Persuasive Essay Guide

Persuasive Essay About Gun Control

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Persuasive Essay About Gun Control

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Are you looking for inspiration for your persuasive essay about gun control? You are at the right place!

Gun control is a controversial but common topic for students. But with so many arguments on both sides, students often find it challenging.

However, reading some sample essays can be a good start! 

This blog provides several example essays on the topic of gun control that you can read for inspiration. Moreover, you'll get tips to help you craft your own persuasive essay about the topic.

So let’s get started!

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  • 1. Persuasive Essay Examples on Gun Control 
  • 2. Persuasive Essay Against Gun Control
  • 3. Persuasive Essay on Pro-Gun Control
  • 4. Argumentative Essay About Gun Control
  • 5. Steps to Write a Persuasive Essay
  • 6. Persuasive Essay Topics about Gun Control

Persuasive Essay Examples on Gun Control 

Start with these general persuasive essay samples on gun control. They will help you understand what makes a good gun control essay.

Check out these examples:

Persuasive Essay about Gun Control

Persuasive Essay Examples Gun Control

Want persuasive examples on other topics? Check out our persuasive essay examples blog to find samples on a variety of topics.

Persuasive Essay Against Gun Control

Check out these few examples of anti-gun control essays. These will help you understand the arguments of those who are against gun control.

Why Gun Control is Bad

Argumentative Essay Against Gun Control

Check out this short video below on the pros and cons of gun control to find good arguments for both sides.

Persuasive Essay on Pro-Gun Control

Some people believe that stricter gun control laws should be a priority to prevent gun violence. Here are some examples that will introduce you to their arguments in detail.

Why We Need Gun Control Essay

The Pros of Gun Control Essay

Free Persuasive Essay on Gun Control

Argumentative Essay About Gun Control

An argumentative essay about gun control is a paper that looks at both sides of the debate on this important issue. The goal is to make sure that you can support your position with facts, figures, and logical arguments.

Read these argumentative essay examples about gun control to see how it's done!

Steps to Write a Persuasive Essay

Now that you have read some good examples of persuasive essays about gun control, it's time for you to start writing your own paper.

But how exactly do you write a good essay by yourself? Here are some steps you should follow:

Step 1- Research the Topic

Before you start writing your essay, it’s important to do some research on gun control.

Read up on the different arguments and viewpoints on the issue to get a better understanding of what you are discussing. Gather as many facts and evidence as you need.

Make sure to take notes, so you can cite anything you use later.

Step 2- Make an Outline

Having a persuasive essay outline will help you stay organized and on track.

Start by making an outline of the main points you want to discuss in your essay. Then, break it down into subsections with specific facts and arguments.

In short, make sure to create a clear structure for your essay.

Step 3- Take a Stance

After doing your research, decide which side of the debate you agree with. Choose one side of the debate. Decide if you're going to argue for or against gun control. Make sure to choose an opinion that you can defend with logical arguments. Moreover, stay consistent throughout your paper about your stance.

Step 4- Support Your Arguments

When making your arguments, make sure to back them up with evidence. Use data, statistics, and quotes from experts to strengthen your points. In addition, you should use rhetorical strategies such as ethos, pathos, and logos to make your essay more effective.

Step 5- Address the Opposition  

Make sure to address any counterarguments that you come across while researching or writing your essay. This will show your readers that you have done your research and considered both sides of the argument.

Step  6- Proofread and Revise

Before submitting your paper, make sure to proofread for any mistakes or typos. Having a second pair of eyes look over your work can help catch any errors that you may have missed.

Take your time to revise and edit your essay. Make sure that each point is clearly laid out and supported with facts, figures, and logic. This is important to make sure that the essay is compelling and error-free!

Persuasive Essay Topics about Gun Control

Wondering which gun topic you should write about? Here are a few persuasive essay topics related to gun control that you can choose.

  • The Impact of Stricter Gun Control Laws on Reducing Gun Violence
  • The Role of Background Checks in Preventing Firearms Access for Criminals
  • Mental Health and Gun Control: Addressing the Connection
  • Gun Control vs. Second Amendment Rights: Finding a Balance
  • The Necessity of Banning Assault Weapons for Public Safety
  • Why Gun Control Won’t End School Shootings
  • The Influence of Lobbying Groups like the NRA on Gun Control Policies
  • The International Perspective: Comparing Gun Control Measures in Different Countries
  • How Can Gun Control Help Suicide Prevention
  • The Economics of Gun Control: Analyzing the Costs and Benefits of Stricter Regulations

Want persuasive topics on other subjects? Check out our list of 200+ engaging and interesting persuasive essay topics to get topic ideas.

To sum it up for you,

Gun control is an important issue that needs to be discussed in our society. The example essays in this blog have helped to show different arguments for and against gun control. In addition, you got some useful steps on how to write a persuasive essay about this topic.

Whether you are for or against gun control, make sure to conduct thorough research and use evidence when writing your paper.

So keep these steps in mind and start writing your own gun control essay today!

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Persuasive Essay

How to start a persuasive speech on gun control?

How to start a persuasive speech on gun control.

To start a persuasive speech on gun control, begin with a startling statistic or a powerful anecdote that illustrates the impact of gun violence. This will grab your audience’s attention and set the stage for your persuasive argument.

What are the current gun control laws in the United States?

The current gun control laws in the United States vary by state, but there are federal regulations in place as well, including background checks for firearms purchases.

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What are some common arguments for gun control?

Some common arguments for gun control include reducing gun violence, preventing mass shootings, and keeping firearms out of the hands of individuals who pose a danger to themselves or others.

What are some common arguments against gun control?

Common arguments against gun control include the Second Amendment right to bear arms, the idea that gun control won’t stop criminals from obtaining firearms, and the belief that responsible gun ownership should not be restricted.

Does gun control actually reduce gun violence?

There is mixed evidence on the impact of gun control on gun violence, but some studies have shown that stricter gun laws are associated with lower rates of gun-related deaths.

What are the different types of gun control measures?

Gun control measures can include background checks, waiting periods for firearm purchases, restrictions on certain types of firearms, and red flag laws that allow weapons to be temporarily confiscated from individuals deemed to be a risk.

What is the history of gun control in the United States?

The history of gun control in the United States spans from early colonial laws regulating firearms to more recent federal legislation, such as the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act and the Assault Weapons Ban.

What role does gun control play in preventing mass shootings?

Advocates of gun control argue that stricter laws can help prevent mass shootings by limiting access to firearms for individuals who may be inclined to carry out such attacks.

How does gun control impact responsible gun owners?

Gun control measures can impact responsible gun owners by requiring them to undergo background checks, adhere to waiting periods, and follow regulations on the types of firearms they can purchase and own.

What are some specific examples of successful gun control policies?

Countries such as Australia and Japan have implemented successful gun control policies, including buyback programs and strict regulations on firearm ownership, resulting in significant reductions in gun violence.

What are the biggest obstacles to enacting gun control laws?

The biggest obstacles to enacting gun control laws in the United States include political polarization, powerful lobbying efforts from gun rights organizations, and deep-seated cultural attitudes towards firearms.

How do public opinion and attitudes towards gun control impact legislative efforts?

Public opinion and attitudes towards gun control play a significant role in shaping legislative efforts, with shifts in public sentiment often influencing the introduction and passage of gun control laws.

Are there any restrictions on the types of firearms that can be owned in the United States?

There are restrictions on certain types of firearms in the United States, such as fully automatic weapons, which are heavily regulated under the National Firearms Act.

What is the relationship between mental health and gun control?

The relationship between mental health and gun control is a complex and highly debated issue, with some arguing for stronger restrictions on firearms for individuals with mental health issues and others cautioning against stigmatizing mental illness.

How do different countries approach gun control?

Different countries approach gun control in various ways, with some implementing strict regulations and others taking a more permissive approach. The effectiveness of these approaches can vary widely.

What is the potential impact of technology on gun control?

Advances in technology, such as smart gun technology and tracking systems for firearms, have the potential to impact gun control by making it harder for guns to be used by unauthorized individuals and easier for law enforcement to trace firearms.

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Gun Control Argumentative Essay: 160 Topics + How-to Guide [2024]

After the recent heartbreaking mass shootings, the gun control debate has reached its boiling point.

Our specialists will write a custom essay specially for you!

Do we need stricter gun control laws ? Should everyone get a weapon to oppose crime? Or should guns be banned overall? You have the opportunity to air your opinion in a gun control argumentative essay.

Below, you’ll find everything you need to write a great paper in no time. Check weighty arguments, catchy gun control essay titles, and the latest sources on the subject.

Don’t forget to check our writing service . With it, you can get your gun control essay done just in a few hours.

🔝 Top 10 Gun Control Essay Titles

💥 take a stand in the gun control debate.

  • 👍 Pro Gun Control Essay Topics

👎 Against Gun Control Essay Topics

⚡ gun violence essay titles, ⚖️ gun laws essay topics to explore, 🔫 gun control controversial topics for a research paper, 🔰 pros and cons of gun control, ✍️ 5 steps in writing a gun control essay.

  • 🤔 Frequent Questions
  • Does gun ownership deter crime?
  • Ethics of owning guns for sport.
  • Gun control laws and suicide rate.
  • Do weapons bring a sense of safety?
  • Guns and domestic abuse protection.
  • Do gun control laws reduce gun deaths?
  • Gun control laws and government tyranny.
  • Are gun control laws invasion of privacy?
  • Should high-capacity magazines be banned?
  • Gun control as a way to reduce the crime rate.

Did you know that 33 people are killed with guns every day in America? This is one of the numbers you can use in your essay on gun control. Are you ready to learn more reasons both for and against gun control? Here they are, in a nutshell:

Have you chosen which side you’re on? Great! Now you already have solid background knowledge on the issue.

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The information above will help you write an outstanding essay on gun control. Moreover, you can easily proofread it using Grammarly and avoid common grammar mistakes.

👀 150 Catchy Gun Control Topics

Do you want to know the next step toward your A+ gun control essay? It’s a catchy title that expresses your standpoint and grabs your readers’ interest.

Here are some examples.

👍 Pro-Gun Control Essay Topics

Arms possession is a right enshrined in the US constitution. Yet, more and more people voice their concerns about owning firearms. Mass shootings, suicides, and abuse are among the top arguments for stricter laws. Here, we’ve collected plenty of insightful pro-gun control topics for you to explore.

  • Pro-gun radicalism and American fears. Guns and fear often go hand in hand. Studies suggest that gun owners are more prone to phobias and distrust. The topic requires showing the irrational essence of gun ownership .
  • Being pro-gun equals being anti-women. Firearms make domestic violence a lot more likely to end in death. Prohibiting gun access for abusers could save women’s lives.
  • Why background checks don’t always work. Background checks are essential. Yet, they don’t always prevent ineligible individuals from acquiring a firearm . This “why we need gun control” essay shines a light on the procedure’s flaws.
  • The economic burden of firearms. This topic concerns the costs linked to gun-related injuries and deaths. These preventable expenditures strain the US economy. You can underline the necessity of gun control to alleviate the problem.
  • Gun control to protect schools from firearms. Schools are at the heart of the anti-gun movement. Meanwhile, gun control plays a vital role in preserving safety in educational facilities. An essay could communicate the intricate connection between the two.
  • Kids are not ok: pediatric gun-related injuries and deaths. Children often become victims of gun violence. The number of pediatric firearm-related injuries and deaths is disproportionate. Should parents remove all guns from their households to protect their kids?
  • Rising gun deaths: a call for action. The high firearm-related death rate is a notorious problem. In the United States, the number is consistently above average. In this gun control argumentative essay, it becomes a reason for stricter gun policies.
  • Reducing firearm ownership is not decreasing civil liberties . The topic handles primary gun control opponents’ counterarguments. The key reasoning is that gun ownership is not a universal human right. In this essay, you can explore the notion of civil liberties .
  • Suicide and the availability of guns. Gun control topics are rarely concerned with suicide. It’s an essential yet underexplored and part of it. You can show how stricter gun control would help reduce suicide rates .
  • More guns, more shootings : understanding gun control. This topic requires exploring the link between firearms and shootings. You can use gun ownership and mass shooting rates to prove your point. In this pro-gun control essay, statistical information is instrumental.
  • Gun control as an answer to violent murders.
  • Do firearm restrictions harm democracy?
  • The perverseness of being pro-life and pro-gun.
  • Do guns in households cause more accidental deaths?
  • Why are some people scared of stricter gun control ?
  • Debunking “guns for self-defense ” myths.
  • Gun control’s positive impact on hospitalization rates.
  • Does better gun control improve life quality?
  • Firearms and suicidal behavior : another case for restrictions.
  • What fears drive opponents of gun laws ?
  • Do firearms restrictions increase the value of life?
  • Do gun laws reduce societal costs?
  • Restricting the carry of firearms for societal benefit.
  • Does pro-gun activism favor domestic abusers?
  • Firearms: used far less for defense than for attacks.
  • More guns – more violence
  • Stop the wrong people from getting guns
  • Revision of the Second Amendment to prevent human tragedies
  • The Second Amendment and gun control can co-exist
  • The thin line between self-defense and deadly force

