Laws imposing minimum age requirements for the possession and purchase of firearms are intended to decrease access to firearms by young people and, correspondingly, to decrease the number of suicides, homicides, and unintentional shootings affecting youth. According to Johnston, “legislation is thus far aimed at imposing penalties on adults who permit a minor under the age of fourteen to get a gun then someone with it” (174). It has been recently debated that “an increase in gun ownership fuels the secondary market by which guns flow to youths and criminals through loans among family and friends” Cost 905).
Gun ownership laws can be bent or broken without prosecution. If a parent chooses to buy a firearm from an unlicensed seller of a gun, no law orbits the gun seller from transferring the firearm to a buyer or parent. However, no federal laws are in place for both seller and buyer to register the firearm after purchasing it. America’s schools and college and university campuses are also generally safe havens from gun violence. Gun violence prevention measures for our schools should focus on educating kids about the dangers of firearms.
The reminding gun-owning parents should safely own and secure firearms and ammunition, rather than on arming teachers. A 2002 study from the Journal of American College Health mound that students who owned guns were more likely than non-gun-owning students to binge drink and then engage in risky activities “such as driving when under the influence of alcohol, vandalizing property, and having unprotected intercourse” (Miller 59). Almost all states prohibit guns in public schools, and college universities, but most states leave the question up to the college or university from banning guns in certain areas of campus.
There is no credible statistical evidence to suggest that the presence of students carrying guns, particularly concealed handguns, will reduce violence on college campuses. According to Harvard School of Public Health, a survey was conducted about gun ownership on school campuses “students who have guns for protection more likely than other students to have been threatened with a gun while at college is consistent with previous work suggesting that high school students who carry guns to school generally carry them for protection and are at high risk for factorization, including physical and sexual attacks” (Miller 63-64).
Those who own guns for protection at colleges or high schools need policies aimed at reducing factorization to other students. Having guns on school property is prevalent, when guns are prevalent in the community the students live in. In addition, a law that works is required criminal background checks. The most dangerous gap in federal firearms laws today is the private sale or private-party gun-market loophole, otherwise known as a secondary market. The “off the books sales and theft” Cost 905) contributed to a large number of criminals obtaining a firearm.
Federal law requires licensed firearms dealers to perform background checks on prospective purchasers and maintain records of all gun sales, unlicensed private sellers do not have to do either. Individuals prohibited by law from possessing guns can easily obtain them from private sellers and do so without any federal records of the transactions. An estimated 40 percent of all firearms sold in the United States are transferred by unlicensed private sellers according to the National Institute of Justice about “2 million per year, were off-the-books transfers in acquired handguns” (Cook 7).
A criminal background check searches public records for any criminal offenses a person has committed. Though not all background checks search for the same information, most checks include arrest scores, convictions, and a sex registry check. President Clinton reminded Americans that crime may have dropped during his time in office, but gun violence remained high, “the number of gun murders by Juveniles has skyrocketed by 300%. This is simply unacceptable” (Decode 268).
The bad people carry their guns illegally. They don’t have permits. According to an article in a recently published Journal, “a robust correlation between higher levels of gun ownership and higher firearm homicide roles could not be a determine causation, for the large number of deaths from firearm related homicides” (Cooping). Criminals are going to do their bad deeds regardless of what the law is. When criminals want a firearm to carry out their task, they will find one.
Felons can even purchase a firearm out of state Just as easy as in state over the internet, at a gun show, or from newspaper advertisement without proving that they are not a felon. According to the “Guide To Interstate Transportation of Firearms,” “There is no uniform state transportation procedure for firearms” (nonracial. Org). This allows criminals to purchase firearms illegally. Felons who give false information or show false identification to a licensed dealer can be imprisoned for up to ten years.
People are entitled to transport a firearm for any lawful purpose from one State where their firearms possession is legal to another state where their firearms possession is legal. This gives unlicensed dealers a way to sell a firearm to a person without showing proper identification or any at all. If a licensed dealer keeps false records from a purchase of a firearm it is only a misdemeanors, but it must be proven that the dealer knowingly maintained such records. This is not easily proven when an experienced gun dealer knows the loop holes.
