For many years, gun possession and control have been prominent and largely discussed topics in many countries across the world. This topic is easily debatable as there are many controversial opinions in regards to it, and this is exactly why this topic is so good for writing an essay.
Thanks to the complexity and global importance of this subject, many students are facing the need to write a gun control essay. How do you do it right and get an excellent grade? In this article, you will find a comprehensive guide with plenty of handy tips and tricks to show you.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Gun Control Definition
So, you were assigned to write an essay about gun control. Where should you start? First and foremost, it is vital to ensure that you understand the concept of gun control pretty clearly before you can shape your opinion on the matter and make any statements.
In a nutshell, the term gun control refers to a set of laws and regulations that control gun manufacturing, transfer, possession, use, and other related matters within a specific legislation.
The situation with gun control in most countries across the globe is restrictive. Most legislations keep the possession and use of firearms under strict control, making gun possession a privilege—meaning that only limited groups of civilians are allowed to buy and use firearms.
However, there are still some countries that have permissive gun control regimes. One of such countries is the USA. Due to the country’s colonial history and pretty developed gun culture, people in most US areas are allowed to possess firearms. That’s why the debate about gun control is especially profound and serious in the USA.
At this point, the Second Amendment to the US Constitution protects the civilians' firearms ownership rights, which often serves as the core argument against gun control laws in this country. Meanwhile, people who are pro gun control, claim that the right to possess and use firearms is not unlimited and that certain restrictions and proper procedures should be implemented to restrict specific groups of people and places to possess them.
Debate Side Choice
To begin with, learn more about firearms regulations in general and find commonly used arguments for each side of the debate. Actually, at the heart of the dispute on this subject, a philosophical question lies; if gun possession is a right or a privilege? And there are a lot of other questions that arise from this one that should be properly regulated, including questions about: gun possession, manufacturing, use, trade, transfer, responsibility for misuse and etc.
Here are some overall arguments of gun control proponents:
- firearms regulation laws reduce the amount of gun deaths;
- most guns used in crimes were obtained officially and not from gun dealers (up to 90% in the USA);
- and possession of guns increases the number of firearm accidents and domestic violence.
Opponents could apply to the following general ideas:
- possession of guns is the best way to insure self-defense;
- gun control would not change anything, it will only increase the availability of guns through the black market;
- and education on guns and gun safety will be more effective than increased firearms regulation.
Some people think that the amount of arguments on their side makes their position stronger, but what really matters is the quality of those arguments. The better the argument is, the harder it will be to challenge it. So, what is a good, strong argument? Firstly, it needs to be clearly stated and easy to understand. Secondly, a strong argument is backed with evidence and facts, rather than emotions. Thirdly, it should be based on reliable sources and contain resource links if your argument is for an essay. Let’s take a look at some strong and weak argument examples:
Strong argument: The population of the USA is 319 million people and the number of firearms owned by US citizens is 371 million [resource link]—in fact, there are more guns than people.
Weak argument: There are more guns than people in the USA.
Strong argument: The study conducted in Israel in 2010 shows that the restriction of access to guns decreased suicide rates by 40%.
Weak argument: Many studies show connection between gun control and decrease of suicide rates.
Gun Control Essay Types
There are several types of gun control essays that students can be faced with writing. Each type of paper has certain distinctive features and peculiarities, which is why it is crucial to see the differences to be able to handle this task.
Let’s take a closer look at the main essay types and their differences:
- Argumentative essay – this type of paper implies supporting your position with strong arguments. Writing this type of essay requires conducting thorough research and collecting arguments from reliable sources and analyzing them.
- Cause and Effect essay – this implies describing the causes and outcomes of something. In the case of gun control, a student can take a specific law, or event related to the topic, and highlight the cause and effect relationship of that law or event.
- Definition essay – as the name suggests, this type of paper aims to define a problem or term in order to make it easy to understand for the reader(s).
- Expository essay – this type of paper requires conducting deeper research and exposing facts. You need to find a deeper problem related to the topic and reveal the issue to a reader. For instance (in regards to gun control in particular), you may examine how the government profits on gun control debates.
- Persuasive essay – this type of paper has to convince readers of something by appealing to facts, logic, or emotions.
- Reflection essay – this type of paper requires its writer to reflect on his/her personal opinion or thoughts regarding their particular topic.
- Annotated Bibliography essay – this type of paper strives to research, analyze, and summarise the available resources (such as books, journals, news reports, etc.) on a specific matter.
Now, let's take a closer look at two most common types.
Persuasive Essay on Gun Control
A persuasive essay is one of the most common types of this assignment. As the name suggests, the main goal of this paper is to persuade the reader(s) of something and to make them support your ideas. Thus, the main goal of the writer of a persuasive essay is to sound credible and support his/her claims with valid arguments.
How to write a good persuasive essay on gun control – first of all, there are three key pillars of persuasive writing to keep in mind:
- Ethos – suggests that a writer provides credibility by utilizing valid facts and using trusted external resources.
- Logos – suggests that a writer helps readers to understand his/her ideas using logic and by clearly stating why something is good or bad.
