The rising cases of gun violence and gun related deaths in the US have recently sparked a new and wide scale debate regarding the issue of gun control. The pernicious and persistent issue of gun violence has affected communities in the United States and around the globe. The recent shootings resulted in President Obama resorting to make a call for the review of gun control laws for the purpose of making them tougher and curb the ever increasing cases of gun related deaths. The Obama administration has been stressing the importance of security organs and agencies as well as the US Justice System with the Congress for the purpose of advancing his gun control proposals (Reese). Obama argued that his administration has often indicated before that it is going to execute everything at its disposal and the actions that needs to be taken including cooperating with the Congress in order to address the issue of gun control. One of Obama’s proposals calls for the ban of assault weapons, a proposal which has become divisive that imagined before (White House). Sheriffs from different states have come forward challenging President’s Obama proposal arguing that banning assault weapons will not succeed in addressing the gun violence issue. The International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) has however disagreed with the sheriffs statements arguing that the continuous and pernicious issue of gun violence affects many communities in the United States on an everyday basis (International association of chiefs of police). Random shootings in schools, mass killings, suicides and other forms of violence committed using firearms have been universally challenging law enforces as well as taxes resources hence IACP proposal for adopting a common logic policies for the purpose of controlling the use of gun and reduce gun violence.
The International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) is an organization comprising law enforcement executives from different parts of the world. IACP has long held its stand that is intended in reducing as well as preventing firearms violence in around the globe. According to IACP the pernicious issue of gun violence needs law enforcement to take a leading role by implementing a new, dedicated and coordinated response including citizens, lawmakers, elected leaders, and the whole criminal justice system (International association of chiefs of police). After the 2001 terrorist attacks in the US, more than 300,000 people in the United States have lost their lives due to gun violence and gun related deaths especially involving mass shootings in schools, churches, and other social places (Reese). In response to the rising cases of gun violence, IACP has been advocating to the various agencies to help in reducing gun violence and as a result, provided proposals drawn from 21,000 members and based on diverse levels of logic and efficacy.
The proposals by IACP, the prohibition of the sale or the transfer of the armor piercing ammunition and the ban on assault weapons have been widely hailed as a positive measure to curb gun violence and also received equal criticism from other security agencies regarding the use of assault weapons. In this regard, IACP calls for a complete ban of assault weapons as well as all military-grade weaponry as well as defensive implementations which includes body armor to any individual who is not involved directly involved or employed by the military or law enforcement. The ban on assault rifles was first enacted in 1994 requiring domestic gun manufacturers to halt the production of the semiautomatic assault weapons and ammunition magazines that can hold at least ten rounds excluding that of the police or the military use (International association of chiefs of police). Similarly, due to the recent rise of cases of gun violence, Obama’s administration has taken a big step to propose a tough legislation than bans any military style assault weapons as well as high capacity magazines and also taking common sense steps in reducing gun violence. Drug dealers and gang members prefer assault weapons. The weapons are often encountered in drug dugouts and are also commonly used by gang members and drug dealers to fight the police. The efficacy of the ban on the sale or transfer of armor piercing ammunition and assault weapons has been remarkable reducing the total number of crimes that mostly involve the use of assault weapons. According to IACP, the period of the ban, between 1994 and 204, a dramatic decline of 66 percent was recorded on the proportion of assault weapons that were traced to crimes.
IACP supports the ban on the sale of bulletproof vests as well as body armor to all the individuals except those sworn or are certified law enforcers. The logic behind the proposal is that safety issue of law enforcement police officers has been comprised because of the possession of bulletproof vests and body armor by criminals who the law enforcement police officers have been trying to arrest (International association of chiefs of police). IACP believes the sale, acquisition, or the transfer of these items should be carried out on an individual basis for the purpose of making it difficult for criminals to obtain and make use of them while they commit violent crimes on communities.
The firearms enforcement proposal by the IACP argues the Congress to increase its resource allocation to better enable the local, state, and the tribal law enforcers as well as the Department of Justice to allow increased prosecution of persons for Brady Act violations. The support of the firearms enforcement programs involving the local, state, and the federal security agencies for instance Project Exile and Project Safe Neighborhoods has been efficient in significantly reducing the use of firearms in committing violent crime (International association of chiefs of police). Furthermore, the logic behind IACP’s opposition on any legislation that can put limitation or reduce the capability of the law enforcement agencies of the nation to control the sale of illegal guns is based on the believe that such provisions can put citizens as well as police offers at risk. Therefore, IACP opposes the “Tiahrt Amendment” that restricts the ability of the ATF to share critical gin tracing information with the local and the state counterparts which ruthlessly puts limitation on the ability of the agencies to carry out vital investigations for identifying and apprehending corrupt and scrupulous firearms dealers.
With the increasing cases of gun violence, Obama’s administration has come with a legislative agenda for the purpose of controlling the use of guns. Many of the legislative agendas on Obama’s list are similar to those proposed or supported by IACP. For instance, the President is planning to close background check loopholes for the purpose of keeping guns out of the dangerous hands (White House). Similarly, IACP supports the legislative agenda of a similar course by supporting the federal Gun Control Act of 1968 stipulating individuals involved in business of selling firearms to own a Federal Firearms License (FFL) (DeConde). The holders of the license are required to carry out a background check and also keep a record of every of their firearm sale.
In a nutshell, the rise in random shootings in schools, mass killings, suicides and other forms of violence committed using firearms have been universally challenging law enforces as well as taxes resources hence IACP proposals and support for adopting a common logic policies for the purpose of controlling the use of gun and reduce gun violence. The IACP supports the enactment of the various legislations with the logic that they will control gun violence. Some of the legislation supported by the IACP have be effective such as the prohibition of the sale or the transfer of the armor piercing ammunition and the ban on assault weapons while others need to be enacted.
- DeConde, Alexander. Gun Violence in America: The Struggle for Control. UPNE, 2003. Print
- International association of chiefs of police. Position Paper on Firearm Violence. 2013. Web. November 2, 2015
- Reese, Frederick. At Odds Over Assault Weapons Ban: Sheriffs versus Police Chiefs. 2013. Web. November 2, 2015
- White House. NOW IS THE TIME. The President’s plan to protect our children and our communities by reducing gun violence. 2015. Web. November 2, 2015