Many deaths occurring among adolescents are caused by firearms. Gunshot wounds have caused a number of teen deaths in the recent past. Most of these deaths are suicidal (Cook and Ludwig 28). Gun control laws are implemented to regulate possession, sale, and use of firearms as well as ammunitions. Currently, laws have become stricter. Gun sales are permitted to authorized and registered individuals only. The legal age of purchasing and owning a gun has been increased to twenty-one years from previous eighteen years. In some states, adolescents are required to not have criminal records and portray a sense of responsibility. Strict laws are beneficial to an adolescent in various ways. They help regulate the number of deaths occurring from gunshots and suicides. Adolescents are also restrained from irresponsible shooting that generates from anger, conflicts, and naivety. The probability of adolescents owning guns to join criminal gangs is high (Fields 1). Gun control laws help an adolescent live in a serene environment and lead a productive life away from violence.
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However, these laws also carry a negative effect on adolescents’ lives. Disarming teens and restricting them from owning firearms renders them vulnerable. They become victims of gunshots and violence since they have no opportunity to defend themselves (Baumer et al. 7). In addition, strict laws preventing adolescents from owning firearms help create a black market. They always find a way to get firearms even through illegal means. It implies that criminals will use the black market to own firearms. Responsible adolescents will concur with laws of the state. It also renders them vulnerable when they become subjects of a criminal activity. Identity issues and negative peer pressure cases are affected by strict gun control laws. Adolescents desire to earn respect and impress their peers, thereby building self-esteem. When such opportunity is denied, they become demoralized and lack self-confidence.
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