this is my final speech for my speech class... looking for advice, possible adjustments.
sorry for the long read
but i figured if anywhere here might have some insight it would be the outdoor section
Two and a half weeks ago, on May 4th 2009 at around 3 am, according to a The Atlanta Journal-constitution, a group of ten students were at a small birthday party in an Apartment in College Park Georgia, when suddenly, two armed, masked men burst into the apartment demanding wallets and cell phones, they separated the men and the women, and were apparently planning to rape the women and murder all ten people, because one of the assailants asked the other ?how many bullets do you have??, to which the other replied ?enough? implying that he had enough ammunition to kill the men he was holding in a room. These criminals plans changed drastically when one of the male students from the party refused to be a victim, reached into a backpack, grabbed a pistol, fired at the criminal watching the men, who fled, and went into a bathroom, where the other criminal was attempting to rape one of the women, and fired three shots, fatally wounding the second criminal. The fact that this young man, who is about the same age as many in this room, took matters into is own hands, and in doing so, saved the lives of ten people.. proves that the best way to deter violent crime, is to not just sit back and be a victim, but to be willing to proactively protect yourself and other citizens from those that are determined to do you harm.
IF WE AS A NATION, INCREASED THE AVAILABILTY OF CONCEALED CARRY PERMITS, OUR CRIME RATES, AND ESPECIALLY OUR HOMICIDE RATES WOULD DROP EXPONENTIALLY.
TODAY, IM GOING TO SHOW YOU HOW THE MORE POPULAR CURRENT GUN CONTROL LAWS AND SO CALLED ?GUN FREE ZONES? DO NOTHING BUT CREATE A SAFER WORKING ENVIRONMENT FOR CRIMINALS, HOW THIS PROBLEM HAS BEEN PERPETUATED BY AN ANTI-GUN BIASED MEDIA, AND HOW THE ONLY GUN CONTROL MEASURE THAT HAS BEEN PROVEN TO REDUCE CRIME, IS TO MAKE IT LEGAL FOR CITIZENS TO PROTECT THEMSELVES IN PUBLIC.
First, let me tell you what a gun free zone is, the gun free school zone acts of 1990 and the revised act in 1994 made it illegal to have a gun within 1000 feet of an American school, and although in theory this is a good law, it actually ended up making Schools an easy target for young mass murderers. The gun free zone law also applied to colleges and any private business that posted ?gun free zone? signs, making it a felony for someone to carry a concealed weapon onto the property, even if they were licensed by the state to do so. These gun free zones have created disaster after disaster, literally creating places where law abiding citizens congregate and are unarmed. For example
On the afternoon of October 16th, 1991, a woman, who would later
become a Texas state representative, and a pro concealed carry activist, named Suzanna Hupp, walked into a restaurant with her mother and father. Suzanna, who had been carrying a concealed handgun for over eleven years, and knew how to shoot accurately and effectively, normally carried her handgun in her purse, but decided to leave it in her car that day, because at the time, it would?ve been a felony for her to have the gun in her purse. During lunch with her parents, a man, named George Henard, drove his truck through a window into the restaurant, got out and opened fire on the patrons, instinctively, Suzanna reached for her purse, only to remember her gun wasn?t in it. At one point, Suzanna?s father tried to rush the man, but was shot and fatally wounded, and as her mother cradled her dying husband in her arms, the man came back and shot her in the head. At the end of that day, twenty three people had been killed, and another twenty had been wounded. Many of those deaths could?ve been prevented, had suzanna been allowed to keep her gun in her purse.
Now lets talk about the media, the media constantly reports on gun crimes and all the harm guns cause, but it is incredibly rare for the mass media to report on a citizen using a firearm to stop a crime, case in point, how many people in this class heard about that college student saving ten lives with a gun before today? I could only find three articles on the internet regarding it, and all are very short and published in small local papers and to be honest, if I hadn?t been working on this speech, I wouldn?t have learned about it myself. The media is seemingly more concerned with demonizing guns than showing that there are instances where guns save lives. According to an article entitled, "Are We 'a Nation of Cowards'?," in Newsweek November 15, 1993, Citizens shoot and kill at least twice as many criminals as police do every year about 1,500 to 600, respectively, and in fact, only 2 percent of civilian shootings involved an innocent person mistakenly identified as a criminal. The 'error rate' for the police, however, was 11 percent, more than five times as high. Also, according to the 2001 gun control facts sheet, on average, guns are used 2.5 million times every year to deter crimes, that?s nearly 7000 times a day, meaning every year, guns are used 60 times more often to save the lives of law abiding citizens than they are used to take lives. And of those 2.5 million self defense cases, the overwhelming majority only brandish a firearm or fire a warning shot and an attacker flees, less than 8 % of those 2.5 million instances does a citizen wound or kill their assailant. These statistics are staggering and yet for some reason all we hear about and see on the news are the crimes that happened, not the crimes that were stopped.
Now let me tell you why the most effective solution to the overwhelming amount of crime in this nation is not just mandatory waiting periods, but to make concealed carry permits more easily accessible to law abiding citizens. Did you know, that every year, 500 thousand citizens defend themselves with a firearm while away from their homes? For example, according to the FBI?s uniform crime reports of 1994, in the year 1976, The states Georgia and Wisconsin took two different approaches to gun control, Georgia made it easier for citizens to carry guns for self defense, and Wisconsin enacted a 48 hour waiting period for purchasing a handgun, in the following years, Georgia?s homicide rate dropped 22 percent, and Wisconsin?s murder rate increased 33 percent during the same period. Now some critics believe that if more people are allowed to carry guns that guns will be used in crimes of passion more often, as in, people getting angry in public situations and using their concealed weapon, this is simply not the case. In fact according to the conviction rates report of texas, 2006 of the 61,539 felony convictions in Texas that year, less than .25 % were the owners of a concealed carry permit. And in Florida, you are twice as likely to be attacked by an Alligator than you are to be attacked by a concealed carry holder. During the first ten years that the Florida law was in effect, alligator attacks outpaced the number of crimes committed by carry holders by a 146 to 88 margin. And, in the 10 year period following the 1987 Concealed carry laws in Florida, nearly 500,000 people received their licenses, and the homicide rate, in the same ten years, decreased 39 %. And according to Lott and Mustard?s, "Crime, Deterrence, and Right-to-Carry Concealed Handguns." 15 August 1996 on average, States which passed concealed carry laws in 1992 reduced their murder rate by 8.5%, rapes by 5%, aggravated assaults by 7% and robbery by 3%, meaning that if those states that DID NOT adopt concealed carry laws in 1992 had decided to do so, in the United states, approximately 1,570 murders, 4,177 rapes, 60,000 aggravated assaults and over 11,000 robberies would have been avoided yearly.
These Statistics simply cannot be denied, sensible concealed carry laws, coupled with already stringent backround checks, possible psychological evaluations, and mandatory waiting periods will, undoubtedly, reduce the crime rate in the united states. And increase your personal safety and the safety of the people around you.
(the caps locked section is my thesis/preview statement)