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Sunday Discussion: Bob Costas Gun Control Debate



Read my thoughts about the NRA press conference by clicking the link below.

UPDATE: MY personal thoughts after the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting are included in this post.

I know this Sunday Discussion is being posted on a Tuesday.  But I am glad I waited to post this until today.  During the halftime segment on Sunday Night Football on NBC.  Bob Costas injected politics into a football game.  Bob talked about the murder-suicide involving Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Jovan Belcher.  And then he talked about gun control; this sparked an immediate outcry on social media calling for Costas to be fired.

Let’s start with the second amendment to the United States Constitution.  It says:

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.

This means people have a right in America to own guns.  They have a right to protect themselves from people who want to commit crimes against them.  Many people in Alabama own guns.  Many homes have several guns inside on display and hidden to protect the people inside.  Bob Costas referenced a piece by Fox Sports columnist Jason Whitlock.  After praising the column, Costas said: “In the coming days, Jovan Belcher’s actions and their possible connection to football will be analyzed. Who knows? But here, wrote Jason Whitlock, is what I believe. If Jovan Belcher didn’t possess a gun, he and Kasandra Perkins would both be alive today.”

According to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.  There are more than 129,817 federally licensed firearms dealers in the United States.  Of those, 51,438 are retail gun stores, 7,356 are pawn shops and 61,562 are collectors, with the balance of the licenses belonging mostly to manufacturers and importers of firearms and destructive devices.  Also According to ATF reports, in 2010 there were 5,459,240 new firearms manufactured in the United States, nearly all (95 percent) for the U.S. market.  An additional 3,252,404 firearms were imported to the United States.  Sure; people convicted of crimes and the mentally incompetent can not buy guns.  And before every gun purchase the buyer has to go through the National Instant Criminal Background Check System.

In 2010; the system ran 16,454,951 background checks for firearms purchases.  Only a small number of these purchases (78,211 or 0.48 percent) were denied.  And since 1998 there has been over 150 million checks in the system.  The fact is the people buying guns are safe people just wanting to buy weapons for protection, hunting, or to build a collection.  Some people out there wants America to ban all guns.  And then they want officials to go house to house to roundup all weapons.  You do realize if they try to roundup all weapons it would be a disaster.  People will not turn over their guns!  If someone tries to take their guns they will be shot!  People are not going to let the government take away all guns.  It just will not happen folks.

I do think the country needs to crack down on people who are not supposed to have guns. If a criminal has a gun and uses it to shoot people; they should be sent to prison for a long time.  If a criminal even processes a gun they should be sent to prison.  Some people don’t deserve to carry a gun and they should not have weapons period.  I would also put in a tougher mental health check before someone could get a gun.  I would check the entire mental health history of a person before they were allowed to get a weapon.  But at the same time, the people who follow the law deserves to be armed.  I wish more people would get a concealed weapons permit.  I think this world would be a safer place if someone who is allowed to be armed would deter criminals not to break laws.

Guns do not kill people; people do!  If Jovan Belcher was not allowed to have a gun, he would have found another way to kill his girlfriend and himself.  Bob Costas should have not talked about the gun control debate during Sunday Night Football.  Bob Costas said during the Dan Patrick Show that America has a “gun culture.”  Costas talked about his stance on gun control on the radio show.  He said: “Here’s where I stand: I do not want to see the second amendment repealed. … People should be allowed to own guns for their own protection. Obviously, those who are hunters. … Access to guns is too easy in some cases. I don’t see any reason a citizen should be able to arm himself in some states in ways only police or military should — to have a virtual militia (bought by) mail order or gun shows. Why do you need a semi automatic weapon? What possible use is there? … Whitlock wrote about a gun culture. That’s what I was focusing on (in the halftime segment).” (USA Today)

After the Sandy Hook Elementary School shootings where 28 people were killed and 20 of those were little kids.  I believe there needs to be some changes to the gun laws in America.  People who are not convicted of a crime and are mentally stable should still be able to own a firearm.  But here is my first question?  Why are people allowed to own these automatic assault weapons that you would see in the military.  I do believe these types of weapons needs to be outlawed because people do not need them!  I think more people also needs to get a concealed weapons permit.  If people were trained to use a handgun and were legally allowed to carry it, these mass shootings might have been stopped before they even started.

I think a big change in the National Instant Criminal Background Check System is needed. There needs to be bigger mental health checks in everyone that is wanting to purchase a weapon.  I would like to see a requirement of having people getting two family references saying its okay for them to get a weapon.  If this is in place it would stop a lot of these mass shooters.  I would also like to see these tough requirements put in at gun shows as well.  It’s way too easy to buy a weapon at a gun show and then some of these weapons are put in the hands of criminals.  I would also like to see required classes for people wanting to get a concealed weapons permit so people can be properly trained and the police can find someone who is mentally unstable.

America will never ban all guns inside this country.  Sure, this country has a lot of guns but 99% of them are in responsible hands.  You know if this country decided to ban all guns the criminals would still have guns to use.  The bad guys would still harm other people and they would have a much easier time harming other people if guns were banned.

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