How the Government Can Decrease Gun Violence
There should be more gun control laws to control gun violence. The debate on gun control in America has been up for deliberation for decades. Almost forty thousand people are killed each year due to homicidal, accidental, and suicidal use of guns (Politics 7). Despite the fact that America has approximately twenty thousand gun laws, there are still often occurring crime due to gun violence. To fix this problem, the government should enforce stricter background checks for all gun sales, increase the penalty on people who own unregistered guns or who buy guns illegally, limit the magazine sizes for all firearms, and ban all automatic weapons. The government shouldn’t enforce background checks for all gun sales. Under federal law background checks are not even required for private gun sales (Findlaw Private Gun Sale Law 1). If someone really wants to cause trouble with a gun, he/she will and there is no way of stopping it. There could be a normal good Samaritan guy that passed all the background checks, yet if he decided he wanted to harm someone with a gun, he could. Even if it was required for all guns sold privately to be background checked, it wouldn’t prevent all gun violence. Background checks are such a hassle.
People won’t want to wait days for a background check before they sell their guns. They would probably lose their sale. So as long as it is legal, people should have the right to buy guns from private sellers without the involvement of the government. Increasing the penalties on people who own guns, sell guns, or buy guns illegally won’t decrease gun violence. The penalty of owning an illegal gun is up to a five hundred dollar fine and possibly up to two years in prison (Congress.gov H.R.7). The penalty on buying a gun illegally also called straw purchase is a federal crime that has a maximum of ten years in jail and up to a two hundred and fifty thousand dollar fine (Congress.gov H.R.7). For selling illegal guns, the penalty is a maximum of 5 years in jail with up to a two hundred and fifty thousand dollar fine (Congress.gov H.R.7). If the penalty on illegal gun owning, buying, and selling is increased, it won’t decrease gun violence, in fact it could possibly increase the gun violence because people will just keep on buying and selling illegal guns more carefully. Limiting magazine sizes probably won’t make a difference in decreasing gun control. Just because a magazine size is decreased, doesn’t mean the gun will not fire bullets. Nothing stops someone from having multiple magazines for their guns nearby, so they can reload quickly.
While it might slow down a gunman if he is constantly reloading, the gunman probably would buy an illegal extended magazine to avoid that problem. What if the gunman attacked another person and that person was law abiding who only had a magazine with ten rounds while the gunman had double or even triple that? It wouldn’t go well for the law-abiding citizen. So even if we did manage to create and enforce a law like that, criminals would find a way around the magazine limitation which would end up effecting the people who choose to follow the law. Banning automatic weapons will not decrease gun violence. Fully automatic guns are already banned in the United States (Congress.gov H.R.4332). People have the right to defend themselves, and in a certain situation they might need an automatic gun. If there was a law that banned all automatic guns, it would most likely make a lot of people angry and increase the number of illegal guns sold. Manufacturers of automatic guns would lose a lot of money and it would cost people tons of jobs if those guns were banned. Therefore, automatic guns should not be banned. Here are the reasons why the government should enforce background checks on all gun sales. With background checks, the government can tell whether a person has been caught in the past doing something illegal or is currently avoiding the law. Background checks are crucial in the safety of gun control because they can prevent a person from buying a weapon that could possibly harm one or more persons. That is why they should be enforced in every sale not only commercial but private too.
People now can avoid background checks by privately buying a gun from an unsuspecting person or buying guns illegally. If the government created a law that did make background checks mandatory, it would help the people selling the guns because they would know that the people buying from them were not currently criminals. Even though the background checks would be a bit time consuming for the buyer and seller, it would be worth it because that knowledge could save people’s lives. The reasons why the government should increase the penalty on people who own guns, sell guns, or buy guns illegally are as follows: The penalty on owning an illegal gun is only up to five hundred dollars. That amount should be increased substantially to further deter people from buying and keeping illegal guns. The maximum of two years in jail for owning an illegal gun is fine. The maximum fines and jail time with straw purchases and selling illegal fines should be raised even higher. This would set an example to those who ever thought about selling or purchasing illegal guns that unlawful gun distribution is a very serious matter. The government should limit magazine sizes on all firearms. People don’t need big magazines for their firearms. Huge magazines for guns are unnecessary to normal civilians, but very good for terrorists who plan on committing crimes. Having a shorter magazine can limit the number of bullets a gunman can fire before reloading which could possibly end up saving people’s lives.
The government should ban all automatic weapons. Fully automatic guns are illegal, but it is still legal to own a semi-automatic or burst fire gun. There are not many good reasons people should have automatic weapons. Maybe if they are a competitive marksman, or if the United States was ever invaded and the people had to defend themselves, but what are the odds of that happening? Even hunters don’t use automatic weapons very often. They mostly use shotguns, scoped rifles, compound bows, and crossbows all of which are for the most part not automatic. People would probably get angry if all automatic weapons were outlawed, but it could very well make people safer since no one could legally own an automatic weapon. As for the manufacturer, they might lose some money, but it shouldn’t matter to them if they are helping with public safety. Gun violence is and will probably always be an ongoing problem. Mass gun violence shootings have become more and more frequent in the past few years. To fix this problem, there should be more gun control laws to try to reduce gun violence as much as possible.