Disarming America

The United States is hooked on gun violence.

A 2019 report by the firearms industry trade commission reported firearm and ammunition sales in the United States were responsible for over $52 billion dollars in economic impact and over 300,000 industry jobs within the country.

The manufacturing industry, the medical systems that care for its victims, the penal codes and the organizations who enforce them are all integral to the foundation of day-to-day living in the United States. Firearms are responsible for not only billions of dollars in gun sales, but trillions when you account for their role in other interconnected industries.

Yet the continued existence of violent mass shootings within our country have stirred calls across the board to reevaluate one our country’s foundational rights.

If we do decide to take away something that has been a part of us since our foundation, we have to be ready for the unintended setbacks. We have to ask ourselves if these incidents are worth cutting the nation short in an already difficult global economy.

Do we even understand the issue enough to pass meaningful legislation? National statistics show the majority of gun deaths are related to neither violent crime nor automatic weaponry, but suicides and handguns.

Contrast this fact with mainstream political discussion focusing specifically on assault rifle bans and you come away feeling something doesn’t quite add up. Firearms don’t kill nearly as many people as car accidents, heart disease or cancer, yet coverage of those issues pales in comparison to popularity surrounding gun violence.

The maintenance of freedom against ever increasing governmental power is a personal virtue for myself and many Americans I know, but when we talk about legitimate protection against the largest war economy in the world, where do we draw the line?

The idea of a door-to-door takeover in the United States is ridiculous to me. Implementation would create far too large an obstruction to daily life for anyone who might benefit, but for the sake of an argument let’s say our government were to take that course.

Available weaponry aside, military grade training, tactics and technology are going to provide more of a threat than any individual gun owner could handle. A SWAT team and drone for every home works just the same between a hunting shotgun or a man-killer.

There are very real arguments to be made about the domino effect a ban on personal firearms could have on our nation. The founding fathers wrote the Second Amendment into the U.S. constitution for reasons that were already apparent during their time. Nazism, Stalinism, and Maoism are all ideologies that have manifested since then and caused the deaths of millions of people. All of which included the disarmament of the population as a form of control.

Consider how realistically gun restrictions could be imposed on a population the size of the United States. We are already failing to effectively maintain current standards on an interstate level, how could we possibly implement laws with even broader scope?

America isn’t just unwilling to make the sacrifices firearm restrictions would entail, it is unable. Compared to the real risk of gun violence in the U.S., it simply isn’t worth it.

With more people now realizing they could be involved in an episode involving a gun, the real question becomes how long Americans are willing to stomach the consequences of their national lifestyle.


About Author

Brock Blasdell is a student journalist from Mesa, Arizona. He was hired onto the Mesa Legend in late 2018 as an Opinions Editor, and soon became the publication’s News Editor in 2019. He is now an Alumnus Correspondent for the paper. His writings emphasize college history, civil involvement, and personal reflection on modern American issues, while also analyzing and critiquing the role of modern media in national politics. Twitter @Brockblasdell