Issue of Gun Control

Essay by DenisP908Junior High, 9th grade March 2004

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Violence levels in Canada are on a rise. Statistics Canada reports that approximately 60% of violent crimes are committed using guns, up from 40% a few decades ago. The number of gun-related crimes has risen by over 10% over the past 2 years. Every day, newspaper headlines and news shows on TV are filled with reports about violent crimes. One might ask why the increase, and the simple answer is lax gun control laws and mild punishment for illegal gun possession. If Canadians want to feel safer, they must deal with the core causes of the problem.

Guns can be obtained quite easily by almost anyone. The process for obtaining a firearm is quite short - if they pass the Canadian Firearms Safety Course and their spouse or common-law partner sign an application, they are allowed to purchase a rifle, shotgun or handgun. Even if the legal method fails, people can still obtain firearms through illegal ways, such as the black market.

Each year, thousands of guns are being illegally imported into Canada, and the government does everything in its power to stop it - which is often not enough. The cause of the problem should be dealt with, not the consequences.

There are an estimated 11,000,000 guns in Canada (1997) - that's 1 gun for 3 people. The presence of those guns in over 3,000,000 people's homes is quite pointless. People claim that they need guns for self-defence, yet only 11% of gun owners actually used their guns to defend themselves against robbers. The other 89% of gun owners have their guns for no useful purpose. The guns can easily get into the wrong hands, and to prevent this, people shouldn't own guns unless they absolutely have to.

The other cause of excessive gun-related violence is the mild consequences...