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Understanding Gun Control Statistics

Understanding Gun Control Statistics

Gun control facts tend to be gathered by proponents and apologists for both sides of the political debate over the degree to which the government should possess the ability to regulate gun ownership and usage among Americans.
As such, gun control statistics are prone to greater amounts of controversy and debate than many of the other fields from which statistics can be collected. Gun control statistics have been appealed to in some cases in order to show the dangers posed by permissive laws regarding gun ownership and widely lenient interpretations of the Second Amendment to the Constitution, while in others gun control opponents have used statistical gun control facts and other pieces of data to show the extent to which wide firearm usage allows people to defend themselves from violent criminals. 
In attempting to glean accurate gun control statistics and thereby come to an informed perspective on this controversial political issue, people might be best advised to refer to the source of the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention, an agency of the United States federal government.
Gun control statistics gathered from the 2005 period by the governmental health agency, in this regard, indicated that the occurrence of around 31,000 deaths as a result of wounds received from firearms that year was made up, to more than 50%, by suicides. Gun control statistics further indicated that 40% of those killings were made up by murders, while three percent were accidental and two percent permissible. Despite the gun control statistics gathered, interpretation of gun control facts remains heavily contested.

Assault Weapons Ban (AWB) At A Glance

Assault Weapons Ban (AWB) At A Glance

The Federal Assault Weapons Ban (AWB) was passed in 1994 and represents one of the more wide ranging and extensive pieces of legislation passed on the ability of American citizens to own and use certain kinds of firearms on a federal level.
The Assault Weapon Ban was approved as such under the administration of President Clinton. The AWB was distinguished, apart from its wide ranging nature, in terms of being set for just a ten year period in which it would continue to apply to American gun ownership rights.
In addition to creating restrictions on certain kinds of firearms, in terms of allowable ownership and use, the Assault Weapon Ban also required and accordingly involved the procedure of assault weapons being defined as such under law, as had not previously been the case. The Federal Assault Weapon Ban ceased to possess legal standing on September 13, 2004. 
The Federal AWB was generally understood to apply to specific kinds of semi automatic weapons which had been converted from having previously been fully automatic guns. The Federal Assault Weapon Ban was passed into law by Congress as a part of the larger package of legislation referred to as the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act.
Under the restrictions that it created on allowable rights for ownership, the AWB put into effect limitations of possession in regard to nineteen different kinds of guns. The AWB did not apply to guns which had been purchased prior to the law going into effect.

Guide to the Gun Control Reform Movements

Guide to the Gun Control Reform Movements

Gun control reform movements are constantly attempting to implement or deny further restrictions regarding gun control laws and regulations, depending on which side of the argument a person may favor. Individuals supporting gun control will constantly lobby and push for more legislation to be considered in restricting firearms.
Those who support gun rights will attempt from allowing any further restriction be put in to action, and furthermore, will fight to remove some of the regulations already in place. The fact is that the heated gun control debate is one that is still very much present today, and has become part of the country’s legal system when certain gun control implementations were enacted in to law.
Though there are several recent and current gun control reform movements, it can be said that the most important law reforms are the National Firearms Act of 1934 and the Gun Control Act of 1968. These two regulations on guns and firearms will essentially shape and form the rules and laws that are in place today.
The National Firearms Act of 1934 is the first official piece of legislation regarding gun control. This law statute is one that is still part of the gun control debate, and its constitutionality is still being held in question by staunch gun rights supporters such as the National Rifle Association. This legislation was passed to restrict the transfer of certain firearms and impose mandatory registration for those that fell under that category.
A tax was also to be imposed for all transfers for these firearm types. Some of the firearms subject to this law are machine guns, short barreled rifles and shotguns, as well as gun suppressors or silencers. These types of firearms and their components were restricted based upon the argument that no ordinary citizen would have any particular need to employ such weapons under normal circumstances.
Gun rights activists continue to argue that as long as the users of firearms are legitimately allowed to be in possession or ownership of weapons, there should be no reason as to barring the use of certain kinds of guns. Though the law is still in place today, certain additions have been made to extend certain registrations, such as the Gun Control Act of 1968.
The Gun Control Act that was passed in 1968 was partly put in to law as a result of the John F. Kennedy assassination, where Lee Harvey Oswald obtained the rifle used to kill the president through a mail-order catalog. This aspect is only but a provision of the various rules and regulations under this act, that serves the broad guidelines instituted today by federal law. Some of these provisions barring or regulating firearms include:
     No convicted felon may purchase, possess, or carry a firearm
     No fugitive of justice may be in possession, carry, or purchase a firearm
     No illegal aliens
     No people with a history of addiction to controlled substances
     No person dishonorably discharged from the military or armed forces
     No person that has renounced U.S. citizenship
The Gun Control Act also implemented the Federal Firearms License, which was needed to be in the business of buying or selling firearms, which properly excluded mail-order weapons and guns at the time. This implementation did apply to individuals buying or selling firearms for their own personal use.
Other additions were made in more recent times, such as the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention of 1993, and the Domestic Violence Offender Gun Ban added 1996. The Brady Act created the national background check system that is still used today to prevent restricted people from purchasing firearms. The Domestic Violence Ban was directed to stop those with a history of domestic violence, or have active restraining orders from acquiring firearms. Many have opposed the Gun Control Act from its inception in 1968.
It has been at the center of the gun control debate then, and still is now. However, even gun rights activist like the NRA agree with some of the law’s junctures, such as possession by felons, while others disagree with the entire body of legislature completely, stating that restrictive laws fail to prevent crime and prove unnecessary. Though gun control facts have proven to a certain extent that restrictive laws help lower crime rates, some laws implemented seem to only make it tougher and more difficult for legitimate gun owners. 
More recent gun control debate news deals with a recent gun law passed by the state of California implementing a new system regarding the purchasing and selling of firearm ammunition. The new law requires that all ammunition purchasers provide personal information to be kept on file as well as fingerprint. Law enforcement agencies will then have the records available to them and conduct background checks on buyers if need be.
The reason for this new implementation is because there is no current background check needed for the purchase of ammunition; only the basic age requirements must be met via presenting proper documentation. This new law compensates for not having the instant checks system, but also seems to restrict lawful firearms owners. The NRA has argued that the law makes it extremely inconvenient for legitimate gun owners to acquire ammunition, and that the requiring of personal information at the time of purchase is a violation of privacy.
Others argue that the new legislation does not necessarily restrict felons from acquiring ammunition because most will try to purchase it by normal means. Thus making the new law seem to not meet its intended purpose, which is used as an example by gun rights activists as to how gun laws do not necessarily regulate crime.