Despite the loop holes, many consider the gun-buyer database law successful. A law that needs to be enforced is the sale of a firearm to a mentally unstable individual. Deranged people, mostly on a quest of suicide, convinced of what their mind is telling them to do, sometimes decide to take out as many people as possible with a gun. There’s little consensus on where the burden for defining mental illness lies. Possession of a firearm by the mentally ill is regulated by both state and federal laws. According to the NCSC “Under 18 U. S. C.
S 922(d), it is unlawful for any person to ell or otherwise dispose of any firearm or ammunition to any person knowing or having reasonable cause to believe that such person has been adjudicated as a mental defective or has been committed to any mental institution”(NCSC). There is too much attention being pay to trying to stop mentally ill people from having guns when we can’t even define what level or type of mental illness represent incompetence. Predicting human behavior is a shaky ground, and those with substance abuse problems should be prevented from purchasing a firearm.
According to an article recently published in the Huffing Post, “restrictions would rabbit a large portion of society unlikely to commit violent acts from owning guns” (Young 2). The mentally unstable and the criminal find different avenues and sometimes the same avenue to purchase a firearm to accomplish their task. Is this psychological or Just pure evil? Experience indicates that when a criminal obtains a mentally insane. There needs to be a thorough screening of gun applicants for mental impairment and the criminal backgrounds.
Gun ownership should be a privilege intended and reserved only for those who can show mental competence and stability. According to Gregg Easternmost, “mandatory gun safety standards would merely regulate guns in the same way that other products are regulated in an effort to improve public safety’ (162). Those convicted of or planning to commit, random acts of violence, or diagnosed or demonstrated serious mental instability should NEVER be allowed to own and operate or have access to a gun under any circumstances.
Until this country gives special treatment, care, and prevention to the psychologically impaired starting from an early age society will continue to be confronted by the resulting tragedies of random acts of violence with firearms. A person shall not have in his or her possession or under his or her custody or control, or purchase or receive, or attempt to purchase or receive, any firearms whatsoever or any other deadly weapon for a period of six months whenever he or she communicates to a licensed psychotherapist a serious threat of physical violence against a reasonably identifiable victim or victims.
Licensed psychotherapists are required to immediately report to a local law enforcement agency the identity of a person who has communicated a serious threat of violence against a reasonably identifiable victim or victims only through dysfunctional ignorance can continue to promote gun ownership for all without mental prettification and evaluation. In addition, a law that needs to be enforced is that illegal immigrants may not purchase a firearm inside the United States.
Currently there is no consistent state-by-state policy of notifying local authorities that an illegal, unlawful alien or a fugitive from justice to purchase a firearm. Every day illegal immigrants are obtaining firearms in much the same way criminals obtain their firearms, through unwatched and unrestricted channels. Legal immigrants must have an admission number from the Homeland Security and a valid state hunting license to purchase a firearm which can only be purchased in the state in which they are a resident.
A non-immigrant can purchase a firearm from an ad in the newspaper or from an unlicensed dealer at a gun show without ever showing identification to the seller. Gun lobbyists such as the National Rifle Association (NORA), which I am a lifetime member, the longest standing Civil Rights organization in America, work to preserve the Second Amendment of the U. S. Constitution and the right of citizens to bear arms or possess firearms. The NORA lobbyists have accomplished many roadblocks for the citizens of the United States against governmental powers that wish to disarm American citizens.
But also pointing out, the NORA not only is involved in keeping the right to bear arms, it affiliates itself with many other organizations and supports fundraising and shooting classes for communities. After careful examination of the lack of gun control, there are laws that work, but there are laws that do not work that need solutions. Registering a gun according to the law, stopping underage buying of handguns and holding parents responsible for their children. Criminal background checks, especially on illegal immigrants should be improved upon.