Gun Control

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Gun Control

“After a shooting spree, they always want to take the guns away from the people who didn’t do it. I sure as hell wouldn’t want to live in a society where the only people allowed to have guns are the police and the military.” –William S. Burroughs. Gun control has been a controversial topic for years but seems to have more importance only when there has been a mass shooting. An unarmed public will not put an end to gun violence but stricter background checks and ammunition limitations can reduce it. Stricter background checks can help ensure that unstable citizens won’t be in possession of guns. In March 1996, Thomas Hamilton, a man known to be mentally unstable, walked into a primary school in the Scottish town of Dunblane and shot 16 young children and three other teachers before taking his own life (Malcolm). Hamilton had a gun certificate although according to the rules he should not have been granted one. People enforcing the laws of background checks are not doing their job. It’s terrifying to think that a gun is in the hands of a mentally unstable person. In the article, “Counterpoint: Gun Control Saves Lives”, Beverly Vallaro and Laura Finley reports, “In 2008, Mayors Against Illegal Guns, a bipartisan group of 300 US Mayors, found that homicides from handguns were highest in states with the most lenient gun laws.” The group also found that these states had higher rates of fatal police shootings, and that criminals were gravitating to these states to purchase weapons. The word “criminal” implies that this person shouldn’t even be allowed to buy a weapon. Part of a background check should make sure that someone who has a criminal record cannot purchase any sort of weapon. Stricter background checks alone won’t make a vast difference but gun purchases limitations in addition can help. A citizen with a gun permit has no limit to the number of guns or ammunition he/she owns; that should be changed. “Common sense (and the historical experience...
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