Stricter laws can’t solve every problem. In cases such as prostitution and drug use, they are even detrimental. But does this reasoning also apply to gun control? Find it out by discussing its disadvantages with one of the following engaging prompts:

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  • Gun control laws : a waste of taxpayers’ money. Firearm restrictions have economic consequences. Additional gun control measures are not free— they require more monetary resources. Besides, stricter gun control deprives many citizens of firearm-related jobs.
  • Firearm regulations deny the right to self-defense . Self-defense is a constitutional right granted by the Founding Fathers. When an attacker is armed, defensive gun use remains the only option. Gun control diminishes the capacity of citizens to protect themselves.
  • Guns don’t breed crime—society does. Crime is a colossal social challenge. It is vital to direct resources for crime prevention and management. Yet, gun control is not the ultimate solution to this problem.
  • Gun control laws are not fruitful . One of the purposes of gun control is to curb the gun violence epidemic. Yet, whether it works or not is debatable. This “is greater gun control a great idea” essay demonstrates gun control’s ineffectiveness.
  • Gun control : limiting citizens’ freedoms. Gun control is not only fruitless, but it’s also unconstitutional. The right to possess and carry guns is civil liberty. Firearm restrictions violate the essence of the country’s constitution.
  • Gun ownership increases the sense of security. Besides, firearms perform an important psychological function. They give their owners a sense of safety, bringing emotional comfort. Gun control takes away the knowledge that one can protect oneself.
  • Firearms black market: a bigger problem. Gun control will not prevent determined individuals from obtaining firearms. Restricting access to legal guns could prompt people to buy weapons from black markets.
  • Knives, hardware, and vehicles are lethal weapons , too. Firearms are only a small part of a criminal’s arsenal. For instance, they frequently use cars as deadly weapons. Firearm control can’t always prevent those determined to harm someone from doing it.
  • Eliminating guns: an oversimplified approach. Gun control proponents often oversimplify the problem. Access to firearms is not the root cause of gun-related deaths and violence. The phenomenon has multiple origins that you could examine.
  • Disarming Americans kills their national identity. Guns are deeply ingrained in American culture and national identity. The right to bear them has a profound symbolic notion. This “against gun control” essay covers the meaning of firearms in American nationhood.
  • Gun control hinders African American emancipation.
  • How does gun control incite government tyranny?
  • Gun control doesn’t prevent violent behavior.
  • The racist history behind firearm restrictions .
  • The Second Amendment: the cornerstone of gun rights .
  • Firearms as an answer to domestic violence .
  • Would gun control make the country safer ?
  • Firearm ownership : gaining control over life.
  • Gun control and the demise of democracy.
  • The empowering role of firearms .
  • Gun control as a method of disabling citizens.
  • What’s your position on the statement: “ Assault is not a weapon but a behavior”?
  • Why gun control laws should be scrapped .
  • Is there a link between firearm ownership and crime ?
  • Banning guns means more black markets.
  • Gun control is not the answer – education is
  • Gun culture propaganda starts with cartoons
  • Mass media is to blame: murder is an easy route to fame
  • Gun control : why not ban everything that poses a potential threat?
  • Criminals don’t obey gun control laws

Firearm violence has developed into a significant human rights issue. It affects our right to life and health. Not only that, but it can also limit our access to education. Gun violence disrupts school processes and endangers student safety. An essay on this issue gives you many different directions to explore.

  • Firearm violence as a racial equity challenge. Studies have shown that some ethnicities are more likely to experience gun violence than others. African Americans , in particular, are affected by the issue. Your essay can investigate how firearm violence reflects and aggravates discrimination.
  • The relationship between mental health and mass shootings. Mental illness is the prime suspect as the root of gun violence. Researchers often consider it a determiner for mass shootings . For this topic, it’s vital to analyze literature regarding the correlation.
  • Preventing and responding to firearm-related deaths. Each year, thousands of US citizens die due to gun violence . As the rate of firearm death rises, the issue becomes exponentially troubling. Decreasing the gun-related mortality rate is a topic of high priority.
  • The socio-economic roots of firearm violence . Gun violence has pronounced socio-economic causes. Low income and life in a deprived neighborhood are among the most significant risk factors. Examining how certain circumstances prompt gun violence is instrumental in alleviating the issue.
  • Long-term psychological effects of gun violence . Survivors and witnesses of gun violence experience grave psychological consequences, including PTSD and depression. Your essay can present gun violence as an extremely traumatic event.
  • The contagion effect in mass shootings . The contagion effect describes the spread of behavior. You can use it to explain the epidemic of gun violence. The topic requires you to look into the phenomenon.
  • Intimate partner violence : the role of firearms. The severity of intimate partner violence is related to how accessible guns are to abusers. Many domestic homicides involve the use of weapons. This gun ownership essay prompts to explain how firearms contribute to the phenomenon.
  • Mass shootings and weapon availability. This topic prompts you to investigate the mass shootings aspect of gun violence. In particular, it’s concerned with the link between gun accessibility and mass murder . You could use quotes and statistics regarding gun laws to establish the connection.
  • Gun violence : A poignant human rights issue. Firearm violence causes psychological, social, and financial harm. Its victims suffer from long-term consequences in the form of mental disorders. It’s unwise to overestimate the issue’s global burden.
  • Gun violence against women and girls. Firearms violence negatively impacts the life quality of women. Women and girls frequently become victims of gun attacks. Here, you could discuss how deep-seated misogyny contributes to the problem.

Stephen King quote.

  • The global burden of guns .
  • Firearms violence: A community health problem .
  • The reasons behind gun violence in the United States .
  • A gender profile of firearm violence .
  • School shootings : portrayal in media.
  • What are the economic consequences of firearm violence?
  • Preventing gun violence in vulnerable neighborhoods.
  • The role of toxic masculinity in gun violence .
  • Discuss the effect of firearm ownership regulations .
  • How can the government reduce firearm violence in low-income neighborhoods?
  • Psychological consequences of school shootings.
  • Supporting school shooting survivors.
  • What are the effects of gun ownership on violence?
  • The epidemiology of mass shootings .
  • Mass shootings from a sociological perspective.
  • Fighting against gun violence: social activism .
  • Gun violence : the primary cause of premature death.
  • What ethical problems occur regarding mass shootings ?
  • How does the media promote gun violence?
  • The health implications of gun violence .

Gun laws are vital to ensure the safe handling and purchase of firearms. Regulations come from the federal as well the state level. It makes gun laws confusing for many. If you’d like to entangle the issue, this section is for you.

  • Major loopholes in gun laws . Federal and state laws are vulnerable to exploitation. It means they contain gaps endangering public safety. The “Charleston loophole” is the most notorious example. You can inspect it along with other deficiencies.
  • Gun laws : too strict or too weak? The harshness of gun laws is a debatable issue. Given the present gun violence epidemic, the answer might appear evident. Still, this topic encourages viewing the problem from multiple perspectives.
  • Prohibiting the possession of assault weapons. Assault weapons are another intriguing facet of America’s gun problem. Currently, there is no federal law prohibiting their ownership. Using such a weapon in a shooting increases mortality and traumatism.
  • The problem with private gun sales. Private firearms trade results in excessive gun accessibility. Private sellers are allowed to bypass crucial standards such as sales recordkeeping. The situation poses a threat to communal well-being.
  • Mental illness in the context of firearms control legislation. In the context of gun laws, mental illness is a prominent notion. The term and its usage in state and federal laws have nuances. You can interpret them in your essay.
  • Using deadly force to defend property. Firearms constitute a part of the “deadly force” notion. Regarding the defense of private property, its use is not always justifiable. This gun law essay proposes to reflect on the norms of firearm use.
  • Nuances and limitations of the stand-your-ground law. The stand-your-ground law is the subject of heated debate. It’s easy to misinterpret it. It most notably concerns the boundaries of gun use. Yet, knowing what is allowed is essential in self-defense .
  • The need for federal registration laws. Although there is no national gun registry, its introduction could be beneficial. It would allow law enforcement agencies to track firearms more efficiently. In your essay, you could research other advantages of federal registration as well.
  • Differences in gun laws at the state level . Besides federal laws, each state has its own firearms policies. Federal and state regulations tend to vary considerably. It could be interesting to analyze how gun use and possession regulations differ from state to state.
  • Buying guns without a background check: a dangerous loophole. Background checks are indispensable under federal law . Still, a loophole makes it possible to sell firearms to incompetent and dangerous individuals. Say what could be done to make background checks more efficient.
  • Are tougher gun laws a solution?
  • Politically polarizing firearm policies .
  • What are the public’s views of federal firearms laws?
  • Gun licenses and political affiliation.
  • Firearm registration and accessibility of guns to criminals .
  • Gun laws : State vs. Federal.
  • How are state gun laws and firearm mortality connected?
  • Gun laws from the constitutional point of view .
  • Understanding the duty to retreat in US legislation.
  • Gun-friendly state laws and criminality.

22% of gun owners in America haven't passed a background check.

  • Open carry and concealed carry laws.
  • The extent of federal gun laws .
  • Concealed carry: not covered by the Second Amendment .
  • Should the US government enforce firearm registration?
  • Limiting concealed carry under the influence.
  • Weaker gun laws equal less public safety.
  • Gun control policies: Democrats vs. Republicans.
  • The benefits of a universal background check.
  • Analyze gun laws in the state of Missouri .
  • Restoring the federal assault weapons ban.

There are few topics more controversial than gun control. That’s why it’s the perfect base for a good debate. Controversies surrounding gun control include questions of race, gender, and ethics.

  • Gun ownership: gender, ethnicity, and class . The demographic portrait of a gun owner is a politically loaded subject. Despite the possible implications, it necessitates in-depth research. This topic suggests considering gun owners’ social class, gender, and ethnicity.
  • The racial element in American gun culture . Racism and gun control are more connected than might appear. A range of opinions exists. Evaluating their interconnection might yield compelling results. In your essay, investigate American gun culture through the prism of racial inequality.
  • Firearms ownership: do we need incentives or fees? Gun ownership has several advantages, such as a sense of security . Nevertheless, its less positive effects could eclipse them. Discussing whether gun ownership should be discouraged or encouraged could help you write an engaging paper.
  • The usage of firearms in self-defense. The efficacy and frequency of self-defense weapon use are essential for the gun control debate . Analyzing these factors could help establish the validity of the argument.
  • Gun ownership regulation: the Swiss example. In terms of firearm possession, Switzerland is a liberal country. It has lax laws regarding the acquisition and usage of guns. What can Switzerland teach the US about gun control ?
  • The ethicality of firearm ownership. It is common to examine whether gun ownership is constitutional. Looking at its ethicality is a rarer approach. This controversial gun control essay topic helps to bridge the knowledge gap.
  • Constitutional contradictions regarding gun rights . The Constitution’s meaning is not as self-evident as it may appear. Whether gun rights are constitutional or unconstitutional is at the core of the debate.
  • Do gun rights promote vigilantism? Vigilante violence is a severe community challenge. A vengeful armed vigilante is a threat to their society. In your paper, investigate the role of gun rights in contributing to the problem.
  • Preventing criminals from accessing guns. How effective is gun control in stopping gun violence? Contradictory opinions denying or supporting its productiveness need scrutiny. For this paper, you can use statistics and facts to clarify the situation.
  • The ideology behind gun control and rights. The gun control debate has long gone beyond objective arguments. By now, the problem entails larger political implications. Gun ownership or its absence strongly correlates with political behavior.
  • Interpretations of the Second Amendment regarding gun control .
  • Does unrestricted gun ownership lead to more shootings ?
  • The effectiveness of firearm restrictions.
  • Multiple origins of gun-related crime .
  • Are gun restrictions instrumental for public safety?
  • Gun control as a measure against crime and gun violence .
  • Firearm control rhetoric: an analysis.
  • Should the public use of guns remain legal?
  • Gun control : creating optimal policies.
  • Presidential elections and gun control rhetoric.
  • Limiting access to guns: is it useful or debilitating?
  • Evaluating gun control and its impact on crime.
  • The future of gun laws.
  • The political battle over gun control .
  • Gun policies and common sense.
  • How relevant is firearms control?
  • What effect does gun ownership have on domestic abuse ?
  • The economics of gun control.
  • Gun control: Is it saving lives or narrowing freedoms ?
  • Should you ever be able to buy a gun without a license or permit?

