A Teenage Opinion on Gun Rights

In response to the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting and massacre, two debates have sparked regarding gun rights and mental illness across America. The viewpoints range from having logic to none at all, leaving the country mixing bitter and mournful emotion into political agendas.

I was raised in a Conservative family; majority of the men in my family have served in the Armed Forces and my brothers currently serve in the Marines and the Navy. I will outright say that we like our right to bear arms. Both of my brothers own several rifles, both are members of the NRA, and both practically preach about the Second Amendment. Upon becoming of age, I intend to become a card-carrying member of the NRA in addition to purchasing a handgun.

None of my family members hunt, although my brother does fish. We possess arms for the sake of possessing them. We have no intention of using them against other people unless for protection. The majority of Americans are strictly the same – we will not attack other humans just because we own guns. It is for the sole use of protection – i.e. if a burglar breaks into our house and even then, we are restricted to the amount of force we use against him, despite him breaking into our private property. I have incredible opinions regarding that alone, so we’ll save that for another day.

Many people are beginning to think that guns are not the problem, rather they are the solution. Some people feel that arming teachers would prevent such tragedies as Sandy Hook and Columbine. While there’s a chance that could work, I don’t necessarily believe arming our teachers is the most accurate and logical solution. Adding security to schools, like police officers, to stand watch during the school hours I feel would be a better approach. Students and teachers alike would feel safer and more protected.

Regarding the idea of taking away Second Amendment rights, I disagree to an extent. Handguns and shotguns should remain, in my opinion; however, military-grade semiautomatic weapons should be taken away. There is no need for civilians to have military-grade weapons. There is absolutely no need to go hunting with a machine gun. A shotgun and pistol would do just fine.

I feel that many people in the country are focusing their attention on the topic of guns when they should be focusing on mental health. I, myself, suffer from depression. Depression, as well as several other disorders and mental illnesses are growing more and more prominent in teenagers and young adults, yet the level of healthcare available for these people suffering from them aren’t exactly adequate. I feel that focusing our resources and minds on improving healthcare for people with mental illnesses would overall better the country. No person, in their right mind, would feel a need or a desire to kill sixteen children, and that’s why we need to focus much more on mental health.

What happened at Sandy Hook was a tragic event, and I pray for those families for their suffering to soon be relieved, especially during this holiday season.



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