BUSINESS

Opinion: Gun regulation would make it harder for criminals to commit crimes

Kerrigan Herret
Oxford Stories
kbherret@go.olemiss.edu

In the United States, it is easy to obtain a gun from a local store, such as Walmart, with little to no regulation regarding who can purchase one.

In February, a 19-year-old man went to his local gun store, bought a gun legally, and killed nearly 20 students at a Florida high school. According to The Washington Post , the FBI received several tips about the shooter leading up to the shooting, but obviously, nothing was done to apprehend the individual.

The fact that a person with repeated violent incidents and a history of mental disorders can so easily obtain a weapon of mass destruction is astonishing, and actions should be taken to restrict the process of purchasing firearms.

The Second Amendment of the United States details the right to bear arms, though the history behind this amendment was to help American colonists protect themselves from the British in case they tried to invade. The founders who created the Bill of Rights may have had different intentions in their despite how some interpretf their words today.  

In D.C. v. Heller, the Supreme Court ruled that firearms were protected by the Second Amendment, but that “the home” is “where the need for defense of self, family, and property is most acute,” which means guns should not be everywhere, just in the home for self-protection.

Though people have the right to carry guns with a permit, the Second Amendment was not intended for people to use it to justify walking around with a gun for a situation that most likely will not arise.

I’m not saying guns should be banned from the United States, but it should be harder for someone to get a firearm. If a person passes a thorough background check, has no history of mental illness or violent tendencies, has never been convicted of a felony, and takes extensive training about how to properly handle and use a gun, then that’s fine.

However, you should not be able to walk into a store, ask for a gun, and get one, just like the Parkland, Florida shooter did. According to local police officers who investigated shooter Nikolas Cruz and his home, he owned nearly 10 firearms prior to the incident, which included the AR-15 he used to murder 17 students and faculty.

Criminals will always find a way to harm people and do bad things, but it’s up to us to make it harder for them to do so, and to diminish crime in the streets and in schools especially. Some citizens object to conversations about guns because they are so afraid their guns are going to be taken away, but if you’re a law-abiding citizen with a clean background, you should have no problem keeping your unnecessary rifle.

Cars are things that have been used in a few recent acts of terrorism, such as a van plowing into a horde of pedestrians in Toronto, Canada, leaving 10 dead and 15 wounded, according to CNN. No, we aren’t going to ban cars, but there are extensive regulations in place to combat violence used with cars.

A person has to be a certain age, take a permit test and license test, get their car registered, renew their license and car after a certain period of time, and pay fines if they are not using it correctly. Speed limits are also in place to prevent unlawful uses of automobiles.

However, it seems there are few regulations regarding guns, and not an extensive process to maintain a gun as there is for cars. There have been many more crimes committed with guns than cars.

Legislation hasn’t been passed offering stricter gun regulations, and I don’t think it is coming any time soon. Nobody will ever be able to agree on this issue, and people will always cry that it violates their rights and the Second Amendment.

I wish people could understand how beneficial this would be to society, and if it’s not going to change anything like some pro-gun arguers claim, then what’s the issue with implementing the law? If it makes no difference, then changing legislation won’t matter, and it won’t hurt to put a few more laws and restrictions in place.

I just wonder how many more acts of terrorism and mass shootings have to occur before people realize something needs to be done about these weapons that were put together solely to kill.

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