Gun control pros and cons have been discussed and thoroughly analyzed countless times. Both advocates and opponents have stuck to their positions, leaving the issue unresolved. Here are a few important pros and cons:

Points made in support of gun control (pros)

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  • Gun control statistics reveal that although the United States accounts for only 5% of the world’s population, U.S. residents own 50% of guns in the world.
  • When gun deaths statistics for different countries were expressed as the number of gun deaths in a population of a million people, the United States was ranked below South Africa.

Points against gun control (cons)

  • The very idea of gun control goes against the US constitution that allows people the right to safeguard their lives. People need guns to defend themselves when being attacked by others. Additionally, firearms can provide a sense of comfort and security. It would be undemocratic to take away a person’s right to feel safe.
  • Since the Second Amendment upholds the right to gun ownership, it should not be restricted. It seems dangerous to start altering the constitution whenever we see fit. In doing so, we might create a precedent that others can use to promote more harmful agendas.

Whichever side you chose, now you already have a few persuasive arguments. Let’s move on to the actual writing part.

Writing an impressive essay on gun control can be a bit difficult without proper organization. No matter what type of paper you are going to work on, you’ll need some detailed planning and thorough research.

Follow these five steps to write a perfect gun control essay:

  • Define what gun control is. Whether you are writing an argumentative, persuasive, or any other type of paper, the first thing you need is context. Use the definitions that are most appropriate for your essay. For example, you might start with a dictionary definition. Then, add some general facts about types of firearms. Next, you might give statistics on gun control , such as ownership and reasons for it.
  • Write a gun control thesis statement. Besides context and definitions, any essay introduction requires a thesis. It’s the message you’re going to argue in the following paragraphs. So, work on it before writing the rest of the paper. Make sure your gun control thesis statement is concise and easy to understand. You can use an online thesis generator if that requirement is hard for you to achieve.
  • One option is to use studies that have collected plentiful information over the years.
  • If you are writing a pro-gun control essay, you can use studies or statistics on how guns owned by private citizens have killed innocent people. You can also cite cases where students used their parents’ guns to commit violent crimes in school.
  • If you are arguing against gun control, cite studies proving that private gun ownership saves lives. You could also add research revealing the positive effects of gun ownership.
  • Organize your paper. Of course, the content and organization vary for each particular essay. The facts remain the same. It is the way that you arrange and present them that will create a concrete argument. That’s why you should make sure to draft an outline before you get started.
  • End with a strong conclusion. In there, you should summarize your essay and reiterate the most important points. Don’t forget to restate and develop your statement based on the facts you mentioned. If it’s not an argumentative essay, present your findings and suggestions about the issue.

John McGinnis Quote.

As you can see, writing an impressive gun control essay takes time and effort. It also requires deep research. If you’re finding this task too challenging, you can order an essay from our custom writing service. We provide 100% original papers at reasonable prices.

You might also be interested in:

  • Top Ideas for Argumentative or Persuasive Essay Topics
  • Best Argumentative Research Paper Topics
  • 97 Inspirational & Motivational Argumentative Essay Topics
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  • Proposal Essay Topics and Ideas – Easy and Interesting
  • Free Exemplification Essay Examples

🤔 Gun Control FAQ

To create a great title, you should express your point of view in a concise and eye-catching manner. A creative title grabs your readers’ interest. Try to make up an unusual keyword combination, or paraphrase a metaphor or a set expression. Using two opposite ideas works well, too.

If you want to spark a discussion, you need to make an educated standpoint choice. For a good debate essay, make sure to thoroughly study the topic. A list of pros and cons will help you gain a deeper insight. Then decide where you stand before you start writing.

Good persuasive topics provoke emotions. A great topic for an essay is an issue that concerns nearly everyone in society. For example, gun control or animal testing may be good topics for college essays.

Good thesis statements give a clearly formulated opinion. You need to state whether you are for or against gun control. Either way, the author’s position must be based on convincing arguments and facts.

🔗 References

  • Gun Control Latest Events
  • The Link Between Firearms, Crime and Gun Control
  • Gun Control Pros and Cons
  • Second Amendment: Right to Bear Arms
  • A Brief History of the National Rifle Association
  • Gun Control Essays at Bartleby
  • Argumentative Essays on Gun Control
  • Gun Control Issues, Public Health, and Safety
  • Universal Background Checks: Giffords
  • Gun Violence: Amnesty International
  • Facts on US Gun Ownership: Pew Research Center
  • Gun Control in the US: Encyclopedia Britannica
  • Gun Control: The Debate and Public Policy: Social Studies
  • Guns and Gun Control: The New York Times
  • Gun Control Topic Overview: Gale
  • US Gun Policy: Global Comparisons: Council of Foreign Relations
  • US Gun Debate: Four Dates that Explain How We Got Here: BBC News
  • Gun Control and Gun Rights: US News
  • Why Gun Control Is So Contentious in the US: Live Science
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my thing is this it’s not the guns it’s people now if we could make it to where you’ll have to possess a gun ownership license kinda like a drivers license that would solve most problems don’t you think

Custom Writing

I agree with you, Richard.

I am trying to cite this website for my English paper on “NoodleTools” and there are multiple things I can’t find. Like the publisher, publication date, “permalink,” and more. I really like this article though!

Grace, glad you liked the article! Regarding the question about citing, maybe this page will help you somehow:

My opinion if I may is that guns should be in the hands of law enforcement and military. If a person wants a gun for protection they only need to call 911 on their cell or landline if a person is frightened to take steps which are many, to ensure your safety guns do kill people and there have been far too many innocent people dying! Football games schools churches concerts outdoor activities and or indoor activities places just about anywhere and people in danger it is terrible. What has become to civilization where people are going about their innocent daily lives and get killed!!!!! What is wrong with this picture? Many years ago American citizens did not have to live in such danger as it is today, the government does nothing including NRA. Congress does nothing, sadly we live in a dangerous and volatile world and something needs to be done about this to prevent innocent children and adults from dangerous people who have guns in their hands the government should protect America from harm and danger!!!!

This helped me with my essay due. I wanted to do it on gun control, but I had no idea where to start. This really helped to develop my thesis statement and claim to turn in. Now I just have to write 8 pages on it. 🙂 Wish me luck, lol.

Do you still have a copy of this essay ?

Good luck, Danielle! 🙂 Glad the article was useful for you.

I think you should add how guns can be a big cause in the world because guns are a bad thing.

Thanks for the advice, Robert!

This helped me with a 5-paragraph essay I need due.

I’m happy the article was useful for you, Dulce!

This article saved me so much time, thank you!!!

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Persuasive Essay Writing

Persuasive Essay About Gun Control

Cathy A.

Persuasive Essay About Gun Control - Best Examples for Students

Published on: Jan 9, 2023

Last updated on: Jan 29, 2024

persuasive essay about gun control

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Gun control is such an issue that often evokes strong opinions from all sides. While some argue that guns should be banned altogether, others think gun ownership is a fundamental right. 

It can be tricky to navigate this complex topic if you're tasked with writing a persuasive essay on gun control. 

But don't worry – we're here to help! 

In this blog, we'll outline the basics of gun control essays and offer examples for crafting a persuasive argument. 

Let's get started!

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Persuasive Essay Examples on Gun Control

Gun control is an incredibly controversial and divisive issue in the United States, with strong opinions on both sides.

Writing a persuasive essay on this topic is not an easy task. 

To effectively write an essay on gun control, you must have a clear opinion on the subject you want to defend throughout your paper. 

The following are some good examples of persuasive essays on gun control that you can use to help guide your writing.

Essay Examples on Gun Control

Persuasive Essay Against Gun Control

In a persuasive essay against gun control, it is important to explain why gun control has the potential to infringe upon individual rights. 

Here is an example of a persuasive essay against gun control:  

Persuasive Essay on Pro-Gun Control

One of the most controversial topics surrounding gun control is pro-gun control. 

In a persuasive essay, the writer may argue in favor of pro-gun control and provide examples to support their stance. 

Here are a few examples of persuasive essays on pro-gun control. 

Short Persuasive Essay on Pro-Gun Control

Argumentative Essay About Gun Control

An argumentative essay on gun control is an academic piece that presents both sides and provides evidence supporting one side. 

Here are a few examples.

Short Argumentative Essay About Gun Control

Check out these examples of argumentative essays on gun control. 

Short Argumentative Essay on Pro-Gun Control

Tough Essay Due? Hire a Writer!

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Tips to Write a Persuasive Essay

Persuasive essays can be tricky. Still, with some tips from the experts, you'll be able to write one that truly convinces your reader of your argument. 

So what are you waiting for? Check out these six tips for persuasive essay writing!

Choose Your Position

Before beginning the writing process, decide which side of the argument you will take and state it clearly in your thesis statement. 

Choose a Strong Thesis Statement

The thesis statement is your argument boiled down to one sentence. It should clearly state your opinion on the topic and give a sense of direction for the rest of the essay. 

Research Extensively

To make a good persuasive essay, you need to back up your opinion with facts, figures, and other research. 

Take the time to explore all sides of the issue and consider different points of view. Make sure your evidence is both relevant and reliable.

Check out this video explaining essential tips and tricks for writing a persuasive essay.

Create an Outline 

A good persuasive essay has a clear structure that is easy for the reader to follow. An outline can help you organize your ideas and arguments to flow logically.

Check out our amazing blog on how to write a persuasive essay outline here. 

Use Strong Language

Choose words that are powerful and precise. Powerful language can make your argument more convincing. Take the time to craft sentences that make an impact. 

Make It Personal

Connect with readers on an emotional level by sharing stories and experiences. This will help you to create a connection between your argument and the reader. It will make them more likely to agree with you.

Edit Thoroughly

Take the time to edit your essay, so it’s clear and concise. Check for grammar or spelling mistakes and arguments that don’t make sense. 

Thorough editing can also help you remove unnecessary information, making your essay more persuasive. 

These tips should help you write a strong and effective persuasive essay. 

Persuasive Essay Topics About Gun Control

Let’s explore a few persuasive essay topics about gun control that might help get your point across.

  • Should the government implement stricter gun control regulations?
  • How can Congress work to reduce gun-related deaths and injuries? 
  • Is the Second Amendment an outdated law that should be revised? 
  • Should individuals be allowed to carry firearms in public places? 
  • Are laws requiring background checks on gun purchases effective? 
  • Are concealed carry laws a good idea? 
  • What are the risks and benefits of having private citizens own guns? 
  • Should states have the right to set their gun laws? 
  • Is there a role for mental health professionals in developing gun control policies? 
  • How can we prevent children from accessing firearms? 
  • What role does the media influencing people’s opinions on gun control? 
  • Does the NRA hold too much sway over legislators regarding gun control laws? 
  • Is stricter gun control legislation the best way to reduce mass shootings? 
  • Are smart gun technologies viable for promoting responsible firearm ownership? 
  • How can we work together to create more effective gun control laws?

Take a look at more detailed  persuasive essay topics  to get inspired.

Whether you are for or against gun control, conduct thorough research and use evidence when writing your paper.

So keep these tips in mind and start writing your gun control essay today!

So here you have it! We’ve provided excellent examples of persuasive essays on gun control for your reference, but don’t stop there!

Take a look at our website and see how our persuasive essay writing service can help you take your writing skills to the next level. 

Our expert persuasive essay writer is here to help to craft a compelling essay in no time. Our online essay writing service is available to you 24/7. Just complete the easy order process, and our essay writer will start working to deliver a masterpiece to you. 

At, we are experts at helping students write essays that will get them the grades they need and want.

Try our AI essay generator and breeze through your assignments today!

Frequently asked Questions

What should be included in a persuasive essay outline.

A persuasive essay outline should include the thesis, evidence, counterarguments, and conclusion. It is important to structure your argument logically to effectively communicate your point of view to readers.

How do I write a strong persuasive essay?

To write a strong persuasive essay, you should start by thoroughly researching your topic and familiarizing yourself with both sides of the argument. You should structure your essay using an effective introduction, body paragraphs, and conclusion. 

What are good sources for writing a persuasive essay?

When writing a persuasive essay, it is important to use credible sources. Examples of good sources include scholarly journals, government documents, and reputable websites. Make sure you check the credibility of any source before using it in your essay.

