Gun Control Reform Needs to be on State of the Union Agenda

28 days into 2014 and this is already promising to be another deadly year when it comes to gun violence. In the first 14 days of school this semester, there have already been seven school shootings in our nation. Compare that to last year’s statistics: 28 school shootings in 2013, the year after the tragic shooting at Sandy Hook elementary school in Newtown, CT in December 2012 – which was supposed to be the year of gun control in the wake of the national tragedy where 20 students and six staff members were brutally murdered. President Obama demanded gun control reforms that made sense in last year’s State of the Union address. On the heels of the tragedy at Sandy Hook, Obama promised the nation mandatory background checks before gun purchases, more ways to keep guns out of the hands of the “bad guys,” and stricter gun laws in general.

America was ready for this reform after the events of December 2012, but none of it happened. The Senate completely voted down Obama’s proposals on gun control at a national level. At the state level, many laws passed. However, two-thirds of them actually loosened regulations on who can buy and sell guns. All of this despite the fact that, according to an April 2013 Gallup poll, 65% of Americans actually favor stricter background checks for gun sales.

The majority of our nation favors reasonable gun control measures, but the politicians in Washington are too worried about the money they get from the NRA and other pro-gun lobbies to effect any real change.

This problem goes much deeper than what we see in schools, though, as a teacher, that is what concerns me the most. There are an estimated 30,000 gun-related deaths each year in America. That’s one person every 17 minutes, according to the CDC. Also according to the CDC, that number includes 82 children under five years old who died from firearm-related injuries in 2010. And that doesn’t count injuries that alter the lives of 100,000 people each year. This is a widespread issue that effects every single one of us, and we deserve action.

President Obama is expected to tackle the issue of gun control in his State of the Union address tonight. I, along with the majority of Americans, know that these words will likely seem empty considering his plea for gun control last year and the Senate’s failure to act. Considering he asked for 41 different things last year and only three of them came to fruition (the renewal of the Violence Against Women Act, Congress did not default on the nation’s debt and they passed a government funding bill earlier this month), I know that enacting gun control measures is going to be an uphill battle. However, the nation needs to hear these words from our president, even if it is seemingly futile. Then, we need to follow up and demand stricter gun control laws from our representatives. When the nation speaks, hopefully the politicians will listen.

Gabby Giffords, a former representative from Arizona who was shot in the head during a mass shooting at one of her political events, has the same idea. She has released a new ad calling on Americans to demand change when it comes to gun control laws. This ad is expected to air both before and after the State of the Union address tonight. Hopefully it will inspire our nation to enact the change we so desperately want to see.

Photo Credit: The Knowles Gallery


Jim Ven
Jim Ven5 months ago

thanks for the article.

Brian Akhavan
Brian Akhavan2 years ago

Why must all decent non-violent people fight against "gun control"? Why is the right to keep and bear arms truly a fundamental individual right? You can find the answers in this new book.

People frequently ask why we are so dedicated to our cause? This book answers that question by collecting the key facts and arguments in one place.

People have asked us to present the whole JPFO argument in one place. We have done it. Available now in an easy-reading format and a handy size, the new book is entitled Death by Gun Control: The Human Cost of Victim Disarmament.

The message is simple: Disarmed people are neither free nor safe - they become the criminals' prey and the tyrants' playthings. When the civilians are defenseless and their government goes bad, however, thousands and millions of innocents die.

Professor R.J. Rummel, author of the monumental book Death by Government, said: "Concentrated political power is the most dangerous thing on earth." For power to concentrate and become dangerous, the citizens must be disarmed.

What disarms the citizens? The idea of "gun control." It's the idea that only the government has the right to possess firearms, and that citizens have no unalienable right to use force to defend against aggression.

Death by Gun Control carefully examines the "gun control" idea: its meaning, its purposes, its effects. It comes in many forms, but in every form it enables the evildoers and works against righteous defense.

Cheryl F.
Cheryl F.2 years ago

Eliott Rodgers - another person with mental/emotional problems that was able to go and purchase guns and look what happened.

When are the lives of innocent people going to become more important than the money the NRA gives to politicians?

Judith C.
Judith C.2 years ago


Eric Lees
Eric Lees2 years ago

"Incredible Speech on Gun Violence"

Scott haakon
Scott haakon2 years ago

Say no to gun control and put the money to mental and emotional issues. The people most likely to shoot in these situations are fragile white males who seem to be fragile emotionally.
We also have to be cognizant that with the explosion in information technology a person can get over whelmed with news from the four corners of the world making it seem that everything is negative.
Urban and rural areas have differing needs. As a person whom has lived in rural and city I can tell the differences. As a kid (10) I had a pistol,shot gun,rifle and practiced every week. The gun was a tool. My friends would come over and go hunting. We knew and lived safety.
I had to go and tell hunters that the land was posted(no hunting). I was always armed. Not once did anyone defy me.
For myself early training is best. Gun handling like languages is best taught very early. As is home discipline! I saw the anti-gun new report with Sawyer and was amazed at the laziness of the parents. The children were allowed to roam everywhere! My parent's room was off limits! I had boundaries. My first paid job was milking cows. I had to get up very early walk several miles as cows get up early and need to be milked.
I blame a lot on the parenting methods used. No boundaries is a bad idea.

Jelena Radovanovic
Past Member 2 years ago

Thank you for the article.

Frank S.
Past Member 2 years ago

Identifying mental illness is the key to gun control

Bryna Pizzo
Bryna Pizzo2 years ago

Thank you for sharing the important news and the petition! (s, p, t)

Eric Lees
Eric Lees2 years ago

Interesting video I came across on this subject.

"Why Everyone Should Own a Gun"