According to the California Department of Justice Bureau of Firearms, handguns refer to equipment that is used for defense of one self as well as resources or valuable properties. Handguns are not defined by the department as weapons that are used to facilitate killing of innocent people. In the United States, there have been heated debates over the control of handguns resulting in varying responses from different organizations, individuals, administrative offices and lobby groups. Criminals versus the citizens who follow the law have interactively engaged in a contest with an aim of determining who should have the upper hand when it comes to the control of handguns. More than 30,000 deaths that were attributed to these guns were recorded and reported within the United States in the 90s. These deaths resulted from accidents, murder, self-defense and suicides among other reasons.
Currently, police officers, uncertified and certified handgun holders are using handguns to kill people, facilitate the hunt for the owners who like this activity, carrying out different gang activities as well as during celebrations in which people participate in pleasurable though unnecessary shooting sprees. On the basis of the outlined safety measures by the California Department of Justice Bureau of Firearms, ownership rights and practices are violated by these uses of fire arms. Therefore, this essay aims at evaluating and analyzing whether handguns should be banned in the United States (CDJ 5).
According to Bruce Gold, there are ten reasons on the basis of which handguns should be banned. Although these guns are required for the purpose of providing self-defense, Bruce notes that crimes are being committed on the basis of “self-defense” and this complicates investigations by the police. Police officers are employed by the government to ensure order and law. Therefore, civilians should be banned from owning handguns for self-defense purposes and instead people ought to be encouraged to depend on police to offer them security. Police offers undergo training and they are equipped properly. This makes them the right persons to handle handguns when compared to civilians who own handguns (Bruce 1).
Out of 100 handguns that are owned by the civilians, 4 are used in committing crimes. Out of the handguns that are under the citizens’ ownership, only 2 percent of them are fired during self-defense. Therefore, it is apparent that handguns are unnecessary because they increase the rate of crimes in the US because some of them are illegally owned by criminals.
The argument of the Gun Owners Foundation is that more lives are saved using handguns that the lives that are taken by criminals because criminals fear attaching armed citizens. Nevertheless, the chances of homicides and suicides being recorded in homes where there are handguns are usually higher than in residents where there are no handgun owners. As such, handguns ought to be banned because they pose danger to owners, citizens and neighbors regardless of the way they are used more so if the holder has not undergone training on how they should be used. Additionally, in households where there are handguns without a proper lock for ensuring child safety, reports of suicides, teen murders, gun wounds and accidental shootings by young children have been reported. Therefore, handguns ought to be banned since they are not safe to handgun holders and the people around them (Bruce 1).
Maitreesh Ghatak notes that a setting that has criminals and civilians who abide by the law both holding guns presents a competition because each wants to succeed. This implies that criminals will be determined put their handguns that have been acquired illegally to use on the victims who they know or believe that they own handguns which they can use to harm them. Therefore, both parties opt to use handguns because they assume that the other party has already decided to use the handgun in hurting them, stealing or damaging their tangible resources, properties or valuables. Consequently, criminal activities will increase as well as murders, accidental shootings and homicides (Maitreesh 2).
The constitution of the United States stipulates that citizens should not try to execute justice by taking the law in their hands. Only criminals who do not respect the law should do this. Instead, citizens should count on the police offers to provide them protection from rape, murder, burglary, assault, as well as other criminal acts. Handguns should therefore be banned because majority of the handgun holders do not respect the authorities. They have an over-dependence attitude because they own firearms. To enhance reliance and trust of the authorities as well as the government while executing its constitutional responsibilities, handguns ought to be banned (Bruce 1).