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persuasive speech on gun laws

  • White House

Read Barack Obama’s Speech on New Gun Control Measures

P resident Barack Obama unveiled a new set of executive actions aimed at limiting gun violence in a press conference Tuesday from the White House. The efforts largely center on more stringent background checks.

Here’s a full transcript of his remarks.

THE PRESIDENT: Mark, I want to thank you for your introduction. I still remember the first time we met, the time we spent together, and the conversation we had about Daniel. And that changed me that day. And my hope, earnestly, has been that it would change the country. Five years ago this week, a sitting member of Congress and 18 others were shot at, at a supermarket in Tucson, Arizona. It wasn’t the first time I had to talk to the nation in response to a mass shooting, nor would it be the last. Fort Hood. Binghamton. Aurora. Oak Creek. Newtown. The Navy Yard. Santa Barbara. Charleston. San Bernardino. Too many. AUDIENCE MEMBER: Too many. AUDIENCE MEMBER: Too many. AUDIENCE MEMBER: Too many. THE PRESIDENT: Thanks to a great medical team and the love of her husband, Mark, my dear friend and colleague, Gabby Giffords, survived. She’s here with us today, with her wonderful mom. (Applause.) Thanks to a great medical team, her wonderful husband, Mark — who, by the way, the last time I met with Mark — this is just a small aside — you may know Mark’s twin brother is in outer space. (Laughter.) He came to the office, and I said, how often are you talking to him? And he says, well, I usually talk to him every day, but the call was coming in right before the meeting so I think I may have not answered his call — (laughter) — which made me feel kind of bad. (Laughter.) That’s a long-distance call. (Laughter.) So I told him if his brother, Scott, is calling today, that he should take it. (Laughter.) Turn the ringer on. (Laughter.) I was there with Gabby when she was still in the hospital, and we didn’t think necessarily at that point that she was going to survive. And that visit right before a memorial — about an hour later Gabby first opened her eyes. And I remember talking to mom about that. But I know the pain that she and her family have endured these past five years, and the rehabilitation and the work and the effort to recover from shattering injuries. And then I think of all the Americans who aren’t as fortunate. Every single year, more than 30,000 Americans have their lives cut short by guns — 30,000. Suicides. Domestic violence. Gang shootouts. Accidents. Hundreds of thousands of Americans have lost brothers and sisters, or buried their own children. Many have had to learn to live with a disability, or learned to live without the love of their life. A number of those people are here today. They can tell you some stories. In this room right here, there are a lot of stories. There’s a lot of heartache. There’s a lot of resilience, there’s a lot of strength, but there’s also a lot of pain. And this is just a small sample. The United States of America is not the only country on Earth with violent or dangerous people. We are not inherently more prone to violence. But we are the only advanced country on Earth that sees this kind of mass violence erupt with this kind of frequency. It doesn’t happen in other advanced countries. It’s not even close. And as I’ve said before, somehow we’ve become numb to it and we start thinking that this is normal. And instead of thinking about how to solve the problem, this has become one of our most polarized, partisan debates — despite the fact that there’s a general consensus in America about what needs to be done. That’s part of the reason why, on Thursday, I’m going to hold a town hall meeting in Virginia on gun violence. Because my goal here is to bring good people on both sides of this issue together for an open discussion. I’m not on the ballot again. I’m not looking to score some points. I think we can disagree without impugning other people’s motives or without being disagreeable. We don’t need to be talking past one another. But we do have to feel a sense of urgency about it. In Dr. King’s words, we need to feel the “fierce urgency of now.” Because people are dying. And the constant excuses for inaction no longer do, no longer suffice. That’s why we’re here today. Not to debate the last mass shooting, but to do something to try to prevent the next one. (Applause.) To prove that the vast majority of Americans, even if our voices aren’t always the loudest or most extreme, care enough about a little boy like Daniel to come together and take common-sense steps to save lives and protect more of our children. Now, I want to be absolutely clear at the start — and I’ve said this over and over again, this also becomes routine, there is a ritual about this whole thing that I have to do — I believe in the Second Amendment. It’s there written on the paper. It guarantees a right to bear arms. No matter how many times people try to twist my words around — I taught constitutional law, I know a little about this — (applause) — I get it. But I also believe that we can find ways to reduce gun violence consistent with the Second Amendment. I mean, think about it. We all believe in the First Amendment, the guarantee of free speech, but we accept that you can’t yell “fire” in a theater. We understand there are some constraints on our freedom in order to protect innocent people. We cherish our right to privacy, but we accept that you have to go through metal detectors before being allowed to board a plane. It’s not because people like doing that, but we understand that that’s part of the price of living in a civilized society. And what’s often ignored in this debate is that a majority of gun owners actually agree. A majority of gun owners agree that we can respect the Second Amendment while keeping an irresponsible, law-breaking feud from inflicting harm on a massive scale. Today, background checks are required at gun stores. If a father wants to teach his daughter how to hunt, he can walk into a gun store, get a background check, purchase his weapon safely and responsibly. This is not seen as an infringement on the Second Amendment. Contrary to the claims of what some gun rights proponents have suggested, this hasn’t been the first step in some slippery slope to mass confiscation. Contrary to claims of some presidential candidates, apparently, before this meeting, this is not a plot to take away everybody’s guns. You pass a background check; you purchase a firearm. The problem is some gun sellers have been operating under a different set of rules. A violent felon can buy the exact same weapon over the Internet with no background check, no questions asked. A recent study found that about one in 30 people looking to buy guns on one website had criminal records — one out of 30 had a criminal record. We’re talking about individuals convicted of serious crimes — aggravated assault, domestic violence, robbery, illegal gun possession. People with lengthy criminal histories buying deadly weapons all too easily. And this was just one website within the span of a few months. So we’ve created a system in which dangerous people are allowed to play by a different set of rules than a responsible gun owner who buys his or her gun the right way and subjects themselves to a background check. That doesn’t make sense. Everybody should have to abide by the same rules. Most Americans and gun owners agree. And that’s what we tried to change three years ago, after 26 Americans -– including 20 children -– were murdered at Sandy Hook Elementary. Two United States Senators -– Joe Manchin, a Democrat from West Virginia, and Pat Toomey, a Republican from Pennsylvania, both gun owners, both strong defenders of our Second Amendment rights, both with “A” grades from the NRA –- that’s hard to get — worked together in good faith, consulting with folks like our Vice President, who has been a champion on this for a long time, to write a common-sense compromise bill that would have required virtually everyone who buys a gun to get a background check. That was it. Pretty common-sense stuff. Ninety percent of Americans supported that idea. Ninety percent of Democrats in the Senate voted for that idea. But it failed because 90 percent of Republicans in the Senate voted against that idea. How did this become such a partisan issue? Republican President George W. Bush once said, “I believe in background checks at gun shows or anywhere to make sure that guns don’t get into the hands of people that shouldn’t have them.” Senator John McCain introduced a bipartisan measure to address the gun show loophole, saying, “We need this amendment because criminals and terrorists have exploited and are exploiting this very obvious loophole in our gun safety laws.” Even the NRA used to support expanded background checks. And by the way, most of its members still do. Most Republican voters still do. How did we get here? How did we get to the place where people think requiring a comprehensive background check means taking away people’s guns? Each time this comes up, we are fed the excuse that common-sense reforms like background checks might not have stopped the last massacre, or the one before that, or the one before that, so why bother trying. I reject that thinking. (Applause.) We know we can’t stop every act of violence, every act of evil in the world. But maybe we could try to stop one act of evil, one act of violence. Some of you may recall, at the same time that Sandy Hook happened, a disturbed person in China took a knife and tried to kill — with a knife — a bunch of children in China. But most of them survived because he didn’t have access to a powerful weapon. We maybe can’t save everybody, but we could save some. Just as we don’t prevent all traffic accidents but we take steps to try to reduce traffic accidents. As Ronald Reagan once said, if mandatory background checks could save more lives, “it would be well worth making it the law of the land.” The bill before Congress three years ago met that test. Unfortunately, too many senators failed theirs. (Applause.) In fact, we know that background checks make a difference. After Connecticut passed a law requiring background checks and gun safety courses, gun deaths decreased by 40 percent — 40 percent. (Applause.) Meanwhile, since Missouri repealed a law requiring comprehensive background checks and purchase permits, gun deaths have increased to almost 50 percent higher than the national average. One study found, unsurprisingly, that criminals in Missouri now have easier access to guns. And the evidence tells us that in states that require background checks, law-abiding Americans don’t find it any harder to purchase guns whatsoever. Their guns have not been confiscated. Their rights have not been infringed. And that’s just the information we have access to. With more research, we could further improve gun safety. Just as with more research, we’ve reduced traffic fatalities enormously over the last 30 years. We do research when cars, food, medicine, even toys harm people so that we make them safer. And you know what — research, science — those are good things. They work. (Laughter and applause.) They do. But think about this. When it comes to an inherently deadly weapon — nobody argues that guns are potentially deadly — weapons that kill tens of thousands of Americans every year, Congress actually voted to make it harder for public health experts to conduct research into gun violence; made it harder to collect data and facts and develop strategies to reduce gun violence. Even after San Bernardino, they’ve refused to make it harder for terror suspects who can’t get on a plane to buy semi-automatic weapons. That’s not right. That can’t be right. So the gun lobby may be holding Congress hostage right now, but they cannot hold America hostage. (Applause.) We do not have to accept this carnage as the price of freedom. (Applause.) Now, I want to be clear. Congress still needs to act. The folks in this room will not rest until Congress does. (Applause.) Because once Congress gets on board with common-sense gun safety measures we can reduce gun violence a whole lot more. But we also can’t wait. Until we have a Congress that’s in line with the majority of Americans, there are actions within my legal authority that we can take to help reduce gun violence and save more lives -– actions that protect our rights and our kids. After Sandy Hook, Joe and I worked together with our teams and we put forward a whole series of executive actions to try to tighten up the existing rules and systems that we had in place. But today, we want to take it a step further. So let me outline what we’re going to be doing. Number one, anybody in the business of selling firearms must get a license and conduct background checks, or be subject to criminal prosecutions. (Applause.) It doesn’t matter whether you’re doing it over the Internet or at a gun show. It’s not where you do it, but what you do. We’re also expanding background checks to cover violent criminals who try to buy some of the most dangerous firearms by hiding behind trusts and corporations and various cutouts. We’re also taking steps to make the background check system more efficient. Under the guidance of Jim Comey and the FBI, our Deputy Director Tom Brandon at ATF, we’re going to hire more folks to process applications faster, and we’re going to bring an outdated background check system into the 21st century. (Applause.) And these steps will actually lead to a smoother process for law-abiding gun owners, a smoother process for responsible gun dealers, a stronger process for protecting the people from — the public from dangerous people. So that’s number one. Number two, we’re going to do everything we can to ensure the smart and effective enforcement of gun safety laws that are already on the books, which means we’re going to add 200 more ATF agents and investigators. We’re going to require firearms dealers to report more lost or stolen guns on a timely basis. We’re working with advocates to protect victims of domestic abuse from gun violence, where too often — (applause) — where too often, people are not getting the protection that they need. Number three, we’re going to do more to help those suffering from mental illness get the help that they need. (Applause.) High-profile mass shootings tend to shine a light on those few mentally unstable people who inflict harm on others. But the truth is, is that nearly two in three gun deaths are from suicides. So a lot of our work is to prevent people from hurting themselves. That’s why we made sure that the Affordable Care Act — also known as Obamacare — (laughter and applause) — that law made sure that treatment for mental health was covered the same as treatment for any other illness. And that’s why we’re going to invest $500 million to expand access to treatment across the country. (Applause.) It’s also why we’re going to ensure that federal mental health records are submitted to the background check system, and remove barriers that prevent states from reporting relevant information. If we can continue to de-stigmatize mental health issues, get folks proper care, and fill gaps in the background check system, then we can spare more families the pain of losing a loved one to suicide. And for those in Congress who so often rush to blame mental illness for mass shootings as a way of avoiding action on guns, here’s your chance to support these efforts. Put your money where your mouth is. (Applause.) Number four, we’re going to boost gun safety technology. Today, many gun injuries and deaths are the result of legal guns that were stolen or misused or discharged accidentally. In 2013 alone, more than 500 people lost their lives to gun accidents –- and that includes 30 children younger than five years old. In the greatest, most technologically advanced nation on Earth, there is no reason for this. We need to develop new technologies that make guns safer. If we can set it up so you can’t unlock your phone unless you’ve got the right fingerprint, why can’t we do the same thing for our guns? (Applause.) If there’s an app that can help us find a missing tablet — which happens to me often the older I get — (laughter) — if we can do it for your iPad, there’s no reason we can’t do it with a stolen gun. If a child can’t open a bottle of aspirin, we should make sure that they can’t pull a trigger on a gun. (Applause.) Right? So we’re going to advance research. We’re going to work with the private sector to update firearms technology. And some gun retailers are already stepping up by refusing to finalize a purchase without a complete background check, or by refraining from selling semi-automatic weapons or high-capacity magazines. And I hope that more retailers and more manufacturers join them — because they should care as much as anybody about a product that now kills almost as many Americans as car accidents. I make this point because none of us can do this alone. I think Mark made that point earlier. All of us should be able to work together to find a balance that declares the rest of our rights are also important — Second Amendment rights are important, but there are other rights that we care about as well. And we have to be able to balance them. Because our right to worship freely and safely –- that right was denied to Christians in Charleston, South Carolina. (Applause.) And that was denied Jews in Kansas City. And that was denied Muslims in Chapel Hill, and Sikhs in Oak Creek. (Applause.) They had rights, too. (Applause.) Our right to peaceful assembly -– that right was robbed from moviegoers in Aurora and Lafayette. Our unalienable right to life, and liberty, and the pursuit of happiness -– those rights were stripped from college students in Blacksburg and Santa Barbara, and from high schoolers at Columbine, and from first-graders in Newtown. First-graders. And from every family who never imagined that their loved one would be taken from our lives by a bullet from a gun. Every time I think about those kids it gets me mad. And by the way, it happens on the streets of Chicago every day. (Applause.) So all of us need to demand a Congress brave enough to stand up to the gun lobby’s lies. All of us need to stand up and protect its citizens. All of us need to demand governors and legislatures and businesses do their part to make our communities safer. We need the wide majority of responsible gun owners who grieve with us every time this happens and feel like your views are not being properly represented to join with us to demand something better. (Applause.) And we need voters who want safer gun laws, and who are disappointed in leaders who stand in their way, to remember come election time. (Applause.) I mean, some of this is just simple math. Yes, the gun lobby is loud and it is organized in defense of making it effortless for guns to be available for anybody, any time. Well, you know what, the rest of us, we all have to be just as passionate. We have to be just as organized in defense of our kids. This is not that complicated. The reason Congress blocks laws is because they want to win elections. And if you make it hard for them to win an election if they block those laws, they’ll change course, I promise you. (Applause.) And, yes, it will be hard, and it won’t happen overnight. It won’t happen during this Congress. It won’t happen during my presidency. But a lot of things don’t happen overnight. A woman’s right to vote didn’t happen overnight. The liberation of African Americans didn’t happen overnight. LGBT rights — that was decades’ worth of work. So just because it’s hard, that’s no excuse not to try. And if you have any doubt as to why you should feel that “fierce urgency of now,” think about what happened three weeks ago. Zaevion Dobson was a sophomore at Fulton High School in Knoxville, Tennessee. He played football; beloved by his classmates and his teachers. His own mayor called him one of their city’s success stories. The week before Christmas, he headed to a friend’s house to play video games. He wasn’t in the wrong place at the wrong time. He hadn’t made a bad decision. He was exactly where any other kid would be. Your kid. My kids. And then gunmen started firing. And Zaevion — who was in high school, hadn’t even gotten started in life — dove on top of three girls to shield them from the bullets. And he was shot in the head. And the girls were spared. He gave his life to save theirs –- an act of heroism a lot bigger than anything we should ever expect from a 15-year-old. “Greater love hath no man than this that a man lay down his life for his friends.” We are not asked to do what Zaevion Dobson did. We’re not asked to have shoulders that big; a heart that strong; reactions that quick. I’m not asking people to have that same level of courage, or sacrifice, or love. But if we love our kids and care about their prospects, and if we love this country and care about its future, then we can find the courage to vote. We can find the courage to get mobilized and organized. We can find the courage to cut through all the noise and do what a sensible country would do. That’s what we’re doing today. And tomorrow, we should do more. And we should do more the day after that. And if we do, we’ll leave behind a nation that’s stronger than the one we inherited and worthy of the sacrifice of a young man like Zaevion. (Applause.) Thank you very much, everybody. God bless you. Thank you. God bless America. (Applause.)

