“Guns Don’t Kill – People Do! Drugs Don’t Kill – People Do!”

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“Guns Don’t Kill – People Do! Drugs Don’t Kill – People Do!”
Doug Marlette is a well-known cartoonist. Throughout his life, he had learned that things are not as clear cut as they seem and that often there are two sides to every story; he began to express this in his art (Encyclopedia Britannica, 2013). “I began understanding my role as an artist. The great novelists see the whole picture…they empathize with the thief and with the saint. They feel the whole thing and they show the whole thing. Ideologues don’t” (Gross, n.d.). In one of Marlette’s cartoons for Newsday newspaper in 1999, he drew two vehicles side by side. The one on the left had a bumper sticker by the N. R. A. (National Rifle Association) that said, “Guns don’t kill – people do!” The other vehicle had a bumper sticker by a drug dealer that said, “Drugs don’t kill – people do!” In this cartoon, Marlette shines light to a perspective of the ignorance behind gun advocates’ neglecting to see the country’s dire need for gun monitoring and control by relating it to the known, horrendous issue of drug use in the country. The statement that guns do not kill people, but rather people kill people, was a statement put forth from the N. R. A. and gun supporters to combat possible new legislation that sought to impose stricter gun laws. The government felt stricter gun laws would help put a stop to the senseless and tragic mass killings. The N. R. A. argued, however, that only criminals do such heinous crimes by abusing guns but that guns themselves are inanimate objects that should not be the focus of blame. Also, criminals break the law, so criminals would not be stopped by more control laws. The N. R. A. felt gun control laws would only, therefore, be infringing upon the constitutional rights of the free and law abiding citizens of the United States. Marlette has been recognized as being in favor of gun control laws (Gun Owners of America, n.d.). In this cartoon, he is equating the seriousness of gun...
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