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What was interesting to note was that ownership of handguns went up almost triple during this period. It was a no-brainer that handgun ownership and violence rates seemed to…
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The False Promise of Gun Control In the 60’s and 70’s, rates of robbery in the United s escalated while rates of murder doubled. What was interesting to note was that ownership of handguns went up almost triple during this period. It was a no-brainer that handgun ownership and violence rates seemed to keep in pace with each other. Journalists and legislators noted these statistics, and in 1969; a National Commission formed by the US government officially linked these two statistics. As a result of both financial and political strength held by the powerful gun-lobby, the reaction to these statistics were slow. However, in November 1993, legislators passed the Brady bill. The Brady bill mandated federal checks on the background of purchasers of firearms in the United States. However, has this bill been successfully instituted? Has it had tangible results? This paper aims to show how this bill, while noble in intention, has failed to address the real nature and reason for criminal activity, via the eyes of the author.
The notion about linkage of violence and guns, however, immaculately documented is mistaken. Firearms and their possession do not cause a surge in crime rates. The resulting legislation of laws controlling possession of firearms causes the surge in crime rates. Violence and crime rates are currently below the monstrous rates, witnessed in the 70’s. An increase in population of 15-24 year old males, who are noted as being the at-risk population, will inevitably lead to worsening crime rates. There is certainly no evidence that this fresh criminal generation will find it more difficult to obtain firearms than their elder statesmen will. As the violence grows, call for harsher laws will escalate. However, each piece of legislation will only precede renewed frustration over seemingly un-deterred criminals (Polsby 1).
The argument that gun control works is ignorant, to say the least. Markets that deal with the illicit trade of firearms will always find a way to adapt to the intense scrutiny, regulation and bureaucracy hurled at them by the legitimate world. It is also worth noting that the increased control of firearm supply infringes on privacy interests and freedom, which are the foundation of American life. Moreover, the war on prostitution, pornography and drugs should at least educate us on the methodology of illicit markets and expenses the public has to foot in a doomed effort to control them (Polsby 1).
The Brady bill is an amalgam of two types of firearm control laws in the US; those that seek to the regulate location and methods of buying firearms and individuals who can buy them, and laws that increase expense of various types of firearms. The Brady bill is an example of a scarcity inducing law. However, gun lovers want to rid themselves of these laws while proponents of firearm control want the laws made more stringent. While everyone agrees that firearm control, basically, has some sort of effect on firearm distribution, the results have been muted and disappointing (Polsby 1).
In conclusion, the rate of gun related crimes could not be halted by legislation that seeks to limit the tools of work available to criminals while ignoring the resolution of the core reasons for crime. The solution is more likely to come from addressing the chances that at-risk age groups have at legitimate income generation. A sure way of going about this includes review of the system of education, such that they are equipped for income generation and legitimate self-employment. Guns are nothing compared to poverty as inducers of violence and crime. As long as there is profit to be gained from crime coupled with crippling unemployment, honest, hard working citizens must elect between protecting their life and property and being victims.
Works Cited
Polsby D. "The False Promise of Gun Control." The Atlantic Monthly (1994): 1. Electronic.
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