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How to Constructively Debate Gun Control

Masthead members conduct an experiment in persuasion  

persuasive speech on gun laws

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Today, we’re continuing our ongoing Masthead-member debate on gun rights. If you’re just catching up, here’s Justin Robinson’s argument for why gun rights deserve protection . The way gun-control advocates typically press their cases, Justin wrote, “throws gun-rights advocates into a reflexive, defensive crouch.”

We asked you to rebut Justin’s argument, and vote for the best rebuttals. We’ll get to those rebuttals (lightly edited and condensed by us)—and Justin’s responses—in a moment.

Because today’s issue is unusually lengthy, we’ve moved Justin’s recommendations for how to have a better gun control debate to the top. If you’d like to keep this email short , I recommend you focus on that and skip the rest. For those of you that savor a meatier argument , the full rebuttals and responses compose the rest of the email.

persuasive speech on gun laws

But first, register now for our call with Jeffrey Goldberg . We’re talking to The Atlantic ’s editor in chief on Monday, November 6, at 1 p.m. EST. Register at this link to receive dial-in details . Write back and let me know what questions you have for Jeff. (Please note that daylight saving time ends this weekend in the U.S., so if you’re calling from outside the country, you may need to adjust your local time.)


Here’s a synthesis from Justin Robinson of his conclusions after participating in this debate. It’s a useful, concise statement of where gun-rights advocates can find meaningful agreement with advocates of tighter gun controls. If you don’t want to read the full back-and-forth, there’s plenty of insight here.

We all seem to agree that with 300 million guns in the country, we can’t get to total confiscation from where we are. We seem less in sync on how much confiscation is a good idea. Here's an explainer from Australia showing how difficult it is to own firearms there. Private ownership of pistols pretty much doesn't exist. With respect to James Fallows , that is a political impossibility here. But I'll close out with some suggestions of what I think may be achievable, in rough order of utility.

  • A federal standard for training and licensing of gun owners, including cops. Drivers renew their licenses periodically; gun owners should have periodic background checks separated from purchases. Training would weed out some casual gun owners, and that’s good. As Betsy Schneier and Emily Brown suggest, we should acknowledge the dangers inherent in ownership.
  • A federal standard for criminalizing negligent use. Briefly, "flagging," improper storage, and accidental discharges should have stronger consequences. ("Flagging" is pointing a weapon at a person, regardless of intent to fire.) Worked for drunk driving .
  • A commitment to data collection. We can sell this to gun owners who fear witch hunts by pointing out that shoddy self-defense data is already subjecting them to witch hunts.
  • Some kind of title program. We cannot imagine a mass "inventory reduction" of the excess weapons in circulation if we cannot guarantee that legal owners won't get caught up, too.

Getting even this much done would save lives, and maybe take decades to accomplish. Do we want to get started, or do we want to keep being right?


Here are the top responses to Justin Robinson’s original argument, as decided by our members.

The Right Debate Requires More Data

by John Harland

People on both sides of the gun-control debate have honed convincing talking points. Very few of us innocently caught in the motel-lobby situation with a gunman would not be thankful for the armed citizen who rescued us. On the other hand, other countries with more restrictive gun laws seem to have fewer mass shootings.  

Too much of the gun debate, from my perspective, is driven by "moral imagination" and anecdotes. Too little of the debate is driven by data. If we just have two extremes in the debate—guns or no guns—we are doomed to Sisyphean arguments.

We are having the wrong debate. We should acknowledge, first, that the United States will not be able to eliminate guns for both practical and constitutional reasons and, second, that lives are being lost needlessly and people are being maimed by bullets from guns. The debate should then be about what data we need to analyze the causes of deaths and injuries by bullets and how we can fund nonpartisan research to identify possible ways we can reduce the likelihood of these deaths and injuries.

We have historical precedent for using data to help us incrementally and substantially improve the safety record of cars. The number of deaths per million vehicle miles traveled in the U.S. has steadily dropped from about 25 in 1921 to about 2 today. Instead of an endless debate about whether to ban cars, there are detailed reports on major accidents providing data used to enlighten decisions on car safety. We even have a government agency dedicated to gathering data and researching ways to make the use of cars less deadly. Because of the data, we not only look at car design, but also driver training, design and maintenance of roads, how to encourage people not to drive tired, and the legal age for drinking alcohol.

How typical is the situation in the motel lobby where a person who is clearly trained saves the lives of innocents? How often do similar situations end with innocents being killed by a well-meaning Good Samaritan? If our goal is to reduce needless gun deaths, we need the data to inform our discussion and research to help us interpret the data. Let’s have the more realistic debate be about how to collect data to drive incremental improvements, not the unwinnable debate about whether or not to ban guns.

We Need Classification, Not Cowboys

by Jonathan Spoon*

I understood and appreciated Justin's argument for the good cowboy. It’s a neat way to skirt our current issues under the assumption that there are more good people than bad and that everyone wants to participate in this kind of daily shootout. Most people are neither the robber nor the store clerk. They are the innocent bystanders who don't want death to be a prevalent option when shopping for groceries. There are certainly well-trained, ethically sound gun carriers who save innocent people from criminals. There are probably more toddlers who get accidentally shot by their 5-year-old brother because we have too many guns and give them to people not responsible enough to own them. Basically, guns were a tool when the constitution was written, and they are a fetish now. Their nature and our use of them has changed, and our rules need to as well.

The first step is classification. There should be at least three classifications for firearms: (1) hunting guns, (2) personal protection, (3) weapons of war, and maybe (4) weapons of mass destruction. Hunting rifles and low-capacity shotguns should be available to most law-abiding citizens of a certain age. The University of Texas shooter was an exception, but, generally, people can't go on killing sprees with these weapons. Personal protection is the tough section. Lynyrd Skynyrd said it best: "Hand guns are made for killin' / They ain't good for nothin' else.” This is the area where we need serious regulation or innovation. Weapons of war are simple. Buy them back for five years at exorbitant prices, then go out and confiscate them. People don't need assault rifles and they shouldn't have them. If WMD come up, arrest the perpetrator immediately and sentence him to enough years for people to stop playing with rocket-launchers.

There is a big missing part to this discussion. We have not even broached the topic of smart weapons. These are guns that are technologically capable of recognizing their owner and only functioning in his or her possession. This should be the future of personal protection weapons.  

Being purely anti-gun won't work. Identify the ones that are creating a public health epidemic and start removing them from our populace.

The Most Important Right Is to Safety

by Michael Grattan

We need to address the issue of gun ownership in this country honestly.

First, we need to admit that we will never take away guns from their owners following the Australian model. There would be far too much resistance, and there are already too many guns in private hands. That horse has left the barn.

Second, we need to admit that the myth of a responsible "good guy with a gun" responding to a gun-related incident is just that, a myth. A study of police shootings found that law enforcement officers only hit 27 percent of what they were shooting at. I cannot imagine the average gun owner doing any better. Also, most people do not spend their day at the higher level of alertness required to be constantly "on guard" to be able to respond to a situation in a timely manner.

We need to talk about responsible gun ownership. You want to own a gun—fine. Then you must demonstrate competency and financial responsibility. In other words, you get a gun license that requires annual training, carry insurance for when you do shoot someone, and store your weapons safely.

You may have the right to own a gun. The rest of us have the right to feel safe.

Gun Extremists Hold Us Hostage

By Betsy Schneier

This is a very useful point of departure for a debate on gun control! Why? Because one gets the sense that the writer is level-headed and thoughtful with respect to gun ownership. I totally agree that the divide between pro- and anti-gun rights has become so toxic that it’s basically a nonstarter.

That said, however, I inferred the writer was someone who was trained to use a weapon. And herein lies the problem.  

Let me state that I lost a dear friend and knew all four other badly wounded victims of the hostage shooting that occurred in downtown Seattle, at the headquarters of the Jewish Federation in July of 2006. I still suffer from survivor’s guilt. I dearly wish that no civilian would wish to own a gun in this society. I watch the NRA hold the entire public hostage, metaphorically, as do extremist groups who wish to flaunt their guns.

But I’m a realist. People wish to hunt. People who are scared would like protection that the cops can’t offer. Possessing a firearm is legal in this country if one is not a felon. Even so, I think the writer is missing one vital aspect of gun ownership: Most people are never trained in gun safety, nor are they required to learn how to operate the weapon. I know many people who own guns. They either served in the military or took courses, and they store their weapons in safes. They have no objection to registering them in a database, so they will never fall into the wrong hands. In other words, they know they possess lethal force. And guess what? They all are happy to register their firearms now that Washington state passed an initiative overwhelmingly—twice—to do this.

