The Eyrie

Stronger gun control provides social benefits

Khadija Ceesay, Reporter

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As times are changing and the world becomes more chaotic, there needs to be a better way for us to cope with gun violence. People would feel safer in public areas with stronger gun control laws.

With 57,860 reported deaths per year by guns, according to the Gun Violence Archive, it is a necessity to at least discuss the issue.

But Congress does not seem interested in the discussion. Gun control should be taken more seriously with all the tragedies that continue to happen.

President Donald Trump said that the issue of mental health is our biggest problem as opposed to the process of background checks and the actual guns themselves, as reported in the New York Times.

It is true that a lot of the problem comes down to mental health, but if background checks were conducted to know one’s history of mental health issues, the problem would be greatly reduced.

A study reported in The Lancet, showed that enforcing “federal universal background checks could reduce firearm deaths by approximately 56.9 percent; background checks for ammunition purchases could reduce the death rate by guns by approximately 80.7 percent and gun identification requirements reduce it by 82.5 percent”.

These enforcements would also reduce the societal costs that come with gun violence.

According to the Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation, in 2010, gun violence cost every person in the United States about $564 and the government $5.5 billion in tax revenue; $4.7 billion in court costs; $1.4 billion in Medicare and Medicaid costs; $180 million in mental health care for the victims and $133 million for the law enforcement response to shotgun injuries.

Gun control could also help women escape abusers and stalkers. About five women are murdered everyday due to domestic violence. A 2003 study reported that American women are 11.4 times more likely to be a victim of gun homicide.

In the United States alone, 50 women are shot dead by an intimate partner in an average month and the number continues to rise. Currently, 31 states do not ban convicted stalkers from purchasing and owning guns, and 41 states do not have a law against convicted domestic abusers keeping guns they already own.

Some argue that guns are needed for self defense and that the current gun laws allow people to feel safe in their houses.

If there were more enforced background checks for those who want to buy guns for self defense purposes, we could keep people feeling safe and lower the percentage of death by guns.

According to the information on ProCon.org, guns are rarely even used for self defense. Between 2017 and 2011, only 0.79 percent of victims protected themselves with the use of a purchased gun.

The purpose of gun control is not just to keep people feeling safe, but to reduce the amount of violence and to keep those who are not mentally stable from harming others.

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Stronger gun control provides social benefits