates and Gary Mauser state, “it is easy to find nations in which very high gun ownership rates correlate with very low murder rates, while other nations with very low gun ownership rates have much higher murder rates”(Kates, Mauser, 4). This report shows how the United States can reduce homicide and suicide by making guns legal, but adding more background checks for buying them. Today, gun restrictions are helping limit our capability to reduce homicide and suicide from guns.
I’m bringing this issue to light because I am personally connected to this issue and I believe the federal government can make a real difference across the nation with one law, instead of everything happening at the state level. I’ve heard the opinion of gun control from Liberal and Conservative standpoints, which has shed light on the clashing opinions from both sides. These pieces of evidence support my belief that a system of more rigid background checks for purchasing a gun would be more effective than making more laws to restrict guns.
Metz, Jonathan M., and Kenneth T. MacLeish. "Mental Illness, Mass Shootings, and the Politics of American Firearms." N.p., Feb. 2015. Web. 29 Sept. 2016.
Breck, Lauren. "Different Views on Gun Control." Different Views on Gun Control. N.p., 2 May 2013. Web. 31 Oct. 2016.
Kates, Don B., and Gary Mauser. Would Banning Firearms Reduce Murder and Suicide? N.p., n.d. Web. 30 Oct. 2016.