Our Founding Fathers and the Right to Bear Arms
Our founding fathers staged a successful revolt against the British colonial government over two centuries ago, and undertook to develop a new system of governance that was different from what their rulers had in place, and which addressed the shortcomings and inefficiencies they had seen in other forms of government in Europe (Alcorn, 125).
During the formation of the government, the founding fathers formulated a bill that outlined a bill of rights that they thought were crucial to the long-term prosperity of the nation. There were tens of basic rights outlined; among them the right to keep and bear arms for the purpose of protecting their families from the government and fending for themselves (Alcorn, 125).
However, in the recent times as gun violence has continued to rock the country, questions have started been asked on whether the right to keep and bear arms too dangerous to be continued, and can we as a nation, justify taking away one of the basic and sacred human rights enshrined in our constitution?
The right to bear and keep arms is espoused in the Second Amendment of the constitution, with the amendment outlining that there is need for a well-regulated militia been present at all times for the security of a free state (Malina, 175).
The framers of the constitution in formulating the Amendment had the intent of having the people hold and keep arms, but for regulations to be put in place to ensure anarchy does not arise since the lack of regulation would lead to the creation of an armed mob and not a militia.
The lack of clear regulations on gun control as well as the existence of loopholes in the rulings made by the courts and the Supreme Court has seen the ownership of guns in the country rise rapidly through the years. For instance, the country has a gun ownership rate of 120.5 guns per 100 people which translates to 393,347,000 guns spread across the population (Alcorn, 125).
The high ownership of guns across the nation has seen more guns fall into the wrong hands of individuals who are out to promote personal agenda such as vengeance against a certain group of people or even to settle scores.
Position on Issue
A report published in 2011 by the Center for Disease Control elucidates that close to 30,000 people die annually in the country because of accidents, suicide or homicide at the hand of a gun (Malina, 175).
The statistics from the Harvard Injury Control Center indicate that the prevalence of suicide is five times higher in the homes that have guns in comparison to those without guns, and the predisposition to guns makes it easy to injure and kill within a short time (Malina, 175).
For instance, on December 14th, 2000, a deranged Chinese man wielding a knife entered an elementary school and indiscriminately attacked everyone he came across and in the process hurt 22 people (Malina, 175). The strict gun control policies in China made it challenging for the man to access a gun, which would have been catastrophic during the attack.
The control of access to guns is crucial to the nation's sustained security and bringing an end to the recent streak of mass shootings (Alcorn, 125). The adoption of gun control measures across the nation provides a lasting solution to a problem that had bedeviled the American society for years, although it has become more rampant and pronounced in the recent years.
The gun control will provide a means through which the government can regulate access and monitor the use of guns across the nation, making sure that firearms are not misused and do not fall into the wrong hands (Alcorn, 125).
The advocates of gun rights argue that guns do not kill people, but people do, and gun ownership is an unalienable right espoused by the founding fathers when framing the constitution and the government has no right to infringe on the provision (Malina, 175).
Americans are born with the right to own guns, and it is expected that the government does not take measures such as the formulation of regulations to impede this unalienable right since doing so would make it challenging for Americans to access firearms (Alcorn, 125).
The advocates for gun rights further argue that although the gun control policies are aimed at reducing crime and violence within the American society, they have been unable to effectively do so since they do not address the root cause, which are the people who use the firearms (Malina, 175).
For instance, Illinois, although having strict gun control laws, has some of the highest violence and crime rates in the entire nation.
Gun control, although a controversial subject, is a necessary tool for the realization of a safer place for all. The lack of gun control measures makes it easy for firearms to fall into the wrong hands since there are no background checks, medical checks, or even monitoring of how firearms are used (Malina, 175).
The imposition of the control policies will mean that guns will be accessible to those who meet the set criterion, and mentally unstable individuals or those with a history of violent crimes do not have access to firearms.
Alcorn, Ted. "Trends in research publications about gun violence in the United States, 1960 to 2014." JAMA internal medicine 177.1 (2017): 124-126.
Malina, Debra, et al. "Rooting out gun violence." (2016): 175-176. Retrieved from https://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMe1515975