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Argumentative Essay on Gun Control
Gun control is a controversial subject in the United States of America. In the wake of so many tragic mass shootings, like the recent Las Vegas Shooting, the conversation tends to pull in two directions: Those who believe gun laws should be less strict and those pushing for more restrictions.
When you are writing a gun control argumentative essay, you are free to take any side you want, unless your instructor specifically tells you to take a certain side. What matters is that whichever position you choose, ensure you have good points and supporting facts.
In this gun control essay, I have decided to take a pro gun control approach: strict regulation up to and including an outright ban on firearms. In fact, my thesis statement for this for argumentative essay is stricter gun control laws should be enacted and implemented if the United States is to solve the problem of mass shootings and reduce crime within its borders.
My essay is divided into three basic parts, the introduction, the body and the conclusion.
Here is my gun control argumentative essay. Enjoy!
Stricter Gun Control Laws Should Be Adopted
The pervasive gun culture in the United States of America is a creation of the country’s frontier expansion, revolutionary roots, colonial history, and the Second Amendment. The Second Amendment stipulates, “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” (“Second Amendment,” 2020). The argument fronted by proponents of stricter gun control laws is that the amendment targeted militias and not the common citizen. They are of the view that gun control restrictions have always been there and that they serve to enhance the security of the country and the various states. The opponents however argue that through the provisions of the Second Amendment, individuals have the right to own guns. Their view is that individuals need guns for self-defense and that gun ownership thwarts criminal activities. This paper argues that stricter gun control laws should be enacted and implemented if the United States is to solve the problem of mass shootings and reduce crime within its borders (my argumentative essay thesis statement).
On 1st October, 2017, the U.S. witnessed one of the worst mass shooting incidences in its history, probably the worst. The shooting, as observed by Swift (2017), was conducted by a common U.S. citizen who was a gun owner. Following the incidence, there has been rage and confusion all over the country as to whether the gun control debate is still relevant. A whopping 59 people died in the incidence with 500 others sustaining serious injuries (Swift, 2017). This incidence alone, the Second Amendment notwithstanding, tells why the country is in dire need of very strict gun control laws. Nothing can compensate for human life and it is even worse when life is lost at the hands of another human being. It becomes more serious when one person decides to kill, without stopping to think, as many people as time and other factors would allow them to! The latest gun incidence is a clear sign that the threat of lives being lost due to misuse of personal guns is more real than the threat of one losing their life due to lack of self-defense.
Given the latest mass shooting incidence, together with such other past incidences, it could be safely argued that the Second Amendment is being misinterpreted to mean what the framers of the Constitution never intended nor meant. It is high time the three branches of the federal government, together with the states, sought a clear reinterpretation of “well-regulated militia”. It cannot be that those who effected this amendment “authorized” what was recently witnessed in Las Vegas. As pointed out by Insana (2017), “The Founding Fathers, who lived before the invention of the Gatling gun, could not have envisioned civilians commanding the right to hunt turkeys, or humans, with modern ferocity”. The Second Amendment is surely not a leeway for citizens to have unlimited rights to own guns. A well-regulated militia should imply that a state, or the country, adequately serves its law enforcement agencies with the right ammunition and weaponry so as to ensure security. This has however unfortunately been misinterpreted to mean anyone can own a gun.
Stricter gun control laws would reduce deaths resulting from individually owned guns. Street (2016) reports that between 1999 and 2013, the number of gun deaths totaled 464,033. Out of this, 270,237 were gun suicide cases, 9,983 were unintentional deaths, and 174,773 homicides. It is thus crystal clear that mass shooting is not the only way in which guns are being used for the wrong purposes. It is emerging that giving an American citizen the right to own a gun is akin to giving them a shorter way of executing their evil plan of killing themselves, if they had it that is. If a gun is meant for self-defense and crime prevention, isn’t gun suicide the exact opposite of this? As a matter of fact, one would be safer from their own selves without a gun than with a gun. This is why it should be made tremendously difficult for people to acquire guns.
