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America's gun debate ep3: Criminals illegally take firearms across state lines

CCTV.com

06-16-2016 12:56 BJT

Today, in the third episode of "A Nation at Gunpoint", we hear from firearms supporters and look at the different gun control regulations across the US, including the loopholes that let criminals illegally transport firearms across state lines.

Texas is the second largest state in the US and it's common here to see locals with guns. An ordinary outdoor shooting range near Dallas.

Philip is in charge of security and provides training services here. Members of the International Defensive Pistol Association are holding a competition.

The aim of the competition is to improve combat abilities. Who gets the highest number of rings in the shortest time determines who will be the winner.

In today's contest, most participants are middle-aged amateurs and they bring their own guns. Although some of the competitors might not be as agile as they used to be, all of them perform on the day.

Steve is the competition organizer. As a veteran of the local shooting range, he himself own about ten guns. He's Texan-born and is addicted to firearms. 

The children's father helped them gain a respect for the power of firearms from an early age, so there's nothing mysterious about them.

To Steve, there are two sides to the debate about the use of guns but he says the media won't accept the positive aspects.

Each state in the US sets their own gun legislation. Gun control laws in Texas are comparatively relaxed and, as of this year, handgun license holders in Texas are allowed to carry a holstered pistol in public under the "open carry" Law passed in 2015.

Illinois has the strictest gun control restrictions, yet, in 2011, around 80% of murder cases there were gun-related. Most of those crimes happen in the state's largest city, Chicago.

Different gun control laws across the United States makes the reselling of firearms possible. Dealers will purchase huge numbers of guns at low prices in states with relaxed gun control laws to then sell them on at higher prices in states where laws are more prohibitive.

Illegal sales of firearms is a serious problem in the US. According to estimates, at least 50-thousand guns are resold every year across the United States.

In 2014, two-thirds of the guns seized by New York police for criminal purposes were from other states with relaxed gun control regulations.

In tomorrow's fourth episode of "A Nation at Gunpoint" we'll be looking at the channels available to Americans looking to buy guns and how gun control institutions investigate the identity of gun owners involved in criminal cases.

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