On January 8th, Jared Lee Loughner shot Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-AZ) in the head at point-blank range, then proceeded to fire into a crowd outside a Tucson supermarket hosting a constituent gathering. Among the victims were Chief Judge John Roll and nine-year old Christina-Taylor Green, who attended the gathering in hopes to learn more about our government system. This shooting was a great tragedy, and has reignited the gun debate that, with the advanced technology of the 21st century, must be revisited.
The handgun used against Giffords, the Glock 19, is the gun of choice most commonly used in the many U.S. mass killings within the last 30 years. This same weapon was used in the 2007 Virginia Tech massacre.
In my argument for stricter gun regulations, it is important to note that I do not blame any political figure for the tragedy in Tucson. Sarah Palin came under fire for her target hit list, which placed crosshairs over congressional districts held by certain Democratic leaders, Rep. Giffords’ district included.
While Sarah Palin may be guilty of regularly embarrassing her own political party and making President Obama look better everyday, she is not to blame for the actions of the mentally unstable individual who was responsible for the shooting in Tucson.
With that said, a large-capacity bullet magazine (otherwise known as ammunition), available on the market, serves no other purpose than to provide others similar to Loughner with an outlet to take out their frustrations on innocent people.
After the tragedy in Tucson, several colleagues of Giffords suggested that it’s time for Congress to reinstate the expired 2004 federal ban on extended magazine clips. This law, which expired under Bush’s presidency, made it illegal to purchase or sell magazine clips holding 10 or more rounds.
We as citizens have a right to bear arms. However, in no way could our Forefathers have envisioned the high-capacity magazines we have available on the market today. It only takes 10 seconds for 33 bullets to be shot out of a Glock 19 pistol—ten seconds that in Tucson left 6 dead and 20 wounded. I am not asking you to give up your Second Amendment rights. I am simply asking you to use your common sense.