Alec MacGillis is a political reporter for the ProPublica as well as the New Republic. He states how President Obama tries to use tragedies of mass shootings as a stepping stone for stricter gun control legislation. Going as far as to say “it is entirely likely that neither background checks, restriction on gun ownership by criminals or those with mental health issues or limits on ammunition or particular kinds of weapons would have stopped the Oregon shooter.” He believes any mass shooting will not change control over guns in America as the Second Amendment is constantly used in law. Even with most Americans backing stricter background checks the instances of wanting to attack the Second Amendment fall short in statistics. A senator from Alaska, to appease the majority of his voters, even voted pro-gun because his voting public statically was gun owners. How are politicians basing their own beliefs on policies on the majority of their voters?
Robyn Thomas, an executive director of the Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence thinks that individuals who support stricter background checks and the NRA are confused, as the NRA opposes background checks. She goes in to speak about how Congress not taking a stand against the NRA is leading the public to believe that they are “invincible”. However, some states are and they are winning. Some states have taking the power to enact the background checks and have the requirement met prior to purchase of a gun. Believing that the gun lobby is out of touch with the American general public and their members she goes on to say “American people want smart gun laws.” The trends in voting polls show how the laws are changing state by state.
Lee Drutman a senior fellow in the program on political reform at New America thinks that until power is matched by an organization with the gun lobbyist, the politics will not change. He starts to speak on how the gun control votes are connected with the political parties. Some elected politicians may vote a certain way to appease the general public, but have a different viewpoint on the issue. The NRA is spending a magnitude of money in congressional races and “The National Rifle Association poses a credible threat to any lawmaker who crosses it.” With that being said, lawmakers who are basing their careers in politics are choosing to encourage the NRA’s hand in politics to obtain the necessary votes to keep their seat.
Elijah Anderson a sociology Jr. professor at Yale University stands from more of an inner city perspective. Giving examples on how the “street, an eye for an eye code” prevails in the neighborhood. The power of having a gun holds for some is not just limited to self-protection and self-assertion, but power and credibility as seen by others in the “street”. The accessibility of obtaining a gun in inner city neighborhoods in his opinion is due to the law enforcement relinquishing their control, and the need for self-preservation takes hold. As Supreme Court Judges choose to uphold the Second Amendment, and some cities see their state based laws unenforceable to the general public. Anderson seems to think that if our judicial system and democratic process change it will be solely based on the public’s outrage demanding it.
Glenn Harlan Reynolds a professor of law at University of Tennessee College of Law in Knoxville thinks that with the proper political and law support the gun lobby is basically invincible. In his expert opinion Americans have a severe distrust in the government. A statement made by Reynolds is “people don’t trust the government to protect them anymore”. In the pew polls, information obtained reflects the level of gun control, and how the public trusts their governmental elected official. With a president stating 8 years ago he does not wish to take guns away from everyone and now supporting Australia in a gun confiscation program trust is going to be a hard for the Obama Administration to regain. Without the regain in trust, voting will never support any harsher gun laws.
Carroll Doherty a direct of political research at Pew Research Center states that the Pew Poll demonstrates that the American population is in agreement with background checks as part of lawful gun purchases. Somehow even with over 80% backing, the Tea Party Republicans opposed a bill that would enforce background checks. Across the Democrats and Republicans there is support for the stricter background checks, but low votes for the legislation to support them. The overall feeling of the non-legislative supporters was that the regulations went too far and could possibly move towards broader restrictions.
In my opinion, we need background checks for all gun sales whether private, shows or at a gun store. Also, our country needs to go as far as screening for mental illness. Over the last 3 years I have seen media coverage of horrific mass shootings killing innocent children. This hurts to my soul. As a gun enthusiast I have to say if those checks are completed and you are able to purchase a gun, I feel no one can dictate the size of my gun, how much and what caliber ammunition I can have for my gun, and what my clip is able to hold. If I want a damn rocket launcher, sell it to me with extra rockets. I agree 100% with Glenn Harlan Reynolds as I do not trust the government in our country. Before Hitler’s full regime he dictated that the Jewish people relinquish all weaponry to the government, and their inevitable slaughter was met with little resistance. I will go down fighting. If my president needs 15 armed guards, at every outing, equipped with AR’s holding a 30 round magazine clip for his families protection, why am I frowned upon for wanting the same to protect my babies. It is also discouraging that politicians are voting pro or con on gun control legislation based on what might happen to their congressional seats. This is a topic that will be debated for years to come. I wish some politician could see it my way. I think even the NRA could agree to the background checks, mental stability screens, and freedom to gun ownership. The basic arguing point for most citizens is the Second Amendment, but how many really know the origination of it? It was put in place by our founding fathers that feared a regime so powerful that it could overtake the colonies they had created. IE: Our current Democratic government. The right to bear arms was for every able bodied man to stand against any regime that threated the separation from the English rulers. This is very useful today as our current government wants to use tragedies such as Sandy Hook or Umpqua Community College to get sympathy votes to push for tougher gun laws. The governments we have are not trusted by the American population in my viewpoint, and no gun laws will change until we can all see the greater good in some changes. This will lead to law abiding citizens obtaining freedoms set by our founding fathers. Once that is set hopefully the career politicians can actually say what they mean and mean what they say.