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Gun Debate (Con)

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Gun Debate (Con)

Kayla Hodges

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Gun control has been an issue in America since before the ratifying of the second amendment in 1791, it is still a pressing issue today that haunts the people of this nation and their social media feed. You don’t even have to look to find all the arguments imaginable at the tips of your fingers. No matter where you stand in this debate, pro, con, or undecided, there’s always another party to back you up. Guns have been a help to security, self defense, law enforcement, and from many points of view are just plain fun, but has this “safety precaution” spiraled out of control? Guns, though often used with good intention, have become a weapon of mass destruction often being abused, taking many innocent lives. If gun violence is really such an issue, which given the rapid increase of school shootings and gun related deaths in the recent years there’s no doubt it is, why are we still fighting fire with fire?

Every argument under the sun has already been made against gun control, such as it being a necessity for law enforcement and our right to bear arms being protected by the second amendment, but if there weren’t any guns to protect us from would we need guns to protect ourselves? It’s a fact of life, and unfortunately death too, that many guns have fallen into the hands of the wrong people. Parents of deceased children, families fallen victim to war, and children who have watched classmates die can second that statement, and guns or no guns anyone in the right conscience could agree as well. Not to say that guns are the problem, it’s the guns in the hands of the wrong people that are the problem. This poses the concern that guns have been made all too accessible, not only to citizens but to law enforcement and everyone else too. The sad truth is that sometimes corrupt people with malicious intent are elected into our government and hired into our law enforcement, these are the very people in charge of running our country and keeping it safe and we simply hand them their weapons with their paychecks. This is by no means to say all cops or government employees are corrupt, but the fact is sometimes they are which poses a threat to our safety. Undoubtedly many law enforcement officers are the very reasons we are safe on our streets, in our homes, and in our schools.

Humans are psychologically flawed and there is no way to avoid violence, but there are ways to make our country safer for the people we love. We’ve seen other countries throughout the world make these progressive steps to create a safer environment for all those who inhabit their land. In 1996 Australia passed a law banning guns in response to the Port Arthur Massacre. The Port Arthur Massacre was an event taking place on April 28th in 1996, a 28 year old man named Martin Bryant went to a popular tourist destination in Port Arthur, Australia and opened fire with a semi automatic assault rifle. At the end of the day Bryant had killed 35 innocent people and injured 18 more. Georgia Whalley, a sophomore at Fair Grove high school, lived in Australia until she was 12 years old where she was raised in a much more controlled environment. “I never felt unsafe in school, in crowded areas or in any public places. I don’t think I ever had to worry about or think about guns while living there.” Said Whalley, “When I moved to America I experienced something I never had before and that was worrying about the people around me pulling out a gun.“ she added. Whalley speaks fondly of her country and their way of government, “Of course bad things still happen, but since the banning of guns Australia hasn’t experienced any massacres like the one that caused our Prime Minister at the time to ban them” she stated.

We can’t legislate morality, but if you stand for nothing what do you fall for? Banning guns is a radical idea, even making stricter gun laws is a radical idea, but in a time of mourning isn’t that what we need? Our country was founded and built on great people and brilliant minds with radical idea, so when all else fails what does this period of devastation call for. There’s no way to tell what is going to change the violence and malicious intent of the human race, taking away our freedoms may not help whatsoever, but when do we call for a new radical idea. Martin Luther King jr. had profound ideas, dreams that the vast majority of people wouldn’t stand behind, but those ideas and dreams brought us to a new way of life. Now we celebrate those very ideas. There is no way to solve violence, but it’s better to at least try than to stay silent as people get caught in the crossfire. No amount of laws or restricted freedoms will eliminate violence, but when the body count is this extreme shouldn’t our response be too?

(Editor’s note: Read Preston Thompson’s opposing viewpoint, here: Click here.)

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