A day doesn’t go by that the debate of guns doesn’t somehow come up in conversation. I live close to Chicago where it seems like there are multiple shootings daily. It has gotten to the point where it doesn’t even raise an eyebrow anymore. That statement saddens me dramatically. Even if that person is a gang member, it’s still another human being getting shot. Somebody lost a child, a brother, a dad, a cousin, a friend. That should bother us but it sure does seem that we have gotten immune to it.
I never considered myself a gun person. For the longest time, I really had no opinion on the gun control or the concealed carry laws. I have to admit that the amount of mass shootings lately is concerning enough for me to now have an opinion on the matter. I hesitate to give it at times because the issue is such a hot button for people and most people involved in this issue are very passionate for one side or the other.
Criminals do not obey laws, such the term “criminal”. Let’s look at the DUI laws. They keep lowering the legal drinking limit, which no doubt has increased convictions of DUI’s. So now the guy that may have had 2 beers on his way home after work and been fine to drive, is now facing a DUI conviction. Meanwhile, the people that are getting in the accidents aren’t the slightest bit concerned about what the legal limit is. They are going to do whatever they want anyways. Perhaps tougher penalties for those people is the answer.
Making more laws about guns seems to be the biggest false sense of security there is. It doesn’t seem like the law-abiding people are doing the shootings anyways. The only thing more laws would do is punish the people that are actually following the already established laws. I’m pretty sure gang members aren’t following the established waiting period for purchasing a gun or filling out the paperwork for a FOID card. Chicago and Washington D.C. have some of the most restrictive gun laws in the nation yet violent crime rates in both cities were the highest in the nation for several years.
This is a mental health issue, not a legal one. How many of these shootings were there warning signs about the shooter before hand. Lets take the Newton school shooting for example. As the husband to a schoolteacher and the father of 4, this hit really close to home for me. My first reaction when hearing about this was “If this doesn’t get a conversation about gun control going, then what will?” but after further reflection about it, what is there to do? This guy murdered his mom, broke into a locked gun safe, and then went on a shooting spree. Sounds more like a failure of our mental health system then a gun control issue.
I actually think concealed carry is a good idea. Illinois is one of the few remaining states, if not the last one, that does not have this law. I think people fear that it would become like the wild west with shootouts in Daley Plaza. This law has been proven to be effective in other states and crime has gone down where it is available. I still don’t think that I would carry a gun but that is my choice to make. I am completely fine with others having a gun on them though. They might actually save me or my family from a criminal being the only one with a gun.
The laws that are already established for guns are fine. You can’t buy a gun at a gun show without having a background check done and a waiting period. Want to do something productive? Make the penalties more severe if a crime is committed with a gun. Make it even more severe if the crime was committed with an illegal gun.
We don’t need more laws. Guns aren’t my thing but I support people that want to have one legally. I don’t smoke cigarettes either but I support those that choose that habit. The laws are in place where I don’t have to breathe their second hand smoke so if they want to light up, that’s fine.
Without addressing the mental health issues in this country, and looking at the social economic status of the gang members doing the shootings, making more laws about guns is nothing but a waste of time.
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