Gun Sales and Gun Control

Recent discussions have focused on the importance of either expanded gun rights or regulations. Recent studies show that the number of people in support of gun control laws is rising. (DeGrazia, 2014). The rise in gun violence cases, which has caused many deaths, including in the USA, has been largely blamed for the trend. (La Valle, 2013). States, like the USA, have passed a variety of gun laws to either strengthen or loosen the current primary national firearms control rules in an effort to lower the mortality rates from firearms. On the other hand, there have been arguments that gun controls have not done much to reduce gun-related crime (Kalesan, Mobily, Keiser, Fagan, & Galea, 2016). Gun rights

activists also argue that granting people the right to own guns will significantly reduce crime. The case for the legal right to own a gun raises many debates. However, this paper will present the argument in support of gun rights.

To start with, the right to bear arms possesses a unique importance in the certain institutions, for instance, in the US Constitution and culture (La Valle, 2013). Currently, the US Constitution and other institutions are experiencing struggle with global gun control. If the issue is not resolved, global gun control will infringe on the important human right. For example, it is stipulated in the Second Amendment to the US Constitution that, "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" (DeGrazia, 2014, p. 3). Gun possession has become the tradition in the US that has been observed for the longest time.

Furthermore, the right to own firearms is safeguarded by the Second Amendment. Therefore, implementing additional gun control regulations will infringe on the fundamental right to possess the firearm. For example, in 2010, the case between the McDonald v. the City of Chicago, the ruling was in support of the Second Amendment as the fundamental right (The Library of Congress, 2017).

Furthermore, Lawrence Hunter, the chairperson of Revolution PAC highlighted that the right to bear arms as well as gun ownership was as important as maintaining the freedom of religion, the right to free speech among the other obligation in the Constitution. In addition, the protection of the right to bear arms is essential element which is outlined in the Bill of Rights.

Similarly, in the District of Columbia v. Heller case in 2008, the American Supreme Court reached the verdict concerning the Second Amendment of the American Constitution (The Library of Congress, 2017). It was the first decision interpreting the Second Amendment since 1939. According to the court’s ruling, the Second Amendment grants the person the right to bear a firearm for conventionally legal reasons, for instance, protection of oneself. In addition, the court also made a verdict that the District of Columbia’s requirements that barred the possession of firearms, as well as those that necessitated legal arms in residential houses should be disassembled or trigger-locked, infringed on the right to bear and own firearms (The Library of Congress, 2017). Therefore, basing on the United States case and the Second Amendment, any individual should be conferred the rights to own and bear firearms because it is the constitutional requirement.

Gun control is less likely to limit possession of firearms by the criminals because more often they do not use the authorized process of obtaining guns. Instead, it will just limit the ability of law-abiding citizens for protection. Different research carried out by academic scholars as well as the central government has indicated that criminals do not obtain firearms from legal markets. For instance, basing on the analysis of crime in Chicago, this reality is more evident nowadays than ever (Institute for Legislative Action, 2015). Furthermore, the interview conducted by different researchers at the Cook County Jail provided more evidence to support the claim that criminals did not acquire guns from legal sources (Institute for Legislative Action, 2015). The researchers’ reports revealed that criminals obtained guns from their social networks, for example, relatives and friends. They acquire firearms from gun shows as opposed to the stores or Internet sources. In addition, according to the research, offenders do not often steal firearms.

The researchers at Cook County Jail also revealed that criminals rarely acquired firearms from the market because they had some fear to purchase the firearm from the source they were not well acquainted with (Institute for Legislative Action, 2015). The fear of being caught by the law enforcement agencies or being reported to the police by law-abiding gun owners also drives the criminals towards buying firearms from the sources they have confidence in.

Furthermore, criminals do not keep firearms over a long period due to the fear of the gun being traced to the certain crime. The research findings were coherent. Felons did not participate in the activities that would make them the primary target of any manner of a universal background check obligation or other suggestions instigated by the supporters of anti-gun movement (Institute for Legislative Action, 2015). Therefore, as portrayed by the study, laws and regulations governing the possession of firearms only affect the law-abiding citizens. As a result, implementation of more gun control will not serve to protect the citizens against crime but instead, reduce their capacity to secure themselves amidst any criminal activities.

