Let’s not jump the gun



Our country was faced with several mass shootings this year, including the one in a Colorado movie theater and the endless gang violence on the streets of urban America. When most people hear about these tragedies, they typically jump the gun by suggesting that we do something about guns. This is certainly a political issue.

In a recent debate, President Barack Obama mentioned that he would reintroduce an assault weapons ban within the next four years, if re-elected. I will vote for Obama this year because I am a Democrat who stands with him on most issues, but I think I will have to disagree with his recent proposal of an assault weapons ban.                                                                    

I own guns, mainly because I enjoy hunting, but also in case someone wants to climb in my window without my invitation. I am from Flossmoor, a suburb outside of Chicago, in Cook County, Ill. Cook County has some of the most gun control regulations in this country.

The state of Illinois does not allow concealed or open carry of firearms. Cook County has a ban on assault weapons, and the ban on handguns in Chicago was recently lifted after almost thirty years of existence. I have lived in Cook County all of my life, and I can tell you that with all of the regulations on guns in place, the gang violence in Chicago seems to get worse every year. Innocent people, who are not allowed to carry a loaded weapon in public for protection, are being killed in large numbers every year.

I am trying to say that many of these gun regulations are ineffective. It is not because I own guns that I support gun rights. It is because I think the government is wasting time by trying to introduce laws that do not work, and this waste of time is costing lives.

The only people who lose their guns through gun control are the people who should be using them against the criminals. A criminal will always have access to a firearm, despite any laws, because he is a criminal, and breaking the law is what he does best. I will also point out that I do not need an assault rifle when I am hunting deer, birds or small game, but I have known of some civilians who use them for recreation, and I think they deserve every right to do so.                               I am not sure how to stop the violence, but maybe we can try to maintain our background checks that we use for public firearm purchases. Maybe we should bring our troops back home to help our police instead of being the world’s police. Let us also pay attention to unusual behavior because I have seen the mug shot of the gunman in the Colorado theater shooting, and I think a red flag should have popped up for anyone who put a gun in his hands.