Gun Control Examples of Gun Control Efforts in American Cities

Gun Control Examples of Gun Control Efforts in American Cities

Gun control legislation is evident at the many levels of government, including federal, state, and local tiers. The federal laws are an attempt to provide for a broad collection of generalized rules and regulations that must be adhered to, regardless of other legislation imposed by other governmental function. Some state gun laws have proven to be tighter and more restrictive than federal gun control legislation by imposing certain rules and regulations. 
State gun control legislation, depending on the state, may place more strict policies on firearms by expanding and using federal gun control legislation as a guide, and imposing provisions to further regulate the possession, purchasing, and carrying of firearms. Gun control politics is an issue that is becoming a more prevalent and important discussion in urban areas and large cities. Gun and gang violence is a priority to many city’s legislative policies, and they attempt to find ways to reduce the crime rates associated with these types of violence. 
Gun control legislation is often the first option employed or considered by cities because of the association gun control politics has made between the availability of firearms and violent crimes; the logic employed by gun control enthusiasts is that the more firearms and guns available–legally or illegally–the more likely crime rates will increase. In cities where gang and gun violence are a predominant concern, certain cities will impose their own gun control legislation in to address the problem that may further restrict firearms by adding or adjusting the state laws. 
A excellent example of such a case is the city of Los Angeles. L.A. has become quite notorious for its gang violence for decades. Los Angeles and its surrounding urban areas seem to be plagued by this problem more so than any other city in the United States. Southern California being a veritable hot bed for illegal immigrants and there seems to be an unfortunate correlation between their inability to obtain successful or fulfilling jobs and careers. Gangs will often offer what seems to be a great opportunity to make grand amounts of money with minimal effort and time, albeit through illegal means. 
Gangs will often recruit young people, specifically those of immigrant families because they are so desperate to improve their financial situations; when a family is starving, sometimes individuals will go through extreme lengths to provide for them, and gangs deceivingly so provide for a quick route to do so. L.A. having such a predominant gang and gun violence problem, it has provided for stricter gun control legislation in an effort to help curtail crime involving firearms and gangs. 
It was recently enacted by the Los Angeles City Council to place new requirements on ammunition sellers and the ban of certain types of military style ammunition. The ban applies to the sale of .50 ammunition, which capabilities are beyond armor piercing. 
The sale of ammunition is now restricted and limited to purchases done in person, eliminating the possibility of acquiring potent bullets from other states or countries. Gun dealers are also required to provide for reports and records of all their inventory twice a year to local law enforcement departments, in hopes of being able to keep a better track of what kind of individual is purchasing firearms and ammunition. It is no surprise that gun rights activists have opposed the new regulations, with the National Rifle Association fronting the movement and most likely bringing the issue to court. 
Gun rights activists argue that these new laws are an unfair inconvenience to rightful firearms owners and users, and that imposing stricter laws will not reduce crime; the new laws will not deter criminals from acquiring guns because if they can not do so legally, they will do so illegally. These new laws will be used to reinforce California gun control legislation already banning armor piercing ammunition and restrictions on handguns, such as the one-per-month clause and the controversial inclusion of microstamping technology to be used on all semi-automatic handguns. 
Microstamping consists of a cartridge being imprinted with a unique code each time the handgun is fired, thus being able to possibly trace the gun as well as the user. L.A. is going to certain extremes in order to help curtail the gun and gang violence problem, and stricter gun control legislation seems to be the most viable and logical answer at this time.
Another city that employs gun control efforts at a higher level is Washington D.C. D.C is notorious for having some of the worst crime rates in the country, being over three times the national average for all violent crimes. D.C. was dubbed as the “murder capital” of the United States because of its extreme crime rates in the the 1990’s. D.C. turned to gun control legislation as a way to help reduce violent crime, and it adopted some of the strictest laws in the country. 
Gun control politics went as far as banning handguns within the capital’s city limits, which was only recently overturned. The courts ruled that the provision violated the Second Amendment right for individuals to bear and own firearms. Though this particular law was overturned, D.C. still has strict policies regarding handguns. Notably, the carrying of firearms in the capital is strictly prohibited, regardless of concealed or open carry.
Registration of all types of firearms–shotguns, rifles, and handguns–is mandatory for all gun owners and gun purchases. The capital also employs a strict assault weapon ban as well. D.C.’s gun and violent crime rates were a result of a surge of crack, causing a sort of epidemic of the drug in the early 1990’s. Gangs and individual criminals began to acquire more and more firearms as the drug market became more competitive, and as a result, more violent crimes were committed with use of firearms. 
Law enforcement agencies went as far as launching a gun-violence crackdown operation codenamed Ceasefire, in nearly 300 handguns were seized in the first months of the project. Even though gun control legislation in the nation’s capital are notoriously among the most restrictive, firearms will still landing in the hands of criminals by way of purchasing them in neighboring states such as Maryland and Virginia. This might have led to D.C. imposing a strict regulation on the transporting of firearms in vehicles, which is prohibited. 
The only exception relates to those traveling through the capital, in which case the firearm must be unloaded and secured in a case and transported in the the trunk of the vehicle. Also, those transporting a firearm through the city limits are not allowed to stop and must travel straight through as a provision stated by this law. Gun rights activists denounced these laws are being a severe hindrance and inconvenience to lawful gun owners.
Though its difficult to relate the effect that gun control legislation has had on gun and violent crimes, the rates have dramatically dropped from the early 1990s. By 2005, the crime rates–including homicide, and other violent crimes–had reduced by nearly 50 percent. Whether the drastic change is an immediate result from gun control legislation is hard to determine and an arguable point, it can at least be credited with impacting the change at a minor level.

