Write a persuasive essay on gun control.
Arguments Favoring Gun Control
Gun-Control in a very generic sense is understood as some form of legal arrangements that are aimed at monitoring and censoring the sale, purchase and possession of fire-arms. They are legislated, and implemented with a view to avoid any untoward incident that has the potential of causing loss of life, severe physical injuries, and creating an aura of panic (Roth, 2016). This essay seeks to address the need to implement and execute Gun-Control measures for the sake of the general good, in a persuasive tone. The arguments favouring Gun-Control emanates from the spirit of creating mass-awareness about the ills of possessing lethal fire-arms and the hampering effect that it could have on the lives and security concerns of innocent civilians. The following sections shall be providing viewpoints that supports Gun-Control. They are essentially statement of facts that substantiate the cause of imposition of strictures on the usage of guns, in light of the unfortunate happenings in the past.
The latter half of the second decade of the 21st century has witnessed some horrific incidents of mass shootings that presses the need for stringency on the usage of guns. It has been found on investigation that the individuals who had carried out the massacres were wrought with severe mental problems. Surveys have reported that the crucial task of diagnosing the mental predispositions and inclinations of the customer is rarely conducted before proceeding with the sale of guns (Steadman et al., 2015). This task of a diagnosing the status of mental health of a customer gets skipped and resultantly an undeserving individual is allowed the custody of a gun.
The gory images of the Las Vegas Shooting of 30th September, 2017 needs a mention in this regard. It so happened that a 64 year old retired professional by the name Stephen Paddock had sprayed bullets on the spectators of the Route 91 Harvest Music Festival from his 32nd floor suite at Mandalay Bay Hotel. A background check of his had confirmed that he had a troubled state of mind. It was induced by estrangement from his former wives and long-time girlfriend. He had sought recourse to narcotics and gambling for seeking mental peace. However when his depression overshot the tolerable limits, he had committed the atrocity and took his own life as well (Shultz, Thoresen, & Galea, 2017). Another incident worthy of mention is the Amish Tragedy of 2006. The perpetrator of the crime was 32 years old Charles C. Roberts. He had perpetrated the crime at a local school targeting only female students. He was supposedly quite dissatisfied with the injustice destiny had done to him. He had lost his daughter, and that agony drove him to the massacre (Gutsche & Salkin, 2017). On May 2014, a 22 year old individual Elliot Rodger had opened fire at the students of the University of California. The motivating factor to have driven him to the extent of killing innocent girls was his singlehood. He had spent his college life deprived of the share of enjoyment which his counterparts sought through girlfriends and sexual liaisons. That brewed a sentiment of inferiority complex in him, and thus he pledged to kill as many girls possible to avenge for the lacking in his own life. He too, like Roberts and Paddock was goaded into a crime by depression, and failure of mental stability (Blommaert, 2017). These occurrence of such incidents time and again in the US have alarmed the authorities to rethink their stance on Gun-Control.
Mental Health Issues and Mass Shootings
There have also been incidents when hatred towards a particular community had been the driving force behind a crime. For instance, the Orlando Massacre of 2016 must be given due consideration in this aspect. Omar Mateen, a 29 year old security guard had earned the ignominy of being responsible behind the deadliest attack on the queer community of the US. He shot at revellers at a gay nightclub named Pulse in the wee hours of June 12th. Investigations had discovered that he had connection to the ISIS Chief Abu Bakr Al Baghdadi, whose extremist and dogmatic intellectual brainwashing had inspired Mateen to target the LGBT Community (La Fountain-Stokes, 2018). This shows that procuring a fire-arm in the US is not a difficult issue. Anyone can get access to it, even the terrorists who are contemplating heinous crimes at the back of their minds. The couple who had carried out the San Bernadino attack, Syed Rizwan Farooq and his wife Tafsheen Malik had got hold of the semi-automatic rifles through legal means, from their friend Enrique Marquez. Soon after the tragedy President Obama had raised concerns about strict gun control laws. He was deeply moved by the mass shootings that was spreading all over USA like an epidemic (Forster & Hader, 2016).
In the year 2013, the United Nations had come up with a declaration which held increase in crimes and the ownership of guns as directly proportional to each other (Rosenfeld, 2016). The credibility of such a declaration lies in the increase in rate of crimes in countries where the Gun-Control Laws are not strict enough. Alongside there have also been studies which have proven that the rate of ownership of guns in the USA is way high than most other countries. On top of that the restrictive laws are not enforced in the desired way. This has been attributed as one of the prime reasons behind the rise of gun related crimes in USA (Rosenfeld, 2016). The declaration by the UN is not just applicable to USA, rather globally.
