Gun Control Issues: What They Mean to Me

This was my very first time at the shooting range ... talk about nervous!
This was my very first time at the shooting range ... talk about nervous! | Source

Gun Control vs Gun Rights

I'm Texan. We are supposed to be these gun toting hillbillies that value our rights more than our own lives. Or so outsiders would believe. Well, the hillbilly part anyway. We do love our gun rights.

When the whole gun control issue made its way to the White House, Texas was probably one of the first states to be considered a 'problem' child of this great country.

You see, we are perhaps one of the friendliest breed of humans you'll ever come across until you start messing with our gun rights.

The funny thing is, I am a rare breed of Texan because I have never liked guns and have never wanted to own one. At least not until someone threatened to take away my rights to own one.

So of course, me being me, I needed to find out what the deal was because after my very first ever visit to the shooting range just this month, I found myself wondering if I was just riding the panic train along with most Americans.

Was everyone, including myself, hearing the words gun control and automatically assumed this meant Uncle Sam was going to come knocking on the door to carry away our firearms?

Well after a little bit of digging it would appear the focus of the gun control debate centers around citizens owning such things as semiautomatic weapons or machine guns. Now, maybe it's my fear of guns that makes me raise the question, who needs a semiautomatic gun in their home, but then again who needs the government to take away their right to have one?

So what is all this talk about gun control and what does it mean to you?

Essentially, it has been proposed, by Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), that the federal assault weapons ban that was in effect from 1994-2004 be reinstated to include such weaponry as: Belt-fed semiautomatic firearms, Rifles, Shotguns and Pistols. See the full list here.

Even the White House is clearly on board with some kind of gun control but what exactly it will be is anyone's guess at this point.

It's not clear just how far this debate will go but Americans seem to be bracing for the worst. There have been an increase in gun sales and people like myself have been clamoring to the shooting range to learn the basics.

The point is, it all comes down to gun control by the federal government or upholding the gun rights that this country was built upon.

As a mother, I cringe to think of my children's school facing the same tragedy as Newton or one of my family members being caught up in a movie theatre massacre like Aurora. I also cringe to think of a robber entering my home and I am left with a baseball bat to defend myself against their possible weapon.

So the verdict for me on gun control? Well, the jury is still out. But in the meantime, I'll still visit the shooting range and learn what I can before getting my first gun. Which in my opinion, is the point some are trying to make in the gun control debate. Education is first and foremost.

I Think This 15-Year-Old Says It All

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Comments 9 comments

Loretta Kemsley profile image

Loretta Kemsley 3 years ago from California

You don't need to worry about not being able to buy a handgun to defend yourself. They are not trying to ban handguns or hunting rifles. They want to plug the loopholes in the background checks, ban 157 military style weapons whose only purpose is to kill a mass of people in mere seconds and to ban high capacity clips that hold more than 10 rounds.

We've had gun bans since our nation was first founded. Back then, Native Americans, Blacks and criminals were banned from owning guns. In the 1930s, bans were put into effect for fully automatic weapons, sawed off shotguns, machine guns and similar weapons. in the 1960s and again in the 1980s under Reagan (who supported gun control) there were changes made in the gun laws.

The Supreme Court has upheld these laws and has ruled reasonable restrictions do not violate the 2nd amendment. In fact, until recent decades, the NRA supported gun control. In the late 1970s, libertarians took over the organization, and their stance began to change. Their current stance has never before been held in our entire history.

74% of NRA members want reasonable gun controls, which is comparable to the general public. Here's why the NRA is ignoring the wishes of its members: membership dues and fees no longer fund the major portion of their budget. The gun industry does, so they back what the gun industry wants. The more profit the gun industry makes, the more funds end up in the NRA coffers.

Our safety should not be compromised for gun industry profits. We need reasonable gun safety laws that help our nation to lower the gun violence rate. Our gun violence rate exceeds all other developed nations combined. That's very scary and completely unnecessary.


Superkev profile image

Superkev 3 years ago

The good news is that Feinstein's ridiculous legislation is DOA in the Senate.

