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Pro-Gun Advocates, Anti-Gun Advocates, and Rising Crime Rates in America

Photo by George Brainard, Austin, TX

Laws With Teeth, Not Gun Control, Will Reduce Crime!

The right to bear arms is but one of the constitutional rights accorded citizens in these United States. It does, however, seem to get a disproportionate share of media attention by both pro and anti-gun advocates as both sides are intensely adamant on their position. The founders of this country, having suffered oppression, were obviously trying to make sure that didn’t happen again via the Constitution of the United States of America. In contrast, many Americans, having never experienced oppression, although repeatedly threatened, often don’t connect the dots between the right to bear arms and freedom.

Texans are not unaware that many view us as totally unsophisticated, living in a wild west fog, and less than intelligent. Although known as a pro-gun state; there are many among us that are anti-gun and both sides are equally vocal. Law abiding, pro-gun advocates in Texas define gun control quite differently than most: "If the gun is registered in my name and is in my possession - I control it!" By virtue of the wording in that definition there's absolutely no doubt the gun owner claims responsibility for three things: ownership of the weapon, undeniable responsibility for it’s proper use and the safety of others. Criminals don't do that! It therefore, stands to reason that intensifying penalties for crime is more expedient than controlling guns, which are inanimate objects, until in the hands of criminals.

Texas is also a death penalty state and in the words of comedian and fellow Texan, Ron White: "Texas not only has the death penalty, it's got an express lane!" Whether one finds that statement amusing or not is irrelevant. What is relevant is that if one uses a gun, or any other weapon, to commit murder in the State of Texas the consequences most likely will be grim. It’s also a fact the State of Texas doesn’t have one cell, in any prison, occupied by a convicted gun.

The way we deal with guns and crime in Texas doesn't set well with advocates of gun control nor those who rationalize a murderer deserves only a slap on the wrist because they experienced a dysfunctional childhood. Thank God we're all entitled to our own opinion on the subject simply by virtue of citizenship. Firearms were instrumental in both the initial attainment and subsequent upholding of that right and consequently Americans have a voice in determining the way criminals are punished in this country. Most punishments are a matter of established law in relation to the nature and degree of the crime and judges rule accordingly. If criminal cases had no guide lines judges and juries could mete out any punishment they choose and that’s not freedom.

Many have begun to question established law in relation to the molestation and death of children. The idea of harming a defenseless child is a totally alien concept to most people and they want it stopped. Pretend, for a moment, the death penalty is the law, unequivocally, for molestation or murder of a child. There's still no way to know how many children were SAVED from a child molester by virtue of the molester's fear of the death penalty. The only statistics available are those concerning children that WERE molested. Unfortunately, the statistic problem is used like a whip by those advocating the abolishment of the death penalty and gun control.

Those against the death penalty advocate that murderers and child molesters are people too. They are and most rational people, although finding those actions abhorrent, agree with that statement. However, disagreement arises when peaceful society is expected to treat those individuals as though they had not committed a crime and have the same inalienable rights as law abiding citizens. Does it not stand to reason they gave up those rights by virtue of their actions?

Should criminals be allowed to vote? No! Why should they be allowed a voice in the way this country is run? They really aren't purveyors of good judgment; now are they? As far as the suggestion that their rights should be upheld, they should be treated with dignity, accorded pleasant living accommodations, all the comforts of home, the best of medical care, a free education and conjugal visits; many find that beyond comprehension. Law abiding citizens, however, are paying the bill for all that every day. Perhaps there'd be fewer repeat offenders if they weren't treated so royally!

The Warden of one of the state prisons just outside Palestine, Texas, was the featured speaker at a luncheon a few years back. His entire speech was very informative but the part that's stuck with most of the audience all these years was at that point in time it cost $35,000 a year to support each inmate in Texas prisons. God only knows what that figure is now! One audience member gasped and just blurted out: "Heaven forbid - I support a family of four on less than that a year and only God knows how I’ll educate them!" The Warden responded to her outburst by replying: "If our laws were enforced, our penalties for crime intensified, and the prevailing liberal attitudes pertaining to the treatment and housing of inmates was altered that figure would not be so outrageous!"

One can surmise a lot of different things from his answer but his tone of voice and his countenance suggested he was not only discouraged he was plain pissed off! Unless and until both the anti-gun and pro-gun advocates in this country stand up, become vocal and demand cessation of criminal molly-coddling, harsher sentencing, repair of our less than satisfactory parole practices and uphold the death penalty they're spitting in the wind concerning crime reduction.

An old horse trader once said: "You know, anything that breathes will do a lot for you if they love you but they'll do a whole lot more if they're afraid of you!" Most will be appalled by his statement and can't imagine training horses in an atmosphere of fear. The majority of those same people, however, don’t have a bit of trouble applying that analogy to a murderer or child molester. Harsher penalties for heinous crimes will do more to reduce crime than gun control could ever hope to accomplish! It's sad but true; fear is and has always been a strong deterrent.

