The Definition of an Issue:
United States Gun Control
To: Senators and Congressmen
Subject: Gun Control
Firearms restriction, commonly known as gun control, is a hotly debated subject in and out of the political arena. Advocacy groups propose more restrictions, tighter restraints and harsher punishments for offenses. These proponents claim that violence stems from guns and gun owners, gun manufacturers and gun supporters are to blame. Opposition groups to gun control suggest that lesser restrictions, greater availability of different types of firearms and more moderate punishments should be put in place.
History and Background
"A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be in fringed." This is the Second Amendment to the Constitution of the United States. With this single sentence, laws, debates, fights and controversies have begun, ended and are still being fought.
Gun control can be defined as "government limitation of the purchase and ownership of firearms". In the early days of our country there was little gun control. Guns were used both as protection from Indian incursions as well as tools for hunting. It wasn't until 1934 with the National Firearms Act, passed by Franklin D. Roosevelt, which "prohibited the sale and manufacture of automatic-fire weapons like machine guns, short-barreled shotguns and rifles, parts of guns like silencers, as well as other "gadget-type" firearms hidden in canes."(Spitzer 141) This act came about from the lawlessness and rise of gangster culture during prohibition. The most controversial piece of legislation was passed in 1968. called the Gun Control Act, this act expanded licensing requirements to include more dealers, and more detailed record keeping. "Handgun sales over state lines were restricted, as well as the list of persons that dealers...