BY Jacob Multer | Guest Columnist |
Earlier this year, the Statesman ran a story about America’s gun issue. This is why I, and the College Democrats, have refrained from writing an editorial in this paper about the same topic. However, after I held a moment of silence before our meeting last Thursday for the fourth time this year, it became clear we need to have this talk again.
San Bernadino is just the latest attack in the United States after a year filled with senseless, disgusting violence. We’ve heard a lot of arguments surrounding legislation and what can be done to curb this problem. And disturbingly, there are still people who say we shouldn’t do anything. That is what this article is going to be about: why we have to demand that something be done to stop this.
I won’t argue about what should be done for now because there are still some people who aren’t convinced yet that we need to do something in the first place. If you are one of those people, I now speak to you directly. There is not an argument you can make that rightfully and morally defends the idea that your guns are worth more than the lives of innocent people. That is what all of these arguments against gun control boil down to, and I’ll prove that none of the arguments that are being made hold any merit.
The argument that I hear most often is that guns don’t kill people. Except guns are an aid to people that wish to kill. Why do you think they’re the weapon of choice for most mass attacks? They’re easy to obtain and easy to use. This point is usually followed with the argument that criminals are going to commit crimes no matter what. But does that mean we should immediately stop trying to lessen their ability to commit said crimes? Of course not.
That’s why we have laws and prisons: to stop and deter criminals. If we can make it harder for mass murderers to commit terroristic attacks, we can assume the same logic should apply. Here is the hypocritical part of that argument: if you believe people are the problem, not guns, then you should believe that the U.S. should fund healthcare, at least for people who are mentally unstable. But many don’t. This cements the idea that many don’t believe that people are the only problem but they only care about whether they can still have their guns.
The next argument is, plainly, the Second Amendment. However, keep in mind that the Constitution was written back when we had muskets. The Founding Fathers probably weren’t thinking of semi-automatic assault rifles when they wrote that Amendment. There is no situation in which a normal citizen needs an automatic or semi-automatic assault rifle.
There are those that will say we need those weapons in case the government becomes tyrannical and we need to fight back.
Except the government has, you know, the United States Army. This includes, but is not limited to, drones and tanks. Word of advice for anybody thinking of taking on the U.S. army: you won’t win. That’s why we have a governmental system made of checks and balances, so that one branch doesn’t have too much power.
There is no argument to justify these killings. At the absolute least we need to have a conversation about this and so many are refusing to do even that. We can’t quit fighting this. There are too many innocent lives at stake for us to give up. If we do, these attacks won’t stop.