Opinion

It’s time to get the guns off the streets

Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, and Colorado – these are the sites of three fatal school shootings that have occurred in just the past two weeks. The Bush administration has called for a school violence summit to discuss federal action to help prevent such tragedies, but the implications of recent events reach farther than many people realize – rampages of late, such as Columbine, and those that occur outside of schools are transpiring more frequently because of easy access to guns and the regularity of gun ownership.

What can put a stop to the rise of gun violence? Gun control – granted, some people do not believe that there is a correlation between gun ownership and gun violence. However, the very function of a gun is to wound or kill, whether in the hands of a criminal, hunter, or victim in self-defense. Guns cause bloodshed.

Gun rights advocates insist that guns are a means of self-defense against governmental tyranny, foreign invasion, and criminals. The threat of governmental tyranny and foreign invasion may have been legitimate reasons for wide-spread possession of guns centuries ago, when the Second Amendment was first fashioned, but a lot has changed since then. Would U.S. citizens personally combat foreigners if an invasion took place in this day and age? No, that task would belong to our military. As far as I’m concerned, the Second Amendment is essentially null and void. In addition, I believe that the Constitution was meant to be an evolving document, and it’s about time to make a necessary change.

In terms of people protecting themselves against criminals, yes, gun control could make law-abiding citizens vulnerable to assault by lawbreakers, but the main aim of gun control is to eventually thwart delinquents’ ability to obtain guns at all. Obviously, this would not happen right away, but how about alternative ways of protecting one’s self? Self-defense classes, a house alarm system, and pepper spray are all effective methods that do not employ a firearm. Moreover, there is nothing wrong with allowing the police to handle situations in which one’s personal safety is threatened.

Basically, gun control is a start. It has no guarantees, but it’s a step in the right direction. The latest gun laws in Greenleaf, Idaho, on the other hand, exhibit a leap in the wrong direction. City Councilman Steve Jett recently proposed that all Greenleaf households keep and maintain guns to deter the crime that may arise from the imposing growth of nearby Boise. What Mr. Jett needs to realize is that increasing the amount of guns in Greenleaf will only make the city more dangerous.

In the past, there has been an increase in background checks and registration for the sale of guns. There also was an assault weapons ban that lasted from 1994-2004. Desperate times have called for desperate measures. To make stronger procedures a reality, all gun control supporters must make their voices heard. Our opinions have long been disregarded because of the huge influence that gun rights groups wield on the political arena via hefty campaign contributions, but it’s time to for us to step up!

Victoria Genuardi is a freshman majoring in communications. She may be contacted at v.genuardi@umiami.edu.

October 24, 2006

Reporters

The Miami Hurricane

Student newspaper at the University of Miami


Around the Web
  • Miami Herald
  • UM News
  • HurricaneSports

The University of Miami football team has another player with a season-ending injury — and this one ...

University of Miami men’s basketball coach Jim Larrañaga received a grand jury subpoena for his phon ...

Get ready for an avalanche of University of Miami defensive backs and linemen descending on the Hard ...

When UM coach Mark Richt summoned quarterback Malik Rosier into his office last year, a few months a ...

Quarterback Malik Rosier of the No. 8-ranked Miami Hurricanes maintains a solid third place in what ...

Univeristy of Miami’s Wynwood Art Gallery holds its annual faculty exhibition featuring thought-prov ...

From a game simulating how whales navigate to a tribute to Ella Fitzgerald, the U showcased some of ...

A new mobile game called Blues and Reds, now available worldwide, aims to help researchers study int ...

A major Lancet Commission report, a three-year project headed by UM’s Professor Felicia Knaul and co ...

With a $6.8 million NIH grant, the UM School of Nursing and Health Studies and FIU Robert Stempel Co ...

The Hurricanes will look to slow down an inspired Syracuse team at Hard Rock Stadium on Saturday. ...

As a Hurricane Club member, you are invited to participate in the 25th Annual University of Miami Ha ...

University of Miami head coach Mark Richt was selected to the 20-member Paul "Bear" Bryant ...

University of Miami sophomore Bruce Brown Jr. was among 21 players named to the watch list for the 2 ...

Head coach Katie Meier and senior forward/center Erykah Davenport will represent Miami Thursday at t ...

TMH Twitter Feed
About TMH

The Miami Hurricane is the student newspaper of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. The newspaper is edited and produced by undergraduate students at UM and is published weekly in print on Tuesdays during the regular academic year.