According to Brian Micklethwait, firearms’ ownership law is not a guarantee that criminals will automatically surrender handguns that they have acquired illegally. Contrary to this, anti-ownership law makes it possible for the criminals to perform unlawful acts against the innocent civilians. Nevertheless, Brian acknowledges that if the law is upheld by every person and civilians perform their duties while at the same time ensuring the safety of their neighbors, then handguns ought to be banned because they will be of no use. The US is one of the countries in which most civilians own handguns because they can easily be acquired legally by the citizens who can afford the involved costs. Nevertheless, there are no strict measures of minimizing the illegal handguns that are owned by criminals. For this weakness to be dealt with all handguns ought to be banned and the police officers remain the only handguns holders so that they can easily carry out their duty of maintaining order and law (Brian 1).
Nevertheless, Nan Desuka notes that handguns alone do not commit murder. Criminals or people use handguns to engage in illegal activities which cause deaths. Therefore, it is apparent that the issue of increasing suicides, murders and homicides is not caused by handguns ownership. These problems are caused by criminal activities. These claims are supported by this writer with a slogan that “Guns do not kill people…criminals do”. Handguns ought not to be banned because making them illegal is not a guarantee that criminal activities will end. Any willing criminal that is determined and desiring to commit murder will do so even without using a handgun because there are many ways of executing this mission (Nan 1).
Many Wall Street Journal writers wrote an American murder article. According to these writers, there were different circumstances under which murders were committed on different genders and races from 2000 to 2010. During these years, more than 160,000 homicides and murders were recorded in all states of America apart from Florida. These killings were due to arguments, police killings, narcotic drugs, robbery, alcohol influence, arson, babysitters’ murders, gangs, motor vehicle robbery, sexual offenses, gambling and abortion among others. Among the weapons that were used include blunt objects, knives, fire, strangulation, drugs, explosives, poison, and pushing over the window as well as firearms and asphyxiation. Therefore, it is apparent that outlawing handguns will not serve as the ultimate solution to suicides, homicides and murders. Though handguns contribute to murders, suicides and homicides, they are not the only weapons that are used to commit these crimes (Rob, Madeline, Jon and Palani 1).
As Bruce Gold observed, handgun ownership for self-defense purposes started more than 2 million years back and even then civilians committed non-event crimes. Therefore, banning them in the contemporary societal setting is ethical. To end criminal migration, handguns ought to be banned in every state. This should be based on the notification of Bruce that criminals usually migrate to the states with less-strict firearm laws. When handguns are banned, states that act as firearm havens including Virginia record reduced criminal activities.
It is important to consider the fact that not every citizen can afford to buy a handgun. This implies that if they are bought for the purposes of self-defense, then unarmed civilians will become the victims of accidental shootings and crime committed by those who can afford them. The constitution of the United States aims at achieving equality for all citizens. Unless every civilian owns a handgun, they ought to be banned because they widen the gap between the poor and the rich since most rich people own handguns while the poor remain their victims. Handguns make police investigations complicated every time they are used in a case that involves a civilian and a criminal. It is therefore legally and ethically right to suggest that they ought to be banned.
Civilians who hold the belief that handguns provide self-defense to properties and lives own them. Nevertheless, the government hires police officers to provide security to every civilian in the entire country. Therefore, citizens should depend on the instituted authorities to provide security without having to own handguns. To ensure equality, enhance security forces’ work and to eliminate compromises when police conduct investigations as well as to minimize criminal activities that include vehicle thefts and robbery, handguns should be outlawed.
Brian, Micklethwait. Why Guns Should Not be Illegal, Political Notes; Libertarian alliance, 1995. Print.
Bruce, Gold. Gun Control-Simple Solutions for Simple Minds: Ten Good Reasons to Ban Guns, Web, 2002. Print.
California Department of Justice (CDJ). Handgun Safety Certificate, California Department of Justice Bureau of Firearms, 2012. Web
Maitreesh, Ghatak. Gun Control and the Self-Defense Argument, University of Chicago, Department of Economics, 2001. Print.
Nan, Desuka. Why Handguns must be Outlawed, Mountain View, Mayfield Publishing Company, 1993. Print.
Rob, Barry, Madeline Farbman, Jon Keegan, and Palani Kumanan. Murder in America, The Wall Street Journal, 2013, Web.