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Texas School Shooting

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May 26, 2022

Why in news?

Despite a high rate of gun violence such as the recent Texas shooting in the school, the country’s politicians and voters continue resisting changes to their gun laws.

What are the incidents of gun attack?

The U.S. had 390 million guns in circulation in 2018 as per the Small Arms Survey. Also, three out of every ten US adults own a gun (Pew Research Center).

  • Recently, a man shot dead at least 19 children and two adults, including a teacher, at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas.
  • In Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School attack (2018), a former student of the school in Parkland, Florida, opened fire, killing 17 people and wounding 17 others.
  • A similar major shooting occurred at Sandy Hook elementary school in Newtown, Connecticut, in 2012, in which 20 first graders and six school employees perished.
  • Overall, there have been at least 26 school shootings in 2022 alone and at least 118 incidents since 2018.
  • Children are not spared when it comes to the cost of US gun violence.

What is the stance of the politicians?

  • Since the Sandy Hook attack, 13 states controlled by Democrats have enacted or expanded background checks for new gun purchases.
  • However, 14 states controlled by Republicans, have passed laws allowing their citizens to carry guns with no permit process at all.
  • As of 2021, Republicans remain staunchly opposed to new gun regulations, arguing that the Second Amendment is sacrosanct and should not be infringed by virtually any legislation.
  • One of the key and defining characteristics of gun owners is that they associate the right to own guns with their personal sense of freedom and identity.
  • In 2021, Republicans framed gun control laws as part of the country’s history of racism arguing that gun control acts impinge on the rights of minority communities.

The Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution assures citizens of the right to bear arms.

What is the need of the hour?

  • There is an urgent need for
    • an assault weapons ban
    • expanded background checks for gun ownership
    • boosted funding for federal enforcement agencies regulating gun proliferation
  • Critics of gun control laws have often framed mass shootings as a symptom and not the disease, citing mental health illnesses as the root cause that needs to be treated.

 

References

  1. https://indianexpress.com/article/explained/us-texas-shooting-gun-laws-opposition-explained-7936319/lite/https:/www.thehindu.com/opinion/editorial/unending-tragedy-the-hindu-editorial-on-us-school-shootings-and-gun-control-debate/article65460006.ece/
  2. https://www.thehindu.com/opinion/editorial/unending-tragedy-the-hindu-editorial-on-us-school-shootings-and-gun-control-debate/article65460006.ece

 

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