Gun Control Inclusion into Law Overview

Gun Control Inclusion into Law Overview

The issue of gun control is a subject that is one that is under much dispute and controversy. The opposing factions on the matter fight and argue to prove their points to the best of their abilities, often times gaining enough validity to include or exclude certain legislation movements and their inception into law. Regardless of the debate and heated arguments, the fact remains that there are in fact gun control law is instituted into the legal fabric of the country and they must respected and obeyed.  
Those with their allegiance in pro gun control have surely made their impact felt, and the evidence is clear through the time line of the various gun legislation and organizations that have helped push the issue on to writing. Historically speaking, the debate regarding gun control law is almost as old as the United States itself. Ironically, the oldest law regarding firearms is essentially the source of much of the banter from gun rights activist and pro gun control enthusiasts, and is at the center of most of the controversy and debate around the issue of gun control.  
Though the law itself protects the citizen’s rights to own and possess firearms, the Second Amendment is essentially the first law put in to action that deals with an aspect of gun control; particularly, it deals with the main opposition of the concept, and serves as the modus operandi for the gun rights activists such as the National Rifle Association.
The Second Amendment states in the Bill of Rights, “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.” The inclusion of the legislation in to the Constitution serves as a main reason as to why so many staunchly support and fight for the protection of this right. The NRA not only holds it as a constitutional right, but also as a natural human right, further feeding their cause in righteousness. However, there are many controversial aspects to the Amendment itself, that do not necessarily have any thing to do with the content within.  
It has been fairly well explored that there can be various interpretations of the law as it is written; furthermore, it contains ambiguous terms that aid in allowing for the various expressions as to what the Amendment actually allows for. The terms that usually are brought to judgment are “Militia” and “free state.” Pro gun control advocates will constantly point out that a “Militia” is not only not necessary in this day and age, but the definition of the word is available to a free range of interpretations. An example that is presented is that any private citizen, under this provision of the Constitution, could then have the freedom collect as many firearms and weapons as possible, posing a possible danger to the rest of society.  
What stopping an individual from amassing an extensive firearms collection and undertaking an incursion to attack the government; in other words, this is a provision that may essentially, as written, be interpreted as a means for terrorism. Some pro gun control activist will not decisively deny a citizen’s right to bear arms, but do stress that a certain amount of control and restriction is dire to insure the safety of the commonwealth.  
Another common argument regarding the Second Amendment tests its wording and failure to be exact as a fallacy of time. When the provision was written in to the Constitution, it was under the impression and influence of sentiment rightfully opposed to any further imperialistic reign over the people of the country. The Revolutionary War was still a very fresh scar in the minds of the people, and the healing process was to be aided through legislation.  
The Second Amendment is evident to keep in mind the protection against tyranny, and the provision was meant include the protection of the people and commonwealth by their own ability to raise arms and fight for liberty, justice, and freedom. A Militia was needed then to fight for American beliefs of a free state, and bearing arms was crucial for that defense. The Second Amendment is intended to protect a civil liberty that, it main seem a bit outdated, still proves to be a right that a citizen should be allowed to practice without interference from the government. Interpretations of the legislation lead to various disagreements, but it is proven time and time again that the provision is rooted in liberty and justice. 
The Second Amendment was most recently challenged in District of Columbia v. Heller, where the interpretation of the legal right was examined and questioned. The main premise of the case was that Dick Anthony Heller was a licensed law enforcement officer for the District of Columbia, and was not allowed by D.C. law to own or possess a handgun to keep at home. The argument was that this handgun ban was therefore, a direct violation of the Second Amendment rights regarding the interpretation of owning firearms for the purpose of self-defense and protection.  
The United States Supreme Court would eventually uphold the claim and rule in favor of Heller, stating that it was unconstitutional for D.C. law to prohibit Heller’s ownership of a handgun on his own private property because it was for self-defense within the home. An appeal from Parker v. District of Columbia would eventually render the decision that a firearm ban in D.C. is unconstitutional because it infringes the Second Amendment, which protects an individual right to possess firearms for self-defense and protection purposes. 
Aside from the Second Amendment being at the core of gun control law debate, two of the most influential and most highly debated pro gun control laws still implemented today are the Gun Control Act of 1968 and the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act. The Gun Control Act of 1968 was an immediate result of the assassinations of John F. Kennedy, Robert Kennedy, and Martin Luther King, Jr. The fact that JFK was killed by a mail-order firearm made it apparent that certain regulations needed to be applied to guns and weapons.  
The new legislation began to require that all firearm dealers be licensed and that a certain provision of records must be kept regarding all sales and purchases of firearms. The law also prohibited all convicted felons, and individuals with histories of drug abuse or mental disorders. Certain other people were to be listed as prohibited from firearms possession, purchasing, and carrying as well. It is needless to say that mail order sales of shotguns and rifles were also outlawed, which is how Lee Harvey Oswald obtained the weapon that killed John F. Kennedy.  
This law is one that has served as the basic federal guidelines implemented across the country, while allowing states to impose their own restrictions as they see fit, as long as they do not violate the Second Amendment. Aspects of this gun control law are still battled today, specifically at the state level, where stricter regulations regarding sales and record keeping are implemented to further restrict firearms. 
The Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act instituted the use of a National Instant Criminal Background Check System that would be headed by the FBI to further insure that no person unqualified would come in to possession or attempt to purchase a firearm illegally. This also implemented a waiting period before the handgun could be delivered as well.
Though pro gun rights activists such as the NRA support the concept of barring criminals the access to firearms, many qualified firearms owners still oppose the legislation because they believe or feel castigated for owning guns because of what criminals have done and are responsible for. Furthermore, the Brady Act also implemented an “Assault Weapons Ban” which prohibited the possession of new semi-automatic weapons, as well as other types of firearms that are considered to be in this category.
Gun rights supporters opposed the bill because many of them would used this category of weapon for simple recreation and sporting purposes and were now required to register them by a certain date, and possibly have to turn them over to the proper authorities.
The argument that pro gun control enthusiasts emphatically would make consisted of pointing out that no civilian would ever require the use of such type of firearm, and the recreation was not a valid reason for possessing or owning this type of weapon. Though both arguments may prove to be valid to a certain extent, it is easy to see where much of the deadlock in reaching an agreement or satisfactory compromise regarding gun control. Gun control law, in more recent years, exists as a way to prevent criminals from accessing firearms and possibly committing more violent crimes.
Gun control activists constantly try to tie in the availability of handguns to national, state, and local crime rates as a main supporting factor behind implementing further restrictions. Though some of the data relating firearms to crime rates is not entirely conclusive or empirical, it still proves an important factor to consider at least the possibility. Regardless of the laws and regulations, the one thing that does seem to be clear is the pro gun rights activists and pro gun control supporters are bound to be in a stalemate of arguments and disputes until definitive signs can be apparent enough to choose a side absolutely.

