Research Paper


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09prknotts
May 4, 2011, 05:55 PM
Hey Everyone,

I'm getting ready to write my final research paper for college and I have decided to make it over Gun Control and the 2nd Amendment. Feel free to chime in if you have any suggestions for me that you feel are a must for me to cover in this paper, since it must be 8-10 pages I'm sure I will be able cover the most important topics of this issue.

Thanks,
- Phil

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MachIVshooter
May 4, 2011, 06:10 PM
8-10 pages I'm sure I will be able cover the most important topics of this issue.

You really can't. Volumes of books have been written on the matter. For such a short paper, you need to pick one or two points to elaborate on. Once you've decided what angle to attack it from, we can be more helpful with offering recources and insight.

avs11054
May 4, 2011, 06:11 PM
First off, congrats on finishing college!!!

Next, I'll put in my $.02. I would not personally write a paper on gun control (unless I was advocating gun control) in most college classes (I do not know what class you are taking). Most professors will be more liberal, and there is a better chance they will be anti-gun. Gun control is obviously a very controversial subject, and emotions can get very heated. If you put certain things in your paper and your professor has alternate views, right or wrong, it could possibly influence the grading of your paper. I've always felt it is safer to do research papers on neutral subjects, or if the point of the paper is to write about something controversial, at least side with the professor.

I'm all for speaking your mind and arguing what you believe, I just don't believe doing it when a grade for a class, which could possibly have implications on your future livelihood, is the place to do it.

That being said, if you are going to do it, I'd make sure to mention all the states with high crime rate and strict gun control laws. Also mention the higher crime rates of the 90s during the AWB. Especially since the economy was flurishing during that time, so you would expect crime to be lower. Now in recent years when the economy has sagged, there seems to be a move towards less gun control, and crime has decreased. Good luck and keep us posted.

Sunray
May 4, 2011, 06:21 PM
Gun Control and the 2nd Amendment are two topics. Like MachIVshooter says, 8 to 10 pages isn't as much as you think. You need to reduce the scope of the paper.
What course?

MachIVshooter
May 4, 2011, 06:24 PM
That being said, if you are going to do it, I'd make sure to mention all the states with high crime rate and strict gun control laws. Also mention the higher crime rates of the 90s during the AWB. Especially since the economy was flurishing during that time, so you would expect crime to be lower. Now in recent years when the economy has sagged, there seems to be a move towards less gun control, and crime has decreased. Good luck and keep us posted.

Not that those aren't valid points, but they are also rather trite. If you do want to use this subject, I'd suggest finding a more original angle, because, politics aside, your professor is not likely to give you high marks if he feels that you're more or less regurgitating popular dogma of the pro-gun crowd with little novelty. Sometimes even conjecture is better than plagiarism

09prknotts
May 4, 2011, 06:25 PM
Thanks avs11054, I have already considered that this is quite a controversial subject and my professor is quite liberal, but he encourages us to write over such subjects that might change his mind. This paper is for a composition so it is not going to be graded so much over the topic as it is the mechanics of the paper and usage of language. My I attend a small private university in northwestern Ohio, so most of the students are pretty conservative such as myself, and the prof. is not as liberal as most, it is pretty easy to sway him in your way of thinking since on most topics he is not very well informed.

- Phil

gf1723
May 4, 2011, 06:31 PM
That is a pretty broad topic, maybe try narrowing it down a little like others said. I remember my term paper from high school, it was re-used a couple of times in college. All I had to do was update a few sources. It got a perfect every time I submitted it. It was based on how the violence in video games might affect violent behavior in kids.

MachIVshooter
May 4, 2011, 06:32 PM
sway him in your way of thinking since on most topics he is not very well informed.

Hubris is almost always costly. Don't make a fatal flaw in assuming that he's ill informed on any particular subject matter. I've know many people, including college professors, who deliberately exude the impression that they aren't well versed about something for any number of reasons. It's caught me off guard before, and can be quite embarrassing. I've also been the one to do it, sometimes the talker found out, sometimes everyone else did after he left.

cambeul41
May 4, 2011, 06:51 PM
If you have the time and energy, do quite a bit of reading before narrowing your topic. John Lott's More Guns, Less crime, 3rd edition, has a huge amount of information and a reference list to back it up.

kenhwind
May 4, 2011, 07:22 PM
If you are serious I highly recommend Bob Kukla's book "Crime Control not Gun Control". Very insightfull, it is pro-gun, pro American Liberties. I did a term paper on Gun Control in College many years ago. Mine was pro gun for sure, but doing the research made a believer out of me.

With the internet you have a big advantage over me. I used mostly "Right to Keep and Bear Arms" articles from Guns and Ammo as well as the American Rifleman, and Kukla's book. This was in the late 1980s and the political climate was negative towards guns. It still is but at least the playing field is kind of on an even par.

Dummy me threw out the only copy left, and one on the Colt M1911.

There were two books on the subject; Kukla's, and another that was vehemently pro gun control (Cooper called it hogwash) but I don't recall the title.

ichiban
May 5, 2011, 02:11 PM
This might help you a little.
http://www.law.harvard.edu/students/orgs/jlpp/Vol30_No2_KatesMauseronline.pdf

Worst case, you have a bunch more references to check out.