The old hack that guns don't kill people -- people kill people is, unfortunately, a fact. So is the statement: when guns are outlawed only outlaws will have guns! Who's going to consider giving up the only means most have of protecting themselves when murderers are held in such esteem, the crime rate accelerates daily and death by answering one’s front door is part of the package? A citizen doesn’t even have to be in a public place to be attacked as criminals are now bold enough to practice home delivery!

Gathering up all guns and believing that will produce kindness, generosity and good will among men is one of the biggest fallacies on the face of the earth. People were killing, murdering and dismembering one another long before the gun came on the scene. Instead of gun control just putting teeth in our sentencing laws and restructuring our prison and parole system would put a dent in the rising crime rate.

A famous, old, East Texas judge perhaps put the answer as succinctly as possible. He had finished hearing a heinous murder case, the jury had convicted the murderer and the judge had just ruled the death penalty. The murderer asked to address the court, the judge agreed and thus commenced the most pitiful, distasteful, self-aggrandizing, promise to do better statement the judge had ever heard. He stopped the man within two minutes and in mid-sentence:

"Mr. Brown, in the State of Texas, the first murder is not free! Case closed!"

NOTE: The author is in no way, intentionally or unintentionally, intimating, inferring or suggesting any entity, state or nation, its citizenry or its government is in anyway inferior to the State of Texas; she resides in Texas and is therefore most familiar with that state's attitudes, politics, government, laws and legal system.




Comments 13 comments

Jeffrey Neal profile image

Jeffrey Neal 6 years ago from Tennessee

Good hub, Angela. I am firmly on the pro-gun side of the argument and have spent a fair amount of time debating the issue with those on the other side. I have informed many of these people if they were able to show evidence to support their claims I might could soften my stance, but all I ever get is emotional pleas at best and name calling at worst. Live and let live used to be where many Americans stood on things they didn't agree with, but now too many want to remove an individual's choice in the name of "common sense" when the arguments seldom contain a shred of sense.

Sorry for rambling, but I enjoyed your take here. Thank you.


Angela Blair profile image

Angela Blair 6 years ago from Central Texas Author

Thanks Jeffrey -- we obviously agree. I, too, have debated the issue on many occasions. Most debates end when one question is posed, "Who's going to protect your children in the face of immediate, bodily harm, in their own home, if you don't have a weapon?" Few people imagine such things yet it's now quite common for criminals to kick a door down and walk right in. In Texas we're of the opinion we'd rather be judged by 12 than carried by six.


OpinionDuck profile image

OpinionDuck 6 years ago

Angela another good hub without the comments and attention that it deserves.

Absolutely true that taking the guns away from the law abiding citizens is not going to diminish the bad guys from getting and misusing theirs.

It reminds me of the cowboy movies where the saloon didn't allow guns, they had to be checked at the door. But, that didn't stop the dishonest card player from killing someone at his table that called him for cheating.

If a criminal has to worry about whether you are packing a weapon, they must have to think a lot about attacking you.

Good hub.


Angela Blair profile image

Angela Blair 6 years ago from Central Texas Author

Thanks for the kind words on the Hub. We're having a lot of "just kick the door down, rob and murder" in our larger metropolitan areas of Texas -- and it's tragic and happening all too often. We don't have much of that in the rural ranching areas because a shotgun sits real close to doors that lead in and out of the house -- and whether it sounds "western" or not we'll use them. Obviously, that proves the point -- shooters aren't anxious to accost people that can/will shoot back. They're usually lazy, no-account and cowardly and don't pick on anyone that can hurt them. I don't know the way we do things is an answer but it's one approach and is working pretty well except in the inner cities. Appreciate you stopping by! Best, Sis


Chef Jeff profile image

Chef Jeff 6 years ago from Universe, Milky Way, Outer Arm, Sol, Earth, Western Hemisphere, North America, Illinois, Chicago.

I keep my guns, and swords and black powder rifles, locked up in a cabinet, with trigger guards on the guns, so no one who doesn't know how to use them can't "play" with them. Guns are tools, like a hammer, and if you don't know how to use a hammer, then don't go around pounding in nails, is the way I look at it.

I am a really strong advocate for keeping law-abiding citizens in touch with their weapons, and keeping the weapons out of the hands of criminals. It just makes sense to me - law-abiding, have a gun if you want one, don't get one if you have no use for it. Criminal, get a harsh penalty if you possess a gun, or worse, use it in committing a crime. This is not a Left vs. Right issue for me. It is simply the way, as you said, our founding fathers wanted to make sure we could defend ourselves against anything.

When I was in the Air Force we could keep guns in the base armory locker, and get them to go hunting or sports shooting. Couldn't keep them in the barracks, which was a good thing, but we could use them for legitimate reasons. I see no difference now as a civilian. I don't break the law, so don't punish me. If I do break the law, then I am a big boy now and I know there will be consequences.

Cheers!

Chef Jeff


Angela Blair profile image

Angela Blair 6 years ago from Central Texas Author

Thanks, C.J. - having been literally raised with guns, like you, I believe they're a fact of life. As far as illegal use of them -- throw the book at the sucker! Those are the folks that make it hard for everyone and provide fodder for the anti-gun folks. Appreciate your comments and thanks for stopping by. Best, Sis


Chef Jeff profile image

Chef Jeff 6 years ago from Universe, Milky Way, Outer Arm, Sol, Earth, Western Hemisphere, North America, Illinois, Chicago.

