Stricter Gun Laws and Gun Violence. Essay Sample

Published: 2023-04-19
Stricter Gun Laws and Gun Violence. Essay Sample
Type of paper:  Research paper
Categories:  Gun control Gun violence Social responsibility Social issue
Pages: 7
Wordcount: 1760 words
15 min read

The issue of civilian gun ownership in the United States has not only been one of the most pervasive but also controversial in the discussion of public safety and crime. Factions in this whole discourse use various premises to argue out their perceptions about the implications of firearms being in the hands of civilians. This debate on gun ownership vis-a-vis public safety in the United States often arises every time general security breaches such as shooting, homicides, and other forms of gun-related aggression. On a broader perspective, pundits do not essentially agree on whether gun ownership assures the safety of the owners and the public. Within the more comprehensive argumentation of guns and public security is the hypothesis that stricter gun laws result in reduced gun violence. It is essential to use statistical evidence, systematic, logical reasoning, and psychosocial perspectives in demystifying the validity of the hypothesis that stricter gun laws result in reduced gun violence. Thoroughly assessing the hypothesis that US states with Strict gun laws have more reduced gun violence against the opposing standpoints is necessary for demystifying the validity of such propositions.

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The National Rifle Association (NRA) posits that the existing gun controls are adequate to ensure responsible ownership and handling of firearms by law-abiding citizens ("Joint Statement," 2020). In a brief reply to the politicians who have voiced their demands for increased federal and state regulations on firearms, the NRA takes the stand that the Second Amendment of the Constitution and other relevant laws such as the Gun Control Act of 1968 provide an adequate framework for gun issuance, follow-ups and use among the citizens. According to the agency, there is no logical connection between having stricter laws and reducing gun-related violence. The premise of NRA argumentation is that most of the cases of unlawful use of guns such as shootings and homicides are attributable to people who are insane or have some form of mental instability ("Joint Statement," 2020). Therefore, they underscore that stricter laws, such as banning gun ownership for law-abiding Americans who only use them as a means of self-defense, do not in any way prevent future attacks. However, the NRA contends that the focus on arms regulation should be focused on the type and class of ammunition allowed for sale to the public. For instance, some devices that have been specifically designed to allow the semi-automatic rifles to function as fully automatic ones require extra controls ("Joint Statement," 2020). Whereas the NRA does not agree with the proposition that a complete ban on gun ownership by the mentally upright and law-abiding citizens is the right way to go, it calls for a comprehensive assessment of all types of arms and their functionality to know whether they really comply with the federal laws. According to the organization, a primary focus on having stricter regulation firearm type and functionality guarantee a safer America.

A panel study by Siegel et al. (2019), the disparities in the cases of gun-related violence and homicides reported in various states in the United States of America are attributable to tight regulations on the access to firearms, but not the types of arms allowed to the public. The same sentiments are shared by the Boston University researchers who posit that The FBI and CDC datasets are consistent that the fundamental link between crimes are regulations about who Has guns but not "Which" guns. The researchers whose studies focused on various states in the USA present that states that use multiple approaches to assess people fit to own firearms recorded a comparatively lower rate of related violence than those that do not (Siegel, Pahn, Xuan, Fleegler & Hemenway, 2019). Some of the areas that need stricter regulations and comprehensive enforcement are pre-issuance of firearms, which entails background checks on individuals buying guns at any time. The scholars postulate that stricter laws providing for unfettered universal background-checks, the prohibition of the sale of guns to people who are violent, and permits for concealed arms. Employing these regulations together and consistently results in decreased rates of firearm homicide. Furthermore, the researchers cite that the difference in enforcement of laws in various states and their unique geographical location accounts for the difference in the effectiveness of gun control laws. The underpinning for this argument is that the nature of gun-related crime and demographics in urban settings vary from those in the local states (Siegel, Pahn, Xuan, Fleegler & Hemenway, 2019). Therefore, the application and effectiveness of access to firearms regulations largely depend on the uniqueness of states, which means they cannot be directly compared. Stricter background check laws are more effective in largely urban states with a high population, while misdemeanor checks are more effective in suburban and rural areas. It is deducible from these propositions that gun regulations in the United States should be clustered and not be universally applied to all the states without cognizance of their singularities in terms of demographics and urbanization (Siegel, Pahn, Xuan, Fleegler & Hemenway, 2019). In their conclusion, the researchers present that stricter laws on gun access accompanied by consistent enforcement in states result in different rates of reported crime across the various states, with some having lower incidences than the others.

