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A gun. Careful: this image could be the last thing you ever see.

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Gun control is the restriction of those who can legally obtain firearms, and/or restricts which types of guns a normal citizen can obtain. It attempts to make it more difficult for a nut to pick up a gun somewhere to use against an innocent life, such as yourself, your family or anyone you care about. Support for better gun control in increasing among American voters and a majority want stronger gun control. [1]

Frankly, most other western nations have stronger gun controls than the United States.

Self-defense

Some also argue that if everyone carried a gun with them at all times, murderers would be shot soon after they start shooting, and gun rights prevent crime. On the other hand, people do not always think rationally. Think of every time someone is drunk, using drugs, or is extremely angry. Now imagine if they have a gun while this is happening. Shooters may be stopped more quickly, but there will be far more people who engage in shootings. And even if a gunman is shot soon after he starts shooting, one or more people are likely to be killed before the gunman is stopped. All and all, gun rights don't prevent crime.

In some cases, people carrying guns with them would prevent crime. This is the case when people commit mass shootings, such as Anders Behring Breivik. However, if a murderer is only trying to kill one person, this will not work. The murderer will try to kill people in situations where there are no other witnesses, and the person who will be killed is unaware of their fate.

Even if guns were successfully taken away from everyone, that would still not prevent murders. It may prevent mass murders, like what Breivik did, but it would not prevent single murders. Theoretically, anything could be used as a weapon. If someone wants to murder someone else, they will use knives, axes, and other items rather than guns.

It is sometimes argued that gun rights will stop robbers from robbing one's house. However, adequate robbers try to rob houses when no one is home. Robbers don't rob houses when someone is clearly at home. If the robbers know they are going into a house where people are present, they are likely to be armed, the robbers will bring guns with them.

Sometimes, gun ownership supporters refer to Switzerland as an example of a nation with a high rate of gun ownership and a low crime rate, implying that gun ownership has little relation to the crime rate. What they often miss is that Switzerland actually controls gun ownership quite strictly: instead of an army, they rely on the conscript-based militia, members of which have to pass mandatory training and follow strict rules -- which contributes to a more responsible gun culture[2].

Suicides

Using a firearm is the most common method of committing suicide. People who try to take their own lives with guns sometimes survive with permanent brain damage or other injuries/disfigurement. [3]

Most suicides happen because the victim is so desperate and unhappy that he/she can't think clearly and can't find ways out of whatever causes the unhappiness. There are rare situations when suicide is reasonable, for example when a person is terminally ill. Despite this, most people who survive suicide attempts afterward find solutions to their problems or ways of living with their problems. Most people who survive suicide attempts are afterward glad to be alive. If suicide is too easy this causes unnecessary deaths among people whose lives could become worth living again.

Domestic Violence

Guns also increase the occurrence of domestic violence.  The risk of a woman being murdered by her husband or other intimate partner increases more than seven-fold if there is a gun in the house. [4]

Studies have shown that even when people buy guns to use on burglars/crazy murderers who invade people's houses, the guns are more often fired by accident or in trivial arguments.[5].

Logistics and Outrage

If the 2nd Amendment were repealed, there would be outrage across the country. Guns are a treasured item for many who want to keep their guns even when children are killed because guns are too easily available. [6] Because of this, the odds of a 2nd amendment repeal are extremely unlikely.

Black markets

There is also the possibility that a black market will emerge, like what has happened with alcohol during the prohibition era and illegal drugs today, as well as other goods in the Soviet Union. However, guns do not have the addictive potential that many illegal drugs have, and are less useful than the aforementioned items. Because of this, guns are less likely to cause a black market than drugs and other items. A black market is still a distinct possibility, though.

Many liberals realize that a profitable black market could be created if guns were completely banned. Some liberals want to set intermediate controls used in many industrialized countries. Even if strict gun control was enacted in every country, that still would not prevent people from illegally manufacturing firearms.

There are liberals who want guns to be completely banned, but the ultimate goal of liberals is not to criminalize responsible gun owners; it is to prevent those who are clearly unstable and have a questionable past from stocking up on arsenals and using them.

Conservative silliness

Conservatives like to claim that gun control will lead to the rise of Nazis in America. In truth, the Nazis softened the gun laws enacted by the Weimar Republic. These included lowering the age from 20 to 18, raising the permit lengths from one year to three years, and exempting party members.

Others shallowly argue that because cars and bathtubs are dangerous, they should be banned if guns are too. However, they ignore that we need a license to drive and that bathtubs weren't designed to kill people. These same conservatives also claim that all liberals want to ban guns period, instead of just setting limits on these lethal things, as we do with cars, alcohol and trans fat. This is not true.

See Strawman.

See also

References

  1. Majority of Americans live in fear of mass shootings and support regulations to prevent them
  2. "What America can learn from Switzerland..."
  3. Attempted Suicide Horrors
  4. http://www.womenandpolicing.org/gunban.asp
  5. http://www.minnpost.com/second-opinion/2012/12/health-risk-having-gun-home
  6. Guns and the Courtier’s Reply

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