The question as to whether crime and violence can be tackled effectively, and minimized by controlling gun ownership in the United States has remained a hard nut to crack. Gun control is a hot issue right now in the United States. Gun control debates are continuing to rage on all people across many states despite the government shutdown. The government regulates gun ownership, sale, and the use of firearms and ammunition in various states. The laws vary from state to state depending on the existing gun laws in the states. The government insists that gun owners should be subject to gun laws of the state they are in while the gun owners argue that they have rights to own guns despite the state laws. After the Sandy hook massacre, several people felt that, there should be stricter laws and regulations on firearm ownership. However, after the Boston Marathon bombing, again a number of individuals argued that they needed some form of self-defense since; the government could not protect them fully at that time. Therefore, the government’s regulation of gun ownership has both advantages, and disadvantages.
One of the advantages of the government regulation of gun ownership is that, it will help protect the societal needs. This is to say that, when regulations are put on gun ownership, the people will be able to defend their own property and themselves. Criminals will be afraid to attack people, as they are unsure if they are carrying concealed guns (Weil 300). In addition, it will help reduce gun-related crimes, suicide and homicide. This is because, the guns will be issued with more restrictions, and those who own guns will use them with a lot of care, as they will risk their guns being confiscated by the government. Stringent laws on gun ownership will result in a reduction of violent crimes, given that only a few people vetted will be allowed to own guns. The shop lifting, and house theft incidences with the use of guns will be at minimal levels because the criminals are unsure if the people are armed or not. The more the government controls how the guns are delivered to the people, the lower the violence rates will be reported. It will ensure that only people with background checks will be allowed to own gun, and when a crime has been committed, a search will be done with the records of gun sales to trace the owner. This will help in solving crimes.
It is doubtless that gun control in the United States has several advantages, but like a two-sided coin, it has a number of cons. One of the main disadvantages of gun ownership regulation is that, it will not help in the disappearance of illegal guns. Gun ownership regulation cannot help mitigate gun violence, however, it increases violence and crime. In fact, the sale of illegal guns will be at increased levels. In addition, it will lead to many criminals getting access to them while law-abiding citizens remain helpless. Criminals will find ways to acquire illegal arms like they do in most countries, and use them to terrorize people due to the regulations (Levinson 14). The society will not be safer by regulating gun ownership because; the weapons will be smuggled in, and used for criminal activities, since they are not registered under anyone or at times, maybe stolen from registered owners and be used for criminal activities. What should be noted is that, guns do not kill people, it is the people who kill people and regulating gun ownership will not stop them from committing these crimes.
Additionally, gun ownership laws make owning a gun difficult for the ordinary people, yet they can use them for self-defense. The laws are very stringent and at times, and violates the peoples right to firearm ownership. This will be denying the people their constitutional rights given that, the right to gun ownership is guaranteed in the constitution. According to Cook Molliconi, and Cole (60), “If we make guns illegal, only the criminals will have them,” therefore, people should be allowed to own guns for their own security without stringent laws. Creating stringent laws on gun ownership will lead to the increase of black market selling of guns that will be cheaper and with no restrictions. This means that, the majority people will start owning guns illegally.
The gun control debate will continue to be an ongoing process in the United States. The citizens argue by balancing their self-defense and freedom with the safety of the nation, and the society. There are a number of pros and cons of gun ownership, and control, but the interesting thing is that both the pro and cons sides have valid arguments. The pros and cons are evidently on polar contradictory sides of the spectrum, yet while debating, they make solid points as to why the feel firearms should or should not be regulated by the state government. Each side has its own compelling arguments against this issue as they stand firm on what they feel are the impacts of gun ownership regulation. The pros can change over time the same applies to the cons, and the debate on the regulation of firearms seems to be growing stronger with time. Therefore, it is the duty of all Americans to decide on what to do with their rights on the issue of gun ownership, because, the pros and cons debate on gun ownership and control is not likely to depart very soon, but rather it is becoming stronger and stronger everyday.
Cook, Philip J., Molliconi, Stephanie and Cole, Thomas. “Regulating gun markets.” Journal of Criminal Law and Criminology, 86.1 (1995): 59-92. Print.
Weil, Douglas. “Gun Control Laws Can Reduce Crime.” World & I, 12.1 (1997): 300.Print.
Levinson, Sanford. Guns and the Constitution: A Complex Relationship. Reviews in American
History, 36.1 (2008):1-14. Print.