Wednesday, March 20, 2013

  In present day America, the hotly debatable issue of gun control rages on. As Obama and his cabinet further try to push their bill of banning assault weapons and requiring extensive background checks, the battle continues to escalate. This issue was especially sparked and revived by the tragedies of the Connecticut school massacre and Colorado theater shooting. Many Americans are siding with Obama's viewpoint on the issue while other citizens proclaim that the bills that are being proposed are violating the sacred amendment of our "right to bear arms." These new bills that are being considered are not a violation of our freedom due to the fact that automatic assault weapons are useless and irrelevant for a civilized society, and that these extensive background checks will ensure that less crime is committed.

  Firstly automatic assault weapons are pointless and only a threat to civilized societies. In one of Obama's bids, he calls for a ban on these dangerous military weapons. The truth is, these weapons have no purpose except for war-like situations. Why would anyone want to shoot multiple rounds a second to hunt purely for sport for example. Obama's plan won't ban essential hunting sport weapons like rifles and shotguns, or self-defense weapons like the pistol. In the article, "In Louisiana a conservative backlash against gun control", it speaks of citizens in Louisiana rallying against the new gun laws exclaiming that they will never allow the government to "take away" their guns. In both the Connecticut middle school massacre and Colorado theater shooting, the shooter used high capacity round assault weapons. These guns have such a high bullet rate in fact that the fact that many were killed is no shocker. Th primary weapon that was used in the Connecticut shooting was a Bushmaster AR-15, which can be described as an assault like weapon that can fire at a rate of 45 rounds per minute. This killer is the number one supplier of AR-15's in the nation and is used by the militaries of over 50 nations. How this type of lethal weapon is essential in everyday life is a question that everyone should consider. It is simply too dangerous to have legal. The reality is that banning automatic assault weapons will reduce the amount of mass shootings and in essence preserve lives. The bill is in no way violating our sacred amendment of our right to bear arms as weapons like pistols, shotguns, and rifles are dangerous enough. 

  Secondly, extensive background checks will reduce the amount of crimes. Obtaining guns these days is much too easily accomplished as there are very minimal background checks. This leads to an every increase in mass shootings. Weapons are in fact more often than not obtained legally without any real constraints. A rather stunning chart can be seen on the blog, "Twelve facts about guns and mass shootings", where it shows just how many mass shootings in the U.S there were by weapons that were purchased completely legally. By creating more extensive background checks, it will decrease the amount of mass shootings. A massive loophole in the system is the selling of firearms to private buyers. If one is to sell a firearm without a license, that buyer doesn't require a background check. This means that one with no criminal history can easily go into an arms dealer, buy a gun, and sell it on the street to a person with a criminal history that cannot purchase a weapon. This loophole needs to be recognized and acted upon as millions of people with a criminal history have the potential to obtain a weapon just so easily. Having a weapon is a big responsibility and should be treated as a privilege to only people with no criminal history. All too often we are seeing weapons being purchased with absolutely no hassle.

   To conclude, the banning of assault weapons and implementation of more extensive background checks is essential if we are to preserve lives. We are not violating our constitution in any way, just ensuring that we decrease the amount of death's. Still the issue is in much debate, and a decision won't come easy.

Whitesides, John. "In Louisiana, a Conservative Backlash against Gun Control." Reuters. Thomson Reuters, 06 Mar. 2013. Web. 13 Mar. 2013.
Klein, Ezra. "Twelve Facts about Guns and Mass Shooting in the United States."Washington Post. N.p., 14 Dec. 2012. Web. 13 Mar. 2013.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Rhetorical speech exercise

In these famous speeches by Barack Obama and Martin Luther King, we can see very similar rhetoric.They both appeal to their audience(citizens of the U.S) by using the essential tools of ethos, pathos, and logos. We can see ethos in MLK's speech by the very fact of what exactly he and his followers are fighting for, and that's for freedom essentially. Good ethics can be fighting for what's right, and that's exactly what he's doing. In terms of ethos in Obama's speech, he display ethos by mentioning the gays which was a very first in any election acceptance speech. Obama too stands for freedom for all, in this case referencing to sexual preference. In terms of pathos for MLK's speech we can see this when he makes the famous line, "i have a dream."  This is one of the most famous lines in American history as it had a profound emotional impact.  MLK states that he has a dream that one day blacks and whites would be equal and live in peace. Obama appeals to the emotion by stating that we will return America to the top of the world. This is important as it brings hope to a country that has very high unemployment rates and is in a steep recession. People that are in a desperate state like we are today find comfort in a leader who promises hope, and that's what Obama did. In terms of logic , they both encourage equality which in turn is logical as it releases tension between people, which in turn makes people happier. These two speeches are prime examples of the power of rhetoric and how it is used at its finest. The two speakers also have something that cannot be taught, and that's the ability to lead through their voice and charisma. Everyone recognizes the voice of MLK and Barack Obama because of their distinct, powerful voice that can literally leave goosebumps on a person. I chose these two because they will always be remembered as two of the most powerful speakers in history.
Not their right to control your arms?

