The measures and laws to restrict gun violence are traditionally discussed in the American society in association with the shocking events when adults or teenagers use guns against the public. The problem is in the fact that gun assaults are typical for the American society. Thus, the necessity to restrict the access to purchasing guns is discussed during a long period of time. Today, few people are opposite to the idea that guns should be restricted. These persons can support their vision with references to the issue of human rights and freedoms to protect their life and property, but the everyday realities provide the evidence that gun violence increases.
The situation at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, required the immediate response to control gun violence. Thus, the first new restricting law was signed in the state of New York. From this point, new restricting laws and measures to regulate the situation with gun violence can be discussed as the effective legitimate steps because they respond to the public’s vision of the problem, and the measures are necessary to decrease the rate of homicides and teenagers’ violent attacks.
The debates on the necessity of gun control and restricting laws and measures have a long history, but the first steps to restrict gun violence were made only in January, 2013. Andrew Cuomo, the Governor in New York, signed the restricting law on gun control in the state to improve the current situation and make the environment safer for the public. The new law broadens the definition of “what is considered an assault weapon and reduces the permissible size of gun magazines to 7 rounds, from 10”, and the law includes provisions “to better keep firearms away from mentally ill people” (Kaplan). The first restricting laws and measures can be discussed as the positive tendency to overcome the problem because the rate of mass shootings depends on the public’s access to guns.
The rate of homicides and mass shootings in the USA is significant. The fact is 70% of homicides in the USA are committed using guns (Stell 37-38). According to Stell, “carefully-crafted, well-enforced firearms control policies can contribute to marginal reductions in criminal violence” (Stell 38). As a result, the way to decrease the rate of homicides and mass shootings is to work out the effective restricting laws and measures to prevent gun violence affected by the uncontrolled usage of weapons by mentally ill people or teenagers.
Children and teenagers’ gun assaults are the most shocking for the public. The tragic situation at Columbine High School in 1999 provoked the development of gun control debates, which resulted in stating the necessity to develop effective restricting laws (Lawrence and Birkland 1193). However, the necessary changes in legal questions were not done, and the similar tragic events repeated. The violent shootings at the elementary school in Newtown in 2012 accentuated the immediate necessity to act and control the uses of guns. That is why, new laws on gun control can become the main measure to stop mass shootings at schools.
The laws and measures to control gun violence will be effective to overcome the problem, if these laws are significantly stricter than the current regulations. The law signed in New York can be discussed as the first possible variant to improve the situation and stop the further development of gun violence in the country. The reactions and responses to mass shootings should result in legitimate regulations to cope with the issue and reduce the rate of homicides.
Kaplan, Thomas. Sweeping Limits on Guns Become Law in New York. 2013. Web.
Lawrence, Regina, and Thomas Birkland. “Guns, Hollywood, and School Safety: Defining the School-Shooting Problem Across Public Arenas”. Social Science Quarterly 85.5 (2004): 1193-1207. Print.
Stell, Lance. “The Production of Criminal Violence in America: Is Strict Gun Control the Solution?” Journal of Law, Medicine & Ethics 32.1 (2004): 38-46. Print.