C: When a crime of gun violence occurs (U.S), who is to blame? Gun or shooter? What about the individual that sold the gun, in other words, do guns kill people? Or do people kill people?
Typically, when these atrocities occur, there is a need for greater reform. However, after an initial burst of new proposals for gun legislation, many of these ideas are either rejected or swept under the rug. Life goes on, and legislation remains as is. Therefore, when it comes to gun laws in the U.S there is a constant push and pull about changing what is currently in place versus sticking to the status quo.
I feel like one of the main reasons for this boil down to a simple matter of opinion on the extent of control and safety. On one side, people see the possession of a firearm as a potential for danger. A weapon is a weapon, and anyone has the potential to pick it up and pull the trigger. On the other side, many people believe that it is alright to own the gun because it is an asset in cases of security (whether national or personal).
For instance, what is to be done in the case of a mass shooting? If one has both the means and agency to stop something, shouldn’t they?
When discussing gun control, Andrew Lawton of Global News shares these sentiments in his opinion piece.
On the heels of the Sutherland Springs Baptist church shooting in November 2017, Lawton argues that it was not gun control that stopped the assailant, it was in fact the rights to own a firearm that saved the day.
According to this article, the assailant, 26-year-old Devin Patrick, took the lives of 26 worshippers at the church with an unregistered AR- 556. Patrick was eventually stopped by an instructor from the NRA with an AR-15.
The rest of the article details Andrew Lawton’s dismissal of the Liberal view of gun control, he states that
“No amount of gun control can stop a killer’s motivation to find [the] tools to kill, but it does disarm those prepared to stop [the] killers”
Lawton maintains the general stance that there are more complexities to gun ownership, and that registered gun usage is what saved the day.
However, that is his opinion. Yes, in this case having the rights to a firearm halted an atrocity. However, how can we be so sure that everyone that gets this privilege exercises this properly? Also, if gun registration is such a surefire thing, how did Patrick gain access to one in the first place?
The question I pose is simple: Is stricter gun control truly necessary, or is possession of a firearm truly a necessary evil?
Join me on this episode of “A Matter of Opinion” Where I will attempt to answer this through a discussion of lapses in gun legislation, and a look at the dichotomy between gun and shooter.