Difficult Buy a Gun a U S Citizens Thesis
- Length: 9 pages
- Sources: 10
- Subject: Law - Constitutional Law
- Type: Thesis
- Paper: #94027361
Excerpt from Thesis :
difficult buy a gun, a U.S. citizens amendment 8-10 pages length, double spaced, font 12 times roman. MLA standards 8-12 sources, 12-20 citations.
Why the U.S. should not ban gun control
There is presently much controversy regarding the U.S. And its position concerning gun control. With recent events such as the Newtown, Connecticut (a mass shooting involving 29 persons shot dead) dominating media devices, the public has become agitated concerning gun laws. The fact that these legislations provided an environment where guns can be used by a series of controversial individuals triggered alarm and influenced the masses to lobby with regard to reform. Even though gun control is especially important when considering conditions in the contemporary U.S., it is also significant for the authorities to acknowledge that guns are an active part of society and that people who meet a series of requirements associated with gun ownership need to have access to weapons.
The Second Amendment
The Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution only contains twenty-seven words, but in spite of this it has managed to generate numerous controversies through the years. "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." These words are responsible for fueling a great deal of debates and for making people confused with regard to their rights and to how they need to protect them. Guns play an important role in U.S. history and from the time when colonists brought their muskets to war until today, many Americans felt securer as a result of having access to guns on a legal basis (Gerber 6).
The moment when the Second Amendment was ratified in 1791 marked the beginning of an era in which the government acknowledges that owning a gun is a liberty. The American Revolution enabled people to look at their role within the community from a different perspective. American citizens realized that the forces of Power were constantly obsessed with persecuting simple people and that they were responsible for protecting the realm of Liberty (Shalhope).
Individuals who were in charge had a tendency to express lesser interest in protecting and maintaining a republican society. As a consequence, it became obvious that the U.S. was only likely to remain a haven of Liberty as long as its people kept their virtue and their ability to protect themselves. The Second Amendment is, in its essence, an attempt by the people to highlight the free individual's rights, and, by this, to provide people with the "right to bear arms" (Shalhope).
Two main principles support people's interest in the "right to bear arms." Firstly, the masses fear the idea of standing armies, taking into account that the government can easily manipulate armies to attack the general public in situations when the latter puts across thinking that is in disagreement with values supported by influential bodies. Secondly, people are concerned about having a militia composed out of simple and honest citizens, as such as military force would certainly be devoted to defending the rights of the people rather than acting in accordance with orders provided by controversial individuals. The people basically fight for the people and it is thus essential for numerous individuals in the U.S. To express particular interest about having access to guns (Shalhope).
The revolutionary war provided individuals across the colonies with the feeling that it was essential for them to have the right to legally own guns. The Second Amendment was actually devised as a means to ensure that the government is unable to take away this right. It is thus very problematic to discuss this matter today, considering that the contemporary U.S. is divided between individuals who support the "right to bear arms" and people who emphasize that the right to own guns does not necessarily apply to individual citizens.
III. The District of Columbia v. Heller Case
The Second Amendment generated much controversy concerning people's right to own guns. While some believed that the amendment only referred to individuals needing to have access to owning guns as a means for them to be able to unite in a militia if it is required for them to do so, others felt that the amendment also relates to how an individual has the right to own a weapon with the purpose of self-defense.
If the Second Amendment were to solely refer to a collective right to bear arms, then individuals who want gun control to be stronger would be right in thinking that the legislation does not necessarily imply that all mentally-fit individuals should have the right to own guns. This serves to prove the divisiveness that this particular law can generate.
In situations when it is important for a militia to be available, particular states are reluctant to provide individuals with the right to own guns. The District of Columbia, for example, previously supported the idea that "it is a crime to carry an unregistered firearm, and the registration of handguns is prohibited" (DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA, ET AL., PETITIONERS v. DICK ANTHONY HELLER 1) and "requires residents to keep their lawfully owned firearms, such as registered long guns, "unloaded and dissembled or bound by a trigger lock or similar device" unless they are located in a place of business or are being used for lawful recreational activities." (DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA, ET AL., PETITIONERS v. DICK ANTHONY HELLER 1)
The District of Columbia v. Heller Case made it possible for lawmen and for the masses to realize that the Second Amendment was not as clear as they previously believed it to be. Dick Heller is a special police officer in the District of Columbia and he has the right to carry a gun while on police duty. The fact that he lived in what he related to as a diverse environment enabled Heller to want to get actively involved in trying to provide people with the right to own guns. "People who work in downtown DC or live west of Rock Creek Park exist in a world mostly without guns. But residents of tough neighborhoods on the city's east side hear gunshots as often as the chirping of birds. All but a few gun murders last year took place east of Rock Creek Park." (Jaffe)
Taking into account the conditions that Heller lived in, it seems perfectly normal that he wanted to raise public awareness concerning the actual purpose of the Second Amendment. While the legislation influenced many to believe that there was nothing special about the right to own guns up until Heller's decision to rise against the government, the reality was that the Second Amendment had very little effect in certain areas. One of Heller's attorneys anecdotally emphasized that the Second Amendment was rather similar to the Loch Ness monster -- even with the fact some reported seeing it, a great deal of individuals and lawmen in particular tended to consider that it did not exist (Gould).
The District of Columbia v. Heller case certainly made it possible for people to understand that conditions were critical when considering the Second Amendment and the degree to which it provided people with the right to protect themselves. The fact that Heller won further contributed to making it possible for individuals in the D.C. In particular to be able to protect themselves, especially when considering that there are a series of dangerous neighborhoods in the area. Moreover, the case also influenced people in other states to acknowledge that the authorities were not very supportive when considering their right to own guns.
IV. The Right of the People
The right to own guns is much more important than someone might be inclined to believe and the fact that "the right of the people" phrase is only used in the Constitution and the Bill of Rights three times emphasizes the significance of this right. "All three of these instances unambiguously refer to individual rights, not "collective" rights, or rights that may be exercised only through participation in some corporate body." (DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA, ET AL., PETITIONERS v. DICK ANTHONY HELLER 5)
Interpreting the Second Amendment as only being meant to protect the right of able-bodied men to hold guns with the purpose of getting actively involved in a militia when the time comes is certainly wrong. Many promote the belief that the right to bear arms only referred to individuals in the 18th century and that this particular right was intended to have them prepared for a situation involving the authorities attempting to persecute them. However, similar to other amendments, the Second Amendment refers to American individuals in general, regardless of the time when they were born or of whether or not they are going to be part of a community serving as a militia. In addition to having to protect the state in critical situations, an individual also needs to be able to protect him or herself and in some cases the only way to do so…