Responsibility Gun Control Term Paper

Excerpt from Term Paper :

regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be in fringed. (Amendment II to the Constitution of the United States)

The preceding sentence has inspired a great deal of controversy over the years. Gun control is a heated topic in both American politics and in civil discourse throughout the nation. The issue has had a profound effect on lobbyists and on the general public. Issues revolving around gun control and the constitutionality of both new and old laws constantly see media attention. Every time there is a school shooting or a justifiable homicide, large numbers of advocates for gun control and opponents against the issue arise. Indeed, the politics of gun control and the rights of gun ownership inspire heated and emotional debates throughout the nation.

The concept of gun control is ultimately flawed. The vast majority of those who use weapons in violent offenses have not attained them through legal means. In other words, it is common for stolen guns to be used for criminal acts. The result is that one's own personal responsibility with firearms is far more important than gun control legislation. The reality is that to be a responsible gun owner, one must be aware that he or she owns a weapon. A gun is not a toy, nor something that should be glorified as is common in movies. Guns must be protected from larceny and from misuse. To own a gun is to be responsible for the weapon and one's own actions with said weapon.

Greg Claus contends that to own a gun one must be responsible for the use of the weapon. In his article, "With Gun Ownership Comes Great Responsibility," he writes of an incident wherein an intoxicated man attempted to enter a house that was not his own. The home owner shot and killed the man as he entered his house. This particular home owner was not faced with a threat to his life, but he shot the man anyway. Claus does not attack the home owner for having a gun, but instead criticizes him for his rash and somewhat unprovoked violence. "The problem," Claus writes. "Is with how coarsely we treat the sanctity of human life." He continues to talk about the possible implications to gun control litigation, but that is not the focus of the article. The focus is responsibility. He finishes his assessment of the situation by writing, "civilized society cannot now nor ever allow fear alone to be justification for killing another person."

Claus's article is concise and well written. He took an issue - the mistaken shooting of a drunk man - and evaluated the issue from a pro-gun perspective. He clearly relates the story to his intended audience and then begins to explore issues of responsibility in gun ownership as filtered through the incident described. Certainly Claus makes a number of assumptions about the incident or perhaps he just did not include his source material. He assumes that there was no violence preceding the shooting and he assumes that the shooter used his weapon without warning the intruder and without provocation. It appears Claus has a good understanding of human nature and one's need to react in light of fear so his assumptions are not that far out. Indeed,…

Sources Used in Document:

Works Cited

1) North, Gary. "Gun Ownership in Iraq." Lew Rockwell. 7 March 2003.


Claus, Greg. "With Gun Ownership Comes Great Responsibility." The Press Republican. 16 June 2002.

Ashcroft, John. "Defense of the Second Amendment." United States Senate Republican Policy Committee. 23 September 1998.

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