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Jan. 21, 2013
Christy Walker | Cartoonist

Action needed to curb gun violence

ronniesia»Ronniesia Reed

–rreed24@my.apsu.edu

More and more tragedies due to gun violence are happening each day.

Whether people are being killed or injured, innocent people all around the nation are being affected by the bad decisions of gunmen. It is now our responsibility as citizens to stop this from continuing to happen.

Gun control has become a hot topic recently due to incidents like the Sandy Hook massacre. As many already know, on Dec. 14, 2012, 20 elementary students and six teachers were fatally shot in Newtown, Conn. by Adam Lanza, who then killed himself.

After hearing stories about what happened at Sandy Hook, it is clear many parents and family members of children are concerned about what could potentially happen to their loved ones. President Obama has come up with some ways to prevent situations like these from happening again.

According to The Huffington Post, the President’s proposal for better gun control laws is broken down into four parts. These include law enforcement measures, limiting the availability of dangerous firearms and ammunition, improved school safety and mental health treatment.

Jan. 21, 2013
Christy Walker | Cartoonist

These would be addressed by requiring criminal background checks for all gun sales, reinstating the assault weapons ban, restoring a 10-round limit on ammunition magazines, eliminating armor-piercing bullets, providing mental health services in schools, allocating funds to hire more police officers and instituting a federal gun trafficking statute, among other policies.

These are all great steps towards making our country a safer place to live. However, our public schools need to be safer. Teachers should be allowed to carry guns, after being trained on knowing when and how to use their guns.

Although the President has made his own proposal for laws on gun control, some states are making some of their own decisions on gun restrictions. In 2008, Harrold, Texas decided to give teachers the right to carry concealed weapons.

“Country people are take-care-of-yourself people. They are not under the illusion that the police are there to protect them,” David Thweatt, the schools superintendent told The New York Times. This law was put in place to give police officers back up, and under the condition that teachers were privately trained.

Imagine how the Sandy Hook tragedy might have turned out if the teachers were armed. Since the incident, many states — including Tennessee, Missouri and Nebraska — have begun to consider allowing teachers to carry guns.

Although some states feel it will be helpful to give teachers guns, other states have put more emphasis on tightening gun restrictions. According to ABC News, New York has passed a bill titled The New York Safe Act, which will require background checks for ammunition and gun buyers, even in private sales, imposes tougher penalties for illegal gun use, a one-state check on all firearms purchases and programs to cut gun violence in high-crime neighborhoods.

“It’s unfortunate that it took those tragedies to get us to this point, but let’s at least learn from what’s happened,” said New York Governor Andrew Cuomo. “Let’s at least be able to say to people, yes, we went through terrible situations, but we saw, we learned, we responded, and we acted, and we are doing something about it. We are not victims.”

We are not victims, we need to take a stand against unnecessary violence and the loss of innocent people.

About Ronniesia Reed, Staff Writer

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One comment

  1. Your piece is so full of misinformation and conjecture, it is hard to pick a place to start. First, more violence is NOT happening. Statistics show it is down. Second, a RESPONSIBLE citizen knows you can’t STOP a person from doing bad, only reduce their chances of success. Gun control has only become a hot topic because progressives want to misdirect the problem onto guns. The issue should target mentally illness, which is the commone element. Only because Lanza is dead is the subject on guns, because he can’t be questioned about his acts has the target been switched.

    As to the praise you desire to give this failing president for his misguided suggestions, your bias is apparant. He and the other progressives choose to attack our Constitutional rights instead of the real problem, mental sickness/illenss. People who do these acts are already breaking several laws. Putting one more on the books won’t help. Reducing magazine size (they are NOT clips) means attackers will just carry more. Restricting assault weapons means they will just carry other weapons (Lanza also had pistols and boobytrapped his apartment). Putting more security in schools will only reduce response time IF they are not the first target of the attacker, and security is meant to SUBDUE, not stop. If you put arms in teachers’ hands, they must have the fortitude to use it if the emergency arrises. Just giving them a gun and teaching them to shoot doesn’t make them effective. They have to be WILLING and ABLE to take a life when safety dictates.

    I could also go into correcting your reference to the (misinforming) Huffington Post. This paper is famous for blatient bias. The point is all of these steps have been tried, with poor success (look at Chicago). Government will not enforce the existing laws, so how will they enforce the new ones? The big picture here is Government passes laws to restrict law-abiders. Failing to enforce them on law breakers means they will enact more laws (only to apease the public). This process continues untill the rights of everyone are removed, and the law breakers STILL are breaking the law. And, given the U.S. is spending almost $1 TRILLION a year (about half the GDP) MORE than it brings in, tax rates would have to be near 50% just to keep up. Where are you going to raise the money to pay for these proposals? ‘Printing’ more brings inflation which is a tax on us all.

    Wake up to reality, don’t fall for the tactics of progressives to limit our freedoms, which serves only to enslave us. Truly responsible people in a free country are willing to stand up to a repressive government. This is why our Founding Fathers gave us a REPUBLIC and not a democracy, and it is our responsibility to know the difference.