Gun control: Government leaders taking away your guns so they can control you.
Like most American citizens, you probably do not trust the American government. It is a well-known fact that our government is not only untrustworthy, but downright corrupt. Add to that the fact that our political leaders do not trust us any more than we trust them. This is why our government is so hell-bent on disarming us.
Many political leaders paint a pretty picture of what a wonderful country we could have if guns were outlawed. Crime rates would plummet, since so many violent crimes are committed at gunpoint. Get rid of the guns and get rid of the crime, right?
All our government wants to do is gradually grind away our rights until we have none left. The Second Amendment guarantees our right to bear arms, yet our government today does not feel we need that right anymore. The truth is, we need that right today mo re than ever. The police cannot be relied upon to protect us; we must protect ourselves.
But if guns are outlawed, what will we need to defend ourselves against?
I will answer this with a question. Who do you think is more likely to break the law: a law-abiding citizen or a habitual criminal? Hmmmmm. That's a tough one.
It doesn't matter to a criminal whether guns are legal or illegal. He can still get one on the street in 30 minutes or less. In fact, street guns are much more appealing to criminals, since that bothersome little issue of registration does not arise when a gun is purchased on the street. This means that the only people who would abide by gun control laws are law-abiding citizens, and I just don't see how this would cause any sort of a drop in the crime rate. In fact, gun control laws only succeed in incre asing the incidence of crime. Areas where gun control is low and gun ownership is high tend to have significantly lower crime rates.
According to the National Institute of Justice Wright-Rossi Report, despite gun control laws in Washington D.C., New York, Chicago and California, the incidence of violent crime was not reduced; it was increased.
According to the FBI's Uniform Crime Reports, the murder rate in Virginia, which has almost no gun control, is 8 per 100,000 in the population. However, in adjacent Washington, D.C., which has a long-standing ban on handguns, the murder rate is 79 per 100 ,000 in the population. What this shows is that if you have two populations in the same vicinity - one with gun control and the other without - the population that takes guns away from law-abiding citizens is going to have a murder rate roughly ten times that of the population without gun control.
The reason for this is simple: In a population where citizens are allowed to own handguns, criminals have to be careful who they victimize, since they have no way of knowing who might have a gun. In a population where handguns are illegal, all the citizen s are sitting ducks, just waiting to be victimized by punks who got their guns on the street.
The way to lower the crime rate is not by restricting law-abiding citizens, but by restricting the criminals. Our government's "catch and release" criminal justice system does nothing to restrict perpetrators, and it puts ordinary citizens at risk of bein g victimized by repeat offenders.
But what about those citizens who may not have enough common sense to be trusted with firearm ownership? Well, a program was implemented in California a few years back that deals with this problem: People could trade in their guns for tickets to sports ev ents. This can be summed up in a quote by my father, Paul Huff: "Anyone who would trade his guns for sports tickets is too stupid to own a gun." My father has been an active member of the NRA for decades, and is well-informed about guns and gun laws.
One problem the NRA has with gun control is the issue of assault weapons and whether citizens should be allowed to own them. Personally, I believe assault weapons are not firearms at all, but military equipment, like howitzers or flamethrowers. The milita ry may have reasons for mowing down large numbers of people with these weapons, but ordinary citizens do not. An ordinary citizen does, however, need a handgun to protect himself, his home and his family.
Paula Huff is a biology junior. Her column appears every other Friday.