But what about the rest of us? Why put us at risk, when punks, thugs, and hypocrites whine about common-sense controls?  

I’ll end with another personal story. Decades ago I spent the summer in Israel on an archaeological dig. Some terrorist activity broke out not far from where we were digging. Since there were some Israelis in the group who were still subject to reserve duty, they were asked to go home and bring their rifles to the dig in case of trouble. I’ll never forget how one American young girl saw a rifle propped up next to one of these guys and got excited, dancing around as if he was a Hollywood extra in a shoot-em-up movie. The guy, who was normally mild-mannered, started to scream at her. “Do you think it’s fun to kill? Because I have been in battle, and it is no fun at all. I live for the day when I don’t have to carry one ever again.”

Make Gun Licenses Like Driver's Licenses

by Emily Brown

I live in East Texas, where even if you don’t own a gun—though many do—you’ve shot one at least once. When I was in school, I had a political-science instructor who talked to us about gun control. He asked how many people owned a gun, and about half the class raised their hand. He asked how many had their campus carry with them, and 20 kept their hands up. Then he posed this scenario: If a gunman walked into the classroom and pulled his gun, how many of them would pull theirs out and shoot back? Only one man kept his hand up. He was ex-Army, so he said it would be second nature to him. All this to say, the number of people who would actually step up and use their gun are a lot less than people think.

My Texas background keeps me from saying we should ban all guns, but I think there needs to be a more thorough process for obtaining a gun or a gun license. I've recently seen the argument about making gun licenses obtainable like driver's licenses. Driving a car takes months of practice with an experienced instructor because cars have the potential to hurt or kill. A gun's sole purpose is to hurt or kill. The fact that someone can get their hunting license at the local Walmart is absurd. I was allowed to go hunting with my family when I was 10 because I didn't technically need a license. I was 10 when I shot a gun for the first time. There's no logical reason a child should ever hold a gun. There's no reason a person should so easily be handed a weapon, either.


by Justin Robinson

Before I begin, please know that I appreciated having this opportunity, and I value all of your perspectives, whether I agree with them or not.

In less than 1,000 words, my essay tried to articulate the self-defense argument for gun ownership and explain how gun-control advocates could benefit from addressing the argument head-on. Gun-control advocates mostly dismiss self-defense. Instead, they use versions of the following arguments:

  • The number of self-defenses cannot make up for the lives lost. Show me math. Otherwise, gaze upon my stats and despair!
  • Most folks would just make things worse by shooting the wrong people.
  • If nobody had guns, then good guys wouldn’t need them.
  • A single data point is an anecdote unless it’s Australia’s buyback program.

Arguing in this way dismisses the gun owner’s right to agency, and inadvertently brings up the specter of confiscation, whether or not we intend to do either. I fear that not adapting the argument will lose key allies we need to implement controls that are achievable.

Virtually all of the pro–gun-control responses to my essay used some part of the outline above to dismiss self-defense. I often agree, but I hope I can reinforce which bits of these arguments may be counter-productive.

Cut the Cowboy References

When it comes to guns, we seem to want moral victory more than progress.

I’m sure that Jonathan Spoon’s heart is in the right place. He raises good points and offers concrete suggestions. But he says I’m arguing in favor of "the good cowboy" as a "neat way to skirt" issues. He goes on, but basically suggests that self-defense is a diversion from what he'd prefer to be talking about.

I don’t appreciate the cowboy comparison. I live in the Old West, 20 minutes from Tombstone. Here, the Cowboys were murderous thieves who disobeyed gun control regulations. This line of argument may feel good, and I'm guilty of excessive snark often enough that I'm not passing judgment, really. But we argue like this all the time, both as liberals and conservatives. It doesn’t get us what we need.

How to Understand That Video

We all agree: The more data analysis we have, the better this debate will go. And John Harland is right: we need to legalize and fund better research .

But the video I shared is a data point , not an anecdote . It shows that an individual:

  • can be in a situation where the choices are only using a gun or capitulating;
  • can be trained as well as cops;
  • and can respond to a crime without harming bystanders.

I acknowledge that these results are not uniform, and perhaps not even typical. We can and should fix that.

A Gun's Purpose Is Beside the Point

Jonathan Spoon also offers the Lynyrd Skynyrd/“.38 Special” argument. It often pops up in response to a gun-rights advocate pointing out that cars or swimming pools kill more people every year than guns do (to downplay gun violence statistics). The ".38 Special" argument responds that unlike cars or swimming pools, guns are only meant to kill (and so are more "worthy" of restriction).

Emily Brown also brings this up. Michael Grattan hints at it by asking, essentially, what if the good guy misses? Let me try to show why the ".38 Special" isn't as definitive as it may seem.

  • Swimming pools and cars are not for killing people. They only kill people when misused.
  • Guns have three legitimate intended uses: threatening or harming people who can credibly, lethally harm you (we can argue what’s credible); sport (again, open to definition); and practicing for the first two.
  • Pools and cars do kill more people than guns , despite safety controls. (Tragically, cars at least are sometimes used to kill people on purpose .)
  • Of the people who are harmed by guns each year, that number breaks down into legitimate uses and illegitimate uses. Cops, for instance, legitimately deprive criminals of life, liberty, or property with guns. (Though Michael Grattan points out they could be doing it better.)

If we're banning guns based on the pure numbers of deaths involved, we should ban personal cars first. If we argue that what’s decisive is how guns and cars are meant to be used, we shouldn't totally ban guns unless we also argue that guns should never be used by anyone . If we accept that using a gun is okay in even one case , then a gun's purpose is irrelevant.

I will admit that we don't control guns as well as we do cars, and that's insane.


  • Question of the Day: What argument in this debate moved you most? What was most persuasive?
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  • What’s coming: Tomorrow, Caroline looks to Magnolia, Mississippi, a small town that has become the surprising vanguard for nondiscrimination policies.
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Matt Peterson


* Correction: An earlier version of this article used the wrong first name for one of the contributors. It is Jonathan Spoon, not John. We regret the error.  

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A Debate Over ‘Common Sense’ Gun Legislation

Conservative writer charles c.w. cooke and times opinion editor at large alex kingsbury on three frequently cited policies..

It’s “The Argument.” I’m Jane Coaston.

It’s been a week since the shooting in Uvalde, Texas, that killed 19 children and two adults, and less than a month since the massacre at a grocery store in Buffalo that killed 10. And as you’ve probably guessed, nothing legislatively has happened. Every time after a mass shooting — and boy, do I hate saying every time after a mass shooting — the national debate over gun control or gun safety or common sense gun legislation, whatever you want to call it, comes to the fore. And don’t get me wrong, we need to have a conversation about guns and gun control. But I think we’re having it wrong. Actually, we need to have a bunch of different conversations. Because the majority of gun violence in the United States isn’t mass shootings. It’s gun-related murders and suicides.

These are all violent acts that involve guns. But stopping each of them requires different solutions. So I’ve invited two people with opposing views on gun control to talk about solutions. Alex Kingsbury —

I’m an editor at large with Times Opinion. And I sit on the editorial board.

— and Charles C.W. Cooke.

I’m a senior writer at National Review.

Alex has written about the need for more gun control laws. And Charles has written about the value of the Second Amendment and why we need guns.

When people talk about quote, unquote, “common sense gun control measures,” there are three major proposals that always come up, particularly after a mass shooting incident. Those three are red flag laws, background checks, and age limits. I want to start out by talking about background checks. Federal law requires background checks for all gun sales by licensed gun dealers. And in theory, it makes sense to give someone a background check to see if they have a criminal record. But understandably, that doesn’t work if you don’t have a criminal record. So I’m curious as to, Alex, your thoughts — we’ll start with you — on what should universal background checks look like.


I love that sigh. I feel like we’re already in a good spot.

No, it’s like — I agree with the idea of universal background checks if we can figure out a way to implement it that actually works. One of the major problems with U.S. law enforcement in general, or one of its features, depending on where you sit, is that there’s so many different jurisdictions and different law enforcement agencies and different databases, and all this sort of thing. And so if there could be some sort of centralized way to evaluate the purchasers or potential purchasers of firearms, I think that would be to the good. I mean, every time you go to the White House as a visitor, you get run through a background check. You get on an airplane, and there are certain types of things that are checked. Every time, you get run through one of these systems.

But the idea of introducing more friction into the system, I think, is really the central issue here. And with all of these things that we’re talking about, it puts friction in a system that stands between the purchaser of the gun and the gun. And I think basically anything you can do to that end is to the good, and it’s going to save lives.

Unlicensed private sellers aren’t required to perform background checks. But a bunch of states have passed legislation to extend the federal background check requirement to cover at least some forms of private sale. But Charles, I’m curious as to your thoughts.

Well, I think the first thing to say is that background checks wouldn’t do much about mass shootings. So the case for background check expansion does seem to be to prevent crime. I’m against the federal government doing this.

The federal government regulating private, often non-commercial, intrastate transfers of firearms strikes me as a complete violation of enumerated powers. And I don’t see how the federal government has that. Of course, that doesn’t mean that states shouldn’t do it, and a lot of states do. The one I live in, Florida, does not. And that means that I can sell a gun in a listing in a newspaper, for example, to another Floridian without either of us undergoing a background check.

There are some rules that apply. I can’t, if I think he’s a criminal, sell him a gun. I can be convicted for that. But if I have no idea, I can do that.

I can see the case for tightening that up. I think where this gets stuck in the mud, though — when people are asked in the abstract, do you think we should do this, 90 percent say yes. And then when we start writing it down, it goes down and down and down. And it gets, often, to 50 percent, as it did in Nevada and Maine.

And the reason for that is what counts as a transfer. If I lend you a gun, is that a transfer? If I give a gun to my brother-in-law, does that count? Is it only commercial transactions?

I have some time for the idea that the state of Florida, for example, should regulate all commercial transactions of firearms and require a background check for those. I certainly wouldn’t want to see a system where if I loan my brother-in-law a rifle for a month, that necessitates some sort of federal background check or even state background check. I think that’s crazy.

I just have two quick points. Charles makes some good ones here. Look, if you lend your brother a car for a month, it doesn’t count as selling him a car. So I think the way we track vehicles is not perfect, but it certainly provides a model by which the government can do this. I would say another thing is the government is good at regulations except when you don’t give it the tools to regulate. And the A.T.F., which is one main organization of the government that’s supposed to be doing this, has been religiously starved for funds by decades in a political project that wants to make the government look bad, and also doesn’t want to regulate guns. So the fact that the government isn’t good at regulating guns because it’s been made very difficult to regulate guns strikes me as kind of circular logic in a lot of ways.

When we’re thinking about background checks, can these be at all successful if we can’t measure — like, this isn’t pre-crime. We can’t measure someone else’s intent to kill, especially if they have no history of it. There’s been a lot of research that talks about how many people who have committed mass shootings have a history of domestic violence or a history of expressing misogyny in some means.

But if you are sketchy, that’s not illegal.

Like, we are asking background checks to do something that I don’t know if they can do.

Well, what they can do is weed out people who have criminal records or who are in a mental health database. And I think that is valuable. In a country with 400 million guns, I’m generally skeptical about the value of any government intervention. I think that ship, or many of those ships, have sailed. But I think that’s valuable.

Of course, what we’re doing now is we’re moving a little bit towards the debate over red flag laws when you mention pre-crime. One of the differences between the United States and other countries is that we don’t prevent people from exercising certain rights on the basis of their viewpoint. If you are British and you want to buy a shotgun, and you have a long history, for example, of being a neo-Nazi, you can’t do it. They’ll just deny your application. That’s not true in the United States.

Now, I share the opprobrium that is thrown at neo-Nazis in the same way as everyone else does. But I would not want to see the federal government determining on the basis of speech, unless that speech were, I’m going to go buy a gun so I can kill someone, which I think would put you in a different category. But I wouldn’t want to see people excluded because, for example, they were a white supremacist, or they thought that the 2020 election was stolen, or they were a brand of radical Muslim that I found uncomfortable. I think that would be a very dangerous road.

And America is not just an outlier when it comes to gun rights. It’s also an outlier when it comes to speech rights, and when it comes to privacy rights, and when it comes to due process. And together with the 400 million guns and the Second Amendment, that often puts law enforcement in a pretty difficult position until someone actually commits a crime.

Alex, what do you think? You had a face that I am curious to hear the thoughts behind the face.

