Political Perspectives: Enough is enough, gun control

Political perspectives is a column that focuses on providing different opinions on important political issues from UNCW students.

Genevieve Guenther

Political perspectives is a column that focuses on providing different opinions on important political issues from UNCW students.

Kristen Rodriguez, Contributing Writer

Editor’s Note: Kristen Rodriguez is a freshman at UNCW majoring in Political Science with a minor in International Relations. Kristen is a contributing writer for The Seahawk and writes many of the pieces featured in Political Perspectives. All opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the author. Kristen may be found on Twitter @kristen_rodd. All suggestions and inquires may be sent via email to [email protected]

The debate on gun control has been going on since the Constitutional Convention made the second amendment in 1791, but a lot of things have changed since then. The United States has 5% of the world’s population and 31% of the world’s mass shootings occur here. Between 1966 and 2012, there were 90 mass shootings that occurred.

A mass shooting is defined as a shooting that kills 4 or more people, not including gang violence or the deaths of multiple family members. People always blame the person who committed the act, who is 100% at fault for the tragedy they provoke, but how did they get there? Why do we live in a society where we are given the opportunity to harm one another?

People who oppose gun control say that guns are necessary for protection, but when you’re put into a situation like Orlando, Las Vegas, Sandy Hook, there is no way to anticipate those events, no preparation, no way to know you’ll need protection. How do you expect people in those situations to be prepared for something so unthinkable?

People accuse the left of wanting to revoke the second amendment, and while I’m sure there is an extremist out there who believes that is the only option, it is not what the majority believes. Most policy makers that are for gun control simply call for more extensive background checks, more thorough training on how to properly use the weapons and limitation on the types of weapons you can buy. Is that too much to ask for the chance to possibly save the lives of people all over the country?

Guns are not necessary to human survival and they are not a basic human right. Not being gunned down at a concert, a club or at a school should be a basic human right. Gun rights advocates argue that if gun ownership were made illegal, then only people who broke the law (i.e. criminals) would have access to guns, leaving law abiding citizens at a disadvantage. Now, one can admit this fear isn’t completely misguided, if guns were totally outlawed there is no doubt that black market gun sales would rise rapidly. The thing is that most people do not want a totally gun banishment, all they want is a restriction on who can buy guns, when, where and how. They also want the banning of weapons similar to the types used in the Las Vegas attack, which have no place in normal civilization.

If Las Vegas has shown anything, it’s that the gun issue has gone much too far. The gunman had 23 weapons, along with thousands of rounds of ammunition, at his disposal. This is the kind of behavior gun control activists wish to see change in: they want to see change in how people can buy guns and limits on how many they can buy. Imagine if someone had monitored the amount of weaponry the Las Vegas shooter bought. Would things have been different?