Actually the first rifle I owned was my dad's WWII carbine. Nice weapon! Unfortunately it got stolen while I was away with the Air Force. I left it at home and the neighbor kid broke in and took it. He later got caught after using it in a crime and I never got the rifle back.

I used to target shoot back when we lived in the country and there were no neighbors to bother (they all had their own guns, too, so it was not unusual to hear popping of a rifle or pistol most weekends.)

Now I own some very old rifles, 1880's, and a few black powder rifles as well. I do have one old English pistol that I treasure, and I go target shooting with that at times. I did have an original ball and cap Navy pistol but I sold that when times got tough. Miss it, though!

Cheers!

Chef Jeff


Angela Blair profile image

Angela Blair 6 years ago from Central Texas Author

Wow -- would love to see your gun collection - and sorry you lost the WWII carbine. I have a "door" gun (shotgun) and a couple of handguns that aren't of any particular value other than they shoot straight and steady. My brother, however, collects guns and is an avid hunter. I doubt the gun control argument is ever going to end -- but I intend to keep mine. Glad you stopped back by - Best, Sis


m amin65 6 years ago

What I found in the Wikipedia story was that the information they had was based on the year 2004 and related to crime rates which would remove the sheer numbers of larger states and make this a more reasonable comparison.


50 Caliber profile image

50 Caliber 4 years ago from Arizona

Sis, you won't catch me unarmed. I think one gun is none and two guns is one. I shoot either hand and were I to be shot in my right hand I have a left side draw gun and still think that's not enough in the case of an active shooter.

Think Texas and Charles Whitman, he killed 16 people and put a bullet in 32 more that lived. I carry an active shooter bag in my vehicle. 10 tourniquets, pouches of a chemical called quick clot. H-pressure wrap bandages, pre-treated rolls of gauze for packing wounds and a host of new age battlefield immediate action medical supplies. Some as simple as duct tape. Large gauge needles in the case of a sucking chest wound where air is pulled in through a chest wound, the plastic that wraps the goods and duct tape used as a chest seal to stop the air from inflating the cavity pushing the lung and organs against the heart that collapse the other lung. Once sealed the needle is inserted into the chest between the 3rd rib located by pressing and counting from the top. you will hear the whoosh of pressure when it gets in far enough, you'll see the victim return to a normal breathing pattern. That is about the most technical thing one might run into. I have taken combat immediate action medical and this is useful even at a car accident and other things as well like a rodeo or just horse riding.

I figure that if one is set to take a life, he ought to be set to save one. The odds of using your gun is far less likely than an opportunity to save one or even your own. That's my spiel that s a little off topic nonetheless important.

As a gun slinger I keep an attorney to come get me out, chances of going to jail are pretty good whether it's a righteous shoot or not. Any thing you say can and WILL be used against you. If at all possible make the 911 call yourself and let them know in uncertain terms you or another was attacked and shots were fired, I was in fear of my or for their life, I'm wearing tan pants and brown shirt, a few minor details or the call will go out "xx address shots fired man down ambulance" the law dog will show armed and in force with no info so they are going to man handle you. You are responsible for every bullet you fire and what/who it hits. Say as little as possible if they need to know there were 3 guys one threw his weapon on that roof the other in that bush, then tell them you want to answer all their questions but your nerves are messed up and you need your attorney. Then expect to be cuffed searched and on your way to jail. I'll stop here as it's getting to be a hub.

Carry your gun! get educated in it's use. Practice right until you can't get it wrong.

Peace, Dusty


Angela Blair profile image

Angela Blair 4 years ago from Central Texas Author

All good advice, Dusty and thanks so very much for sharing your expertise not only with me but other Hubbers. I especially like your statement if one is ready to take a life one should also be ready to save one. I always keep a first aid kit in my truck although I certainly do not have the skills you do. Your last sentence sums it up very well -- carry your gun, get educated in its use and practice until you can't get it wrong. If that was the standard for gun owners all over these United States we'd be in good shape. Best, Sis


sgbrown profile image

sgbrown 4 years ago from Southern Oklahoma

Amen sister! I beileve that there are people on this earth that do not deserve the right to live. For what ever reason, the will continue to be dangerous to anyone around them and no amount of rehabilitation is going to fix them. I also believe that we have the right to protect ourselves from those types of people. I carry a gun. I have a permit and I know how to use it, very well I might add. I do believe that anyone that ownes a gun, needs to know HOW and WHEN to use it. Excellen hub, extremely well written! Thank you for sharing this with everyone. Voted up and awesome! :)


Angela Blair profile image

Angela Blair 4 years ago from Central Texas Author

sgbrown -- it's been interesting to find how many ladies are now arming themselves and learning to shoot. Glad to know you're among them as am I. Thanks for commenting -- seems we're in absolute agreement right down the line. Thanks for the vote and compliment. Best/Sis

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