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Defense of self and state. Fundamental right. 10 Big Questions in the U.S. Gun Control Debate. Big Questions in the U.S.

10 Big Questions in the U.S. Gun Control Debate

Gun Control Debate In December 2012, a 20-year-old man wearing combat gear and armed with pistols and a semi-automatic rifle forced his way into a school in Newtown, Conn., and killed 26 people, including 20 elementary school students [source: Barron]. That event followed two other mass killings in 2012 -- a July attack on an Aurora, Colo., movie theater in which a gunman slaughtered 12 people and wounded 58 more, and an August assault on a Sikh temple in Milwaukee in which six worshippers were shot to death and thre others wounded [source: Krouse]. But this time, the age of the Newtown victims -- coupled with heart-rending accounts of Victoria Soto, a 27-year-old teacher slain while shielding her first-grade pupils with her body -- roused many Americans to demand action to prevent further gun violence [source: News Times]. But gun rights lobbyists say such laws would violate Americans' constitutional right to bear arms.

Gun Rhetoric vs. Gun Facts. Summary The mass shooting in Newtown, Conn., has reignited a national debate on gun control.

Gun Rhetoric vs. Gun Facts

As elected leaders begin the dialogue, some facts are clear — there has been a massive increase in gun sales. Some things are not so clear — such as whether there is causation between more guns and more violent crimes. Gun law in the United States. Gun law in the United States is defined by a number of federal statutes.

Gun law in the United States

These laws regulate the manufacture, trade, possession, transfer, record keeping, transport, and destruction of firearms, ammunition, and firearms accessories. They are enforced by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF). The right to keep and bear arms is protected by the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution. America's gun problem, explained. NRA regrets more 'law-abiding' citizens can't get concealed-carry permits, like Orlando shooter had.

The National Rifle Association may be keeping a low profile in the wake of Orlando's 49-person massacre, but the organization had plenty to say last week after the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled there was no constitutional right to carry concealed weapons—a right the Orlando shooter Omar Mateen had received a permit to exercise through Florida law.

NRA regrets more 'law-abiding' citizens can't get concealed-carry permits, like Orlando shooter had

In fact, the NRA's screed following the Ninth Circuit decision included no less than six references to "law-abiding" citizens—presumably like Mateen, pre-massacre—who want to carry concealed weapons in California. As you might imagine, the citizens who are denied such a permit are being victimized by the courts, says the NRA.

“Once again the 9th Circuit showed how out of touch it is with mainstream Americans," wrote Chris W. Cox, executive director of National Rifle Association Institute for Legislative Action, the NRA's lobbying arm. Of course, the problem is that everyone's a "law-abiding" citizen until they aren't. Why can people on the terrorist watch list buy guns, and other FAQs. Attendees visit the trade booths during the National Rifle Association’s (NRA) annual meeting in Louisville, Kentucky.

Why can people on the terrorist watch list buy guns, and other FAQs

Photo by Aaron P. Bernstein/Reuters WASHINGTON — Omar Mateen, investigated twice by the FBI, was on the government’s terrorist watch list for 10 months before being removed. Gun politics in the United States. Gun politics is a controversial area of American politics that is primarily defined by the actions of two groups: gun control and gun rights activists.

Gun politics in the United States

These groups often disagree on the interpretation of laws and court cases related to firearms as well as about the effects of gun control on crime and public safety.[1]:7 Since the 1990s, debates regarding firearm availability and gun violence in the U.S. have been characterized by concerns about the right to bear arms, such as found in the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, and the responsibility of the government to serve the needs of its citizens and to prevent crime and deaths.

The 3 Worst Arguments Against Gun Control. Guns don’t kill people.

The 3 Worst Arguments Against Gun Control

Making it hard for criminals to get guns makes it hard for everyone. Any gun law puts us on a slippery slope. We’ve heard it all before. It’s all wrong.