Gun Regulations Across the Country
In wake of the recent tragedy in Las Vegas now more than ever we need to take a harder look at gun laws and regulations. Gun laws vary by state, so below we’re comparing the state laws between Illinois and Nevada, the state where the recent mass shooting took place.
– The first article of Nevada’s constitution states: “Every citizen has the right to keep and bear arms for security and defense, for lawful hunting and recreational use and for other lawful purposes.”
– You don’t need a permit to buy a gun, register or get a license for a firearm. There’s also no limit on the amount of guns a single person can purchase at once.
– Carrying an unconcealed firearm in public is completely legal.
– You’re legally allowed to own assault weapons and large-capacity magazines for ammunition.
– There’s no mandated waiting period to purchase a firearm.
– Nevada voters passed a ballot that would require background checks for firearm transactions between private parties. It has not been enforced yet because the attorney general put a hold on it.
– According to the Illinois Constitution: ““Subject only to the police power, the right of the individual citizen to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.”
– It is unlawful to carry or possess any firearm in any vehicle or concealed or about person, except on one’s land or one’s fixed place of business without a license.
– Rifles, shotguns and handguns require a Firearm Owners Identification (FOID) card to permit purchase.
– FOID is not required to register firearms.
– There is a 72-hour mandatory hold on all handguns sold and a 24-hour hold on any rifle or firearm.
– The seller must retain for 10 years a record of the transfer including a description of the firearm, serial number, identity of the buyer as well as their FOID number.
According to the Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence (a gun-control advocacy group that tracks firearms legislation), Nevada received a grade of C- on its gun laws. Illinois has some of the strictest gun laws in the country and the same group gave the state a grade of a B+. According to a Pew survey taken earlier this year, 83 percent of American adults said they consider gun violence in the US a big problem. However, the same survey revealed that only 47 percent of people believe there would be fewer mass shootings in the US if guns were harder to legally obtain. And there may be some truth to that. Illinois has some of the strictest gun laws in the country and one of the highest gun law grades, but Chicago is no stranger to gun violence. It is fairly easy to smuggle in illegal firearms from surrounding states with more relaxed gun restrictions.
I don’t know the answer to the gun laws question. I do think there’s no real need to own a semiautomatic rifle for any reason. I also believe selling an attachment that allows a weapon to act as a fully-automatic weapon shouldn’t be allowed. There are still many unanswered questions involved in the Las Vegas shooting, but there’s one thing we know for sure. Stephen Paddock purchased and owned all 47 firearms recovered from his homes and the scene of the crime. He broke no Nevada laws purchasing those weapons and he used them for pure evil. Without better regulations something like this could happen again. And while gun laws and regulations are a huge hot-button issue in the country, it’s time to openly discuss changes. It’s the least we can do for those who’ve been affected by this tragedy.