I mean, I think comparisons to free speech rights and gun rights are just different, right? The Constitution says that Congress shall pass no law abridging the freedom of speech, and yet Congress does pass laws abridging the freedom of speech. And so I think Congress was perfectly appropriate to pass laws restricting gun rights.

I think if you had laws that say, based on your profile, we’re going to have a three, five, six, 10-day waiting period, whatever it is to give a bit of delay, to allow a little bit more investigation — some of these backgrounds are sort of instant background checks. And if they don’t come back in three business days, then the sale goes through. I think some of this is designed to fail, in a lot of ways.

Is that referring to the Charleston loophole? I believe that permits gun purchases to continue after three business days even if a background check is not completed. Correct me if I’m wrong.

Yes, unless they subsequently find out that you have a record or some disqualifying variable. I mean, on the Charleston loophole, that’s actually a good example of what I’m talking about. Because in the United States, we’ve instituted due process protections for gun buyers, essentially. I mean, so, the Democrats in Congress want to change the provision at hand from three days to 10 so that if your background check comes back without resolution, then you wait 10 days. And if the federal government can’t find anything on you, then you’re allowed to buy a gun.

We can debate that three days, five days. But presumably, we are all going to agree — and if we don’t, the courts will do it for us — that there have to be some due process protections in there, that the government can’t indefinitely prevent you from exercising a constitutional right. Again, that’s just not how it works in most countries, and we’re different.

Alex, what do you think about the three-day waiting period? Is it too long? Too short? What are your thoughts?

Oh, it’s way too short. I would support extending it vastly, and way beyond 10 days, too. And I would support that if the government doesn’t come back with a response in time, that you have to wait until the government comes back, comes back in time. You have to wait for the government to do a lot of things that we wish it did quicker.

Just because people really want to buy a gun — to me, firearms are so different, so different from so many other purchases that it requires a lot more deference to regulation in the name of public safety. I don’t find this sort of controversial at all. I know a lot of people do. And it’s just sort of a philosophical disagreement.

I mean look, the government abridges our freedoms in a whole bunch of different ways for a variety of regulatory reasons, many of which are unfair, and annoying, and obnoxious, and create friction, and so forth and so on. Most of them, we just find irritating and annoying. And all of those are impingements on liberty in one way or another. But I just don’t have a problem with doing it for guns because of the nature of the gun problem in this country.

So my problem with that is that the law and order right, to which I don’t belong, would say that the same principle should apply to, say, the detention of people who are suspected of a crime, or to terrorists who are suspected of a crime — that instead of having to release them after a time if you can’t find evidence, that it’s just too important. We’ve just got to keep them in. Because if we don’t, they go back on the street. They kill someone or they blow someone up.

And I don’t understand how we could have, you know, a strong culture of due process that tells authorities, you can’t detain someone without evidence beyond a certain point, but you can restrict a constitutional right without limit because it’s just too dangerous.

There is an island not far from here called Rikers that is full of people who have been there without trial, detained for more than a year. A lot of them die there without ever facing trial. This is something we deny —

But that’s bad, isn’t it?

Yes, it is. But denying liberty to a gun is not the same as denying liberty to a person.

No, but I think that they’re both violations of constitutional rights, and we should oppose both.

Well, no. I think we can acknowledge that one is worse than the other.

Well, OK. But I think that, Charles, you actually mentioned red flag laws earlier. Basically, if a person exhibits behavior indicating they could be a threat to themselves or others, a person in their family, a school official, or a police officer can go to court to secure an order that permits police to seize their weapons and prohibits them from purchasing any additional weapons so long as the order lasts. So red flag laws, Alex, useful or not useful to you?

Oh, absolutely useful. Look, one of the main intersections between violence and death and social pathologies is domestic violence. And red flags are zeroed right in on this particular issue.

Women are five times more likely to be murdered if her abuser has a gun. Of all the situations, domestic violence and weapons should be as clear-cut that the left and the right agree on. I’d love to see it at the federal level. But anything we can do at the state level for this kind of legislation, I think is to the good.

Again, you talked about putting friction in the system. And I think that this is another means by which of doing so. And I’m curious, Charles, because I think that we see all of the time that after a mass shooting, there are incidents that sound like red flags afterwards. But what looks like a red flag to some people doesn’t look like a red flag to others.

Well, I broadly see red flags in much the same way as I would see law in general, which is that I am open to them, providing that they have narrow terms and extremely robust due process protections. I would need to see the details. But I am open to red flag laws because I think, you know, that we do generally recognize people who are a threat, providing that there is really robust judicial oversight, that the terms are nailed down so that we don’t see political abuse, which we would, and so that we avoid, as far as is possible, trying to regulate pre-crime or speech.

But I do think that if you have a system that is written by people who are not trying just to restrict access to guns, and who have good motives, then this can work. And I think it’s worth trying, perhaps with a sunset clause for renewal so that if it doesn’t work, it expires.

Yeah, in the Buffalo shooting case, he wrote that he wanted to commit a murder-suicide. And then when he was asked about it by law enforcement, because someone raised that as being a concern, he said it was a joke. And then he told people online later that it was not a joke. I wrote that down because that’s what I want to do. This is the reason I believe I am still able to purchase guns.

Nearly half of individuals who engage in a mass shooting leak their plans in advance to someone. So Alex, given that, I want to know what you think about red flag laws, especially because — are there types of violence they would be more effective at preventing? Would they be more useful in domestic violence cases than they would be in attempting to prevent mass violence?

Yeah, and I actually don’t think red flag laws are going to do all that much for mass shootings. I frankly don’t think there’s a whole lot we can do about mass shootings at this point. I do think there is a lot we can do about domestic violence, which is vastly more incidents of killing and wounding with firearms. Red flag laws are good for that.

Red flag laws are not a panacea for mass shootings. None of the solutions that we’re talking to are. But overlapping enough of these things together, and you’re going to catch some mass shooters. How many mass shooters do you have to catch to make a federal red flag law an unfair impingement on liberty? What does that number have to be, you know? One classroom? Two classroom full of kids? That’s kind of what we’re talking about, right?

Well, I don’t know we are. I don’t think that we measure the desirability or constitutionality of legal provisions by the number of lives they save. I mean to me, that’s an Archie Bunker approach to the law, where you get conservatives historically who have said, well, yeah, I don’t really care about the due process rights of people who are arrested. I don’t really care about Sixth Amendment rights. I just want to stop crime.

And to me, this reminds me of the debate over stop and frisk. And I remember writing, seven or eight years ago, that I think stop and frisk is unconstitutional and should be stopped, and it will probably lead to an increase in crime. I think this is where this gets very difficult.

And of course, this ends up sounding horrible because you end up saying, well, yeah, I’m prepared to indulge some crime — forget guns, just all crime. But I suppose I am, not to live in a police state. So I would — and I’m not suggesting you think we should live in a police state, but I’m not quite sure that’s the right way to look at it.

The difference between locking up people without due process and not letting guns into circulation because of due process rules, to me, are two very different things. And if we err on the side of taking guns out of circulation, that’s good. We err on the side of taking people out of circulation for no reason and throwing them in prison or jail, that’s bad.

We have these dangerousness hearings, for instance, when somebody who’s been accused of a crime, they consider whether or not to set them free, whether under bail or on personal recognizance or whatever. And the judge looks at them and evaluates whether or not they’re dangerous or not. It’s a problem if there’s no due process there, and the default is to throw that person in a cage.

It doesn’t strike me as very problematic if a judge looks at somebody with a gun and says, well, actually, I’m going to take away your gun because we’re not sure here. But in this situation, we’re going to err on the side of you not having a gun. You just can’t look at the death toll that weapons have inflicted on this society and say that we overregulate weapons in this society.

Let’s move that slightly to one side. Because as you say, we disagree on the question of where guns fit in. I think one of the things that I’m driving at is that we can’t have many of the laws that gun control activists want without also putting more people in cages.

And there is a tension at the moment, and one that I find very interesting, and one that I have some sympathy for as a civil libertarian across the board, where it’s conservatives who are saying categorically, no, I don’t want this gun control law or that gun control law, but a lot of progressives and criminal justice reform advocates who are saying, I don’t want the consequences of those laws, even if they nominally covet them.

In this case that is before the Supreme Court at the moment, the Bruen case, which is about New York’s concealed carry licensing regime, you have a lot of amicus briefs filed on behalf of the plaintiffs by progressive defense lawyers saying, OK, we don’t like guns, and we’re not big on the Second Amendment. But we’re so tired of New York’s gun laws leading to young Black men being incarcerated that we want them to go.

And I think this matters. Because as I say, put aside your and my different way of seeing how guns fit into due process and the constitutional order. If we are going to get more active about prosecuting not just gun crimes, but gun control, we are going to see more people in court and in jail. We are going to see more of the school to prison pipeline, as it’s called.

I think this tension is really important. Because it’s not just conservatives who are opposed to that, it’s progressives, too, at least on the back end.

How does things like red flag laws, background checks and age purchasing, how does that lead to more arrests, necessarily?

Well, background checks would be clear. Because right there, you’ve got a thing that people do is now criminalized, and would lead to prosecution. And New York has been really good at prosecuting gun crimes. But that has led to an awful lot of people, and they’re mostly young Black men, statistically, going to jail for the first time for fairly minor crimes, on the idea that if somebody is willing to carry a gun without a permit, or to have a magazine he shouldn’t, or to transfer a gun to a friend, or to straw purchase, then he might end up killing someone.

One leads to the other. And if it’s worth it, it’s worth it. But I just note a really interesting tension between the people who say no categorically and the people who say yes, but we don’t want the consequences.

Only one third of American States have an age limit of 21 or older to buy a gun. A court recently ruled that California’s age limit was unconstitutional. In both recent mass shootings in Buffalo and Texas, the shooter was 18. Do you think there should be a federal mandate for all guns of 21?

Well, the federal government has 21 for handguns and 18 for rifles. And then states can set their own limits, as you know. I don’t think the Ninth Circuit is right. I don’t think it is unconstitutional to set the gun purchase age at 21.

I am open to this. I’m generally frustrated with the gun control movement’s response to mass shootings. Because usually, what they proposed doesn’t intersect with what happened.

And then they put all this moral energy behind it and say, if you don’t to do what we want to do, then you’re in favor of mass shootings. And then I end up saying, but that has nothing to do with what happened. And then we go nowhere.

But actually, with this one, we clearly have this very narrow, very specific problem with mass shootings. And although most mass shootings still are carried out with handguns, increasingly, mass shooters fetishize modern sporting rifles. And a lot of those mass shooters are 18.

And this seems, to me, to be a proposal that is constitutional, that is not particularly draconian, and that would very specifically target this narrow problem of mass shootings, which is 18-year-olds buying rifles and using them.

Yeah, I actually agree almost entirely with what Charles said. I don’t it’s going to stop all mass shootings. Again, there are — what do we think, Charles, 12, 14 million AR-15-style rifles out there?

Yeah, maybe more, yeah.

There are a lot of them out there right now. So these things are in circulation. They’re sloshing around there. If somebody really wants to get a hold of them, they’re probably going to do it even if they turn 18.

But this idea that even if you pass a gun law, people are going to break the gun law — well, this is really good evidence, right? The guy waited till he was 18, and then went and bought two of these things and 375 rounds of ammunition. I mean, clearly, here’s a guy who — yeah, I’m going to be a mass killer, but I want to follow the gun laws to be able to do it the most easily.

I want to end by thinking about — we’ve talked about background checks, age limits, and red flag laws. But Alex, we’re seeing so many people responding to what’s taken place. Entirely understandably, it feels really weird to just be like, yeah, there’s really not specifically anything we can do that would stop this form of gun violence.

I really hope Charles has something more uplifting. Because I’m not going to be totally uplifting —

That’s fine.

— about this. I mean, I think there’s a lot of things to say. I used to cover terrorism quite a lot. And I would say this to people, and they’d kind of freak out. But you’re more likely as an American to drown in a toilet than you are to be killed by a terrorist attack.

To be killed in a terrorist attack is extremely rare. And to be killed in one of these spectacular mass shootings, exceptionally rare. They get a lot of play on TV. They’re very horrible, and they should really make us think a whole lot about the culture that we have in the United States.

That said, yeah, I really don’t think there’s a lot that we can do about these spectacular mass shootings, particularly ones with assault weapons or semi-automatic, military-style rifles, because there are so many of them out there. Right now, I have a very young child. And it’s horrifying to hear them go through these live shooter drills that they’re taught in school. And it’s incredibly traumatic for them to do it. And part of me really thinks, after watching these sorts of massacres, that we should just stop with the active shooter drills and teach them first aid instead.