- Pathos – suggests that a writer appeals to the emotions of readers to persuade them of something, for example by making them feel shock or empathy.
Choose an approach that suits you most. Then, with the help of solid arguments, logic, or emotion you will be able to build credibility and make your essay truly persuasive.
Argumentative Essay on Gun Control
Another common type of task is an argumentative essay. As you can already understand from its name, the main purpose of such a paper is to provide arguments for or against a particular matter. Unlike a persuasive paper, writing an argumentative essay doesn’t require you to convince the reader(s) of your point of view. Still, it is one of the most difficult types of papers there are as there are several different types of argumentation:
- Classic Argumentation. This type of argumentation implies using a five-discourse style of writing that consists of an Introduction, Narration, Confirmation (by providing valid facts from external resources), Concession and Refutation (that serve to reveal two sides of a debate), and Conclusion.
- Toulmin’s Argumentation. This model of argumentation implies that you have ground or data for claims that are instantly supported by trusted materials (for example, news reports, academic resources, support arguments, etc.).
- Rogerian Argumentation. This type of argumentation implies studying claims from both sides of the problem with the goal of finding common points and reaching a mutual understanding. When writing an argumentative essay on gun control topics, this model of argumentation is one of the best approaches you can choose.
To write a flawless argumentative essay on gun control, you need to choose a type of argumentation that suits you most.
Additionally, you need to find the right topic. If you were assigned to write an argumentative essay about gun control, choosing a topic can be a bit more difficult. Here are a few ideas to help you shape a strong gun control argumentative essay thesis:
- Gun control laws vs. Crime level: does one really affect the other?
- Why stricter gun limitations will not help reduce mass shootings
- Has gun control helped decrease crime in the US?
- Gun limitation laws have to be stricter
- Does gun control leave people unable to defend themselves?
Next, you have to conduct thorough research to gather enough arguments in support of your thesis. Then, organize the collected data in a detailed gun control argumentative essay outline to simplify the process of writing. Once you have all of the arguments and an outline, all you need to do is to write your paper while following your previously written plan. To finish up, polish it up by proofreading and editing.
How to Choose a Good Gun Control Topic
Selecting a topic is one of the first steps you should take before rushing into writing your paper. Still, it can be quite hard to make your mind up and make the right choice.
Many students make a big mistake at this stage – they pick topics thoughtlessly and with no prior research. At the same time, they pick something very broad that will be hard to disclose in a short essay like “why gun control is good facts” or “why gun control is good 2020”.
Here is something to remember – gun control is an extensive and global matter. There are many aspects to it which make it impossible to cover everything in a single paper. Therefore, we advise you to pick a more narrowed and more specific related topic to have the ability to go deeper into it as you write the essay.
Here key characteristics for a good essay topic to keep in mind:
- Importance – regardless of the type of essay you are writing, it is crucial to focus on important and relevant subject matter.
- Engagement – a great topic should be engaging both for you and your readers.
- Size – a good topic should be just the right size for the length of your paper. It is vital to ensure that you will not have too much or too little to say on the chosen topic for the given number of words/pages.
- Precision – a good topic should be accurate and specific. For example, the topic “Reasons why gun control is good” is too broad, whereas the topic “Stricter gun control laws in the USA can minimize social risks” is more specific.
- Relevance to your thesis – it is vital to ensure that your chosen topic is in-line with your thesis. For example, if you are going to focus on the facts why gun control is good in your paper, your topic should also be pro gun control.
- Debatable – a good topic should be controversial—meaning that there should be both arguments for and against it. You will need to study both sides of the matter. Speaking of firearm laws in particular, you will have to study both the good and bad things about gun control.
Now, once you have the general idea of what you should do to pick a good topic, let’s look at some engaging topic examples!
Pro-Gun Control Essay Topics
- Why gun control laws are good: Stricter regulations reduce gun related deaths
- The availability of firearms for sale increases the number of domestic violence cases
- Stricter gun control laws will help minimize crime
- Gun possession promotes youth violence
- Does the accessibility of guns affect youth suicides?
Anti-Gun Control Essay Topics
- Against gun control facts: it’s not guns who kill, it’s people
- Top 5 arguments against gun control
- Gun possession is the most effective way to ensure one’s safety
- Strong arguments against gun control: stricter gun control laws will stimulate the growth of the black market and illegal weapons trade
- What is hidden under the cover of gun control debates
Writing an essay on gun control can be rather challenging. However, if you know how to organize the process right, you will be able to handle this task with ease!
To help you get on the right track, here are some of the most effective tips for writing a brilliant essay:
The better your choice of topic is, the easier it will be to handle writing. A good topic is relevant, important, and engaging. It is not too broad, but, at the same time, will encompass enough scope of information to disclose in a paper. Earlier in this article, we shared some tips on how to pick a good topic, so follow them to ensure success.
