The conservative side of gun ownership

Jesse McCauley

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Gun control is yet another controversial topic that divides our country into two halves. Some argue for stricter gun laws, and some will argue for more lee way with guns.

Typically, democrats are the ones lofting for harsher gun laws, while republicans tend to believe that government should not have as much control over gun ownership.

Like all issues, gun control is not black and white. There are several arguments from both sides, as well as a range of beliefs.

Even within each party, the degree of each argument varies from person to person. Nevertheless, here are some of the arguments that pro-gun advocates often espouse:

“The Second Amendment protects my right to bear arms.” This opinion may be the most popular. The US Constitution states, “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” as part of the Second Amendment.

Many conservatives also view the Constitution as dead, meaning that the words of the Constitution are set in stone.

They see guns as a constitutional right, and therefore dislike the idea of the government interfering with their right.

The Second Amendment also hints at another key argument: security. To some, more guns mean more protection.

According to the National Rifle Association (NRA), guns are used for self defense 2.5 million times a year.

The Executive Vice President of the NRA, Wayne LaPierre, stated, “The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun.”

So, gun activists will argue for their right to self defense, and they believe guns are a key part of that.

One of the major points of controversy is what type of guns one should be allowed to own.

While some are concerned with the use of assault weapons, gun advocates argue that this infringes on their ability to hunt and participate in other recreational uses.

An assault weapon is “a semi-automatic firearm with the ability to accept a detachable magazine and two or more of the following: a folding or telescoping stock.” Within the Republican Party, the view of which type of guns should be allowed also varies.

Another area of concern is who should be allowed to buy and own guns.

Those with a criminal record are restrained from buying guns. Gun laws proposed by the democratic side often include extensive background checks, past the criminal component. Republicans often argue that this is an invasion of privacy.

Background checks would mean that the government would follow name, address, medical history, etc.

This ties back to the Second Amendment. Conservatives may say that no matter what type of history one may have, it is unconstitutional to take away their right to own a gun.

But some conservatives do approve of more advanced background checks.

Acknowledging that the government itself carry firearms through the police force and military, a restriction on guns worries conservatives because they believe that gives too much power to the government.

“If you look at why our Founding Fathers put it [the Second Amendment] there, they had lived under the tyranny of King George and they wanted to make sure that these free people in this new country would never be subjugated again and have to live under tyranny,” said Lapierre.

Not only do conservatives want to protect themselves from other people, they also want to protect against a possible tyrannical form of government.

In addition, a popular argument in the Republican Party is that education on guns is more important than gun control.

They believe that if people are properly educated on guns, this will result in fewer accidental deaths. A reoccurring phrase is, “guns don’t kill people, people kill people.”

The list of arguments goes on, as this issue has proved to be controversial, especially with the continued mass shootings.

No matter what party one may identify with, it is important to acknowledge and discuss both sides. Without proper dialogue and education, it is difficult to feel secure.

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