By Joseph D'Alessandro

The "right to bear arms" amendment has been a part of our constitution for as long as the United States seceded from Great Britain. It gives most states the right to allow people to have weapons and purchase them with minimal background checks and resistance. Recently, because of many tragedies like the Connecticut school shooting and Colorado movie theater massacre, many are questioning the amendment and calling for stricter gun laws. Such a concern has been raised in fact that many bill proposals calling for these strict gun laws have been introduced by Barack Obama and his staff. Many citizens specifically in southern conservative states, are outraged at these bill proposals as they claim that it is violating their sacred amendment and therefore unconstitutional. Both arguments make good points as gun control is no easy issue to resolve.

In the online article, "In Louisiana a conservative backlash against gun control", written by John Whitesides, it explains both sides of the hotly debated argument. One point of view can be seen in Baton Rouge Louisiana where a sales craze is leaving gun store racks empty as people scurry to purchase weapons that will possibly be illegal in the near future. In this widely known conservative providence, a series of bills aimed at protecting gun owners' rights have been introduced as a counter punch to Obama's push in Washington. Many rallies have been organized to support these gun friendly bills, and a sea of hands is evident when a congressman asks how many people are worried about their gun rights. "This has been a rallying cry for people to draw a line in the sand and say, "We are not going to allow this to happen to our guns", said state representative Jeff Thompson who has launched a campaign called "Save Louisiana", to try and fend off state and federal gun control proposals. Many believe that the new proposals are violating their rights and that the government shouldn't have the right or power to "disarm" its citizens. This thought process is especially evident in conservatives who believe in small government and often reference back to the constitution as being unchangeable.One thing remains certain, American states who believe in unrestricted gun rights aren't giving up as they fight to preserve their, "constitutional rights".

On the other side of the argument, many citizens all over the U.S agree with Obama's point of view about gun violence. A big spark in the debate was ignited after the notorious Connecticut massacre that left several people dead. Soon after, citizens cried for more strict policies on background checks of guns and claimed it was too easy to obtain these weapons. Most Americans do agree that something must be done. They are not calling for a complete ban on weapons, just automatic assault guns with large clips claiming that it is unnecessary to own such a dangerous weapon. An argument is raised that killers can obtain these weapons legally with little to no hassle. The truth is, statistics show that most killers do obtain their weapons legally as can be seen in the article, "Twelve facts about guns and shooting in the U.S", by Ezra Klein. However, other graphs show that whether or not a state has weapon policies, there will be homicides. California for example has some of the highest gun deaths in the nation due to its high population, yet has some of the strictest gun laws in the nation. The issue is debatable by both sides, and no compromise seems to reachable anytime soon.

Overall, the general public does support these new gun proposal policies that Obama is trying to pass. However, the question is raised by many if the government has the constitutional right to approve of potential gun laws. For many it simply isn't constitutional, for others it doesn't matter because time's have changed and killings continue to occur. The issue is very debatable as both sides make legitimate points. Whatever the outcome is, it will not come easy and a tension will brew.

Whitesides, John. "In Louisiana, a Conservative Backlash against Gun Control." Reuters. Thomson Reuters, 06 Mar. 2013. Web. 13 Mar. 2013.
Klein, Ezra. "Twelve Facts about Guns and Mass Shooting in the United States."Washington Post. N.p., 14 Dec. 2012. Web. 13 Mar. 2013.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Pretentious blog

This is my blog. I gave it this particular name because it is exactly what a blog can in fact be: a form of writing/social media intended to give the writer undeserved yet strongly desired attention. I will be posting my opinion on many subject matters including political, social, and personal topics. I hope you enjoy them.

-Joey D