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In the last few decades in the USA, a number of high profile shooting incident have frequently occurred where many innocent citizens lose their lives and scare the entire population. Some of these crimes have occurred in education facilities and are committed by minors. This brings into focus the ease with which firearms are obtainable in this country. These shooting incidents usually result in by public outrage, sparking heated debates on gun control laws in the country. Debates on gun control laws in the USA are a complicated affair and an emotive subject, which usually divides opinions in so many directions. There are those who advocate for tighter gun control laws, while others feel that the existing laws are stringent and violate their constitutional rights. There is no doubt that when guns fall in the wrong hand they can cause untold damages. Gun control policies are aimed at regulating the possession of firearms and their uses. Where these laws are strict the levels of violent crimes involving handguns and suicide have been found to be very low. In Japan, for example, where there are very strict laws governing possession of firearms and their use, incidents of gun violence are very low. What is lacking in the USA is a uniform policy governing gun control throughout all the fifty two states. The government should therefore, implement a gun control policy that should be enable equal and uniformly gun control regulations applicable in all the states (Miller and Hemenway).
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There are over three million guns in us households, and the majority of these guns are illegally acquired. According to statistics over sixty five percent of suicides in the USA are committed using firearms (Erin and David). Halve of violent crimes involve firearms and a substantial segment of the populations feel unsafe without firearms at their houses for protection purposes. This further complicates the gun control debate, since a majority feel that there are too many guns in public possession that it is unsafe not to have one (Thompson, Price and Khubchandani). It is not possible for the USA government to introduce laws illegalizing private firearm ownership in the country. The discrepancies in firearm ownership in the various states further complicate gun control in the USA. The country legislative organs should therefore, consider enacting a uniformly applicable gun control policy. This would enable the law enforcement agencies control the number of firearms in private ownership. Such a policy should include strict gun storage requirements, registration regulations applicable in all state. In addition, the policy should outlaw multiple firearms ownership among the citizens.
Gun control laws vary from city to city, though there are federal laws governing the uses and possession of firearms. Lack of uniformity in state laws provide loopholes that can be easily exploited. Most of the illegal gun in circulation can be traced back to legally acquired sources (Miller and Hemenway). The national justice department’s crime statistics indicate that most guns that are used to commit violent crimes we once legally owned. Statistics also indicate that most weapons bought from illegal dealers were once legally owned. Discrepancies in state laws allow strict gun control laws from one given state to be undermined by the states that have lenient laws (Kopel, Gallant and Eisen). It becomes easier, or criminals to acquire firearms through the black-market even in states where there are strict gun control laws. This therefore, undermines the efforts of strict laws of any given state.
Criminals are prohibited from acquiring guns in all state, but weak state laws can be exploited to provide illegal traders with firearms which criminals eventually acquires. Some of the states permit individuals to buy multiple firearms in total disregard for the purposes of the firearms bought (Miller and Hemenway). This is once such loophole that permits individuals to acquire guns legally only to sell them to illegal gun traders. Gun registration requirement and procedures also differ from one state to another. Whereby, some states requiring strict registration procedures while others have weak registration requirements procedures. Variations in such legal requirements make it possible for firearms to be traded illegal since firearm supplies become easily available to the illegal traders (Erin and David). Acquisition of multiple firearms enables individuals to privately trade some of their legally acquired firearms. The supply of firearms is therefore, not an issue to barred individuals who cannot legally acquire firearms. This also becomes a troubling issue, since it becomes very difficult for law enforcement agencies to keep track of the firearms owned by the public (Thompson, Price and Khubchandani). This is one of the factors that have contributed for the excessive number of firearms in the public domain. In the USA, the population is an estimate at to be over tree hundred and seventy million, the number of gun in private homes is estimated to be over three hundred million. In addition, there are firearms that are owned by state agencies and issued to officers and the numbers become scary. It is therefore, possible to argue that at any given time in the USA the number of firearms in the hands of the population outstrips the number of people in this country.
Federal laws prohibit felons, convicted criminals and fugitives from justice from acquiring weapons. But in a country where so many guns are in private hard it is not hard to acquire a gun (Erin and David). There are also legal ways, which can enable; those blacklisted by federal agencies acquire firearms. In gun shows, people can buy firearms without being subjected to security scrutinizes. Such a loophole enables individuals prohibited by law to acquire firearms from legally permitted source. If such an individual, happens to be a member of a state that does not require firearms to be registered then we can argue that they are in possession of a legally acquired firearm. This is one among many reasons why the country needs a uniformly applicable gun control policy. Such a policy would have the capability of enabling the federal agencies control gun acquisition, registration and use in all states equally. It would also enable the government have the capability to control the number of firearms in public hands. This policy should stipulate that all guns owned by the members of the public be registered. It should also outlaw and illegalized having more than one firearm.
Among the most controversial issues in gun ownership is the legality of concealing firearms. Since it is not possible to illegalize gun ownership in the USA, one possible way of controlling firearm ownership is through the introduction of strict requirements for firearms owners. This can be done through stringent registration measures and storage requirements that would discourage the majority from owning guns. Such measures are known to work, like in Japan where firearm ownership requires mental health clearance and strict storage measure among other restricting requirements. The policy should outline strict legal procedures in firearm registration, storage and restrict the number of firearms an individual can own to one.
Violent crimes involving weapons have also been attributed to unstable individuals having access to firearms. Among the many ways that this can be avoided is by introducing laws that would require psychological evaluations of individuals looking to purchase firearms. All those holding weapons should also be required to undertake such psychological exams, and those found to be psychologically unstable stripped off their licensees to own firearms (Lott). The main goal here is to increase the legal requirements for an individual to own a weapon and discourage the majority from acquiring firearms.
Easier access to firearms is one of the reasons that there are so many firearms in private hands in the USA. By increasing the procedures and legal requirements that should be met before an individual can own a firearm, many individuals would be discourage from owning guns. The complications therefore, that arise in enacting strict gun control laws would be eased. This stems from the fact that most of the majority who own firearms do so in the belief that it would increase their security. Others feel safer knowing that if attacked by armed criminals they can be able to defend their families, if the own a firearm (Wilson and Petersilia). Considering that there are so many firearms in private ownership and the ease with which one can acquire a gun in the USA it becomes harder to fault such a perspective. In other words, one of the main reason that force people to acquire firearms is to be armed as any individual who tries to attack their homes. Most would feel safe without a gun if the numbers of guns in private ownership was to drastically reduce. Additionally, this would complicate the ease with which one can acquire a gun in the USA.
Although, criminals are prohibited from acquiring guns in all state weaker state laws can be exploited to provide illegal traders with firearms which eventually ends up in the hands of criminals eventually acquires. Multiple firearms ownership can allow some of the firearms bought to end up in hand of illegal traders and criminals. These are some of the loopholes that permit large numbers of firearms in the country. Weak gun control policies have contributed to the higher levels of gun related violence. To control these high levels of a crime involving guns the country, should consider introducing strict gun control policy that is applicable to all states in the USA.