I know, I know, not another gun control thread.
I pushed myself a bit tonight and hammered out an initial draft for a rebuttal on gun control I'm writing for my school newspaper. I'll work on it
more tomorrow, adding more points, shortening it and editing things. Let me know what you think and give me any suggestions on it.
In a perfect world, crime wouldn’t exist. Crazed killers strung out on psychological medication wouldn’t get access to guns, and they especially
wouldn’t be able to burst into a defenseless area and start harming innocent people. But in the closest thing to a perfect world we currently have
available, people would be able to defend themselves against the threat of violence.
One major thing that I have noticed in the recent mass shootings, despite having to figure it out myself instead of finding it out from the national
news, is that all of them happened in areas where guns aren’t allowed. It’s a rather simple process of elimination: If one would be trying to get
the highest body count and outdo the previous shooter, since it is a game to them, would he or she go to the place where no guns were allowed, or the
place where people’s best defense is to duck and hide, maybe hope they can make it to an exit when the psycho was distracted?
Another thing that these shootings have in common: All of them have stopped once someone with a gun showed up. One example of this happened just two
days after the tragedy at Newtown. On Sunday, December 16, Jesus Garcia in San Antonio, Texas, shot at his recently ex-girlfriend and patrons at her
restaurant. He then chased them toward a movie theatre, possibly with motives like James Holmes in mind, when things took an unexpected turn for him:
an off duty sheriff’s deputy, Sgt. Lisa Castellano, pulled out a gun, ending his attempted rampage, with two innocents non-critically wounded Garcia
sent to the hospital. Other people that have stopped rampages after fearing people with guns coming were Adam Lanza in Newtown, who killed himself
when he heard police sirens outside; James Holmes in Aurora, CO, surrendered when he saw police approach outside; Jacob Tyler Roberts, the shooter at
the Clackamas Mall in Portland, Oregon, ran off and shot himself when he noticed a concealed carrier had pulled a gun.
And it is with these examples that I am proposing one of the more radical things to have been suggested in this newspaper: To allow teachers to carry
concealed guns, should they have a concealed carry license, additional training and use ammo that has the least risks for collateral damage.
I want to first make it clear that I am not advocating every teacher to carry a gun. As a gun owner, I have seen people that have no business owning
one, but that shouldn’t stop other people from defending themselves or others. While this idea may seem radical at first, I find it a lot more sane
then posting a sign outside saying “no guns allowed”, with only one person inside who would stand a chance at enforcing it. This seems to be
another simple option to me: Allow a teacher to defend his or her classroom, should a gunman burst in, or have that teacher throw him or herself in
the way and allow the students to live just a few seconds longer?
This has been proven to work in Israel, where teachers, though not required to carry, are allowed and encouraged to should they be a veteran. Since
then, not one student has been harmed in Israel by a gunman on school grounds. Arguments against this method include claims that kids may get the
teacher’s guns or that the teacher may shoot a student in a fit of rage. Since Utah allowed teachers to carry concealed in 2001, not a single one of
those types of incidents has occurred.
But here we get to the elephant in the room in gun control arguments: Why does anyone need an assault weapon? While the answer may seem even more
radical that my proposition at first, there needs to be background, basic firearms knowledge as well as historical context put before this answer.
110 years ago, the Office of the Director of Civilian Marksmanship (DCM) was set up by Congress. Its purpose was to train Americans, especially youth,
to transition from the previously popular lever action rifle to the new bolt action rifles being used by the military. The training was done through
competitions to encourage marksmanship. This was done to ensure that enlistees in the military would have an easier time using the “military style
assault weapons” of that era. Not only were these owned by civilians, but the government strongly encouraged it!
Today, it still exists as the Civilian Marksmanship Program (CMP), with competition shooters, including me, using the AR-15 platform to shoot targets
at up to 600 yards across the nation. The biggest event of the year is CMP Week at Camp Perry, Ohio. In the scorching hot days of late July, two
thousand people lay out in sweatshirts beneath coats in the hopes of taking home a trophy. And surprisingly, there has never been a mass shooting at
anything besides paper targets.
According to the FBI’s crime statistics of 2006, rifles of any type, which includes weapons like hunting rifles, were used in only 438 murders
compared to hammers, which were used in 638. If banning hammers saves just one life, it’s worth it.
The Clinton Era Assault Weapon Ban did nothing. All it did was ban cosmetic features that made it slightly less comfortable for people to shoot, but
it didn’t make any gun less deadly. The collapsible buttstocks in the bill? All they do is make a gun fit into someone’s shoulder better. Pistol
grips? A tighter grip when firing.
And here is the clincher: Those “high capacity magazines” that are over 10 rounds can be swapped out in less than 3 seconds by a novice. Most
actual “gun nuts” can swap them out in about 1 second or less. Considering the average police response time is 5-10 minutes, one to three seconds
isn’t going to make a difference.
What isn’t mentioned in the gun control debates is just how easy it is to convert a gun that meets all the specifications for what would be an
assault weapon into something that would be deemed perfectly legal. Buttstocks can be replaced in 10 minutes or less. Pistol grips can be removed in
10 minutes or less. 10 round magazines can be bought, and it would be deemed acceptable. Nothing alters the rate of fire, all that happens is a bit
more of an inconvenience for a recreational shooter.
edit on 17-2-2013 by BobSwagger because: (no reason given)