Should Assault Weapons Be Banned Essay

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Amongst all the stories swirling around in the media following the Sandy Hook tragedy it may surprise one to discover that handguns, not assault weapons, are used in most of the gun murders in the United States. Despite this many in Congress are pushing to bring back the Clinton-era ban with some extra restrictions and requirements. Although I can understand how frustration and grief following such horrific events can push people to call for action, I do not think that banning certain types of semi-automatic rifles or limiting their magazine capacity will do anything to stem the tide of death. The first hurdle that politicians seeking a new assault weapon ban will have to face is defining what exactly an assault weapon is. Most of the time…show more content…
The ban was essentially the same as the one currently being debated, banning magazines with a capacity higher than ten but banning only semi-automatic rifles with two or more “military-style features”. This ban is commonly cited by the pro-gun control crowd as a success and a model of what we should return to. So when trying to evaluate the effectiveness of a new assault weapon ban one should examine more closely the effects of the old version. The legislation that put in place the first ban in 1994 mandated a study be done by the Justice Department to assess its’ impact. Not only did this study state that the weapons banned were only used in a small percent of crimes even before the ban, but also "found no statistical evidence of post-ban decreases in either the number of victims per gun-homicide incident, the number of gunshot wounds per victim, or the proportion of gunshot victims with multiple wounds."(Koper, Roth 67) So even if Congress bans these vaguely named assault weapons it will most likely be as ineffective as the last time they did so. Some take issue with the ban not because of its’ functionality problems, but because they feel it violates their rights as

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