On Friday, December 14, 2012, an armed gunman entered Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, CT and did the unimaginable: he opened fire slaying innocent people consisting mostly of children ages 6 and 7. This is the story no journalist wants to report. It is a tragedy whose magnitude is indescribable. As sad as this tragedy is, even more disturbing is its use as a political means for gun-grabbers and their agenda.
Evidence compiled by groups such as the Brady Campaign and the Centers for Disease Control to name a few, show, ironically, that stricter gun laws do not in fact lead to greater safety. Howard Nemerov pulls this data together from these gun control advocates to show the error in their thinking. One example provided is the lower a state scores on the Brady scale (this represents failing to enact gun control standards) the lower the level of violent crime while states who score highly on the Brady scale have greater levels of violence.
If this is the case, then logic would suggest reducing restrictions on gun control. Obviously, this is not to suggest the handing out of guns to just anyone as our own government did during Fast and Furious. A look at some other statistics may further enlighten those who are for stricter gun control and an end to the 2nd Amendment.
In Mexico, it is absolutely illegal for a private citizen to own a gun unless purchased from the government making it one of the strictest countries on gun control. Yet, according to H.D. Hase, Mexico saw almost 16,000 gun related murders in 2010 while during that same time, the U.S. saw a fraction over 11,000 homicides. While these numbers don’t seem all that different, Hase makes the point that the U.S. has a population three times larger than Mexico.
Consider Kennesaw, GA as a real world example. “In 1982, the Kennesaw City Council unanimously passed a law requiring heads of households to own at least one firearm with ammunition” according to Hamilton and Burch. Since that time, the crime rate has plummeted to almost non-existence and there have only been 25 murders during the same period. Conversely, Morton Grove, IL, the first city to adopt a gun ban, saw an increase of 15.7% in its crime rate.
Today, the importance of this is where we go. Tennessee’s state legislature is considering a bill that would train and arm some teachers so that shootings such as Sandy Hook are deterred. Evan McMorris-Santoro of TPM says “Tennessee has emerged this week as a center of the ‘the answer is more guns in schools’ sentiment.” The debate has begun but the Constitution and the 2nd Amendment are important to remember. As the 2nd Amendment states, the right to bear arms is not a right given by government and therefore cannot be infringed.