The AR-15 Should Not Be Banned
On September 30, 1959, the AR-15 was invented in Malaysia. By December of 1959, Colt’s Manufacturing Company had already made 300 rifles. The AR-15 has become increasingly popular among armies, hunters, and gun enthusiasts over the years. Now, some people want to ban this gun due to a correlation between mass shooters and AR-15 owners. However, there is more to this issue that must be considered.
In recent years, the AR-15 has been involved in many shootings and has therefore been featured to a great extent in the news. The media has picked up on this correlation and has exploited it to the full extent possible. Unfortunately, the media misinforms people on many aspects of the gun, including the meaning of the letters AR. These letters represent the company which owns the rights to the gun, Armalite. Most gun owners know this, but the part of the public that isn’t as knowledgeable assumes the letters stand for “Assault Rifle”. When people say they want to ban the AR-15, they aren’t solving the issue of semi-automatic rifle ownership. Armalite has many other models including the brother of the AR-15, the AR-10. Armalite isn’t just the only manufacturer either, Barrett makes the REC-7 which is the consumer model of the M4 carbine used by American Soldiers. There are also many other brands that currently produce semi-automatic rifles. Therefore, when the news and people call for a ban on the AR-15, they are just attempting to solve a portion of the problem.
Most people think of the AR-15 and immediately correlate it with mass shootings. I agree that these shootings are terrible, yet a ban on the AR-15 isn’t the best course of action. When thinking of banning the gun, many people think that a buy back program funded by the government would be the most efficient. If this course of action is to be followed, the government would have to offer massive payouts to those who are looking at returning their rifle, which is pretty unrealistic to ask for. Another problem with buy back programs is that some owners may have a sentimental connection to their rifles for many reasons. The rifle could have been gifted to them, it could have been their first gun, or they might just love their gun.
Often times, those who want to ban the AR-15 do not think of the people that own the gun. They rather think of what is possible to do with the gun. If an individual is interested in taking action to prevent mass shootings, they should focus on deterring mass shooters, not banning the AR-15.
– Davis Hardy
Why We Should Ban The AR-15
As many of us have been painfully made aware of, the United States suffers from mass shootings and gun violence on an unprecedented scale. School shootings have become so commonplace that many of us don’t even blink anymore when we hear about one on the news. This is not natural or normal in any way, and we as a society must combat this epidemic of gun violence.
The most obvious solution to stopping gun violence is to restrict access to guns, or more specifically AR-15s, the most popular rifle in this country. This gun was the weapon of choice in the Sandy Hook shooting, the Las Vegas shooting, the San Bernardino shooting, and most recently the Parkland shooting. And while correlation does not imply causation, it it clear that banning civilian access to this weapon would help us fight gun violence. To see why, let’s look at the specifics behind how the AR-15 works.
The AR-15 is a semi-automatic rifle, meaning it will fire one round when you hold the trigger. However, the gun will feed another round into the chamber automatically, instead of the shooter having to do it manually. So while you cannot just squeeze the trigger and shoot as many bullets as you can, the AR-15 still allows for a decently fast shooting rate. Moreover, bullets leave an AR-15 at a much higher velocity than a bullet leaving a handgun, significantly increasing the chances of a fatal injury. AR-15s can also store 30 bullets in their regular magazine, which is more than the magazines of most other guns.
It is clear that the AR-15 is significantly more deadly of a weapon than any sort of handgun or shotgun. Yet, anyone 18 or older can buy one with almost no waiting time. Why? Proponents for the gun claim that it is a hunting rifle and taking away this gun is infringing on constitutional rights. But most hunting rifles don’t need to be semi-automatic; bolt-action rifles and even sniper rifles are good enough for hunting purposes, and are used often. Additionally, the second amendment guarantees to bear arms, but the Supreme Court ruled that the right is not unlimited and does not prohibit regulation of firearms. Banning AR-15s would not take away the rights to bear arms; it is a regulation on guns that prohibits a certain TYPE of gun. This distinction is important, and makes the process of banning AR-15s legal.
The AR-15 weapon has been used in a multitude of mass shootings. It is a killing machine available to civilians that is more powerful than most firearms given to police officers. They serve no real purpose in society and banning them would not violate our constitutional rights. In the fight against America’s gun violence, banning this weapon is the only logical thing to do.
– Amit Rajesh
Categories: JMM Opinions