The Ethics of Gun Control Essay

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The Ethics of Gun Control


The phrase "Gun Control" means different things to different people. One
bumper sticker states that "Gun Control means hitting your target."
However one defines gun control, the mere mention of it brings
controversy. Opposing sides have for years fought over the laws that
govern firearms. For the purposes of this paper "Gun Control" is defined
as policies enacted by the government that limit the legal rights of gun
owners to own, carry, or use firearms, with the intent of reducing gun
crimes such as murder, armed robbery, aggravated rape, and the like. So
defined, gun control understandably brings favorable responses from some,
and angry objections from others.

The gun control
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The arguments of the anti-gun lobby are generally based on
so-called "common-sense" and emotional pleading, with relatively few
statistics backing up their claims. They argue that the Second Amendment
to the Constitution is only giving the states the right to regulate
militia activity and therefore possess and "bear" arms (Rowland 3). Some
of the more extreme anti-gun lobby advocate repealing the Second
Amendment altogether.

Since the most extreme advocates of gun control wish to ban guns
regardless of the Constitution, it becomes necessary to not just examine
the law of the land, and the courts interpretation, but also the
underlying philosophies of both sides of the debate. This is not to say
that the issue cannot be argued from a legal standpoint. In the past few
years, as class-action lawsuits have become more prevalent, some lawsuits
have been brought against gun manufacturers on the grounds that they
produce and distribute a dangerous product. In some cases, juries
decided for the plaintiffs, and thus set precedent for more anti-gun
suits. This hardly sets an actual legal precedent against the legality
of guns themselves. In fact, US v. Emerson, a case resolved just last
Spring, a federal appeals judge upheld under the Second Amendment the
right to own/possess…

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