By Ethan James, Trending Writer
In the wake of the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman High School in Parkland, Florida, new demands for gun control are being heard loud and clear. With passions and a newfound energy pushing the demand for banning of assault rifles and stricter background checks, there seems to be little heard from gun advocates.
It is important to note that the news media outlets are found to place stories and run events that will boost their viewership and ratings. This being said, trying to understand the statistics of why our nation has the highest gun per capita are seldom heard.
Our forefathers provided and guaranteed the right of every citizen within this nation the right to bear arms, should they choose to. This right is not the only reason that since the founding of our nation we have had an innumerable stockade of arms, privately and publicly owned.
Hunting and self-defense are the two main reasons why so many Americans hold the right to bear arms dear, not just because the right is guaranteed by the Constitution.
Hunting has been a tradition throughout the existence of man. The ability to use guns and rifles for hunting may be something within the last few centuries, but yet is still enjoyed by thousands to this day. Hunting allows for population control of species that may take over ecosystems without natural predators or few available to keep them in check. There is also the aspect to many hunters of either the thrill or fun of doing something in the outdoors or the challenge itself. Though there are many hunters and many own numerous guns, it is important to note that hunters are required to get licenses to hunt legally. Not just anyone can buy guns and hunt.
Self-defense is the reason why our nation exists today. Our nation formed because colonists were permitted to own their own guns and fight for independence with these arms. There is more to the American Revolution, I will not simplify it, but the significance is that guns have already been in our nation’s history, from its conception to the present day. To some, having guns means being proud of our history and the ability for us to defend ourselves, and to others having guns provides a clear sense of security.
Our history may be tainted with mass shootings, but there is more to the story. Our friends, the French, the Canadians, the Germans, and countless others, who have high capita of arms per citizens show us that the right of having guns or the amount is not the clear reason why mass shootings occur. Our nation has hundred of thousands of legal gun owners and up until recently, being a gun owner was not associated with being a mass shooter.
The horrendous crime Nicholas Cruz committed is not symbolic of the hundreds of thousands of legal gun owners, abiding the laws and holding onto their right proudly. His crime helps shed light on the dangers of not acting promptly when receiving a credible tip, not addressing mental health issues or assuring that background checks require this information, and being a passive bystander.
A version of this article appeared in the Tuesday, February 27th print edition.
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