Whypeople should not be allowed to own guns
Guncontrol is among the most controversial and a highly debated issue inthe modern society, where one camp holds that it is constitutionallyright to own guns while the other camp believes that civilians shouldnot be allowed to own guns. The issue of allowing or prohibitingcivilians from owning guns is argued on the basis of the provisionsof the constitution, facts, and findings of different empiricalstudies. This paper will defend an argument that civilians should notbe allowed to own guns. Prohibiting civilians from owning guns is aneffective strategy for reducing cases of suicide, homicide, massshooting, and enhancing social justice as well as equality.
Availabilityof more guns in the hands of civilians is associated with a high rateof homicide. The gun is among the most effective and the easiestweapon that one can use to kill, especially when it is within one’sreach. A cross sectional study of 26 high-income countries have shownthat nations, cities, and homes with guns are at a higher risk ofexperiencing cases of homicides than those with few or non in thehands of civilians (Miller 1). The positive correlation betweencivilian gun ownership and homicides indicates that a gun is a riskfactor for the killings, which justifies that civilians should bedenied the opportunity to own guns. Although the opponents of theissue of gun control suggest that guns are needed for self defensefrom the ever increasing number of armed criminals, it is evidentthat uncontrolled gun ownership is the major cause of the increase inthe number of these armed criminals. Therefore, it iscounterproductive to allow more civilians to own guns since thenumber of violent crimes will increase with the number of guns in agiven region.
Apartfrom increasing the risk of killing other people, gun ownership hasbeen associated with the risk of either the gun owner or the familymembers using it to commit suicide. Although it is perceived thatsuicide is a rational decision where one takes to contemplate andplan how to die, studies have shown that suicide is quite irrationaland the availability of a weapon that can aid one die fasterincreases the risk committing suicide even without taking time toresolve the underlying causes of suicidal ideation (Neyfakh 2).Although the opponent of this argument might hold that people usedifferent methods (such as taking poison) besides the guns to commitsuicide, empirical studies have confirmed that people who won gunsare twice likely to commit suicide compared to those who do not ownguns, and three out of 5 people dying out of gun wounds in thedeveloped nations take their own lives using their own guns (Neyfakh2). This means that gun ownership is a critical risk factor forsuicide.
Thereexist a positive correlation between gun ownership and mass shooting.People living in states and cities with a high number of guns in thehands of civilians live in a constant fear of experiencing massshooting from those who own guns in their respective regions.Research has shown that the U.S. has experienced a total of about 62cases of mass shootings between 1982 and 2012, but most surprisingly,49 of these cases were carried out using legal weapons (Morris 1).This implies that allowing civilians to own guns increase insecurityin the society, instead of enhancing it, as it is widely alleged bythe opponents of the issue of gun control. Although the opponents ofgun control argue that an evaluation of one’s mental conditionbefore issuing gun permits is a sufficient measure to ensure that allpeople with proper mental health given the freedom to own gunswithout endangering security, mass shootings are not committed bymentally ill persons, but by a group of healthy people who feelagitated by a section of the members of the society.
TheSecond Amendment and the right to own guns is a highly debated issuewhere the opponents of the issue of gun control hold that limitingthe right to own guns is constitutional. The amendment holds thatwell regulated militias that are formed to secure the Free State, theright to bear, and keep guns should not be infringed. This part ofthe constitution is widely misinterpreted because it was developed ata time when mistrust among states and the risk of being attacked bythe bigger or the national government were, which created the needfor individual states to have armed militias to defend their states.The Supreme Court also affirmed this context by ruling in 1939 thatthe Second Amendment ought to be interpreted with the sole purpose ofrendering or facilitating an effective militia (Morris 1). Therefore,the Second Amendment does not civilians the constitutional right tobuy guns from shops like any other commodity, but to militias thatare well organized and with the objective of protecting the state.
Therelationship between gun control and enhancing equality in thesociety has been overlooked for many years. Studies have shown thatmost of the guns are owned by the poor members of the society, whichmakes life for people who are economically disadvantaged less stableand more violent (Schuman 1). This explains the phenomenon in whichviolent crimes are always higher in the poor neighborhoods becausethose who guns endanger the lives of those who are defenseless. Gunownership plays a critical role of making it easier to commit violentcrimes, more destructive, and more lethal. Although opponents of theidea of gun control might argue that poverty is the main cause ofviolent crimes, studies have shown that crime increase poverty anddeny members of the poor neighborhood the opportunity to thrive anddeliver themselves from poverty. This exacerbates the issue ofeconomic inequality in the society makes poverty a generational issuebecause people living in the rich neighborhood continue to groweconomically while those in the poor neighborhood to tend to becomepoorer due to insecurity that is associated with unregulated gunownership.
Conflictsare common occurrences in both professional and personal lives, butthe presence of guns increase the risk of these conflicts becomingmore violent. People react in different ways whenever they are facedwith conflicting situations. The majority of people become emotionaland they are likely to take reflex actions as they respond to thepeople they are conflicting with (Sager 1). This implies that anemotional person in a conflict is likely to shoot the other partywithout contemplating the outcome of the action. This has beenconfirmed by a study conducted by FBI, indicating that about 59.9 %of the deaths that result from conflicts involving love triangle areassociated with gun shots (Sager 1). Controlling gun ownership maynot prevent the occurrence of love triangle conflicts, but it canreduce the level of violence, severity of injuries survived by thoseinvolved in conflicts, and the number of deaths that result fromthese conflicts.
Inconclusion, the proponents as well as the opponents of the issue ofgun control present reasonable arguments, but it is evident thatpreventing civilians from owning guns is an effective measure ofenhancing social justice and security in the society. This is becausepeople who own guns are a security threat to those around them andthemselves as well. Gin owners are at a higher risk of committingsuicide and engraining in homicide than those who do not own guns. Inaddition, gun ownership by a given section of the community increasethe risk of mass shooting, which force the section of the societythat does own guns to live in a constant threat of being stacked. Theargument of self defense that is given by the opponents of the issueof gun control fails to take account of the fact that gun ownershipbrings insecurity. This implies that removing guns from civilianswill automatically reduce the need for self defense.
Miller,M. Homicide. HarvardGun Control Research Center.2015. Web. 11 March 2016.
Morris,M. Ten arguments for gun control. GunControl.21 April. 2013. Web. 11 March 2016.
Neyfakh,L. The gun toll we are ignoring: Suicide. BostonGlobal Media.20 January. 2013. Web. 11 March 2016.
Sager,J. How guns create aggression and kill people. TheProgressive Cynic.30 December 2016. Web. 17 March 2016.
Schuman,J. The equality argument for gun control. HuffPost.11 April. 2015. Web. 11 March 2016.