Gun crime and me

People are dying, and the national media is silent

Guns are killing masses of people. Lunatics with assault rifles are the most dangerous threat to American lives. We need to create laws that limit the ability of people to get these powerful weapons. This is the argument that is currently taking place in America. Daily news programs spend hours on the NRA, AR-15s, silencers and bump stocks, but how deadly are these rifles really?

According to the FBI’s Uniform Crime Report, 341 murders were committed using rifles in 2016. So what are some weapons used more often than rifles? More people are beaten to death; 656 people to be exact. 1,604 people were killed with knives or bladed weapons. Finally, the one that never gets as much media time, is handguns, killing 7,105 people. So with these statistics, why is everyone so afraid of rifles?

The most reasonable explanation that I can come up with is the media. When there are shootings, like the one in Las Vegas, the media obsesses over the rifles. They spend hours upon hours talking about bump stocks, AR-15s, gun laws and the like.

Meanwhile, if you look at Chicago news sites, they write stories about the shootings of the day, almost like it’s a recurring column. Those shootings take place every day, and they are not done with AR-15s, but handguns that have been passed through multiple hands, almost untraceable to their original owners.

So why are there outcries for cracking down on rifle regulation? Why is the conversation always, “Why do you need guns?” and not “Where are the guns coming from?”

A research study by Philip Cook found that most guns used in violent crimes are over 10 years old. Instead of preventing Americans from purchasing guns that are meant for hunting or recreational shooting, why aren’t we tracking down pistols on inner city streets?

The best solution to our gun problem? Stop calling each other out. Conservatives, realize that no one is trying to “take your guns.” Democrats, stop making it seem like conservative gun owners are the problem. We do not need to ban all guns — we need to realize where the real gun problem is.

Stop glorifying the massacres. As terrible as these events are, like Sandy Hook and Las Vegas, they are not where the most people are dying. The media shows us graphic footage of mass shootings around the country. We talk about motives and weapons and death tolls. But the media does not show the shootings that happen every single day.

When people are shot on the street, or in their homes, when muggings become lethal, or when gangs battle, we brush it under the rug. The media tells us about what’s new with the Kardashians or how a tweet from Trump is going to change the world. What we need to do is talk about the people who are dying everyday, and what we can do to save them.

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