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Down the Barrel: Ethics and Morals

Tyler Kynion

DC-G High School

A well-regulated Militia, being necessary to the

security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms,

shall not be infringed.

The bearing of arms is the essential medium through which the individual

asserts both his social power and his participation in politics as a responsible moral
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being (J.G.A. Pocock). Have you ever interacted with a firearm? There is nothing like

having your finger on the trigger and the ability to express who you really are. You have

the ultimate decision - the choice of life or death with the twitch of your index finger.

There is a lot of talk about firearms and there are a lot of ethical and moral decisions

that come with them.

With the Obama administration there was a lot of talk about whether or not

restrictions on purchasing firearms and the types you can have was the right thing to do

or not. By doing so, you would be violating many US citizens, 99.9% of which are law

abiding, their 2nd amendment rights. This is similar to protesters burning the American

flag. Is it right? No, not at all. But it says right in the constitution, amendment 1, that a

person has the right to express their opinion. I agree not everybody should own a gun

but you can not take away that constitutional right based on the poor ethical and moral

decisions of a few people.

"Taking my gun away because I might shoot someone is like cutting my tongue

out because I might yell `Fire!' in a crowded theater." (Peter Venetoklis). Guns dont kill

people, people do. The sad reality is, stricter gun control laws only get brought up after

an incident involving a firearm. This then questions moral values if allowing firearms is

unintentionally giving the wrong people the tools to intentionally harm others. I dont

believe so. You have to have strong moral and ethical values when owning a firearm

and know there are right and wrong decisions.

I dont understand the theory that a woman found dead in an alley, raped and

strangled with her panty hose, is somehow morally superior to a woman explaining to

police how her attacker got that fatal bullet wound. (L. Neil Smith). Many of todays gun
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owners, aside from being used for recreational and hunting use, carry concealed for

personal protection. As more people are getting concealed carry permits the rate of

crimes (mass shootings, rape, robbery, etc.) are going down. The people that are

committing these crimes - many of which have lifelong histories of crime, substance

abuse, taught little to no morals, mental retardation and/or irrational violence against

those around them - have to think twice about committing a crime now. The more

capable people are of defending themselves against attack, the less practical and

sustainable crime becomes. Many of these gun owners were taught morals at a young

age and know the right choices are possible, and the ordinary judgement of these

ordinary people are capable of making them and protecting themselves and those

around them.

There is a lot of new technology today and it is constantly advancing. One of

those new technologies is 3D printing. "We shouldn't allow a moral panic to stifle the

large benefits for 3D printing for society at large. (Angela Daly, 2014). There have been

many incidents where criminals have used a 3D printed firearm in a crime. This is not

morally correct because these people are pretty much lying and cheating. There should

be more restrictions on people being able to download and print these guns in their

homes. One fix to this problem could be that firearm manufacturers create these

blueprints. Then on each blueprint they can provide a serial number and trace that

firearm back to a certain individual in the event they need to.

Another technology that is advancing involving guns is how they are stored.

There are many types of gun storage solutions. The conventional ones includes safes

with a key, dial lock, and/or numerical keyboard lock. Today, there are safes that require
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a fingerprint. There are many moral topics that can be taught in households with

firearms, especially ones with children. Things like not handling anything with that gun

unless there is a parent with you, check to see if there is a round in the chamber every

time you handle that gun, and understanding the dangers that could come along with

that gun.

The idea of increased gun control laws split our country up, both sides have their

reasons for and against the topic. The people that are for argue that by restricting the

alititly to purchase such a weapon will restrict the wrong people from using the weapon

to hurt anyone around themselves. Morality is what gun control is all about in the end. It

is about the moral imperative that our government has to create a society that is free of

the type of atrocity that has occurred recently. I realize that restricting guns alone will

not do it, and that societal factors such as media violence and poor mental health care

all contribute to violence, but guns are an important part of that equation and so their

role in the mayhem should not be ignored. I am not advocating the removal of all guns

from America, but a stronger system to track and monitor gun sales. (Sanjay

Sanghoee, 2012). The right to owning a firearm, which is stated right in the constitution,

might be against some people's morals. But I do not see that right ever being taken

away, at least I sure hope not.

In conclusion, there are a lot of moral and ethical topics that get brought up

whenever guns are talked about. They fall right in line with a lot of citizens beliefs but

are against some. Instead of this topic splitting the country apart, we need to do a little

compromising and keep our 2nd amendment right going strong. Americans have the
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right and advantage of being armed - unlike the citizens of other countries whose

governments are afraid to trust the people with arms. (James Madison, 1787)

References

3D printing: Don't let moral panic about printed guns stifle technology benefits, inquiry

told. (n.d). ABC Premium News

Of, T. E. (2013, November 24). The Ethics Of Owning a Gun. Retrieved April 25,

2017, from https://theethicsof.com/2013/11/21/the-ethics-of-owning-a-gun/


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Quotes on the Right to Bear Arms. (n.d.). Retrieved April 25, 2017, from

http://www.catb.org/esr/fortunes/rkba.html

Possible Gun Control Laws and Moral Values (with images, tweets) Jaymarie0820.

(2014). Retrieved April 25, 2017, from https://storify.com/Jaymarie0820/possible-gun-

control-laws-and-moral-values

Muro, J. (2015, January 20). The morality of the gun debate. Retrieved April 25, 2017,

from http://moralcommunities.com/gun-debate/

Sanghoee, S. (2012, December 14). Moral Nation: Why Our Constitution Demands Gun

Control. Retrieved April 25, 2017, from http://www.huffingtonpost.com/sanjay-

sanghoee/moral-nation-why-our-cons_b_2303558.html

Ethics from the Barrel of a Gun: What Bearing Weapons Teaches About the Good Life.

(2010, October 22). Retrieved April 25, 2017, from http://www.catb.org/esr/guns/gun-

ethics.html