QUESTION #2: Is it dangerous to allow the average citizen to own and carry a weapon? Why or why not?


Huascar Rivera:

“In my experience, no it is not. The average American citizen who possesses a firearm does so for entirely legal pursuits. It’s either sport, hunting, or self-protection. I really hate to think that there is anything average about the individuals who have committed these large acts of violence using firearms. There is nothing average about them. There are clearly other issues. To paint with a broad brush and say that because someone who clearly has an issue or some grudge acted in a particular way with a firearm we should also put those restrictions that we want to place on that individual against the common citizen, that to me is wrong. No, the average citizen, the average American, I forget what the statistics are, I think there are more guns owned by Americans than there are people in our country. Obviously, this is not creating a stem of violence. Believe me when I say that one death from a gun is too much, but it’s not creating the stem of violence that they want you to believe is occurring. No, the average citizen is usually a very responsible gun owner.

I believe it’s beneficial for a citizen to have a gun because unfortunately, in this day and age as we know there is a potential to become a victim of crime in a great many situations. I like to think that we don’t live in Mayberry anymore. Andy Griffith and Barney Fife are not around the corner just trying to make things safe from no crime occurring. Almost on a daily basis, we hear incidents like home invasions, so in the sanctity of your own home you could become a victim. We hear of carjackings. In your vehicle, you can become a victim. You can stumble upon a robbery at a bank or at a convenient store. It is prudent to be prepared to protect yourself with a firearm or other means. I’m not saying it just has to be a firearm.

However, I think it’s important that we don’t give people the impression that they need to be fearful of being out and living their lives. They should be prepared to protect themselves. Awareness is very important. If you choose to do so with a firearm to protect yourself, it should be after proper familiarization and training. It can’t be done haphazardly.”

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