What Are The Gun Control Legislative Priorities

What Are The Gun Control Legislative Priorities

Coming from the perspective on instituting gun control policy, it is inherent that the restriction of firearms will be restricted in some form. The efficacy and constitutionality of gun control policy is the main concern and priority when enacting any kind of gun control legislation. The main purpose behind gun control is to reduce crime rates–particularly those that are of a violent nature and undertake the use firearms for crimes–with the mentality that the availability of firearms is directly related to crime rates themselves.
Though there is significant data and statistics supporting the claim, there are just as many that denounce it. However, gun control still remains relevant for the fact that legislation regarding firearms is already in place. Gun control policy exists at the federal, state, and local levels, all employing varying degrees of severity or strictness applied to the possession, purchase, or carrying of firearms.
The main purpose is to keep firearms from falling in to the hands of criminals, so as to prevent any further crime from occurring. This concept was first enacted by the the Gun Control Act of 1968, which provided for a set of laws restricting the the availability and acquisition of firearms by those who were not deemed qualified under law. Some of the firearms restricted any individual that met the following categories:
     History of felony convictions, as well as certain misdemeanors
     Fugitives from justice
     Illegal aliens
     Dishonorable discharge from the military and armed forces
     Minors under the age of eighteen (depending on the type of firearm)
     History of domestic violence
     Have a pending restraining order
In placing these exceptions for individuals to acquire, posses, or carry handguns, gun control advocates assured that it would keep the guns out of criminals’ hands or those who may be prone to deviant and dangerous behavior.
State legislature also applies further restrictions that vary from state to state, and are subject to be more explicit or strict than those of the federal government. In keeping true to adhering to the Second Amendment, the federal government allowed for the state governments to apply their own laws and regulations, as long as they did not infringe on federal statutes and remain constitutionally faithful to the provisions in the Second Amendment.
Another piece of legislation enacted with the purpose of further restricting the availability of guns to criminals the Brady Handgun Violence Act. This gun control policy called for five-day waiting period and a background check for all purchases or transfers of handguns.
The National Instant Criminal Background Check System would be instituted and headed by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, which would verify a prospective handgun purchaser to be eligible for the transfer and not meet any of the disqualifying criteria. Gun control advocates posed that if a criminal history must be evaluated before the purchase of a weapon at a licensed dealer, it would curb criminals from acquiring handguns.
In 2000, nearly 17 million background checks were conducted for the purchase of firearms. Nearly 700,000 of those attempted purchases were denied due to negative evidence as provided by the background check. Over 59% of the denials were due to the purchaser being convicted of felony charges, and about 12% were due to a history of domestic violence conviction or restraining order.
This information proves that the new legislation was effective in curbing the acquisition of firearms by criminals, at least to a certain extent. It is important to keep in mind that all of these purchases and background checks were submitted by authorized firearms dealers or the appropriate law enforcement agency as required by various state laws. This does not take in to consideration the possibility of criminals acquiring guns by illegal means, which realistically, is most likely how most criminals would go about getting a gun.
Certain gun control cases have been brought to court regarding the illegal transfer of firearms, such as Bryan v. United States in 1998, where Sillasse Bryan was found guilty of “willfully” dealing in firearms without a license. Bryan was acquiring firearms through other means because he could not purchase the weapons himself, and proceeded to sell them on the streets, presumably to individuals with a criminal past that would bar them from acquiring firearms legally.
Though the provision would find Bryan violation of federal statutes, it does not refute that criminals are in fact able to acquire firearms through other means. Though the laws are restrictive and the punishment severe, it has yet to be proven exactly how much gun control is effectively reducing crime. Because of the ambiguity of success of gun control policy at the different levels of government, gun rights activists often criticize and will vehemently deny that firearm laws can effectively decrease crime rates in the United States. 

A Full Overview of Gun Control

A Full Overview of Gun Control

Background
The gun control debate has been a political presence that can be traced back all the way to the formation of the National Rifle Association. When the NRA was first brought about, their focus was to train Union soldiers in the ways of marksmanship and instill better rifle skills.
It can be argued that the first confrontation regarding gun control was when the state of New York began to oppose having the NRA practice grounds in the state. This opposition was ironically met with little opposition from the NRA, they simply moved and created new practice facilities in New Jersey. Gun control has been an issue that has been vehemently battled on both sides of the argument, those supporting gun control and those supporting gun rights.
As it stands today, there are many gun control laws and regulations in place and those who are pro guns are constantly battling to have less of these laws in place, and further repeal any motion to implement new ones. The subject of gun control and its actual effects are clouded at best, and the heated debate continues today which can only be described as stagnant stalemate.

Reform Movements
Gun control reform movements have been a presence ever since the idea of restricting firearms and the various aspects regarding ownership, possession, carrying, etc. Though the various factions supporting the concept of gun control have changed as time passes by, the initial ideal is still the driving force behind their actions opposing the liberal ownership of guns. The important aspect of gun control movements is that they have in fact worked in terms of putting into legislation rules and regulations regarding firearms.
Their reform efforts are very much evident today with the various and often complex state and federal laws regulating firearms in a variety of ways. Those opposing gun control, such as the National Rifle Association, are constantly trying to topple many of the laws already in place, and fight against any new legislation that they deem in violation of their Second Amendment rights. Regardless, gun reform movements are ever-present in today’s world as they attempt to curb crime rates through more stringent restrictions on firearms.