Opponents of gun control laws argue that introduction of such laws would deny people a sense of safety by infringing upon their right to self-defense. This argument is oblivious of the fact that weak gun control laws compromise even the safety of the gun holder himself or herself (Purcell, 2013). Moreover, it is the role of the federal government to ensure that every American citizen is always safe irrespective of the part of the country they find themselves. Building and maintaining strong security agencies is enough to ensure this. On the same note, the “right to self-defense” argument would lose its meaning if an individual cannot first of all defend themselves against themselves. When a person knowingly or unknowingly harms themselves using a gun they own, it means they lack the very self-defense they acquired the gun for.
To take their argument even further, the opponents would contend that the Second Amendment gives every American the right to possess personal guns. They often cite the phrase “the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed” (Burke, 2017), with more emphasis on the “shall not be infringed” part. They forget that the same clause contains some “well regulated militia” part which should be equally given as much weight as the other parts. While it is true that this right should not be infringed, according to the Constitution, it should not culminate in anybody being allowed to own guns. If the right is as absolute as opponents suggest, firearms would be owned by children and even mentally ill felons, a situation one can never wish for. It is thus a farfetched and unnecessary argument.
The enactment and implementation of very strict gun control laws by the United States is long overdue. People cannot continue butchering innocent citizens in the name of enjoying the provisions of the Second Amendment. If it is the Second Amendment that is creating all this loss of life and lawlessness, it should be thoroughly reinterpreted so that it works in the best interest of all Americans. Nobody has the right to take their own life and that of others. It is sad that gun ownership perpetuates this phenomenon. This discussion reveals that gun ownership is neither promoting self-defense nor deterring crime but promoting the same.
Burke, D. E. (2017). “Why the arguments against gun control are wrong”. Huffpost. Retrieved July 11, 2020 from https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/why-the-arguments-against-gun-control-are-wrong_us_59d6405ce4b0666ad0c3cb34. Accessed 29 June 2020
Insana, R. (2017). “The time for polite debate on gun control is over”. CNBC. Retrieved October 20, 2017 from https://www.cnbc.com/2017/10/05/the-time-for-polite-debate-on-gun-control-is-over.html
Purcell, T. (2013). Shotgun republic: the gun control debate. North Charleston, SC: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform.
Second Amendment. (2020). In Cornell Law School. Retrieved July 11, 2020 from https://www.law.cornell.edu/wex/second_amendment
Street, C. (2016). Gun control: guns in America, the full debate, more guns less problems? no guns no problems?. North Charleston, SC: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform.
Swift, H. (2017). “Gunman’s girlfriend arrives in U.S. and is expected to be questioned”. The New York Times. Retrieved October 20, 2017 from https://www.nytimes.com/2017/10/03/us/las-vegas-shooting-live-updates.html
A break down of my gun control argumentative essay
Styling Format: APA, 6th Edition
Title: Stricter Gun Control Laws Should Be Adopted
I have tried to design the introduction in such a way that it attracts the attention of the reader and gives him an idea of the essay’s focus. My first sentence comprises of some startling information: The pervasive gun culture in the United States of America is a creation of the country’s frontier expansion, revolutionary roots, colonial history, and the Second Amendment. It is not totally new information to the readers. In fact, it is a pertinent fact that explicitly illustrates the point that I wish to make. It is followed by a sentence of elaboration. In addition, I have tried to ground the reader with some information that is relevant to understand my thesis. Lastly, I have finished my paragraph with a thesis statement for my argumentative essay.
The body of my gun control essay contains reasons + evidence to support my thesis. Each body paragraph begins with a topic sentence that identifies the main idea of that paragraph. If you have read the essay, you can see that my explanations try to answer a simple question: how does this evidence support my thesis?
I have tried to sum up my points and provide a final perspective on gun control in an effort to bring closure to the reader. I have reviewed my main points, trying not restate them exactly, and tried to briefly describe my feelings concerning the topic. I was unable to find a good anecdote that would have ended my essay in a useful way.
Though, I won’t recommend it, I have used some news articles from CNBC and NYTimes as part of my references. I would advise you to go for more credible sources such as peer reviewed articles and journals.
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