17 September, 2013

Why Are Americans So Heavily Armed?

Many times, I have wondered - why are Americans armed more than any other people on Earth? Per person, no other country (except, maybe, Yemen?) has more guns than the USA. Guns, now, seem very much a part and a symbol of America. We can's imagine a US without guns: some if not most of the internationally liked American movies are mainly gun related. But that love for guns has cost and is still costing American citizens very dearly. Then, why would they continue to possess so many weapons?

It is so easy to get armed in America: The United States is a place where “buying guns is like buying sweets from a sweet shop — it’s no problem...". And it is as easy for these guns to be used in very terrifying ways. As has just happened with the Washington Navy Yard Shooting. Although a report says that the rate of gun violence in the the US has very much dropped, still - America has the highest gun ownership rate and also has one of the highest firearm murders in the world. A few months ago when a twenty-or-so-year-old, seemingly very normal young man, brutally and mercilessly slaughtered people, including his mother, and very young children in Newtown, Connecticut - I wondered more on why a people would so much want to possess guns. And I asked an American acquaintance of mine who is very much supportive for the possession of guns - why have the guns?

His answer was brief: he said that Americans must have guns in order for them, first - not to end up with a fascist country like Germany and Italy did over 70 years ago; for him, if American citizens have guns their government can never be taken over by fascists or dictators. Secondary, to him, is Americans needing guns to protect themselves against each other. I tried to reason with him that the possession of guns is only causing more fear and insecurity for Americans. I also pointed out to him - that most European countries do not easily allow the possession of guns and they do not have fascists or dictators running them; he said, they will have that eventually. Only time will tell who is right: Americans and Yemenis who very believe in the possession of guns or most, of the rest of the world who believe otherwise.

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