Gun Control. Does It Need Revised?

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Gun Control. Does it need revised?
Denise Kirby
March 20, 2013

Gun Control. Does it need revised?
Gun control seems to be a major issue for discussion in our society today. These issues have stemmed from all the violence and tragedies that have happened in the past several years. There seems to be two sides of this argument. People are either for stricter gun control laws or against it. I would like to try to find the correct answer as I am a gun owner. I enjoy target shooting, skeet shooting, and hunting. So, gun control. Does it need to be revised?

The Second Amendment to the United States Constitution states “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.” There have been many debates as to what the original authors intended by the wording of this Amendment.

Some people believe the phrase “the right of the people to keep and bear Arms” created individual constitutional rights for United States citizens. Some scholars argue that the phrase “a well regulated Militia” shows they meant only to restrict congress from taking away a states right to self-defense.

In 1939 the United States Supreme Court adopted a collective rights approach in the case of United States v. Miller. They determined Congress could regulate a sawed-off shotgun which moved in interstate commerce under the National Firearms Act of 1934 because the evidence did not suggest it “has some reasonable relationship to the preservation of efficiency of a well regulated militia…” The Court further explained that the Second Amendment was to ensure the effectiveness of the military.

In 2008 the United States Supreme Court considered this issue again in the case of District of Columbia v. Heller. After detailing the history and tradition of the Second Amendment, they proclaimed it established an individual right for United States citizens to possess firearms. They determined that the D.C. handgun ban was in violation of this right.

There are several different types of firearms. A handgun is designed to fire from one or more barrels when held in one hand with a short stock designed to be gripped by one hand. The revolver, pistol, and derringer are all classified as handguns. A rifle is intended to be fired from the shoulder and a single cartridge is fired for each single pull of the trigger. A shotgun is fired from the shoulder. It fires a fixed shotgun shell for each pull of the trigger. A semiautomatic gun is a firearm that when a shell is ejected, the next round of ammunition is loaded automatically from a magazine or clip. However, the trigger still must be pulled for each shot. A machine gun is an automatic gun. This means if the trigger is pulled and held down it will fire rapidly and continuously.

One of the main controversies is over the ban on assault rifles. Assault rifles use an intermediate cartridge and a detachable magazine. The assault rifles are standard service rifles for most modern armies. There will always be two sides to any debate. This one is no exception. One side says to ban them. If they are banned it will reduce the number of violent crimes and tragedies that occur. But if the ban is passed, how are they going to get rid of all the assault rifles that are already in circulation? Law-abiding citizens might turn over any that they own, but will the criminals that have them do the same? There are also people who believe all firearms should be banned except for law enforcement and military use.

The other side argues that banning them will not get rid of them. There are numerous assault rifles that have already been legally purchased. This side also argues that criminals are going to have firearms regardless of what the gun control laws are. Would you want to face an armed intruder in your home when you have no means for self-defense?

President Barack Obama demanded “real action” be taken against assault weapons after the...
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