Gun rights advocates, led by the National Rifle Association, form a powerful lobby that politicians fear to cross. For many of them, it is a core voting issue, a line they will not cross, which, as President Obama recently lamented, is less often true for those who want gun control.
These advocates have effectively deployed the argument that after mass shootings, when emotions run high – and interest in new restrictions spikes – is not the time to debate the issue.
Opponents of gun control often talk about President Obama wanting to take guns away from lawful owners, and although he has never proposed to do that, many gun owners continue to believe it.
The gun lobby has also become more unyielding in recent years. The N.R.A. has hardened its opposition to expanded background checks, for example, and after years in which the group gave subdued responses to mass shootings, after the Newtown, Connecticut school shooting, Wayne LaPierre, the N.R.A.’s executive vice president, famously declared that school employees should have been armed, because “The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun.”
Over the past generation, American politics have become more bitterly partisan, and regional divisions more rigid. As a result, gun control has become an increasingly partisan issue, with Republicans more uniformly opposed – at a time when Congress and most state houses are in Republican hands.
The result is that in recent years, states have gone in opposing directions. Responding in many cases to the same mass shootings, some have made their gun laws stricter (such as Oregon and Connecticut) while about the same number (including Arkansas and Georgia) have made theirs weaker.
In Congress and in more conservative and rural states, gun control tends to be a non-starter. Gun control advocates say politicians’ fear of the gun rights lobby is exaggerated, but even in swing states and some more liberal ones, that lobby has a reputation for punishing those who step out of line.
After Colorado enacted new gun controls, in 2013, gun rights groups succeeded in recalling two Democratic state senators who had voted for the measures, including the Senate leader. In 2014, they targeted two Democratic governors who had signed tougher gun restrictions into law, John Hickenlooper of Colorado and Dannel Malloy of Connecticut, but both were narrowly re-elected.
Another example of the gun lobby’s power came after Smith & Wesson broke with the rest of the gun industry in 2000, agreeing to several control measures to settle government lawsuits over gun violence. The N.R.A. led a boycott of Smith & Wesson, its sales plummeted, and rather than setting an example that other gun makers would follow, the company backed out of the deal.
Essay about America Needs More Gun Control Laws
1397 Words6 Pages
A shooting here; a shooting there; an every day occurrence heard in the newspapers and on the news channels on television. New media are reporting a shooting somewhere. Whether the shootings are accidental or intentional; they are happening across the United States. Nevertheless, in today’s society, gun violence is sparking debate and controversy on how to control gun violence. Throughout the country, thousands of laws and regulations have been created to aid in the control of guns. Through much study, the gun laws and regulations in place have very little effect on the number of gun related injuries and deaths. More needs to be done to establish an effective way to control gun violence.
Shootings in the…show more content…
Another solution is to redesign the background checks on every individual wanting to purchase a gun. Each state has their own law on this one and many are not very strict. By creating a national background checking system for everyone trying to purchase guns which would include a national mental health check; guns entering the hands of an individual mentally unstable could be prevented better. Thirdly, designing tougher sentencing laws could aid in lowering crimes involving guns. Totally removing guns would not be beneficial because the criminals are still going to find a way to have a gun in order to continue their criminal lifestyle. The key to finding the perfect solution is tough due to many loopholes and the effects it could have on everyone’s second amendment right. In looking at the three potential ways to control guns and violence; the perfect way to aid in controlling guns and the violence is to put in place a law that contains tougher sentences, more in depth background checks, a large database to account for every gun purchased or sold and require every gun owner to go through a course to teach gun safety and the laws that are in place.
The studies and research on gun control has opened up many ideas on how weak the current laws really are. Crime rates consist of high numbers. “Since 1982, there have been at least 62 mass shootings across the country, with the killings unfolding in 30 states from Massachusetts to Hawaii”