New Gun Laws Won't Reduce Gun Violence
In today's society, gun crime has been so common that is slowly becoming a part of every day life for many people. Over the past decade, gun crime has been escalating to a new level with mass shootings of innocent people in public places. Between these gun crimes and numerous terrorist attacks, the government has been under pressure to stop the senseless violence. Their solution is to make new laws, in particular, gun laws. Many people think that making new gun laws won't curb the violence, but making new laws is the only thing that the government can do, constitutionally. Unfortunately for Americans, new gun laws won't solve the problem of gun violence.
The problem with gun violence isn't too many guns on the street or slack gun laws. The problem is the people with the guns, or rather, the crazy people with access to guns. Have you ever heard the saying "guns don't kill people, people kill people"? A gun didn't march into Sandy Hook and shoot those kids, a person did. In order for gun violence to occur, at least one person has to be involved, and often, its a person with some type of psychological disorder. To put it in a basic statement, a mentally unstable person gets sad and decides that its okay to shoot a person or a bunch of people because they are sad. This is the problem that we are facing in this country.
How To Determine If Someone Is Mentally Unstable and Violent
Although I passed General Psychology in college with an A, that does not make me a qualified psychologist, so I can't offer a definitive way to determine if someone is mentally unstable and violent. However, I can offer my honest opinion on some of the most obvious observations to some of the least obvious observations.
Observation #1: They have killed someone before
This is the most obvious observation that someone can make. It's sounds crazy that people walk around and know of someone who's committed murder, but hasn't said anything to anyone. Some people may read this, and their mind goes straight to a gang banger on the street, but this is something that affects all types of people. It could very well be the gang banger, or it could be the woman who knocked her husband off because she wanted a life insurance payout or the man who killed a co-worker because they got the promotion that he wanted. If this is you, please report this to the authorities because we don't need murderers walking around in our society.
Observation #2: They talk about killing innocent people
This doesn't apply to people who joke around. For example, if a person had a rough day at work and they jokingly say, "I could just shoot my boss." Many people joke around about this sort of thing, but if you use your instincts, you can tell if a person is serious or not. If they constantly repeat their fantasies, that's a clear indication that there may be a problem. If you know someone who has a strong hatred for a particular group of people and they are constantly talking about killing that group, or fantasizing different ways to kill that group, then that person probably has a mental instability. You should try to convince them to seek help, and if that doesn't work, then try to find help for them.
Observation #3: They are in a gang or on the street selling drugs, or doing some other illegal activity
Everyone knows that gangs are violent. And the streets are dangerous. For someone involved in these activities, they usually have a gun to protect themselves. When the bullets get to flying, they aren't necessarily aiming at innocent people (they're usually shooting other gang bangers), but innocent people get killed from stray bullets. Gangs affect all races across the globe, and the violence from gangs kills an unbelievable amount of innocent people everyday. Many people want to report gang members but they are afraid. However, the only way to eliminate gang activity is if people stand up and take back their communities. There is only so much that police can do without violating constitutional rights. This doesn't mean to go out and shoot the gang bangers, this means to testify, to come forward as a whole community and get these people off of our streets. Many people don't understand why a person chooses to join a gang in the first place. It's often because they've had a horrible childhood and they feel like they'll never amount to anything in their life. They didn't grow up in a home with morals and values, and they're parents could have been abusive or been addicted to drugs and alcohol. They join a gang, usually at a young age before they're capable of making logical decisions, so they can have a family that they feel will have their backs no matter what. Once a person joins a gang, it's very hard for them to get out. So they're stuck. It order to stop this, we must get to the children that are in these situations before they join a gang. We have to nurture them and help them to understand that there are other options in their life.
Observation #4: They are loners AND they are into weird and violent behaviors
The large majority of people who commit acts of gun violence tend to be loners. Later after an investigation, police will find evidence of things like they are into violent games, have bomb plans laying around, or that they have books about military grade weapons. You may walk into their bedroom and they have pictures/posters up of bloody corpses or maybe a swastika painted on their wall. It's important to note that not all loners are violent and not all violent people are murderers. It's just a general observation that one can make that could possibly be a hint. Another major part of this is if that particular person gets bullied a lot at school. They tend to hold in their anger and then take it out on innocent people. If you know someone like this, don't just reach for the phone and call the police just yet. Try to talk to them, get to know them, and maybe do a bit of snooping first. Then if there is cause for concern, call the police asap.
Who Causes Gun Violence
If I were to take a poll across the country that asked the question "Who or what group is responsible for gun violence?", I would get so many different answers that it would be almost impossible to reach a conclusion. People look at gun violence in a biased way. The first thing they do is look at their own lives and cross out the people that they relate to more. Then other factors come into play such as race, education, financial status, or criminal history. The truth is, none of these are main factors in who causes gun violence. Gun violence is caused by people from all groups, no matter your race, background, criminal history, or financial status.
There is one simple answer to who causes gun violence. The answer is mentally unstable people. If a person can pick up a gun and take the life of an innocent person, then they are mentally unstable. This includes gang bangers, a rich college kid, or the guy down the street who lost his job and can't pay his mortgage. Mental instability can affect every group of people, all around the world.
Mentally unstable people have access to guns, which in turn, causes gun violence. Kids get guns from their parents, people can buy illegal guns on the street. New gun laws may make it harder to buy guns, but these mentally unstable people will still have access to them one way or another. We can't ban guns from the public, and even if the government did that, people would still sell illegals guns on the street. There may still be a mentally unstable person on the police force or in the military with access to a gun. The only way to stop gun violence is to stop mentally unstable people from having access to guns.
Observation #5: They are Depressed and Suicidal
This does not mean that all depressed people are suicidal and that all suicidal people are going to kill innocent people. This is just one sign that they could possibly kill innocent people. Unfortunately, this doesn't only link to gun violence. They may do something as simple as drive their car on the wrong side of the interstate into oncoming traffic and cause a traffic pile up. But a lot of gun violence is caused by people who feel like they don't have anything to life for anymore. They angry, confused, and they feel like no one understands them and no one cares. Instead of getting to the root of their depression, they try to rationalize their anger by displacing it onto some group of people, and they decide that if they're life is over, it's not fair for that group of people to live either. This is why it is so important for depressed people to get help. Again, not all depressed people become violent, but if you know someone who is going through a particularly rough time, let them know that you care and that you are there to help them. That could literally be the difference between life and death for a lot of people.
What we need to do is be more aware of the people in our lives, especially teenagers because teenagers are often overwhelmed by emotions. An alarming number of teenagers are depressed and suicidal. Many of these teens, unfortunately, also have access to their parents guns. To an adult, the emotions that teens experience seem rediculous. We know that popularity in high school only matters for four years. We understand that working long hours is sometimes required to take care of our families, therefore leaving us with little time to spend with our kids, but for teenagers, this type of thinking is beyond them and they are too often consumed by their anger and sadness, causing them to do self destructive and violent actions. For some teens, this behavior can carry over into adulthood if they don't have someone to help them through the wave of unwarranted emotions.
Paying Attention to People Will Reduce Gun Violence
People go about their daily lives, often not taking the time to think about others. We are so concerned with our own problems that we often don't take the time to consider how anyone around us is feeling. We have become a society that is divided; divided in our homes, in our communities, in our government, and all across the globe. But we must put aside our differences and join together. We must become more people oriented in order for this senseless violence to stop. New gun laws won't stop gun violence, or any other violence for that matter. We have to get to the root of the problem, the reason that people think it's okay to take the life of other people. If we can fix that problem, it will make our country and our world a much better and safer place to live.