Friday, September 6, 2013

Gun Laws in the US, State by state - interactive


2. Gun Control

3. Issue persists at a local, state and national level; the article regards policies at the state level (where most gun control legislation is enacted).

4. Concerns an enacted policy that has been passed to help with a problem/issue that individuals and families face.

5. Policies on  gun control significantly influence individual and family safety.  While there is promise to take action at a federal level, most gun legislation is enacted at a state level. Families/individuals should be aware of the unique gun laws in their states and determine how these policies conflict or line up with their own beliefs and whether or not they would prefer gun control legislation to take place at a federal level. 

6. My opinion on gun control is complicated and probably not fully realized; I'm terrified of guns and I definitely champion strict regulation, but I think there exists responsible parties and endangered parties (women, chiefly) that benefit from the privilege of owning a gun. After reading this article, and comparing it with gun deaths per capita in each state, I'm unsure that strengthening or federalizing gun regulation (in it's current state) is the solution to the gun violence epidemic in the US. For example, the article shows that Vermont is one of the most lenient states in terms of gun legislation but, according to the FBI's website, Vermont has the least amount of gun deaths per capita. Alternatively, the same statistics show that DC has the highest gun deaths per capita and among the strictest regulations in the nation. Intuitively, this reveals two things to me: the first is that each state has different needs that could not be satisfied by federal legislation and the parties mentioned above would be denied rights that it seems they could safely enjoy; and the second and more glaring observation is that gun control legislation (or execution of that legislation), as it exists, is obviously very ineffective. So ultimately I believe that gun control should continue to be enacted at a state level, but should definitely be altered in certain states in an attempt to increase it's effectiveness - perhaps this means regulation on ammo? I'm not really sure, and the gun control issue is not as simple as either side makes. However, I do feel sure of one thing: gun violence (and violence in general) is an infrastructural issue, and policymakers should thoroughly investigate to determine the issues that are engendering gun violence and then begin making policies from there. Conclusively, gun control probably has less to do with actual gun legislation than many people assume.

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