If we compare gun laws in the U.S. with other countries, we see that in the U.S. it’s not that hard to get a gun and carry it around in public. The government is not allowed to completely regulate guns because of the 2nd Amendment. However, the right is not unlimited. The U.S. Supreme Court has upheld some firearms restrictions, such as bans on concealed weapons and on the possession of certain types of weapons, as well as prohibitions against the sale of guns to certain categories of people. The Gun Control Act of 1968 prohibits individuals under eighteen years of age, convicted criminals, the mentally disabled, dishonorably discharged military personnel, and others from purchasing firearms. In 1993, the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act mandated background checks for all unlicensed individuals purchasing a firearm from a federally authorized dealer. In another way, they could make restrictive laws about guns. If the U.S. Government wants to low gun violence like other countries they have to pass restrictive gun laws in all states.
First, the U.S. can’t really ban all guns for several reasons. One of the reasons as I mentioned before is the 2nd Amendment. The 2nd Amendment says “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.” This made people confused because at the end it says “the right of the people to keep and bear Arms” this means that anyone can own a gun. But once we read it from the beginning it says “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State,” First, let’s explain a Militia. According to the Oxford dictionary a Militia is a group of people who are not professional soldiers but who have had military training and can act as an army. This means that only a Militia can own guns. So the 2nd Amendment doesn’t make clear to own guns. Now during this era, there is no Milita so the constitution is sticking to the right of the people to keep and bear Arms. The other reason is that the cultural and the mindset of Americans for loving guns and keeping guns to protect themselves from anything.
According to Small Arms Survey, there are 120.5 guns per 100 people in the United States. That makes it number one before Yemen (52.8 guns per 100 people). These numbers make Americans nearly own half (46%) of the estimated 857 million civilian-owned guns worldwide. Americans own the most guns per person in the world, about four in 10 saying they either own a gun or live in a home with guns, according to a 2017 Pew Center study. Forty-eight percent of Americans said they grew up in a house with guns. Seventy-two percent of Americans said they have shot a gun. According to the survey, a majority (66 percent) of US gun owners own multiple firearms, with nearly three-quarters of gun owners saying they couldn’t imagine not owning one.
Almost half of the guns around the world are owned by Americans, therefore there are lots of guns in this country, which means they will be lots of Gun violence. Let me first talk about Mass shootings. The FBI identifies mass shootings as four or more people killed or injured in a single location. According to Giffords.org, there is an average of one mass shooting every day. In 2018, student’s risk of dying in a school shooting reached the highest level in at least 25 years. 60% of teens were scared that they will be a school shooting in their school. All that but mass shootings still comprise a small fraction of all gun violence, with estimates showing that such violence constitutes less than 1% of all gun deaths.
According to GunArchive.org, there are 100 Americans die every day. That number is from gun suicide, homicide, law enforcement shooting, unintentional shooting, and undetermined. I’ll focus on gun suicide and, homicide more. The reason for that is because gun suicides are actually higher than gun homicide.
Talking about gun homicide first because the numbers are lower than gun suicide which was a shock to me because I actually thought it’s the other way around. The reason why there is still high numbers of gun homicide is that they are able to access a gun. According to everytownreserch.org, there is an average of 12,830 dies because of homicide. According to the same website, Black Americans represent the majority of gun homicide victims. In fact, Black Americans are 10 times more likely than white Americans to die by gun homicide.
Gun suicide, that its numbers have shocked me. According to everytownreserch.org almost 2 of 3 gun death is by gun Suicide. Access to a gun increase the number of people to suicide. According to a video by Vox titled the state of gun violence, when a person commits suicide with anything other than a gun, the majority of them survive. Guns make it impossible for them to have a second chance. According to everytownreserch.org there is an average of 22,274 people suicide yearly. This more than half of the people who die from gun violence in general. White men represent 74 percent of firearm suicide victims in America.
The law in the U.S. allows anyone to own a gun. All states have their own laws on how to hard is it and easy is it to get a gun. For example, Alaska, if you have a gun there you could walk with it anywhere like state park and even in a restaurant. Since Alaska has the weakest gun laws in the country they have the highest gun deaths. Compare this with California laws, Requires all gun sales to be processed through a licensed dealer, requiring a background check. Requires gun dealers to obtain a state license. Bans most assault weapons. And the gun death rate in Calfornia is low.
The public poll about more gun laws spikes after every mass shooting. According to a poll by NPR, Majorities of Americans support bans on high-capacity ammunition magazines and assault-style weapons, but there are breaks between the parties, men, and women, where people live and whether they own a gun. While Democrats and independents want Congress to pass them, Republicans do not. Men and women also divide, 72% of women are in favor of banning assault-style weapons, while 55% of men are against it. Americans say it’s more important to control gun violence (55% to 39%). The majority of Americans aren’t favored of guns yet, the gun laws are not strong.
Comparing the U.S. gun laws with other high-income countries we see that the U.S. laws are not that strong. Federal law provides the basis for firearm regulation in the United States, but states and cities can make further restrictions. Some states, like Idaho, Alaska, and Kansas, have passed various laws attempting to nullify federal gun legislation. As of 2019, there were no federal laws banning semiautomatic assault weapons, military-style .50 caliber rifles, handguns, or large-capacity magazines. There was a federal prohibition on assault weapons and large-capacity magazines between 1994 and 2004, but Congress allowed these restrictions to expire. In Canda, Firearms are divided into three classes: nonrestricted weapons, such as ordinary rifles and shotguns; restricted, such as handguns and semiautomatic rifles or shotguns; and prohibited, such as automatic weapons. It is illegal to own a fully automatic weapon unless it was registered before 1978. In Australia, The National Agreement on Firearms all but prohibited automatic and semiautomatic assault rifles, mandated licensing and registration, and instituted a temporary gun buyback program that took some 650,000 assault weapons (about one-sixth of the national stock) out of public circulation. Among other things, the law also required licensees to demonstrate a “genuine need” for a particular type of gun and take a firearm safety course. After another high-profile shooting, in Melbourne in 2002, Australia’s handgun laws were tightened as well. The U.K. introduced the Firearms (Amendment) Act, which expanded the list of banned weapons, including certain semiautomatic rifles, and increased registration requirements for other weapons. Gun control had rarely been much of a political issue in Norway—where gun laws are viewed as tough, but ownership rates are high. Norway includes requiring applicants to be at least eighteen years of age, specify a “valid reason” for gun ownership, and obtain a government license—are ineffective. “Those who are willing to break the laws against murder do not care about the regulation of firearms and will get a hold of weapons whether doing so is legal or not. In Japan, the only guns permitted are shotguns, air guns, guns with specific research or industrial purposes, or those used for competitions. However, before access to these specialty weapons is granted, one must obtain formal instruction and pass a battery of written, mental, and drug tests and a rigorous background check. Furthermore, owners must inform the authorities of how their weapons and ammunition are stored and provide their firearms for annual inspection. All these countries make it hard for people to get guns.