Once you have all of your arguments on why gun control is good or bad, and you have defined your own position on the matter, create a short, but effective thesis statement that informs your reader(s) about your position and gives them insight into the main topic of the paper. Here are two examples of a thesis statement:
Example of a weak thesis statement: Gun control doesn’t affect the criminal situation. (Not specific enough, lacks grounding)
Example of a strong thesis statement: According to the official homicide rates in the US states with different levels of strictness for firearms laws, there is no correlation between gun control and rates of homicides. (More accurate, specific, and based on facts)
In-depth research on the subject matter is the halfway mark to success. Thus, make sure that you organize your research right, use trusted sources, and don’t forget to take notes during your research.
To make your essay on gun control look really impressive, you need to provide strong supporting arguments. And to choose strong arguments, you need to know what counter-arguments are there. Thus, be sure to study the arguments from both sides.
Good argument for gun control: Loose regulations and wide access to guns in the USA lead to more than 39,000 gun-related deaths annually.
Good argument against gun control: In Massachusetts, where gun laws are extremely strict, the homicide rate is 2.0; whereas in South Dakota, where the laws are permissive, this rate is only 1.4. Therefore, we can see that there is no direct connection between gun control and violence.
Although many students might skip this step, writing an outline is vital for creating a top-notch essay. If you create a thorough outline that consists of a gun control essay introduction, a main body with key ideas and arguments, and a conclusion, it will help you make the writing process easier. Also, an outline helps ensure that you provide claims and arguments in a logical sequence.
Here is a sample gun control essay outline:
- Background information: The number of people who own firearms in the US keeps growing rapidly. At the same time, the number of gun-related mortalities in the country remains very high (73%) compared to other countries. These statistics are the cause of more and more debates going on about the topic of gun control.
- Thesis statement: Stricter gun control laws in the US will not prevent crimes and violence.
- First Body Paragraph
- Main point: Gun possession has no effect on violence.
- Supporting arguments/facts/statistics/examples.
- Second Body Paragraph (Counter Argument)
- Main point: The high rate of gun-related deaths in the US is caused by loose gun regulations.
- Supporting arguments/facts/statistics/examples.
- Counter arguments in support of your thesis
- Third Body Paragraph
- Main point: Gun ownership is an effective way of self-defense.
- Supporting arguments/facts/statistics/examples.
- Summary of the main points
- Restated thesis
Regardless of the type of essay you are writing, it is not a good idea to stay in the middle of the debate. You need to take a specific position and ensure that you’ve defined it clearly.
Most types of essays imply that you need to provide arguments that support your ideas. This is how you build credibility and, thus, it is vital to choose valid and strong arguments.
How does one do this? Let’s look at some of the most popular questions related to this topic and ideas on how to reflect upon them in your paper:
- What role does gun possession play in self-defense? – Provide statistical data, facts, and real-life examples of how legal guns are used for self-defense.
- How to stop mass shootings without gun control – If there are any real studies or past research on this matter, be sure to provide some insights into them.
- How many Americans want gun control? – Provide official statistical data (if available) or conduct your own survey to find the answer.
- How many countries have gun control laws? – Find reliable resources, such as government websites, and study the legal sides of the matter.
- How have gun control laws changed society? – Share real-life examples from different countries and communities to support your ideas.
By sharing facts and statistical data you make your essay look more valid. However, don’t include too many arguments so as not to confuse your reader(s). Instead of providing many facts, pick several of the strongest and most valid ones you can find!
A conclusion is an important element of every essay. It does not need to be too long, but it has to be clear and logical. In a nutshell, a conclusion is a short message that finalizes everything that was said in the paper and restates your thesis. It is the conclusion that makes a final and lasting impression on the readers. Thus, pay special attention to this part of your paper.
Finally, writing a great essay on gun control requires careful proofreading and editing. Don’t neglect these steps if you want to deliver a truly great paper!
Whether you have been assigned to write a gun control research paper or essay, the tips provided above should help you grasp the general idea of how to cope with this task. Now, to give you an even better understanding of the task and set you on the right track, here are a few excellent examples of well-written papers on this topic:
Gun control has been amongst the most disputable arguments in the news as of late. Some contend that guns ought to be prohibited to reduce the loss of lives, while others think it is their entitlement to remain battle ready. Recently, the Supreme Court has maintained a firearm boycott for abusive behavior at home for guilty parties. Gun control does not mean the government will take firearms away or ban them, but it implies certain types of guns won't be accessible (Bloomberg, & Michael, 31). For instance, a battle zone gun like an M16 ought to not be accessible to the overall population, since it is a sophisticated weapon and it is unnecessary for it to be handled by civilians. Moreover, Gun control would put more confinements on who is able to buy a gun—since few people are in the right perspective to claim a firearm...
The United States has the largest number of people that own guns, with an average of eight individuals in every ten having guns, an approximate 270 million guns in the hands of citizens — which is the largest ratio of guns per capita in the world. Of the population, 22 out of 100 Americans have more than one gun, with women in this category holding 12 percent, while men hold 35 percent (DeGrazia, p. 56-76). Over time, there have been attempts to impose regulations to limit gun ownership in the country, something that does not only violate Americans’ rights, but is something that is also unjustifiable.