Inclusion into Law

Its undeniable that gun control has most definitely made a lasting impact when it is in the perspective of law and legislation. Gun laws exist at the federal, state, and local levels, each implementing a particular and distinct set of laws regarding certain rules and regulations on the possession, carrying, and purchasing of firearms.
To this day, state gun laws seem to be the most extensive, and at often times, confusing of the laws, and their presence can be felt by all involved in the firearm or gun community. Pro gun control activists attempt exhaustively to enact the regulation of firearms in to law constantly, and are just as regularly clashing heads with individuals, factions, and organizations that support the right to bear arms and the Second Amendment.
However, at the very least, gun control regulations are in place and are to be obeyed under the law, giving pro gun control advocates the undeniable fact that their efforts are not in vain. Regardless of the political stance regarding gun control, it is important to realize that the issue is one that is as old as the inception of the country itself, and will continue to be an ever-present issue of dispute for years to come.

Effect on Crime and Murder
Advocates supporting gun control implementations in to legislature will often try to correlate how the availability of firearms and guns is fueling crime, particularly those of a violent nature. Regardless of their claims, it is important to realize that the effect on crime and murder that firearms may have are inconclusive.
The statistics needed to empirically and definitively show a correlation that firearms may have with violent crimes have not been able to prove what the overall effect is, whether it supports gun control advocates theories or not. 
The fact is, measuring the impact is very difficult and complex given the architecture of gun law being implemented on varying degrees by different governmental levels. However, the statistics of crime and the implementation of stricter gun laws do exist, and they exist supporting both sides of the gun control debate. Certain numbers will indeed show how gun regulations and laws decrease crime rates, while other will show how the restrictions seem to lend for a rise in crime statistics.
The focus on the impact gun laws have on violent crimes is further under the microscope because of the recent rise of violent crimes and children. The alarming rates at which violent crimes are occurring with the use of handguns at this age group is pushing factions from both sides of the gun debate to reach some type of solution. Regardless of the measures to be taken, it still remains unclear if further restrictions on firearms or less regulations will effectively help reduce crime and murder rates.


Arguments For and Against
The controversy behind the issue of gun control will often stem directly from the each sides arguments. The arguments for and against gun control are many and can be extremely extensive in providing for key and valid point, often offering statistics and facts provided by studies and research to further support their cause.
Gun control has become an aspect of the political world that is constantly changing according to how gun rights activists and gun control supporters argue and provide for sufficient reasoning for their cause. 
Among the various arguments, the ones that are constantly at the forefront involve the Second Amendment of the Constitution, and the aspect of gun violence, and how the availability of firearms may or may not affect the actual crime rates in the United States. The interpretation of the Second Amendment is often found to be clashing among both gun control factions, and is one the most central and key arguments behind the controversy of the issue. 
The question of civil rights is at the core of the surrounding debate on this issue, and is proven one of the most difficult to understand and evaluate. The issue of gun violence has also been confronted more in depth in recent times, due to tragedies such as the Columbine High School and Virginia Tech shootings. The issue of gun violence, specifically in the ages between 14 and 24, has become a growing concern for the Unites States government as well as its people and society.
The question whether the rise of violent crimes is directly related to firearm availability is one that has many answers, and can not determinately be answered in any conclusive way. Gun rights activist and Gun control advocates will continue to fuel the gun control debate until one side of the argument can be distinctly obvious as the appropriate action to take in regards to firearms.


Legislative Priorities
Gun control advocates make it obviously clear that the intention to control the firearms in the United States in their main priority. In order to do so, anti gun supporters must lobby at the various governmental levels–including federal, state, and local–in order to enact their philosophies and ideals regarding guns and firearms in to actual written law.
The legislative priority behind gun control is simply to enact certain policies and regulations that restrict firearms with the overall purpose of reducing crime rates in the United States. Certain studies have shown that there is a direct correlation between the availability of firearms and crime rates, specifically crimes involving violence and firearms.
Though some of the findings can not be absolutely substantiated, firearm regulations have proven to be effective in some cases. With the continued support of gun control enthusiasts and their labored attempts to turn politicians and the government on to their cause, gun control policies will continue to be considered as long as they adhere to the Second Amendment statutes and do not infringe upon civil liberties.
If crime rates continue to support that firearm laws and regulations have validity in curbing crime, then support for gun control policy will continue grow and gain further support from the government and the masses alike.

Examples of Gun Control in American Cities
Cities throughout the United States with problems regarding crimes of a violent nature will try to implement what ever means necessary in order to contain the rising numbers and death tolls, and try reduce those rates by using and enforcing stricter laws.
Gun control is often one of the first methods considered by cities and large urban areas as way to help stop crime. Two cities that have applied gun control in the United States at more strict levels than federal and state statutes are Los Angeles and Washington D.C. Los Angeles has been well known and documented as having a problem with gang and gun violence for the past several decades, and D.C. has been notorious for being one of the cities with the most homicides and murders since the late 1980’s.
By enforcing stricter firearm laws and regulations, these cities hope to remove and stop guns from landing the hands of criminals and those deemed ineligible to own or possess firearms. Though the correlation between the effectiveness of gun control and violent and gun crime rates is still subject to speculation, it is hard to dismiss that crime rates have lowered since the institution of strict gun laws.