The discussions in the above paragraphs have focussed upon the ownership of guns by civilians and terrorists. This section of the essay shall be dealing with how Gun-Control also pertains to the US Police Force. As per the statistical data, the US Police personnel are equipped with more weapons than their counterparts in other countries. A direct co-relationship between being heavily armed and rise in death of civilians at the hands of police has been observed. This has also caused the rate of deaths perpetrated by police in US to be much higher than that of other countries. The police is supposed to be someone to whom the public shall be looking up to for security, not be afraid of them. However, it is the opposite in case of USA. Consequently, this is making the common people vulnerable, and also creating the need for Gun-Control policies to be applicable to the Police Force as well (Shjarback et al., 2017).
Hatred and Terrorism
According to the legal system in the USA, one needs to attain 18 years of age to be able to buy a gun. Paradoxically, the same individual is required to be of 21 years to be able to buy a bottle of liquor legally. This is not just an anomaly, but has also proven to be fatal. Rise of gun related crimes by teenagers is the evidence (Smith & Son, 2015). There have been several incidents whereby delinquent teens have committed crimes and such instances could have been avoided had the laws been strict enough. In the following sections some of the incidents shall be discussed. Ever since 2013, there has been an increase in teenagers being convicted of gun related violence by an estimated 20%. The culture of viewing ownership of gun as a symbol of power among the teenagers was observed to be fast catching up in the US. It has been argued that as teenagers, their brains do not develop to the fullest, hence any law that permits 18 year old individuals to buy guns should be done away with. The Alabama Shooting incident of March 2018, had raised several question as to how a student of 17 years old could get the gun. He had carried that to his school and in a fit of playfulness he had accidentally shot one his classmates dead. She was very nearby to turning 18, but unfortunately a prank took her life away (Snell, 2018). The case of Jesse Osborne, another teenage convicted in gun crime draws attention to the issue of securing the futures of young people against the ills of easy acquisition of fire-arms. He had shot his father, one of the teachers of his schools and few other students, all of whom had succumbed in to the injuries. He was convicted of the crime and he was treated as an adult for it. Consequently, his entire life was devastated as he was sentenced to life imprisonment (Katsiyannis, Whitford & Ennis, 2018).
It is very obvious from the abovementioned thread of arguments that Gun-Control Laws are a necessity. Any society in which fire-arms are allowed to be circulated loosely cannot be secure for a long period of time. The aim is not to obliterate the existence of fire-arms, but for controlling them effectively. It also has to be ensured that the fire-arms do not fall in the hands of miscreants or any individual who is incapable of utilising it for any purpose that shall benefit the society instead of harming innocent individuals. Fire-Arms are meant for self-defence, for security, however that should not be at the cost of jeopardizing an individual’s entitlement to life and liberty.
Blommaert, J. (2017). Online-offline modes of identity and community: Elliot Rodger's twisted world of masculine victimhood. Tilburg Papers in Culture Studies, 200.
Forster, P., & Hader, T. (2016). Combating Domestic Terrorism: Observations from Brussels and San Bernardino. Journal Article| Jul, 18(9), 27am.
Gutsche Jr, R. E., & Salkin, E. (2017). Behold the monster: Mythical explanations of deviance and evil in news of the Amish school shooting. Journalism, 18(8), 994-1010.
Katsiyannis, A., Whitford, D. K., & Ennis, R. P. (2018). Historical Examination of United States Intentional Mass School Shootings in the 20 th and 21 st Centuries: Implications for Students, Schools, and Society. Journal of Child and Family Studies, 1-12.
La Fountain-Stokes, L. (2018). Nunca Olvidar/to Never Forget: Pulse Orlando. GLQ: A Journal of Lesbian and Gay Studies, 24(1), 17-26.
Rosenfeld, R. (2016). Documenting and explaining the 2015 homicide rise: Research directions.
Roth, D. (2016). Gun Politics Aren't About Guns.
Shjarback, J. A., Pyrooz, D. C., Wolfe, S. E., & Decker, S. H. (2017). De-policing and crime in the wake of Ferguson: Racialized changes in the quantity and quality of policing among Missouri police departments. Journal of criminal justice, 50, 42-52.
Shultz, J. M., Thoresen, S., & Galea, S. (2017). The Las Vegas shootings—Underscoring key features of the firearm epidemic. Jama, 318(18), 1753-1754.
Smith, T. W., & Son, J. (2015). Trends in gun ownership in the United States, 1972–2014. General Social Survey Final Report. Chicago: University of Chicago: NORC.
Snell, H. R. (2018). To Be, or Not to Be an Adult, That Is the Question. Jeunesse: Young People, Texts, Cultures, 10(1).
Steadman, H. J., Monahan, J., Pinals, D. A., Vesselinov, R., & Robbins, P. C. (2015). Gun violence and victimization of strangers by persons with a mental illness: data from the MacArthur Violence Risk Assessment Study. Psychiatric services, 66(11), 1238-1241.
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