Crime and guns. The two seem to go hand in hand with one another. But are the two really associated? Do guns necessarily lead to crime? And if so do laws placing restrictions on firearm ownership and use stop the crime or protect the citizens? These are the questions many citizens and lawmakers are asking themselves when setting about to create gun control laws. The debate over gun control, however, is nothing new. In 1924, Presidential Candidate, Robert La Follete said, “our choice is not merely to support or oppose gun control but to decide who can own which guns under what conditions.” Clearly this debate still goes on today and is the very reason for the formation of gun control laws.
Guns are extremely powerful weapons. They can cause destruction, harm or even death. They can be used to defend and protect or to threaten and kill. Any way you look at it, guns are powerful tools, not only physically but socially. As college students it is important to stay abreast of the current events and issues circulating our country today, one of which is the controversial issue of gun control. It is extremely important to pay attention to where gun control laws are headed. The directions they take not only affect our nation and society but our future as well as we all move to communities and begin to raise families.
So why is gun control such a hot debate? Perhaps to answer this question it would be important to look at some key statistics concerning handguns in our society. In this nation, where nearly half of all US households own at least one gun, nearly 30,000 people die from a gunshot each year (Dahl). From this alone it is no wonder gun control is such an important issue, however as bad as this may seem, the number of firearm related incidents have decreased over the years. In the early 1990’s the number of people killed or wounded by firearms soared. Since 1993 however the US has seen a steady drop in deaths due to firearm (The Lancet). Fatal firearms accidents have declined as well, nearly 40 percent in the last decade, and are now at the lowest levels ever recorded (Poe). So why the sudden drop? Antigun advocates would like to attribute this to an increase in gun control laws while pro gun advocates point to a decrease in unemployment rates along with other social factors.