In the United States, there has been a lot of buzz surrounding anything “gun” lately, and rightfully so. You name it; police brutality, gun violence, school shootings, gun laws… The list goes on and on, and as time progresses, it almost feels as though the issues worsen.
In light of recent events, many have been looking over gun control laws perceptively. However, “gun control” almost seems like an umbrella term, I mean, what even are they? Well, The New York Times writes that ideally, gun control covers any limitations on which firearms can be sold and purchased, who can have or make profit off them, where they may be sold, and what obligations both the buyer and the seller have to report transactions to the government. When reading this, it sound simple and efficient; effective, even. But we must question the logistics of what actually goes into all the precautions. Many say that more gun laws should be made, but that is almost futile once one finds out that the United States currently has 20,000 laws regarding firearms. Again, with all the recent mass shootings and harrowing gun violence occurring, one must question how this is happening?
Personally, I think that it is not the number of laws that matters, but rather the effectiveness of the law. Quality over quantity, right? So how can these laws be made more effective? First, we shouldn’t ban guns completely, no matter how tempting this may sound to some. It is unconstitutional and is politically too difficult to disregard. I won’t go into detail for the sake of staying on topic, but in order to propose anything to the Constitution, two-thirds of Congress would have to agree in order for the majority to win (to learn more, click here), however, this is unlikely, with all the various viewpoints and personal opinions of people, even among a prominently liberal or conservative group. Rather, we should enforce precautions to keep the second amendment; have it be present yet while having our Nation as safe as possible.
Current precautions include a background check prior to purchase. Let’s say a buyer is interested in purchasing a gun; They would simply show their ID to the seller, regardless if a purchase is made in a store or at a gun show, then afterwards they’d fill out an ATF Form 4473, with their personal information. Lastly, this form would be submitted to the FBI, via the internet or a toll-free phone number. The process is very quick, it can even be a matter of minutes. It is seemingly decent, yet Nikolas Cruz, the alleged gunman of the Florida school massacre, passed the FBI gun background check. This is a red flag. If Cruz got away with something so awful, so inhumane, the first thing we should be concerned with is not necessarily who we should blame, but perhaps what. Gun laws should be much stricter, so that those who are buying are well aware that guns are NOT toys. The precautions should go beyond a sheet of paper to justify a “clean record”. They should last longer than a mere few minutes. We must do this so that people like Cruz cannot get their hands on these lethal weapons, and moreover, so that nobody shall end up with innocent blood on their hands.
I am writing this to hopefully provoke some thought of your own, for you to think about what our nation should do to prevent such atrocities in the future.
*Featured image via securitymagazine.com