This is Think a Bit Thursday, the weekly series where I tie movies to ideas and discuss them. This week, we’ll be talking about Pulp Fiction and Gun Control. What does Pulp Fiction have to do with Gun Control? I’ll explain in a minute. First let me give you an idea of what Pulp Fiction is in case you haven’t seen it. It is about two gangsters, a boxer, and a couple of restaurant robbers. Three seemingly unrelated stories mesh together to create what is known as one of the best crime movies ever made.
Organized crime organizations get guns illegally. Gangsters don’t apply for gun licences, obviously. Instead, they obtain firearms illegally and stay under the radar, just like those in Pulp Fiction. But what about those who are average citizens? Should they be allowed to go to a local gun retailer and get a gun as long as they have a clean record, proper training, and the correct licenses and paperwork?
This week’s question is: Should people be allowed to own a gun?
Allow me to lay out my opinion. Please do not leave this post without reading all of it thinking that I feel a certain way when I really do not. As always, I consider all sides of the issue. Just give me a moment to communicate my thoughts.
When I woke up the morning after the Dark Knight Rises premiere, I was fully charged. As soon as my alarm woke me up, I bolted out of my bed and opened my laptop. I opened three tabs at once. I sought Dark Knight Rises reviews. I was living and breathing the film, for I would be seeing it that night. Along with the reviews, I opened up Facebook. As I scrolled down, I saw a lot of: ‘Dark Knight Rises was epic!’ and ‘Best movie of my life!’ But as I was scrolling, my heart pumping fast from the sheer excitement, I came across a status that read: ‘RIP to the victims of the Aurora theater shooting.’ At that same moment, my heart sank. I finally became aware of my heart pumping hard. I slowly pulled my fingers off of my track pad and just stopped. I read the status over and over again. I just sat in my chair, no thoughts, no feelings. Just numbness. I closed all of the tabs and went to Google. I searched ‘Aurora theater shooting,’ and I read 3, 4, 5 articles. This was unbelievable. I went downstairs that morning alone and turned on the news. I soaked up everything I could about what happened in Aurora. For me, somebody who was just as excited as these people for the Dark Knight Rises, this event really struck hard. The movie theater is a sanctuary for people to escape. The fact that a person had disturbed that peace and shattered that excitement with guns and killing and evil was upsetting. It could have been me or anyone else.
Hearing this news right after I woke up put a dark stain in the atmosphere. This was raw, unreal news. And incidents like this are not uncommon. There have been plenty of other shootings at schools and public places. I am completely aware of that. It is a known fact that people do abuse firearms. But is that a valid reason to ban them?
Guns were given to US citizens as a right through the second amendment. During the Revolutionary War, they were oppressed by the British. When the country became free and the Constitution was created, guns were allowed to be carried by citizens in order to establish security and true freedom. But are guns needed now?
Look. Criminals have weapons. Until criminals on our streets no longer possess firearms, we should be able to carry them as protection. If guns are out of our criminals’ hands, THEN I can understand banning firearms. If there is nobody to protect ourselves from, then guns are useless, and solely a hazard. But when criminals are on our streets with guns, taking away the right to guns is unjust. It is taking away out protection. Criminals are dominant over us if we cannot carry a gun and they can. Especially when the economy is poor and police forces are being cut down, now is not the time to disarm citizens.
Here’s the deal. People are saying that because of these tragic shootings and the abuse of guns, they should be banned. Yes, guns have one sole purpose: To kill. And some people misuse the guns and use it as a murder weapon rather than a precaution, which it is meant to be. But we as citizens have a right to defend ourselves. Instead of getting rid of guns altogether, therefore leaving citizens defenseless, we should instead moderate weapons and who buys them. We cannot give out guns simply if a person has a clean record and can complete a training course. We need to truly evaluate each person individually before giving them a gun, and keep up with what they are doing with it. I get that no matter how good of a record a person has, however, the person can still use a gun for murder. He can be set off and act on impulse.
Look at this kid who conducted the Aurora shooting. He was a really smart kid, the kind of guy who would likely be trusted with a gun. Still, just because a small amount of people use guns incorrectly and for personal bouts does not mean that we should get rid of guns altogether. If a gun were placed in my hand and I had a grudge against someone, I wouldn’t even consider pointing the gun. Why? Because I was raised well. I know better than to misuse something as powerful as a firearm. Some people, however, don’t have that support. They don’t have that thing in their mind that says, “Don’t do it.” THAT is what needs to be treated, and before it happens. The desire to kill is a mental issue, and mental issues can be reduced and treated here in the 21st century.
Let’s say that guns were banned. Think: What happens when the government makes something that was once widely allowed illegal? Let’s look at the Prohibition. When alcohol was banned, people obtained it illegally. Eventually, alcohol was made legal again, because the amount of crime being committed to obtain it flew through the roof. The same would happen with weapons. Men who are concerned about protecting their families will not let their guns go without a fight. Taking guns away will cause an uproar. Once people feel like their rights are being stripped in the US, they get extremely upset. Extremely. Repealing or cancelling an amendment is a very clear way of stripping a right. That wouldn’t sit well with the country.
US citizens should be allowed to carry firearms. Yes, guns are abused, and the effects are usually devastating, but if guns were taken away from us, we would see it as a loss of freedom, and the effects of the gun ban would outweigh the current effects. Maybe when crime in the US is diminished and criminals no longer have firearms, gun control could be put forth. But when our criminals have weapons, it is not correct to take guns away from citizens. It is giving power to the criminals. There are a host of reasons why we should keep our right to bear arms. I know that this is a sensitive topic, but what is your opinion? Let me know in the comments below. Here is the question one more time: Should people be allowed to own a gun? Thanks for reading!