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How Do We Measure Up?

How Other Countries Have Dealt with Gun Control Compared to the US

Hakas are being performed multiple times a day in New Zealand at the moment and sadly it is not for a rugby game or wedding. The Hakas are being performed to honor the 50 people that recently lost their lives due to a white supremacist with a firearm at the Al Noor Mosque.

America is no stranger to mass shootings, we have had 1,983 in the past seven years alone. It does seem America is a stranger to one thing, and that is better gun laws. It has been 10 days since the shooting in New Zealand and Prime Minister Ardern said the cabinet has already reached decisions on gun reform laws that she believes will make New Zealand an even safer place. This is an action that has been seen in multiple other countries right after a shooting.

In Britain, after the Hungerford Shooting in 1987 that killed 16 people, the Firearms Act of 1989 was put in place. This act banned the ownership of high powered self-loading rifles and bursting fire weapons. In 1996, another shooting occurred at Dunblane School. This shooting killed 16 children ranging from the ages of four to five and one teacher. In 1997, there was an amendment made to the Firearms Act due to an overwhelming amount of citizens believing that firearms should be banned.

760 miles from Britain is the country of Germany. In Germany, a shooting at Erfurt School accrued in 2002. This shooting claimed the lives of 16 people. The following year, the Weapons Act went into effect. This act restricted the use of large caliber weapons by young people and strengthened rules for the safe storage of firearms. Then in 2009 at Winnenden School, 15 students were shot dead, that same year an amendment was made to the Weapons Act of 2003. This amendment created a federal gun registry and increased the regulation for firearm storage.

Sailing over to Australia, in 1996, a semi-automatic weapon was used to kill 35 people at Port Arthur. That same year the National Firearms Agreement was put in place. This agreement was agreed by the federal government and states that it was right to make firearms more regulated, more uniform and to ban certain semi-automatic weapons. There was also a buyback program put in place, more than 700,000 firearms were bought back.

Dispassionately our government has done little to nothing following any of the 1,983 that have occurred in the past seven years. Instead, they go to saying it as a "heart problem" not a gun problem or blaming it on mental illness. (this is going to be addressed in how wrong that is in my next article, titled The Favored Scapegoat). Though there is nothing wrong with thoughts and prayers, prayer is powerful, it does seem a ton of government officials think this a good bandage put over the gaping hole left by these tragedies.

Our government is at a standstill on the topic of gun control. This standstill makes the government come off as a whole that those residing in it care more about how much power their political party has than the safety of American lives. Instead of reaching across the aisle there are accusations being thrown out that those wanting GUN CONTROL LAWS want to take guns away from all people.

There are those that scream "it's my right by the constitution to own a gun." No one is denying that and if anyone is they must have missed all of their government classes. As a whole, those wanting gun control are not calling for all guns to be taken away, they are calling for amendments to be made and laws to be put in place to better ensure safety. The constitution was written 232 years ago, a ton has changed in regards to firearms since then. The main gun of choice was a musket and it only shot three times a minute, we now have guns that shoot 30 ROUNDS IN 15 SECONDS. That's a massive jump. Using the famous "hunting" excuse can be viewed as folly. Unless the deers are planning a massive attack to take back the forest there should be no reason a Remington, Ruger or bow and arrow won't work just fine.

Our country is starting to become numb with every passing shooting because no matter what people may say these events are becoming a tragic norm. This can not happen, something must be done. We do not live in 1787 where we are under the daily fear of being invaded by a great army. Gun laws and amendments would increase safety and a feeling of protection by the government.

To improve America, we must improve and better its laws. To make America great, we must do more to enrich and help the lives of her people. Republicans and Democrats need to end this petty fight of who holds more power in the government and go completely back to what the government was made to do, protect and serve the American people.

George Washington was right in his farewell speech saying that political parties would rip the country apart. That belief is proven more accurate in today's current climate.

Shouldn't a patriot be described as someone who sees a problem in their country and instead of running from it, takes action to improve their home? Isn't a patriot someone who acknowledges the sins of their country but still loves it and fights for a better tomorrow? This is what our forefathers did. This is what they sacrificed and died for. If you believe that these are things that describe a patriot, then it looks to be that those in our government lack some patriotism surrounding the gun issue in our land of the free.

From the graphs one can easily look up, America is a country that has a massive problem in the subject of guns. We fail constantly in comparison to what other governments have done to ensure a safer place. America is a great country but it seems that multiple of those that govern it are not so great. They care more about political power and where their money is coming from than being a public servant. America needs to start measuring up in the safety and welfare of its citizens.

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