The Second Amendment to the Constitution of the United States of Americaasserts, “A well-regulated militia being necessary to the security of a freestate, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.
“At the time when this amendment was passed, the country was still primarily anagrarian and hunting society, guns were a household item, and necessary fordaily life. The armed farmer was the principal soldier in the revolution toestablish an independent country. The framers of the Constitution understoodthat these gun-wielding countrymen were essential to the revolution, and wantedto insure the people would never be defenseless. In recent decades, with thewaning practical application of guns in an industrialized nation, the SecondAmendment has come under much fire. Living in a technologically advancedcountry, United States citizens no longer have a need for guns in their everydaylives and, therefore, many Americans have grown up in gun-less homes.
The recentrash of violence across the country has shown that the ideals of modern Americansociety have gone awry. Many are quick to blame guns as the reason for thisviolence. Actually, the problem is not the possession of guns; Americans havehad them for over 200 years. Instead, the demise of the morals of society andthe lack of restraint of the American public have caused the recent violenttrend. Guns are merely a tool. In the hands of immoral and undisciplined people,they are put to evil purposes. The problem lies in the fact that the amendmentwas created to deal with the muzzle-loaders of the time, and now guns haveevolved into killing machines, not just hunting rifles. These new guns however,are no more capable of killing without a man controlling them; guns have beenprevalent for literally hundreds of years without being used as weapons forhumans against humans, except in times of war.
Guns have been in American homessince 1776, and they were not associated with violence until recently. Thecurrent trend of school and workplace violence is due to the desensitization ofthe American people through television, movies and even music. Movie andtelevision producers are businessmen, and they produce what sells, that usuallybeing violence. With the American public watching such films, and loving them,the influence on everyday life cannot be ignored. Statistical facts from othercountries show the USA to be much more violent than most other industrializedcountries. Last year, Paris suffered less than 25% of the violence that occurredin Washington DC, and Paris is four times as large. The classic society that ispresent in Europe does not have the same fetish with violence as is present inAmerica. “Progressive” generations in the American society are in essenceregressing; the terms Generation X and the Me Generation have been coined andconvey the selfishness that is evident in modern society.
The Columbine HighSchool violence spree is simply one of the recent acts of violence, but itillustrates how the countrys “troubled” youth are reacting to theirsurroundings. People are taking a more violent approach to try to solve problemsthan ever before, and that is certainly not solving anything. The recentincrease in job related violence can be blamed on the increased stress anddesensitization of the average worker. This new approach to workplace problemsis very evident, recently in Hawaii and is so common that the term “goingpostal” has been created to describe workplace shootings.
In the early yearsof our country, and in most places around the world at a boss or a layoff mighthave been expressed through yelling or at worst, throwing a chair. Thedesensitization of the American worker has caused him to take a differentapproach in very recent times, the approach of violence expressed with the abuseof guns. The issue of gun control is historically split between the two majorpolitical parties in the US The Democrats have always pushed for stricter gunlaws, and the Republicans have always been for lenient laws. Heavy campaigncontributions are made to both parties in hope to push certain groups viewswith The National Rifle Association leading the way with large contributions tothe Republican Party. Regardless of party, most politicians agree that somethingmust be altered in the present equilibrium, because violence is almost becomingroutine. The Second Amendment was intended for the purpose of reminding thesepoliticians that they are there to serve the people, and no other reason.
Although elections are usually enough incentive for politicians to please thepeople, they need to know that the people can revolt, and the Constitution isnot the last ruling document that this country will ever see. The brilliance inthe Constitution is that the Framers allowed for changes in society and changesin government. They knew that they could not map the fate of the country in afew months. Today, the Second Amendment is outdated, and not currentlyeffective. It is, however, part of the Constitution and that will not change inany time near. Since the Framers of the Constitution could never envision whatwould become of guns or the violence that would occur in the US, they cannot beblamed.
The amendment was never a problem for the first 200 years of ourexistence, and that points to a problem in modern society, not the Constitution.Before something that has been around for centuries is changed, maybe what haschanged in recent decades should be examined. Modern American society is basedon instant gratification and what people absorb from their surroundings.
Unfortunately, these surroundings are not always the best influences. Movies,television and music are filled with violence, drugs and sex. If societysurrounds itself with such activities, the influences will be widespread. Inconclusion, the focus of violence and violent behavior is often directed at gunsand the availability of handguns. Instead, the focus should be turned on societyand the changing morals and actions that have caused something that has alwaysbeen present in our society, guns, to become a problem in recent times. Althoughmore efficient, guns today serve the same purpose as always, and in no othertime period or any other modern country has the problem with gun violence thatthe United States has.
Maybe society should change instead of changing adocument that has been steadfast for over 200 years.