Largely, gun control efforts have proven to be ineffective. This claim is supported by the various studies conducted on the above-mentioned issue (Kalesan et al., 2016). For instance, according to the study conducted by Lancet in 2016, a small number of the current State-detailed gun controls are linked to the decline of gun deaths (Kalesan et al., 2016). This evidence emphasizes the essence of drawing attention to pertinent and operational crime legislation rather than infringing civilians’ gun rights. According to the survey, out of the 25 gun regulations, nine were linked to reduced firearm deaths (Kalesan et al., 2016). The study also revealed that nine out of the 25 laws were associated with increased gun mortality while seven regulations did not show any conclusive association. This survey is the clear indication that despite the presence of gun laws, there has not been a significant decline in firearm mortality. Besides, gun crime has increased in the certain US states despite tough regulations. Therefore, the other alternative should allow people to defend themselves by making it easier for law-abiding citizens to obtain guns.

The above argument can also be supported by the fact that Mexico has highly restrictive gun control laws compared to the US. In Mexico, ownership of high-caliber firearms is essentially banned for citizens (Dube, Dube, & Garcia-Ponce, 2013). Furthermore, in 2010, only one retail outlet in Mexico was legally authorized to sell firearms which was operated by the country’s Ministry of National Defense (Dube et al., 2013) In contrast, there were 7,240 federally approved firearms outlets in Texas, California, New Mexico, and Arizona around the same year (Dube et al., 2013). Despite such strict regulations and difficulty in buying a gun in Mexico, there are more gun related deaths compared to the US which means that if the strict firearms laws do not work in Mexico, then there is a high possibility that they will not be effective in the US. Therefore, the denial of the individual’s rights to own guns only makes more harm than good because it will prevent law abiding citizens from protecting themselves at the expense of criminals who own it regardless any measures.

Increased gun control in the certain countries, for instance, USA, will limit the ability of ordinary civilians to defend themselves. The moral right for the state’s law-abiding citizens to possess firearms gets its sturdiest support from a broader liberty to self-protection (DeGrazia, 2014). In this case, self-defense refers to protection of oneself and other people in the household. The legal right to own gun might also be understood by examining the Supreme Court interpretation of the Second Amendment.

The Second Amendment was construed as the protection of the right to possess firearms in the quest for legitimate objectives. However, one cannot claim to have the obligation to self-defense if he or she does not have an effective means of protection. In the today’s United States, a large number of people cannot effectively secure themselves or their families without guns (DeGrazia, 2014). Reducing gun ownership through firearms control will considerably eliminate the law-abiding citizen's ability to use arms when it comes to self-protection. Therefore, gun control measures are unacceptable.

Similarly, the standard gun rights argument is based on the notion that the liberty to own and bear handguns is the right of self-protection (Hsiao & Bernstein, 2016). Given that the rights of self-protection are supposed to necessitate the right to reasonable means of defense, there is a prima facie right to possess guns. At the same time, given that firearms are considered reasonable means of self-protection because they are effective in defending ordinary civilians against any attack, it is correct to say that people have a right to own guns (Hsiao & Bernstein, 2016).

Therefore, it can be argued that there exists a strong supposition in favor of statutory recognition of this right. The reason behind the argument is situated in the circumstance of oneself protection against criminals within the civil society (Hsiao & Bernstein, 2016). In addition, one could also expand this argument to take into account self-protection against outside aggression or by states themselves. As a result, the pro-gun advocates have every reason to demand a right to own firearms because they want to defend themselves against any attack.

According to Hsiao and Bernstein (2016), there is a lot of evidence that can be used to prove that gun control laws are associated with the increase in the criminal activities. For instance, the certain study found that laws allowing people to possess guns reduced murder rates by 8% and rape by 5% (Hsiao & Bernstein, 2016). This survey has been independently revised and confirmed by various peer-reviewed studies. For instance, one peer-reviewed survey found that there was an annual decline in the cases of murder rates by around 1.5% to 2.3% for each additional year that civilians were allowed to bear arms (Hsiao & Bernstein, 2016). Another study conducted in 2014 also revealed that US states with gun restrictions reported higher gun related murder rates compared to the other (Hsiao & Bernstein, 2016). The clarification for the findings is that potential offenders are deterred from the engagement in crimes in the places where there is a high probability that ordinary civilians will be armed with firearms. Normally, certain criminals tend to conduct themselves rationally before committing a crime. For instance, they evaluate possible consequences associated with engaging in a crime in areas that there are chances they might be killed or injured. Such felons will have a very good reason not to engage in crime in areas where most ordinary civilians own guns because they are more likely to be killed. However, they do not have to take such considerations in areas where most civilians do not own guns. This hypothesis confirms the need for gun rights.