09prknotts
May 5, 2011, 03:32 PM
Hey Everyone,

Just wanted to update you on the paper situation. Today we had to tell our professor the topic that had chosen for our research paper and were given a paper to fill out about it. I am just going to focus mainly on the purpose of the 2nd Amendment, and how certain gun control laws may violate the 2nd Amendment. I will Also have more of a focus on the history of the 2nd Amendment and Gun Control. One thing that I did find quite funny was in the paper given to us to fill out it asked why we had chosen this topic, I replied because I am a lifelong advocate of the right to bear arms an also because firearms are a major part of my life. The professor could not believe that firearms were a major part of my life, in fact he said "you don't have one on you now do you?", then takes a step back and looks down at my ankle. I found this quite funny.

- Phil

farson135
May 5, 2011, 04:08 PM
Narrow it down WAY more. I just got finished writing two 10 page papers and am about to write my third for the week and I have got a pretty good idea what a ten page paper looks like. Unless your paper is single spaced with say 8 font you are not going to be very detailed. If this is just a mechanics paper it is probably alright but if your professor is looking at content then you need to be more specific.

bobbarker
May 5, 2011, 08:24 PM
As far as your audience compared to your topic, I say no problem, and go for it. I wrote a paper for Comp. last semester that was included in my portfolio, and it actually won the "Blue Ribbon Award" for the best paper in Comp 122. I wrote another this semester that is in my portfolio at this moment, in the hands (or on the desk) of whoever is grading it.

I might narrow it down a tad more, and focus on a specific set of laws. Example, my paper this semester was on Michigans House Bill 4009, which would remove Gun Free Zones from Michigan. You would only be barred from CCing by federal laws. Something narrower is easier to tackle, and if you're writing a persuasive/argumentative essay, it gives you more room to bring in more sources, etc.

cambeul41
May 5, 2011, 08:31 PM
No one yet has mentioned http://gunfacts.info/ as a source, have they? Since GF cites sources for its facts, the original sources can looked up and cited in the paper.

Also see http://www.guncite.com/ and http://ccrkba.org/

Papers written with help from THR members should be posted here to help future writers.

09prknotts
May 5, 2011, 10:14 PM
Thanks guys for all of your input, you have been a lot of help!
- Phil

Formula94
May 5, 2011, 11:04 PM
Wow, that isn't much for a major paper (length wise, the topic is great!)! I'll be doing my final major project in Psych in the fall. Planning on researching the difference in perceived and actual severity of PTSD symptoms in military/LE personnel vs civilians.

Loosedhorse
May 5, 2011, 11:40 PM
The central question is: suppose that 2A freedoms, for the sake of argument, cost lives in this country--does that matter?

I mean, if your prof was told that college courses could cost lives--would he agree they must be censored? Common sense curriculum control?

The Second Amendment is just one away from the First.

If this line of thought intrigues you at all, I strongly suggest you read Nation of Cowards (http://www.amazon.com/Nation-Cowards-Jeff-Snyder/dp/1888118083) by Jeff Snyder.

shotgunjoel
May 6, 2011, 03:54 AM
See if your library has books under the "Information Plus" series of texts. If so, their gun control volume is very good, with lots of stats. I looked, and they should have just come out with a new issue this spring. When I was in high school, I used this source to write a couple of papers.

Baba Louie
May 6, 2011, 10:24 AM
You ever wonder about the discussions leading up to why the 2nd (originally the 4th article) was even added to the BORs? Why did the States think it important to specifically include that language? Did the pre-Constitutional "Articles of ConFederation and Perpetual Union" not have such language? Who argued for, who argued against? What was the basis for the language, from whence did it originate? What was the final vote tally (for/against)? (I bet MA, NY, MD & NJ voted against it even then due to their influx of Tories :D)

What was the context of the day and is that important in light of todays 21st century considerations?

Did the original colonists practice "gun control" with the natives; did the local Gov'ts do so with/to their "people", "some of their people", slaves or "foreigners"? (Back then you still might encounter the French, Spanish or English when out on the fringes of the new found Nation, not to mention curious or hostile Natives)

Who had "Police Powers"?

Are some animals more equal than other animals?

8 - 10 pages should be a snap depending on your focal point(s). Good luck on your essay.

IIRC there is a book called The 2nd Amendment Primer I need to find and read. Found it. 2 actually, 1 by Adams, 1 by Halbrook.

Ed N.
May 6, 2011, 11:29 AM
If you want a slant that might be a little different than the prof is expecting, you might try this. Spend a few pages on the origins and purpose of the 2A, quote the Federalist Papers, etc. Then spend a few pages discussing where gun control originated, focusing on its racist roots (see http://www.firearmsandliberty.com/cramer.racism.html ; there are some good references here). Then draw conclusions between the two, comparing and contrasting motives and purposes. While maintaining an objective scholastic tone, you can nevertheless show gun control to be as vile as slavery.

If it's written thoughtfully, showing solid research, a college prof might be intrigued.

Arms Post Jay
May 6, 2011, 06:02 PM
First of all I completely agree with Loosedhorse and his thought. How is it that the section of the 1st dealing with free speech is ever expanded while the 2nd has been retracted? Should they not be equally important and protected?

One concept you may want to consider, even though it may not be completely in line with your final topic is how Human Rights impact the subject. Would I be wrong is stating that Human Rights give everyone the right to freedom and the protection of that freedom? We do not ask people to use type writers to access the internet, so we should not be asked to use bare hands to protect ourselves.

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