According to the Law Center, as cited in the New York Times, stricter regulations on guns result in low gun-related deaths (Lisa & Kristin, 2018). The nature of regulations may vary from one state to the other, with some particular states focusing on regulating the type of firearms while others primarily concerned with the stature and demeanor of the individual gun holder. The approach to enforcement of such strict gun regulations notwithstanding, it is evident that they result in the lowest rates of gun-related deaths. There is a critical need for the National Rifles Association to follow through the various efforts employed by individual states in curbing gun-related violence and their implications. The inadequacy of NRA records on gun regulation feedbacks from different states makes it difficult to confidently draw conclusions on which ones are between then the others. Nonetheless, well designed stricter gun regulations in their entirety contribute to recognizable declines in related violence. States such as California, Connecticut, New Jersey, and New York with most stringent gun control measures have the lowest recorded rates of gun-related deaths (Lisa & Kristin, 2018). On the other hand, states such as Alabama, Alaska, and Louisiana which lack aggressive regulation on guns, have the highest reported incidences of gun-related violence.

The Heritage Foundation, on its commentary on firearms, posits that stricter gun control laws are not the ultimate answer to gun-related violence witnessed across the various states in the united states of America. Using statistical evidence from previously reported cases of mass shootings and homicides, the foundation argues two ways (Swearer, 2018). The first aspect is that prohibiting civilian gun ownership does not resolve the dilemma of gun-related violence as it only undermines the ability of an individual and families to protect themselves from unanticipated breach of safety. Second, recorded gun violence across states that have stricter laws vis-a-vis those that are considered as not having similarly strict laws give a grim picture of the effectiveness of such laws. Therefore, they posit that the question of gun violence is not about the rules on gun ownership or type of gun owned by civilians but rather one that needs in-depth focus on proximate correlations such as mental health of gun holders, drug use which compromise demeanor, illegal black market firearm transfers, poverty and lack of proper social welfare which result in delinquents (Swearer, 2018). The primary point of argument here is the fact that most cases of public shootings have been done by unregistered or licensed gun holders, mentally ill, or socio-economically disenfranchised people. Against the claims by the gun control advocates that a lot of violence result from uncontrolled gun ownership, the foundation argues on the need to define what constitutes gun violence and the need not to fall into the trap of attributing isolated cases driven by extreme dynamics to lack of stricter laws. On November 16, 2018, commentary, the entity recounts that there had been eleven mass public shootings in the United States, which resulted in the killing of at least three people other than the assailant. The congress definition of the mass shooting and mass killing requires that at least three victims die out of it. The eleven mass public shootings identified by the foundation were spread across seven different states. Notably, three of these mass public shootings happened in California, two in Maryland and 2 in Pennsylvania. Interestingly, California and Maryland are ranked by Gifford's Law Centre to Prevent Gun Violence as the best states in gun control laws, but still, the violence occurred (Swearer, 2018). In sum, the foundation objects the restriction of the rights of law-abiding citizens to own guns but favors proactive approaches directed towards addressing the proximate socioeconomic and health factors which predispose gun holders to violence.

In conclusion, pundits for and against the idea that stricter gun laws result in decreased gun-related violence both give viable opinions on the topic. The primary idea against the more stringent laws is that the real cases of criminal gun use in states with stringent laws do not necessarily guarantee safety, such laws have the propensity to deny the public the enjoyment of the Second Amendment of the American Constitution, and the fact that there are always underlying issues that cause violent gun use beyond just the regulations. On the other hand, the pro-stricter gun rules posit that stricter gun rules deter would-be criminal users from accessing such firearms, and the rates of gun-related violence have been on a decline in states with more stringent regulations even as the population in such areas increases. That, thorough vetting of individuals applying for gun ownership, result in decreased chances of such arms being in wrongful hands. Politicians, policymakers, and business leaders are still indifferent to what exactly is the best intervention for the rampant cases of gun violence, such as mass public shootings witnessed in the United States of America.


Joint Statement. (2020). Retrieved March 6, 2020, from

Lisa W.F & Kristin H. (2018). In Wake of Florida Massacre, Gun Control Advocates Look to Connecticut. The New York Times. Retrieved March 6, 2020, from

Siegel, M., Pahn, M., Xuan, Z., Fleegler, E., & Hemenway, D. (2019). The impact of state firearm laws on homicide and suicide deaths in the USA, 1991-2016: a panel study. Journal of general internal medicine, 34(10), 2021-2028.

Swearer, A. (2018). Broad Gun-Control Restrictions Are Not the Answer. The Heritage Foundation. Retrieved March 6, 2020, from

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