She want's to ban Modern Sporting Rifles because they have a bayonet lug (among other 'scary looking' things) I guess because those drive by bayonettings are getting out of hand.


flacoinohio profile image

flacoinohio 3 years ago from Ohio

My wife was also not a big fan of owning a gun of any kind. It took the threat of a ban to get her to change her mind, the same goes for getting a conceal and carry permit. After the New York ban was announced , it was her idea for me to go and buy an AR-15 style carbine(if I could find one) the following morning. During the last few months she has taken a new interest in marksmanship and has been to the range several times. She is a very good shot and has put some of the other club members to shame at 25 feet with larger caliber pistols.


Alberic O profile image

Alberic O 3 years ago from Any Clime, Any Place

The semi automatic weapons listed in the ban are not belt fed, they are magazine fed by design.

Automatic weapons aren't totally banned either. They are heavily legislated through law.


sydneyspence profile image

sydneyspence 3 years ago from Austin Texas Author

@ Alberic O. Thank you for that info. Would that make their list inaccurate as far as the belt fed automatic weapons? Just so I can make sure I update anything I need to. Thanks!


Arthur Bundy profile image

Arthur Bundy 3 years ago from Colorado Springs

Ask yourself this?

Why did the Patriot Act not include more funding for the ATF, like it did almost every other major agency in the wake of 9/11?

Why are there excessive limits on listing guns and gun owners?

And, why has there not been a Director of the ATF since 2006?

Answer: Republicans and the American Legislative Education Counsel.

Having said all that. I don't like guns either. But, owning a gun is not just about a fundamental right, it's a major responsibility. Every gun owner in this country should want his guns accounted for, just like every gun dealer in this country should wants all his guns accounted for.


Alberic O profile image

Alberic O 3 years ago from Any Clime, Any Place

My apologies, the suppose law wanted to ban semi automatic belt fed weapons as well. You were right. Didn't scroll all the way down I guess, lol, so I guess just keep the sentence as is. Now to bore you with the summary of the law regarding automatic firearms:

Belt fed automatics (such as common light, medium and heavy machine guns), sub machine guns, assault rifles and machine pistols are legislated under the National Firearms Act. The Gun Control Act of 1968 is a revision of the National Firearms Act of 1934. These legislation (may be others) govern all firearms that can fire 3 round burst or automatic, silencers, explosives, sawed off/really short rifles/shotguns, etc. To own these weapons, you must get approval from the ATF- a federal agency that overlooks firearms, explosives as well as tobacco regulations. You have to pay a 200 something dollar tax for firearms under this legislation and the firearms (automatics/burst fire weapons) are expensive!

The assault weapons ban is poorly written regardless since it only covers semi automatic firearms that look like their automatic/burst fire counterparts. You can currently own semi automatic belt fed weapons without special permit though states. In my opinion, it's kinda pointless to get one. If you ever fired actual machine guns and carry these guys around (especially medium machine guns), they are pretty bulky. Plus a semi automatic mode on a belt fed weapon is silly. But if that's you're cup of tea and you got the money, then by all means do it.


sydneyspence 3 years ago

@Alberic O thank you for the great information!


Connie120 profile image

Connie120 3 years ago

(Loretta wrote: You don't need to worry about not being able to buy a handgun to defend yourself. They are not trying to ban handguns or hunting rifles. They want to plug the loopholes in the background checks, ban 157 military style weapons whose only purpose is to kill a mass of people in mere seconds and to ban high capacity clips that hold more than 10 rounds.)

Those 157 "military style weapons" are mostly hunting rifles, and commonly used target rifles, so yes, they are "trying to ban hunting rifle." Just because they look like military rifle,s doesn't mean their "only purpose is to kill a mass of people in mere seconds. In fact, a double barrelled shotgun like Biden advocates, could do that just as easily.

The current crop of gun control proposals are nenot reasonable and won't reduce gun violence. They will only make the public more vulnerable to attack. It's about time the federal government started going after criminals instead of law-abiding citizens.

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