I think there’s a paradox here. And you touched on a great deal of it. And the truth is that I am much more affected by the news from Tuesday than by reading the suicide statistics, emotionally. But I actually don’t spend much time thinking about how to stop what happened on Tuesday. And I do spend time thinking about what we can do about the suicide rate and what we can do about crime.

If you go back to Columbine 22, 23 years ago, and you average out the number of children and staff who’ve been killed in schools of all types before college, it’s seven a year. Now, that is seven too many. And that’s of no consolation whatsoever to the parents. And if it were me, my life would never be the same again.

But it’s seven compared to 120, on average, who are killed every year on school transportation. And I somewhat regret that as a culture, we spend so much time, as I do myself, crying over this and emoting over this rather than thinking about the daily attrition of suicides and crime.

Right, but I would say that for many people — I mean, think that this actually gets to something Alex mentioned about terrorism. But if we thought of mass shooting events in the same way that we think about terrorism, as a very rare thing that we also work very hard to prevent, and we’ve spent billions of dollars on preventing, and we have people who all they do is think about how to prevent this from happening, and we do limit the civil liberties of people in order to stop this from happening, and we consider success to be it didn’t happen, does that change how we think about this?

I think one of the big mistakes of the response to 9/11 was the 1 percent doctrine, right? If there’s a 1 percent chance that this is going to happen, then we should go all-out to stop it. And if we took that approach to mass shootings, we’d live in North Korea.

Obviously, we do not want to live in a society where we use the 1 percent doctrine on mass shootings. That said, there are a lot of things that we can do. And there are a lot of things that we can set in motion now that will have compounding impacts over time.

There are things that we can do to reduce the number of guns in circulation. And that will reduce the number of deaths. And so if you can save one life next year, and four the next, and six the next, that starts to add up over time. And I think those are projects that are worth pursuing.

I think it’s good we’re about to finish on a disagreement, I think. It’s just not the case that every single tightening of the gun law improves things. It doesn’t. We saw this for 30 years — as the number of guns in circulation tripled, gun laws were loosened and crime kept going down. So I think this is a lot more complicated.

There are some ways that we can try to deal with this, and we should. But we should do it primarily for suicide and crime, and hope that helps mass shootings at the margin.

Alex, Charles, thank you so much.

No, it was a pleasure.

Thank you, Jane.

Alex Kingsbury is Opinion Editor-at-large and a member of The New York Times editorial board. Charles C.W. Cooke is a senior writer for National Review, a conservative magazine. Some of the pieces we mentioned in this episode are “It’s Too Late to Ban Assault Weapons” by Alex Kingsbury in The New York Times Opinion section. Also read “This Is Why We Need Guns” by Charles C.W. Cooke, published in National Review. You can find links to all of these in our episode notes.

“The Argument” is a production of New York Times Opinion. It’s produced by Phoebe Lett, Elisa Gutierrez and Vishakha Darbha. Edited by Alison Bruzek and Anabel Bacon. With original music by Isaac Jones and Pat McCusker. Mixing by Pat McCusker. Fact checking by Kate Sinclair, Mary Marge Locker and Michelle Harris. Audience strategy by Shannon Busta. With editorial support from Kristina Samulewski. Our Executive Producer is Irene Noguchi.

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The recent shootings in Buffalo and Uvalde, Texas, indicate that gun violence, and how to address it, is a conversation we unfortunately need to keep having. But what policies would make a difference and stop some of these mass casualty events?

On today’s episode, host Jane Coaston focuses on the solutions to gun violence and what measures would help stop mass shootings specifically, in addition to curbing homicides, suicides and other forms of gun violence. The three policy proposals up for debate: red-flag laws, background checks and age limits.

[You can listen to this episode of “The Argument” on Apple , Spotify , Amazon Music , Google or wherever you get your podcasts .]

Jane is joined by Charles C.W. Cooke, senior writer for National Review, and Alex Kingsbury, Times Opinion editor at large and editorial board member. Cooke isn’t convinced that gun laws will ameliorate America’s gun problem. “It’s just not the case that every single tightening of the gun law improves things. It doesn’t,” he says. On the other side is Kingsbury, who feels that we need gun control measures and that it’s about time the government finds a solution to the problem. “I mean, you just can’t look at the death toll that the weapons have inflicted on the society and say that we overregulate weapons in this society,” Kingsbury says.

Mentioned in this episode:

“ It’s Too Late to Ban Assault Weapons ” by Alex Kingsbury in The New York Times

“ Gunman in ____ Kills __ ” by Alex Kingsbury in The New York Times

“ This Is Why We Need Guns ” by Charles C.W. Cooke in National Review

(A full transcript of the episode will be available midday on the Times website.)

persuasive speech on gun laws

Thoughts? Email us at [email protected] or leave us a voice mail message at (347) 915-4324. We want to hear what you’re arguing about with your family, your friends and your frenemies. (We may use excerpts from your message in a future episode.)

By leaving us a message, you are agreeing to be governed by our reader submission terms and agreeing that we may use and allow others to use your name, voice and message.

“The Argument” is produced by Phoebe Lett, Elisa Gutierrez and Vishakha Darbha. Edited by Alison Bruzek and Anabel Bacon. With original music by Isaac Jones and Pat McCusker. Mixing by Pat McCusker. Fact-checking by Kate Sinclair and Mary Marge Locker. Audience strategy by Shannon Busta with editorial support from Kristina Samulewski. Our executive producer is Irene Noguchi.

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The Need for Stricter and More Thorough Gun Control Laws

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persuasive speech on gun laws

persuasive speech on gun laws

Idaho Citizens Victorious in Lawsuit Over City of Moscow's Unconstitutional Treatment

persuasive speech on gun laws

Three Idaho church members have triumphed over the City of Moscow, Idaho, after suing the city and its officials for their unlawful arrest in September 2020. Thomas More Society attorneys filed suit for the Christ Church trio who were arrested almost two and a half years ago during a “Psalm Sing” outside the Moscow City Hall. In an order dated February 1, 2023, Senior United States District Judge Morrison C. England, Jr., denied the city’s Motion for Summary Judgement and sent the case for settlement. The City of Moscow had suggested that the case be decided in its favor, but the federal judge disagreed.

Thomas More Society Special Counsel Erick Kaardal explained that Gabriel Rench, and Sean and Rachel Bohnet were arrested under a COVID-19 mask mandate issued by Moscow Mayor Bill Lambert. The three were not wearing masks, and because there were more than 200 protestors in attendance, were unable to socially distance. However, the ordinance that they were arrested and prosecuted under had an exception for First Amendment activities.

“Mr. Rench and the Bohnets were arrested even though law enforcement officers were aware of the First Amendment protections under the mayor’s emergency order,” stated Kaardal. “The city violated its own ordinance when law enforcement wrongly arrested Gabriel Rench and Sean and Rachel Bohnet. Those arresting officers demonstrated reckless indifference to these citizens’ First Amendment rights. It appears that the city’s law enforcement department was ‘weaponized’ to go after critics of the city government.”

Moscow officials claimed that the ordinance under which Rench and the others were arrested was ambiguous.

In response, Judge England wrote: “That is simply incorrect. The City’s Code could not be more clear: Under a plain reading of the Order in conjunction with the Ordinance, all expressive activity was excluded from the mask or distance mandate because such [as in this case] conduct was not explicitly addressed in the Order itself. In other words, during the relevant time period, those participating in expressive or associative conduct were not required to mask or distance. Plaintiffs should never have been arrested in the first place, and the Constitutionality of what the City thought its Code said is irrelevant.”

Apparently, the Moscow prosecuting attorney was of the same mind, having moved to dismiss the arrest charges against Rench and the Bohnets. He told the court, several months after the arrests, that, while city codes allow the mayor to issue public health emergency orders, exemptions, unless specifically prohibited, include “any and all expressive and associative activity protected by the U.S. and Idaho constitutions, including speech, press, assembly, and/or religious activity.”

Read the Memorandum and Order issued February 1, 2023, in Gabriel Rench, Sean Bohnet and Rachel Bohnet v. The City of Moscow, Idaho, et al., by Senior United States District Judge Morrison C. England, Jr. of the United States District Court for the District of Idaho here .

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    Persuasive Essay on Pro-Gun Control. One of the most controversial topics surrounding gun control is pro-gun control. In a persuasive essay, the writer may argue in favor of pro-gun control and provide examples to support their stance. Here are a few examples of persuasive essays on pro-gun control.

  7. Full Transcript: Biden's Speech on Gun Control

    Full Transcript: Biden's Speech on Guns. As the nation grieves for the victims of several recent mass shootings, the president called for a ban on assault weapons and new "red flag" laws.

  8. Barack Obama's Speech About Gun Control: Read the Transcript

    January 5, 2016 2:14 PM EST. P resident Barack Obama unveiled a new set of executive actions aimed at limiting gun violence in a press conference Tuesday from the White House. The efforts largely ...

  9. Remarks by President Biden on Gun Violence Prevention

    Speeches and Remarks. Rose Garden. **Please see below for a correction, marked with an asterisk. THE PRESIDENT: Thank you, Kamala — Madam Vice President. Thank you very much. You know, we're ...

  10. Persuasive Speech On Gun Control

    Gun Laws Persuasive Speech 926 Words | 4 Pages. Imagine sitting in a classroom laughing at a joke your friend made, or planning on going to the movies after school, or even listening to someone's persuasive speech essay. When suddenly someone bursts through the door with an automatic weapon in hand. You and your friends run and hide in the ...

  11. How to Constructively Debate Gun Control

    Their nature and our use of them has changed, and our rules need to as well. The first step is classification. There should be at least three classifications for firearms: (1) hunting guns, (2 ...

  12. A Debate Over 'Common Sense' Gun Legislation

    Federal law requires background checks for all gun sales by licensed gun dealers. And in theory, it makes sense to give someone a background check to see if they have a criminal record.

  13. Remarks by President Biden on Gun Violence in America

    Biden on Gun Violence in. America. Briefing Room. Speeches and Remarks. Cross Hall. 7:32 P.M. EDT. THE PRESIDENT: On Memorial Day this past Monday, Jill and I visited Arlington National Cemetery ...

  14. Gun Control Speech Examples • My Speech Class

    Gun Control Speech Examples. Criminals will be criminals (29667 downloads ) Does banning firearms help prevent homicides (15184 downloads ) Gun control on campuses (11571 downloads ) Gun violence and control (22486 downloads ) Guns don't kill people (24668 downloads ) Guns and gun control - Texas (13004 downloads ) It's up to society to ...

  15. The U.S. Has More Guns, But Russia Has More Murders

    A Russian police officer unloads guns seized from the public that are to be melted down in the Rostov-On-Don region on May 28. Russia has strict gun laws and far fewer guns in circulation than the ...

  16. Essay On Gun Control For Public Speaking Class With Outline

    Speech on Gun Control with pros and cons evaluated. calaway scholes mr. mitchell public speaking october 18, 2017 gun control outline gun control specific. Skip to document. University; ... Thesis Statement: Instead of imposing stricter laws on guns, we should tackle the gun problem .

  17. Gun Control Persuasive Speech Outline

    Gun Control Persuasive Speech Outline prof demircan com100 14331 25 june 2022 persuasive speech on gun control outline topic: gun control specific purpose: to. Skip to document. University; ... Thesis Statement/Proposition: Due to the state's ineffective gun regulation laws, the unregulated handling of firearms plays a crucial role in the ...

  18. The Need for Stricter and More Thorough Gun Control Laws

    Stricter gun control laws will lower costs for the nation. For example, "Firearm-related deaths are the third leading cause of injury-related deaths in the United States ...The mean per person ED and inpatient charges were $5,254 and $95,887, respectively, resulting in an annual financial burden of approximately $2.8 billion in ED and ...

  19. What we know about the Moscow concert hall attack

    A Russian law enforcement officer near the burning Crocus City Hall concert venue following a shooting incident on March 22, 2024. ... But in a speech on Tuesday, Russian President Vladimir Putin ...

  20. Idaho Citizens Victorious in Lawsuit Over City of Moscow's

    "The city violated its own ordinance when law enforcement wrongly arrested Gabriel Rench and Sean and Rachel Bohnet. Those arresting officers demonstrated reckless indifference to these citizens' First Amendment rights. It appears that the city's law enforcement department was 'weaponized' to go after critics of the city government."

  21. Crocus concert hall shooting suspects detained, Russia says, as death

    The death toll from a gun attack on a concert hall near Moscow has risen to 133 as eyewitnesses recalled the moment that attackers armed with guns and incendiary devices stormed the popular venue ...