Obama’s Gun Control
When you find a door has closed on your plans, continue on until you find one that’s open. It looks like Obama is following that advice. His plans for stricter gun control failed this year with his attempt to instate universal background checks on gun sales among other measures. However, that has not stopped him from looking for other ways to tighten the reins on gun control in America.
Lately, Obama has been calling up the U.K. and Australia as examples we should follow. In his speech after the tragedy at the Washington Navy Yard, Obama specifically referenced the actions taken by Australia and the U.K. in the matters of gun control and voiced his opinion that we should follow in their footsteps. Wayne LaPierre, Executive VP of the NRA, described in an article from November 15, 2013, the events that led to restricted gun rights in both the U.K. and Australia. Similar to the events in the U.S., the U.K. and Australia experienced tragedy brought on by the work of “lone, criminally insane killers.” However, the blame for the events was laid with the weapons they used and not with the people themselves. The killers in all of these instances were mentally unwell, but that fact continues to go unrecognized when looking at how to deal with the situation as a whole.
Currently banned firearms in Australia, according to LaPierre’s article, include semi-automatic rifles and semi-automatic shotguns along with pump shotguns. In the United Kingdom, many handguns are considered contraband as well as semi-automatic rifles. These are the types of restrictions that Obama is claiming America needs. He wants only to seize firearms from law abiding citizens by pushing this kind of gun control. However, it would only fix the symptoms, not the cause of the issue. It would be like constantly taking a pain killer for a head ache instead of finding out that poor vision is the root of the issue. Until the vision is corrected, the head aches will continue to return.
Even if gun control were the right answer, a sweeping seizure of every single firearm that fits in one category would be the absolute incorrect way of doing it. To punish a group of people for the actions of one, or few, is not only absurd, it’s juvenile. So, what is the right answer to a problem as large and important as this one? No one solution is going to be perfect. However, there are certainly better ones than overarching gun control. The U.K. and Australia are experiencing their own new set of issues since the inception of gun control. LaPierre’s article quotes News Limited Network which describes the gang violence Australia is facing and the struggle to keep guns out of the hands of criminals. Anecdotal evidence that gun control is not the way to go.
As we said, there is likely not a perfectly correct answer to the problem of gun related death in the U.S. What are your thoughts on Obama’s plan to follow in the U.K. and Australia’s footsteps? What would be a better solution? It will take the voices and ideas of many to bring about a reasonable solution to firearms related tragedies in the U.S.
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