October 2015 marks a month of yet another school shooting. The incident took place in a community college in Roseburg, Oregon, leaving 9 people dead. This has been the third school shooting that Roseburg has seen since 1998. The shooting is now added to a growing list of similar school incidents, namely Columbine, Virginia Tech, and Sandy Hook. This has sparked a resurgence in debates for further gun control.
This is not an article advocating pro or anti gun control laws. Every single one of the massacres is an immense tragedy, and immediate solutions to prevent future slayings should be sought. However, the easiest solutions are not always the best and most effective. And solutions provided by individuals for their own political agendas are never the right ones.
Every day, the United States suffers thirty deaths from gun homicides, the majority are gang related with many of the vicitims being innocent of any gang activity. Many of these victims are children. In 2004, a federal survey questioned prison inmates as to how they acquired their weapons. Only 10 percent said that they had purchased them from licensed dealers. Consequently, the remainder would receive their weapons from friends, family, underground/illegal gun sales, or through theft. Further gun control would not prevent these acquisitions.
In 2013, 1,490 people were murdered by knives or other cutting instruments compared to 285 people murdered by rifles. In 1999, Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold entered their high school in Columbine, Colorado, armed not only with shotguns and pistols, but 4 knives that they intended to use as well. If gun control is the ultimate answer to saving lives, and that is always important, wouldn’t knife control be in order also?
The Virginia Tech perpetrator Seung-Hui Cho purchased his weapons legally. But late in 2005, a year and a half before the shootings took place, Cho was ordered by a judge to seek outpatient therapy at a mental institution for his behaviors. The boys in Columbine purchased some of their weapons through gun dealers, others they received from family. Adam Lanza, the Sandy Hook elementary killer, acquired every one of his weapons from his mother. To combat this, California is passing an initiative that will allow people to petition for gun restraining orders against fellow family members.
Hello Nazi Germany. We are bringing the Hitler Youth Squad to America.
I don’t own a gun. I never have owned one, and probably never will. This country needs an answer, although I’m not sure what that answer is. But taking away personal freedoms is not something that should be taken lightly. Immediate gun control could have definitely stopped some of these shootings, but a quicker and easier solution, which would have prevented every one of the incidents from taking place, would be to shut down and ban every single school in the US.