Gun Control Essay Example

James Q. Wilson, a collins professor of Management and Public Policy a the University of California-Los Angeles, emphasizes the importance of law-abiding citizens owning legal guns in his essay “Just Take Away Their Guns”. Although some may disagree with the topic the author is defending, he is successful in making a strong argumentative essay. While he lacks counteracting opposition's use of pathos to defend his argument; Wilson successfully uses inductive and deductive reasoning. By doing this he argues, legal restraints on the lawful purchase of guns will have little effect on the illegal use of guns thus hurting the population, not helping.

Wilson is very successful in writing his argumentative essay; however, he does poorly in counteracting the opposition's use of emotion to defend his point. While this does not greatly affect the overall persuasiveness of his essay, it is a great device for persuading the audience to consider the topic. An example of Wilson failing to defend his claim from the opposition's use of pathos would be, “Handgun owners are more likely to shoot themselves or their loved ones than a criminal.

Not quite. Most gun accidents involve rifles and shotguns, not handguns” (127). This is a key example of the opposition's use of pathos by stating that loved ones are more likely to die from your gun. Although he does give a rebuttal argument, it is a weak one. Wilson would find more success in persuading the reader if he provided some statistical data to back his claim. The opposition's claim carries more weight by triggering the reader's emotions through the thought of killing a loved one; Whereas, Wilson's point comes off as bland and boring without the backing of logos.     

Ironically this is where Wilson finds most of his success, through logos. His use of inductive and deductive logic provides hard facts that persuade the reader. Wilson states, “In 1992 the police arrested about 240,000 people for illegally possessing or carrying a weapon. This is only about one-fourth as many as were arrested for public drunkenness” (127). Wilson uses inductive logic in this quote, providing the reader with hard facts. This stat strongly supports Wilsons' claim that there needs to be more frisks and stops to look for people carrying illegal firearms.

He uses this stat to shock the reader and grab their attention with the surprisingly low gun find rate. This persuades the audience into thinking that this is a problem and something should be done to fix it. The author also uses subtle forms of logos through deductive logic to convince the reader that his claim is correct. By binding inductive reasoning, the cold hard facts, with subtle forms of deductive reasoning he able to use easy logic to persuade the reader. Wilson exclaims that guns are used for defense prepuces more than a million times, meaning that the number of people defending themselves is greater than those committing crimes.

Therefore, we should take guns only from those committing crimes. By using this deductive reasoning the author is very successful in persuading the reader that the overall claim of the essay should be supported. In the end the author James Q. Wilson was successful in his argumentative essay by using deductive and inductive reasoning to support his claim, “Our goal should not be the disarming of law-abiding citizens. It should be to reduce the number of people who carry guns unlawfully”(126).