Gun politics has been a long-standing debate and is primarily defined by two groups: gun control and gun rights activists. Gun control is a wide-ranging term used to refer to the manufacturing, vending, transferring, the possession, modification or use of firearms. Countries such as the United Kingdom have very strict rules on gun possession while others like the United States, have an extremely liberal view on restrictions.

Since the nineties, debates regarding firearm availability and gun violence in the United States have been considered by the concerns of the population about their right to bear arms, found in the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution and the responsibility of the government to serve the needs of its citizens and prevent any crime or death. Many gun control supporters believe that restricted gun rights help the government fulfill their responsibility and act as a gateway for an even better country. This view differs from gun rights supporters, who promote firearms for self-defense and sporting activities. They believe that guns are meant for pleasure as well as safety, yet for personal safety rather than communal.

The United States prohibits people from owning firearms when they have certain kinds of criminal records or mental illnesses, drug addictions, are immigrants without a legal status, are veterans who have a dishonorable discharge, or are members of society with a permanent restraining order. Not only that, the federal law requires that licensed gun dealers conduct a background check through a database run by the F.B.I in order to make sure the customer is not among those prohibited from owning a gun. Yet, this system has major flaws, among them incomplete listings of criminal cases. Conceivably, the largest flaw in the system is that small-scale sellers are not required to do background checks. This then allows for anyone to buy a gun thus, no restriction is really placed on the person. Theoretically, the laws implemented with gun control face very little argument, however, the practicality of it seems to loose all of its recognition.

In the last five years, there have been approximately 16 mass shootings in the United States. Now here is the million-dollar question: why has the government done nothing when it comes to gun control? When will it be enough to make a change? Unfortunately, gun rights advocates led by the National Rifle Association, who have directly lobbied for and against gun legislation since 1975, are a large and powerful faction that politicians are not fully equipped to fight against; it is a voting issue that will not create any change. Furthermore, the National Rifle Association have effectively deployed the argument that after a mass shootings, emotions are high causing for interest in restrictions to spike, however is not the time to debate the issue because people are not using facts but rather their feelings.

Other adversaries on gun control often mention that President Obama has proposed to cease the ownership of guns, especially when it comes to private ownership. Although this was never reported, many gun owners continue to believe this to be true, thus creating a larger divide within the community. The National Rifle Association even responded to the mass shooting in Newton Connecticut stating that the teachers should have been armed because the only one is able to stop a bad guy who is armed is when there is a good guy around with a gun.

It seems as if the problems that the United States faces with gun control will only be worked out if more people voice their opinion against these mass shootings. For some reason unfortunately, the tides have yet not changed, and people still believe guns are not a problem. How long will it take for them to see the devastation guns have created?



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