Make Sure You Know Your Gun Control Arguments For and Against

Make Sure You Know Your Gun Control Arguments For and Against

The gun control debate is fueled by opposing sentiments, between those who support gun rights and individuals with anti gun sentiments. The arguments are rooted in different philosophical applications as well as statistics and facts regarding how firearms can impact society.
It is important to keep mind that even though there are strong and valid points to be made for both sides of gun control issues, this has proven to be one of the most debated and intense battles that has been fought on the political forefront. Though minor advances and pitfalls have been taken by both factions, the debate of gun control issues is one that is still deadlocked, and will probably continue to remain stagnant in taking significant steps toward either side of the argument.
At the crux at both arguments are underlying questions as to what is to be ultimately accomplished in choosing either side of the debate. Firstly, how are firearm restrictions to be implemented without violating the Second Amendment of the Constitution is one that is considered central in terms of political and legislative in determining how to approach gun control issues. Secondly, a more recently considered aspect is how gun control limit or restrict crime, if at all.
Empirical evidence and statistical facts have proven valid points for both sides of gun control issues, making it extremely difficult to determine an obvious effect or answer. Lastly, one of the most asked questions is how would the restriction of firearms inhibit or impair a citizen’s ability for self defense, and how such a stance is viable without infringing on Second Amendment Rights. The right to bear arms has proven to be somewhat of a thorn in the side of the gun control debate for both sides, but particular those who favor gun control.
Anti gun control factions are unwavering when it comes to interpretations of the Second Amendment that do not coincide word for word as it is written in the Bill of Rights. The National Rifle Association and the Gun Owners of America are two groups that defend the constitutional provision with all of their resources. Gun control activists will often pose three concepts regarding the Second Amendment as it is written:
The provision is outdated and obsolete; furthermore, its ambiguity lends for confusion and different means for interpretations of the provision, and must therefore, be amended to coincide with the times and be more explicit or simply be eradicated.
Regarding the inclusion of “regulated militia,” arms are to be kept for the sole purpose of defense of tyranny or militaristic attempt by the government to suppress the people. To that extent, firearms should otherwise be restricted from other uses with few exceptions.
The right to bear arms is not absolute; it should be subject to regulation under certain requirements, such as when the commonwealth may be possibly threatened. This provision does not support the use of military-style weapons–such as semi- and fully automatic weapons–by regular civilians because they are not needed in the realms of self-defense and protection or hunting and recreational use.
Though this interpretation may serve to have applied logic in an organized and well-thought out manner, anti gun control supporters will claim that the violation of the Second Amendment is a reason why such a clause was introduced in the Constitution; for the people to protect themselves from any form of violation of civil liberties and freedoms. 
Though the interpretation of the right to bear arms is subject to bias and convenience, the arguments posed by each faction have strong and valid points that must be considered to the full extent in order to understand all of the gun control issues. One of the arguments that is getting the most attention in recent times is gun violence and children or minors.
Whether it would be that children have access to firearms and acquire them with malicious purpose or intention to commit a crime, or simply accidental discharge of a weapon by a small child finding a parents handgun and playing with it, firearms are becoming more of a serious concern in regards to children finding ways to get their hands on them. Events as the Columbine High School and Virginia Tech shooting made this argument become more of a national awareness of the gun violence by young people.
Gun control supporters subsequently rallied to propose more restrictions and laws to further limit the availability of firearms. Anti gun control factions responded by making it a responsibility for parents to educate their families of the dangers of firearms and guns, particularly if they were firearm owners themselves. They claimed that laws and regulations would not bar children from acquiring guns if the education was not there in the first place.
Though certain provisions may be taken, such as storing guns in gun safes or applying trigger locks to the weapons, it is more important to educate people about firearms, especially children. Anti gun control supporters stressed that it is the responsibility of the parents to educate their children about guns, and even go as far as teaching them how to appropriately handle firearms so as the can develop a personal sense of fear and respect for them, ant not regard them as toys.
Another common argument posed by gun control activists is that the government has a duty to society and the people to keep firearms away from those individuals that should never be in possession of firearms. There are already laws in place listing restrictions placed on certain people, such as convicted felons, that prohibit their possession, purchasing, and carrying of firearms. Though these restrictions may infringe on some slight level upon civil liberties, the cost will prove worth the price if guns are kept out of the hands of criminals.
Gun rights supporters will argue that more restrictions placed upon already strict gun laws will simply prove to be useless; criminals will always find other means in obtaining what they want or need, that is why they are criminals and operate on the fringe of society. More laws and regulations will simply prove to be a hindrance and inconvenience to those who are legally allowed to handle firearms, and thus, infringing on their civil liberties.
The proposal of having all firearms registered with the appropriate governmental authorities is an issue that has also been suggested by gun control advocates. They claim this will make gun owners more accountable for their actions, and limit the availability of firearms only to responsible individuals. The registration of firearms will only affect criminals and it would aid law enforcement in keeping track of who owns and possesses firearms. Factions supporting gun rights respond to this suggestion by claiming it is an enormous intrusion of a person’s privacy.
If the government is to start monitoring citizens at this level, then what would stop them from monitoring other aspects while further intruding and violating civil liberties? Furthermore, a registry of this scope would eventually be paid for by tax payers, where the money can go to more important and expedient causes. Lastly, one the more recent gun control issues focused on by gun control supporters is in respects to semi-automatic weapons.
Though there is already a ban implemented on automatic weapons, semi-automatic firearms are just as dangerous. In addition to their possible threat, semi-automatics are not needed for recreational use, and a person may adequately defend him/herself with a standard firearm. Gun rights activist have fought by stating that if the government bans semi-automatic weapons, it will only be a matter of time before all firearms are banned. People have the right to arm themselves as they see appropriate to defend themselves from any kind of potential threat.
If it has already been proven that criminals can acquire semi-automatics as well as illegal automatic weapons, why should citizens settle to protect themselves with firearms that are not equally as potent for purpose of defense and survival? Gun control advocates offer some serious valid points that can be used to consider the implementation for further firearm restrictions. Though there are obvious counters, the gun control issues posed supporters of the movement are ones that must be truly considered.
Just as those in favor of gun control have their reasoning and logic behind their intent, anti gun control supporters also pose worthy arguments to oppose gun regulations and laws. 
The main argument presented by gun rights advocates is that the restriction of firearms is a violation of civil rights. The forefathers of the United States included it in to law because of the experiences of tyranny and imperialism had on the Colonies, and the people were being abused and forbidden from their natural and civil rights. 
Right to bear arms is a human right to protect oneself from such tyrannical offenses against mankind, and must be upheld by the government to the extent of the law provided. History has shown on several occasions where governments in the world seized citizen weapons are were shortly submitted to horrific acts of cruelty and tyranny. 
The citizens have a right to arm themselves to protect themselves and preserve democracy from such an event if it were to occur. Gun control advocates constantly counter this argument by posing the idea that bearing arms in name of citizen-armed militias is outdated, and simply, not applicable today. 
The key to ensuring that tyrannical uprising do not occur is by providing citizens the information needed to battle such occasions with democracy and knowledge, not firearms. Gun rights activists also oppose the fact that certain regulations already in place are not doing their intended purpose of limiting and decreasing crime and violence. The laws and regulations have simply proven to become a hassle for those that are legally allowed to posses firearms. 
Criminals will always circumvent any legislation or regulations in the acquiring of firearms. Imposing further restrictions is simply limiting respectful, law-abiding citizens from being able to properly arm themselves for their own protection. More so, criminals already do not comply with the implemented laws, so it would serve logic that would not adhere to any more restrictive or new laws. 
Millions of dollars were used for the creation of the National Instant Check System used to verify the eligibility of individuals purchasing firearms. Though there should be restrictions against unqualified individuals, the system itself has proven to be fallible and criminals still get their hands on guns. 
Before implementing newer and more strict laws, the government should seek to correct and improve the ones already implemented. Gun control advocates would argue that laws that further restrict firearms would deter criminals on the basis that the acquisition of guns itself would be much harder, and the consequences of breaking the law would be much more extensive and serious. 
It is the government’s duty to protect the people and society, and stricter laws have proven to adequately offer for a safer environment. The background checks, must therefore, be conducted to only provide guns to lawful owners. Furthermore, if gun owners registered their weapons, it would more adequately provide law enforcement the necessary information to keep track of firearm purchases and make sure that all sales are legal.
Gun rights activists have staunchly supported the Second Amendment and will continue to do until the government agrees with their position on firearms. Though gun control advocates seem to be unwavering on imposing further firearm laws and regulations, anti gun control factions such as the NRA have proven to become extremely influential and powerful political force to be reckoned with.

