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The Handgun Debate The level of violence in America today is one of the biggest problems the nation faces It is virtually impossible to pick up the morning paper or turn on the evening news without seeing a story about some act of violence Now there seems to be no safe-haven from all the madness Shootings at work school and even churches have become commonplace in contemporary American culture There are over 200 million guns in America today over 72 million of these are handguns Blevins 1 Since handguns account for most of the homicides they deserve a certain amount of investigation Would we be better off without them Do they serve a positive purpose A lot of people say we should get rid of these instruments of violence all together These people are not without great opposition though not in this country anyway The following is an evaluation of this debate both sides of the argument are represented beginning with the proponents of handgun control The facts and figures speak loud and clear Although handguns make up on only about one-third for all firearms in the US they account for 80 of all murders committed with firearms Blevins 2 This statistic is not surprising if you look at the design of a handgun Handguns are small and easily concealed simple to operate and serve only one purpose to kill Devices such as these have no rational basis for existence except for police and military functions Guns have spread like a bad disease across the fabric of American society The amount of handguns in America has more than doubled since 1972 By 2003 firearm-related deaths will be the leading cause of injury related deaths Blevins 1 These fatalities take a great toll on the people of this country It is not just the mothers and fathers tears that result from these violent acts Great economic costs surround the issue too The
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