One of the most controversial topics over the last few decades is the need for stricter gun control There have been numerous events such as Columbine and Sandy Hook school shootings along with others that often prompt the difficult decision for policy makers to take a closer look at the gun policies or lack thereof However it is very rare that a policy surrounding guns is successfully passed into legislation due to the special interest group of the National Rifle Association otherwise known as the NRA Gunned Down The Power of the NRA documents the history of the NRA alternative policy issues and provides firsthand interviews from individuals who have been victimized or who have lost a loved one as a result of gun violence Many experts throughout the film provide their input on the issues surrounding gun control Wayne LaPierre represents the special interest group known as the NRA and is the Executive Vice President of the NRA Throughout the film LaPierre analyzes potential policies surrounding gun control from a special interest standpoint LaPierre does not hold back and firmly believes that the number one way to control violence resulting from guns is to have more guns not to restrict guns For example LaPierre states the only way to stop a monster from killing our kids is to be personally involved and invested in a plan of absolute protection The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun Kirk Wiser 2015 Another expert Matthew Bennet who is a former advisor to President Clinton provides his professional input on the ability to pass any policies regarding gun control Bennet appears to address the issues of gun control from a public interest standpoint Although Bennet appears to support the need for gun control policies he also understands that the NRA is an extremely powerful special interest group
Therefore the NRA often dictate what policies are passed and which one s come up short for votes Paul Barrett who is a political analyst also makes a valid point in the film when he states The degree of fury over this really can t be captured in words but it was never he was never going to do it Kirk Wiser 2015 Barrett is referring to President Obama s speech following the shooting of Congresswoman Gabrielle Gifford President Obama does not make one reference to the word gun during his speech and Barrett s analysis was accurate Obama was not going to focus on the policy of gun control because the cost of taking on the NRA is suicide in the political world Paul Barrett addresses the gun control issue from a public interest stand point Paul Barrett understands the need for politicians to look into the issue of gun control however he also has an understanding that special interest groups make it difficult for gun control policies to be passed in Congress Regardless of the experts views there have been policy alternatives that have successfully been implemented and others that have come up short of votes Throughout the video there are numerous gun policy alternatives that are discussed such as the gun show loop hole the 2nd amendment 1968 Gun Control Bill and the Brady Bill of 1994 The unfortunate issue surrounding the gun show loop hole is that any individual can purchase a gun at a gun show and does not have to undergo a background check
Only a handful of states have passed policies that have closed the gun show loop hole however in many states this policy issue still remains an uphill battle Another policy alternative that this film discusses is the 1968 Gun Control Bill which banned all mail order sales of firearms and restricted certain gun purchases Kirk Wiser 2015 Then we have the Brady Bill of 1994 This policy resulted in the requirement of background checks for all gun purchases from licensed dealer Kirk Wiser 2015 Although the government has not been able to create a policy that puts an end to gun violence some individuals would say they have made progress in the right direction and others would disagree In conclusion the policy alternatives that I feel will help end the issue of gun control would be to focus on the importance of passing policies that close the gun show loop hole in all states and to focus on the importance of not only enforcing stricter background checks but also taking into consideration any mental health conditions an individual purchasing a gun may be diagnosed with For example there are many individuals in the United States that can pass a criminal background check with flying colors deeming them appropriate to own a firearm However if we took a look at their mental health history we may not have the same opinion Therefore stricter background checks and taking an individual's mental health status into consideration would best address the problem in this debate Unfortunately human behavior is unpredictable and there will never be a policy passed that will completely solve the gun control issue but there are steps we can take to possibly lower the chances of firearms reaching the hands of wrong people
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