Devil’s Advocate: Active police involvement in communities will effectively fight crime

In Devil's Advocate, Opinion
With the rampant spread of gun violence across America, the question of how to deal with the issue becomes more and more nuanced. Some believe that more states need to employ open carry laws so citizens can be armed in the case of an emergency. Others hold that law enforcers need to be more actively involved in communities to effectively fight crime. (Natalie Goldstein / Daily Titan)
With the rampant spread of gun violence across America, the question of how to deal with the issue becomes more and more nuanced. Some believe that more states need to employ open carry laws so citizens can be armed in the case of an emergency. Others hold that law enforcers need to be more actively involved in communities to effectively fight crime.
(Natalie Goldstein / Daily Titan)

It’s easy to make the argument that every person is safer when he or she has a gun with which to protect him or herself. But it’s a hard claim to prove, mainly because it’s not true.

First of all, more guns equal more gun-related deaths. In 2013, the 10 states with the highest rate of gun-related deaths per capita, most of which don’t require their citizens to acquire permits, all permitted open carry of firearms, according to the Center for Disease Control.

Statistical figures like these are probably the main reason behind the 1996 ban that prevented the CDC from collecting gun violence research. Fortunately for the gun lobby, their rhetoric is so strong that it outshines any factual data that lends proof to the fact that more guns lead to more injury and death.

The worst of these incidents involves unintended discharges.

According to a 2014 Yale pediatrics study, on average, 20 children and adolescents were hospitalized daily due to injuries caused by firearms in 2009.

While many of these situations were caused by assaults and suicide attempts, of children under 10, more than 75 percent of injuries were caused by accidents.

Accidents happen, and a house with a gun on the premises invites an increased probability for tragedy.

Another popular fallacy argued by gun control opponents is that people who commit crimes with their firearms are more likely to attain their weapons illegally. But all data collected regarding the recent gun massacre epidemic goes to the contrary.

Christopher Harper-Mercer, Vester Lee Flanagan II and John R. Houser all committed heinous gun crimes within months of each other. All of them were able to purchase their weapons through perfectly legal means.

They are just a few in a long list of psychopaths who were empowered by a machine that is armed with a kill button.

Good guys with guns and proper training are called police officers and they need to be more intimately involved in the communities they patrol than they currently are. Police officers are virtually useless inside their cruisers, and citizens need them where they can make a difference: on foot.

The United States needs to follow the example of other developed countries that have witnessed drastic drops in gun violence due to a complete abandonment of the cowboy philosophy. Fighting fire with fire only leads to more fire.

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