Understanding Gun Control Background

Understanding Gun Control BackgroundThe issue
of gun control in politics is one that has been the subject of much controversy
and just as much debate.  There are two sides to the argument, those who
are support gun rights, and those who support gun control and gun control
laws.  The dispute has at its core the Second Amendment as found in the
Bill of Rights, which states: “A well regulated militia, being necessary
to the security of a free state, and the right of the people to keep and bear
arms, shall not be infringed.”  Much of the controversy is directly
related to the interpretation of this provision of the Constitution. 
While gun rights activists will claim that because it is stated as such, it
shall not be violated or infringed upon any way by any person, faction or
organization, including the government.  Furthermore, pro-gun enthusiasts
also claim that the right to bear arms is not only a constitutional right, but
also an inherent and natural human right.  Gun control advocates
constantly point out that the text itself is fairly vague, and open to a
variety of interpretations.  For this reason, the provision should be
amended in order to provide for a more explicit explanation.  Some take it
to another extreme and suggest that the entire Second Amendment be removed, for
guns pose a direct threat to the people, and in according to law, the
government must insure the safety and security of its people.  The
political debate over the validity and application of the Second Amendment is
one that has been constantly battled, but is still deadlocked between both
opposing factions.

The issue of gun control has been further debated by more tangible and specific
occurrences in the United States.  One of these issues is how the
availability of guns–regardless of who they are in possession, by those
legally permitted or not–is a direct catalyst to the many varying degrees of
gun violence.  Some of the most commonly discussed issues are school
shootings–such as Columbine High School and Virginia Tech–suicide rates, and
crime rates.  This argument is often countered by gun rights activists by
posing the notion of how gun control and regulations can actually provide for
measurable and visible differences in the reduction of gun violence or
gun-related crime.  As far as certain gun legislation has been in place,
there has been a validated and noticeable difference pertaining to lower crime
rates involving gun violence.  However, pro gun rights activist also point
out that some of the legislation seems to pose more of a hindrance and
inconvenience to lawful gun owners and users, while the law or regulation
itself does little in the way of showing any progress or change in crime
rates.  An example can be the recent legislation passed in California
regarding the purchasing and transactions of ammunition.  Before the law
was passed, ammunition could be bought with out a permit; all that was needed
was proof of identification and meet the general age requirements instated by
law.  Though there is no need to acquire a permit to purchase ammunition,
the gun control laws now ask that the buyer provide a thumbprint and personal
information to be kept on record every time he/she makes an ammunition
purchase.  The law enforcement organizations must have access to these
files and they will keep on file every purchase made.  The reasoning
behind this new regulation is to make it more difficult for restricted firearm
users or possessor gain access to ammunition, which is illegal under federal
law.  Furthermore, because there are no background checks made for
ammunition purchases, the danger for felons to come in possession of ammunition
seems to be a viable threat.  Anti-gun control followers are outraged at
the current California law staking the claim that it violates gun owners and
their privacy.  Others oppose the law, such as law enforcement officials
themselves, claiming that convicted felons do not acquire firearms or
ammunition through legitimate means; they simply will find other ways to get
their hands on guns and bullets.  Though recent studies have shown that
convicted felons have purchased ammunition with out any problem at local retail
stores, the majority of the consumers are all legitimate gun owners and
users. 

Regardless of the arguments for or against, gun control is something that is
being implemented in the United States today.  Certain studies and reports
will correlate that gun control has in fact impacted crime rates involving
violence or firearms.  However, not all legislation or gun control laws in
place have a significant impact on crime.  Some laws and regulations with
out a doubt make it harder for gun owners and users, which may seem to infringe
upon their Second Amendment rights.  The reason why the government is at a
static stalemate with the issue has to do with making the decision to uphold
civil rights and allow the free bearing of arms while possibly endangering
many, or enforce gun control strictly and more decisively while possibly
violating civil liberties.  Gun control is an issue that seems to be
debated and argued for a long time to come, and until either argument proves to
be more righteous, the issue will continue be discussed from dinner tables in
neighborhoods to Congress and the White House.

