Gun Control Laws and their Effect on Crime
Thomas L. Webb Jr.
May 7, 2013
Professor Frances Gattis
This paper looks at gun control laws and how they impact crime rates. The paper uses a number of resources obtained from EBCOhost, EBL Patron, and Myilibrary databases. The resources used are books and journal articles. These resources present research done on the topic. The paper is divided into different sections. In the introduction section, control laws are defined. The next section dwells on theories. Two theories are analyzed in the paper. The next section is titled previous studies. This section looks at the body of research done on the topic. Under homicide and suicide rates, the paper looks at trends in these two categories of crime and how they have been influenced or affected by gun control laws. The next section dwells on gun control laws. In this section, the research looks at two important control laws and analyzes their impact on crime rates. The paper also looks at self-defense and the effectiveness of concealed weapon laws in preventing crime. In the discussion section, the paper looks at other views supporting the hypothesis that gun control laws have no effect on crime rates.
Gun control laws refer to specific legal requirements on the possession, sell, and transit of guns in the country (Jacobs, 2002). They are legislations formulated to deal with issues of access and use of guns. These laws establish a number of limitations on practices associated with guns in the country. There are laws that ban the use of certain types of guns. Such laws make it an offense to be in possession of certain guns. Other laws target groups within the society and their access to or use of guns. Such laws allow access to or use of guns by certain groups while denying the same to some groups. Federal laws, for example, prohibit some categories of people from purchasing or even possessing guns. Those ineligible include illegal aliens, drug users, fugitives, and persons convicted of felony (Jacobs, 2002). A breach of these laws attracts defined penalties. For instance, a person previously convicted of a felony and found in possession of a gun is admissible to a ten-year sentencing in a maximum prison facility (Jacobs, 2002). Having gun control laws will not affect the crime rate here in the United States. Gun control laws will not limit criminals from purchasing guns and it will not address the real issues of crimes. Most local and state laws on gun control closely mirror the federal laws. For instance, in many states, children are prohibited from accessing or using guns. In these states, persons who make it possible for children to access guns are deemed to have committed an offense. These laws differ in their framing as well as the punishment they impose. Some states have laws similar to federal laws whereas others have stricter laws (Stell, 2004). In the United States, stricter gun control laws are more evidenced in Northern states. On the other hand, Southern states have less restrictions and controls (Jacobs, 2002). In the history of the United States, different events have made legislators at the federal and state levels to reconsider gun controls. Crime using guns has been an important factor in the decision to review gun controls. Incidents of shooting sprees have prompted calls for gun control laws to be amended to make gun access more difficult (Jacobs, 2002). In recent times, shooting sprees in theaters and other public places in the country have made the debate to gain impetus. In the wake of these events, gun control proponents have suggested a reframing of gun laws to effect increased controls (Lott, 2013). On the other hand, opponents of gun controls maintain the stance that gun control laws have no effect on perpetration of crime. As such, they believe that tighter controls would not serve...
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