Despite drawbacks experienced in trying to control the availability of guns to the public, there in no doubt from various surveys conducted that their availability increases deaths and other brutal crimes witnessed in countries that allow access to guns by citizens. Contrary to this argument, being armed on the other hand has also been supported to mitigated crime as gangs are afraid of attacking those with guns.
This paper examines the policies that are legislated on guns bearing in mind the citizens rights on the same. The thorny issues concerning guns are critically dealt with and suggestions on ways of improving gun control (Koper & Wilson 2006). Introduction Deaths and crimes arising from the availability of guns to the public have been rising at alarming rates over the last couple of years. The debate on gun rights has been the most difficult and controversial issue since the massacre in Virginia Tech (Vock & Vu 2007).
Nowadays, the topic has been defined by a stalemate between contests on citizens’ rights to guns as provided by the constitution and the jurisdiction of the legislature to prevent more deaths and mitigate crime through policies that will prevent guns from finding their way into the hands of criminals. Most states’ constitutions in the United States undoubtedly hold that every citizen aged above twenty years has the unalienable entitlement to bear arms. Currently, colleges are firearm free zones (Kahan 2007).
With incidents including the massacre of thirty faculty members and thirty students in 2007 and a gun attack which killed five people at Northern Illinois University, there is a continuing debate as to whether students should be allowed to carry concealed guns. These ugly and deathly scenarios could have been evaded or certainly reduced if students or school administrators would have been permitted to carry guns as they would counter such attacks. Presently, there are numerous bills in the U. S. senate recommending legislation that would permit concealed guns into colleges.
The contentions include enhanced citizens’ safety and reduction of their susceptibility to criminals (Shaw 1993). Background: Prevention Effect Levitt (2004) argues that by permitting firearms onto the hands of citizens will lead to gun losses and misuse and establish an environment where young individuals fight, drink and become unable to manage their emotions as well as fail to create a safe environment. However, a gun free zone invites public mass murders especially by lunatics who are aware that people in such places are unarmed.
In fact, permitting students to carry concealed weapons in dormitories and classrooms will serve as a prevention effect and colleges will be safe. Moreover, it is thought that law abiding individuals adhere to regulations banning guns while perpetrators use the opening to gain on the vulnerability of such citizens and set them for slaughter. The laws permitting concealed weapons on colleges should be passed because guns are not insecure; in fact, it is the individual possessing it who is insecure (Koper & Wilson 2006). Anyone possessing a firearm should take gun safety training on the appropriate respect for firearm handling.
Such persons should also be subjected to a background check which involves an assessment for past crimes, mental illness or misconduct. This reduces the likelihood of gun abuse by such people. In fact, there have been cases in several situations where the interventions of armed people have actually saved lives by facilitating the restraining of loose lunatics from murdering more people (Shaw 1993). Enforcement strategies for curbing gun violence Some of those who argue for gun bans allege that not all gun attacks can be stopped.
With concealed firearms allowed to citizens and on colleges, the probability is high that any armed person going berserk could be rapidly stopped. Basically, allowing guns to citizens and on colleges translates to only those proved to be fit by authority to bear firearms (Kahan 2007). The current bans have turned colleges into unsafe, ideal sites for lunatics who desire to take blameless lives prior to killing themselves. Washington shooting charges on colleges have astounded American society twice in the previous year and unleashed a heated debate over the nation’s gun laws every time.
The pro-gun groups are battling for an extension of the entitlement of citizens to possess a concealed weapon (Levitt 2004). The push surfaced as the Supreme Court discussed for the very first time in history whether the constitution guarantees people the right to keep and bear a firearm. To curb counter those who go astray with their fire arms, all concerned groups must be actively involved. For this to succeed, community involvement programs will be vital for uptight adherence to rules. Implementing preventive and educational programs in collaboration with all parties is a sure way to tackle the gun issue.
