There has been an increase in the number of guns possession to different people in America. According to America Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), there was 300% increase in the number of children who are under 16 and suffered gun shots wounds in urban areas. Another report by the centre to prevent hand gun violence reports that in 1987, gun accidents were ranked as number four leading cause of accidental deaths among children. This is with 270 children dying as a result of an accidental shooting. With the election of Jimmy Carter as the U.S. president, he espoused a strong gun control. “I favor legislation of hand guns, a ban on sale of cheap hand guns, reasonable licensing provisions and prohibition of ownership by anyone convicted of crime involving a gun and by those who are not mentally competent” (Orasin 1981).
Gun laws in the United States are independent and vary from one to another, but they are not contradictory to existing federal firearms laws. Some U.S states have also created assault weapon bans which are independent of, though often similar to, federal assault weapons ban. The state level bans vary significantly in their form, content, and level of restriction. Forty-four states have a provision in their state constitutions similar to the Second Amendment of the Bill of Rights (the exceptions are California, Iowa, Maryland, Minnesota, New Jersey, and New York). However the law on the guns has not effectively worked. This paper highlights reasons as to why gun laws in America are not enforceable.
Deliberate ignorance of law by the criminals has been one of the reasons as why the law has not just worked. Guns control advocates contend that fire arms cause violence and hence restricting the availability of fire arms would reduce the incidence of death and violence. Pro-gun advocates have therefore been supporting the use of fire arms and felonies. According to the pro-control forces, gun laws have not been able to work because they are so many of them which are already possessed by people. It can therefore not work no matter how the authority forces it to the people. “It won’t work. It can’t work. It never has worked. But the authorities try to make people knuckle under to laws that they find offensive and intrusive. And as people refuse to comply, the authorities raise the stakes, adopting tactics that most of us recognize as violations of fundamental rights and of simple human decency’’(Tucille D, 2008.)
The federal regulations have also not been strictly enforced across the nation. This law widely differs from one jurisdiction to the other. There is no aggressive national fire arms policy which would guide all people to use the guns and fire arms the same. This increases the ‘spill over’ effect of the easily available weapons in neighboring jurisdictions that destroys the effect of the tough laws in other jurisdiction. This could have been due to regional, racial and cultural factors that completely swamp the effects on the gun control laws.
There has also been no evidence through the statistics which shows the correlation between the criminal cases and accidents and existing gun control laws. For instance, a study in U.S. shows that strict gun laws had a lower incidence of accidental firearms but they had also lower accidental deaths for poisoning and drowning which could not be due to the gun laws. Based on these findings, it has not been able to conclude that stricter gun laws would reduce accidental fire arm deaths. (Diane 1991).
Argument on discrimination has also seen the U.S. laws on gun use to be unenforceable. Discrimination of the minority groups of the society who live in poor urban areas would be a reality if the gun law would be enforced. This is because they would be denied a chance to protect themselves using guns. Pro-gun advocates contend that gun laws would “interfere more with potential victims than criminals, reducing the crime control effects of non-criminal gun ownership”. This is also emphasized by an argument that there is a large number of potential criminals who rarely commit crimes for they know that many citizens are armed and therefore fear the possibility of getting shot. The U.S. citizen have therefore argued that the crime rate might still be higher were it not for the firearms, and that the widespread of ownership of guns keeps crime and violence below the level it might otherwise reach. (Nisbet L, 1990)
With the above reasons on the contradiction between the U.S. citizen and the authorities, the current law on the use of the gun cannot effectively been enforced. The secret behind law enforcement is that it’s largely dependent on public cooperation. How ever when laws have less than near-universal support it becomes hard for it to be effectively implemented. The policemen are forced to use force, trying to intimidate the minority into submission through increasingly brutal tactics, and in most cases they just give up.
Bruce J. M. Wilcox C. 1998, The changing politics of gun control Rowman ; Littlefield,
Diane, 1991 A Clash of Arms: The Great American Gun Debate DIANE
Tucille T.D. 2008.Unenforceable laws lead to police abuses. Verde Valley Newspapers
Nisbet L. 1990, Gun Control Debate: You Decide Prometheus Books,