The issues of guns has been and is becoming some of the biggest threats to our community. The second amendment states that the people of America have the right to bear arms. While I agree with this statement, I believe that it comes to an extent. The men and women of America should continue to have this right, but with restrictions. This has grown to be a larger concern because of the rising number of mass shootings, particularly in school districts. We as a community have grown more terrified for the safety of ourselves and our country’s students. Americans are divided on what has caused the rise and how to change it. Some believe guns themselves are not the concern, but the person behind the weapon and their sanity is the primary issue, while others believe the issue is solely the guns. Personally I believe both present a threat to our society and should each be resolved. Many people believe that the second amendment should be ratified completely, and others are strong in their second amendment right. There is also a middle ground with this debate, which is where I have found myself. I believe in the second amendment, but do not understand the need for more semi-automatic and automatic weapons being purchased rather than smaller weapons such as handguns. Gun control is a pressing issue in our society today, but the way we attempt to help solve the situation will decide the safety of the future generations of America.
Both the person and their choice of weapon should be put into the picture rather than one or the other. It is still easy for felons and those affected by mental health problems to purchase weapons. After a shooting at Virginia Tech, The Improvement Amendments Act of 2007 was introduced , but “the NRA declared this violated the Second Amendment and, through intense lobbying, limited the definition of mental illness only to people institutionalized or found by a court to be a danger. Even if a psychiatrist believed a patient posed a threat, nothing could be done to keep a gun out of that person’s hand” (Kurt Eichenwald, Newsweek). Our country should put more time and money into mental institutions, and making sure that those still walking the streets are not able to purchase these weapons. When teachers, or just people in general see someone in a situation where they could pose a threat to themselves or the people around them, they should get them the help they need. Parents need to look into their childrens’ lives and protect them from these horrendous situations by seeking help, even if that means finding a counselor or in extreme situations an institution for them, before they make a decision that they will never be able to take back. Though this is a posing threat that is a likely reason for these shootings, so are the weapons themselves. Intense background checks should take place before someone uses their second amendment right and buys a gun. Age restrictions should be intensified. In some states it is legal for children, even under the age of eighteen to own a weapon with a parents consent. We are giving our children “the right to buy the deadliest civilian weaponry three years before they can legally drink alcohol” (Nick Wing, Huffington Post). Our government should see this threat just like the threats drunk drivers pose on the streets, which is why we have high age restrictions on the substances. If a child is not old enough to go to their local gas station and pick up a six pack, why can they go to a licensed dealer and purchase a weapon of mass destruction? Both cars and guns are both considered extremely deadly weapons, so why restrict one more than the other? If these changes take place those unstable human beings would avoid the guns all together, but others could still be given the opportunity to protect themselves based on their backgrounds.
We should be able to continue expressing our second amendment right, but to an extent. People need to be able to protect themselves. Some parents choose to purchase a gun to protect their families, which is their right. But this right has been blown way out of proportion. American citizens “have the right to keep and bear arms. And let’s then acknowledge that the childish interpretation of that constitutional amendment – that Americans have the right to whatever accessory they can put on, in or over a gun for the sole purpose of making it more deadly – is a dangerous falsehood” (Kurt Eichenwald, Newsweek). Semi-automatic and automatic guns, or in general, weapons of mass destruction should be out of the question. There is no reason why men and women should choose to buy a machine gun to protect their families from intruders or other instances of self defense. Pistols and smaller, one round weapons are right for protection. Anything larger has no good purpose in American households outside of the armed forces. The second amendment is a right that should be maintained, but that comes to a maximum choice in machinery that excludes those that fire highly deadly rounds at a rapid rate.
Gun control is something that may never be fully maintained, but there a methods that our country can enforce to help to limit the terrifying, deadly events America is facing more and more everyday. With these changes and limitations, the American people can find a healthier community with the choice and right to protect themselves, while finding a stricter and safer society around them.