There is an argument that civilian gun rights create a bulwark against oppression. According to this claim, more guns will mean more freedom (Cook & Goss, 2014). As much as the issue might be debatable, there is no doubt that US citizens equate civilian guns rights with fundamental American values, for instance, liberty, suspicion of government, and individual independence. Therefore, any direction towards more gun control will put the US on the quick pathway to the seizure of guns and the end of statutory liberty.

The National Rifle Association and gun advocates have also supported the above mentioned assertion while advocating for less gun control. In 2013, a survey concluded that half of the Americans thought that gun control would certainly lead to more strict rules that would ultimately lead to more guns being taken away from citizens (Cook & Goss, 2014). The other studies have also found out that there are growing concerns with regard to handgun control as it can lead to confiscation (Cook & Goss, 2014). Furthermore, according to Gallup polls, more than half of the Americans believed that the federal government had too much power. At the same time, nearly half of the participants viewed that it posed a direct threat to civilian's rights and freedoms (Cook & Goss, 2014). In other words, there is likelihood that gun controls will give the government too much power over citizens which will mean less freedom.

Another essential precept of gun rights ideology is that people must not allow the government to have a monopoly on the use of force (Cook & Goss, 2014). A coronary to this precept is that prohibiting private possession of firearms or creating regulation makes oppression or even annihilation more probable. According to the above mentioned view, there should not be gun control because mass arming protects democracy by leaving the citizens the right of insurgency if they judge that their regime is headed towards the wrong direction. For instance, in 2008, the Supreme Court supported the point by agreeing that civilians’ militias served as a “safeguard against tyranny” (Cook & Goss, 2014). As a result, it could be argued that guns protected against tyranny, therefore, people should not be prevented from owning them. To some extent, creating gun control limits the citizens' ability to safeguard democracy and secure themselves against any possible kind of oppression.


There is no doubt that gun control is the issue facing the criminal justice system in the United States. The arguments against it continue to divide the American citizens. The justice system is faced with a daunting task of interpreting the Constitution while ensuring that guns do not get in the hands of criminals. The paper has presented this issue by arguing against gun control. Besides, the right to bear arms possesses a unique importance for the US Constitution and culture, therefore, individuals should confer the rights to own and bear firearms. The essay has also argued against gun control because it limits possession of firearms by criminals as more often they do not use the legal process of obtaining guns. In addition, felons rarely acquire firearms from used market. In addition, gun control efforts have proven to be ineffective. Lastly, there is an argument that gun rights will create a bulwark against oppression and threaten effective self-defense as well as democracy.



Cook, P. J., & Goss, K. A. (2014). The gun debate: What everyone needs to know. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

DeGrazia, D. (2014). The case for moderate gun control. Kennedy Institute of Ethics Journal, 24(1), 1-25. doi:10.1353/ken.2014.0003

Dube, A., Dube, O., & Garcia-Ponce, O. (2013). Cross-border spillover: U.S. gun laws and violence in Mexico. American Political Science Review, 107(03), 397-417. doi:10.1017/s0003055413000178

Hsiao, T., & Bernstein, C. (2016). Against moderate gun control. Libertarian Papers, 8(2), 308-325.

Institute for Legislative Action. (2015, September 4). Study: Criminals don’t get guns from legal sources. Retrieved from s/20150904/study-criminals-don-t-get-guns-from-legal-sources

Kalesan, B., Mobily, M. E., Keiser, O., Fagan, J. A., & Galea, S. (2016). Firearm legislation and firearm mortality in the USA: A cross-sectional, state-level study. The Lancet, 387(10030), 1847-1855. doi:10.1016/s0140-6736(15)01026-0

La Valle, J. M. (2013). "Gun Control" vs. "self-protection": A case against the ideological divide. Justice Policy Journal, 10(1), 1-26. Retrieved from

The Library of Congress. (2017). United States: Gun ownership and the Supreme Court. Retrieved from

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