What Are The Gun Control Effects on Crime and Murder

What Are The Gun Control Effects on Crime and Murder

One of the biggest issues involving gun control is directly correlated to its effects on crime and murder. Those who support the gun control movement will claim that imposing stricter firearm laws, violent crimes such as murder will decline because of having the availability of firearms curtailed. 
Conversely, individuals that support gun rights and are against gun control will argue that not only does gun control not reduce crime and murder rates, but it actually stimulates them and makes them rise. Very much like the larger scope of the entire gun control debate, it is of no surprise that both opposing factions will reach a stalemate in regarding gun control and its actual effects on crime and murder. 
However, it is important to note that arguments and debate on the subject are not the main reason as to being able to determinately claim fact to one or the other, but it is the discrepancy in the statistics and facts themselves that lend to dispute. In measuring the quantifiable effects of gun control on crime and murder, there are two problems that are bound to surface. 
Firstly, gun control refers to an all encompassing term that can be linked to the specific laws and regulations enforced by the government restricting firearms as well as the safety measures such as safety components or trigger locks used for firearms and guns. 
It is important to see how the interaction of how the various laws and the various governing bodies in the country–meaning the levels of government: federal, state, and local–actually effect crime and murder based on the overall and singular interaction of each provision and enforcement. Because the laws not only vary from the federal to the state level, the further even more so from state to state. 
The differing laws lend for the ability to measure the impact on crime to become skewed or insufficient; the various laws do not necessarily allow for a uniform reproduction of empirical data across the board. Secondly, just because the laws are written in to law does not necessarily mean that they are being enforced equally at the different levels of government. It has to be taken in to account the human aspect of fallacy of enforcing the laws as strictly as the law intends, and that not all laws will be enforced as strictly as another. 
Such aspects make the measuring of crime and murder and the effect gun control has extremely difficult to calculate, and even more so, to determine accurately. However, statistics are available to show a correlation between gun control and crime, but these will also vary depending which side of the argument is presenting the data, as well as the focus or concentration of specific areas or data in order to prove one of two points: gun control lowers crime and murder, or gun control does not affect crime and murder, and may even influence it to occur more.
The effects that gun control has on crime is almost strictly correlated with crimes that are of a violent nature based on the assumption that firearms will be more likely to be employed in committing such a crime. In general, it has been reported that 60% to 70% of all homicides involve firearms. Out of this firearms, about 80% involved handguns.
Since the implementations of more restrictions and regulations involving the purchases, possession, or carrying of handguns have been more explicitly stressed since the 1970s and 1980s, there has been a general decline of firearm related violent related crimes, particularly homicides. From the early 1990s to turn of the century, this decline has been at a steady average at about 10% each year, with a total decline of about 50%. 
Such statistical reports will provide for factual evidence extensively showing how crime can be reduced with pro gun control implementations. Not only do these numbers prove a positive effect about gun control, but it is a drastic and impressive one. Another report showed that there are about 6.3 million violent crimes committed in 1999. Violent crimes including rape or sexual assault, robber, and assault were considered for this statistic. 
Out of those crimes, just over 500,000 involved the use of firearms, which is about 8% of the total estimation of violent crimes. This statistic essentially shows that firearms are not necessarily properly correlated with their use during violent crimes, and therefore, extensive gun control laws deem to be excessive and unfair to those citizens legally allowed to own and use them.
 An example of how stricter gun control laws did not aid in lowering crime rates is Washington D.C. In 1976, D.C. adopted what was to be considered one of the few extremely restrictive gun control policies in the country. The murder rate since the time of new gun control policy rose 134%. Yet another example is New York City, which also implemented similarly stringent gun laws as D.C. had similar results. 
In the early 1970s, about 19 % of homicides involved pistols, and shortly after the new laws were in place, this number rose to about 50%. Furthermore, the restriction of firearms allowed for only 28,000 lawfully possessed or acquired firearms, yet law enforcement estimations had the number at 1.3 million illegal handguns in the city. Conversely, states with fewer restrictions such as New Hampshire and Vermont, have proven to the safest of all the states, with Vermont ranking in at 49th in crime and 47th in murders. 
Another important facet to consider is the institution of concealed carry laws. Concealed carry laws allow eligible firearm owners to carry their weapons in a concealed fashion, as allowed by law. Those supporting gun control argued that no one but law enforcement or military personnel has the need to carry firearms in public, and much less so, to do so concealed from clear view. However, states that implemented concealed carry laws saw murder rates drop an average of 8.5%, rapes by about 5%, assault by 7%, and robbery by about 3%. 
Texas is a great example, which saw its crime rates drop 50% faster than the rest of the nation; before the passage of the law, crime rates were above the national average by 38%. Unfortunately, the reports regarding gun control and its effects on crime and murder are subject to bias; furthermore, the information is available to those who seek it, but the general public is subject only to media outlets that may choose to present a certain aspect of statistics to further provide for gaining supporters for their own cause.
The focus of violent crimes and gun control has shifted in recent times to the subject of gun violence and youth. Tragedies such as the Columbine High School and Virginia Tech massacres have produced an outcry about gun control implementations being necessary for the protection of children and young adults throughout the country.
It is an alarming situation to consider because this age group, which is considered to be in the range of 14 to 24, seems to increase in terms of commission of violent crimes. From the mid-1980s to the early 1990s, firearm related homicides committed by children from ages 14 to 17 increased from about 850 to just over 3,000, an increase of almost 300%. 
The reason as to why the numbers increased so dramatically is still yet to be determined, and just as a fervent argument and debate as gun control; issues constantly blamed include violence in TV and movies, violent or negative lyrics in music, aggressive types of music, etc. Regardless of the reasons why, it is obvious that children are gaining access to firearms in one way or another–most likely their own homes. Gun control supporters would encourage the passage of more strict laws for firearms due to such alarming statistics. 
Those against gun control would argue that firearms are not the issue; the acquisition of firearms by children or other unqualified persons is directly caused individuals breaking the law, and not the community of lawful firearms users and owners. Furthermore, a valid point would also prove to be important is the consideration that the parents of children using firearms for violent crimes have to remain responsible for their own children, particularly if the firearm came from their own homes. 
Firearms users must be held responsible for the proper storage and safe keeping of their weapons from all people who are unauthorized to them, especially if the weapons are kept in the house for self-defense and young children are living with them. Though it is have been proven the shooters at Columbine acquired their guns from gun shows–which at the time, did not conduct background checks–the access of firearms to children at the home must be regulated by the parents. 
The effects of the Columbine shooting were a result of a community stricken by horror and anger, and demanded immediate action. Though nothing happened immediately at the federal level, Colorado passed legislature that required stricter regulations for gun shows in the state. The tragedies at both Columbine and Virginia Tech have slowly pushed pro gun control sentiments in the direction of instituting further legislation on firearms, even with the support of the NRA for stricter background checks.
However, the acts of violence themselves and gun control show that there may be a correlation between the availability of guns and crime. What the relationship is still undetermined for such contradictory data exists that can trump and repel arguments given by both sides of the gun control debate, pro gun control and against gun control.