In most cases analyzed, 80 per cent of gun offenders were found to possess guns illegally. By ensuring one has a gun legally ensures safety to the community with only those approved by authorities being allowed to possess weapons (Koper & Wilson 2006). Therefore, restricting legal possession of arms is against the citizens’ right while illegal possession means terrible danger to the society. Community policing with focus on gun crime Kahan (2007) stipulates that those proposing for a gun ban often believe that possessing a concealed gun would be of no real importance for self-defense.
In fact, in most cases the attackers open fire so abruptly that no one could be able to shoot back. Nonetheless, it is evident that in the United States, there exists up to two million incidents annually where a legitimately armed individual prevents a crime by counter firing where the criminals flees after facing challenge (Shaw 1993). Those who provide this data reveal that the effect of deterrence would adequately benefit females, who are frequent targets of crime. Advocates of firearm control maintain that personal firearms are an avertable cause of domestic accidents.
The figure of college incidents involving firearms is hotly contested, however. For instance, commonly referred statistics relating to child firearm deaths includes casualties of people aged below twenty five years, including armed criminals and gang members. Kahan (2007) recognizes the constructive correlation between firearm control laws and crimes in which gangs victimize obedient citizens. We should be able to quantify societal values on gun ownership where the individual and the society are benefactors of the same gun policies drafted by lawmakers.
Further, gangs override firearm control laws, and are efficiently put off by armed intended causalities. Advocates of firearm control, nonetheless, claim that because criminals acquire firearms by stealing them from law-adhering firearm owners, limiting their accessibility would diminish provision to the criminal elements (Koper & Wilson 2006). Proponents of gun control frequently maintain that causing a dreadful wrong on everybody by taking away their most reliable means of self-defense, in contravention of the Fourth and Second amendment, may in one way or another alleviate the underlying problems.
As a country, many people have failed to understand the purpose and importance of many historical events and the need to preserve the liberty to arms. We cannot fail to criticize where oppressive gun control laws obstruct acquisition of guns within specifications (Kahan 2007). The frequency of pro-control and anti-control events could unlikely be evaluated rightly. But this does not mean that these issues should be evaluated on bias lines. Societal costs and guns benefits should be surmised radically but not on emotional grounds.
In efforts allegedly intended to reduce the moral issues that produce criminal acts, they have resulted to limiting liberty while at the same time denying obedient citizens a way of defending themselves (Vock & Vu 2007). Opponents of rights to firearm ownership or gun rights counteract that legitimate firearm owners greatly outnumber the gangs who steal firearms. But even then, just as with illegal full-autos and illegal drugs, the gangs would still continue to smuggle firearms into campuses from other places.
The United States experience with alcohol ban and the present war on drugs are principal examples named by firearm rights advocates (Shaw 1993). Conclusion The gun control issue remains one that should be reviewed and re-evaluated without emotions affecting either side of the campaign. Gun bans have been advocated by those who are for guns control on the terms that these firearms proliferate to gangs eventually. But on the contrary, guns benefits cannot be negated with the right policing and checks; they should fall into the right hands and eventually help in reducing crime rates they are blamed for.
The capacity of hard-working, decent citizens to carry concealed weapons whether for protection or intervention in gun attacks is clearly provided for in the country’s Constitution and should never be compromised. The state needs to come up with apt community programs and drum up support from all quarters in this issue of guns or else it will remain an expensive riddle to the society. List of references Kahan, D, M (2007), Guns, gun control, and elections: The politics and policy of firearms, Public Opinion Quarterly, 71(2): 318-322.
Koper, C, S & Wilson, E, M (2006), Police crackdowns on illegal gun carrying: a systematic review of their impact on crime, Journal of Experimental criminology, 2: 227-261. Levitt, S, D (2004), Understanding why crime fell in the 1990s: Four factors that explain the decline and six that do not, Journal of Economic Perspectives, 18(1): 163-190. Shaw, J. W (1993), Community policing to take guns off the street, Behavioral Sciences and the Law, 11: 361-374. Vock, D, C & Vu, P (2007), VA Tech shooting inspires legislation, Retrieved July 6, 2009, from http://govpro. com/issue_20070101/gov_imp_52760/