Gun rights vs. Gun control: The debate on banning the AR-15 in America

 WASHINGTON (SBG) - The AR-15 is back in the spotlight following the nomination of former Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) agent David Chipman to lead the bureau. Chipman’s confirmation hearing made headlines after he expressed support for a ban on AR-15s saying, “I support a ban as has been presented in a Senate bill.”

Chipman’s stance is in line with President Biden who has called gun violence in the U.S. an “epidemic and an international embarrassment.”

Gun control regulation continuously faces pushback, especially for the AR-15 which is popular among gun owners for both competition and protection.

“Americans have to realize that you have a duty to protect yourself, not the government,” said Matt Nash a gun owner with over 15 years' experience in the military and federal law enforcement.

Gun control activists believe banning the AR-15 would decrease mass shootings, but gun rights activists believe taking guns from citizens is the wrong focus.

“I think we need to stop focusing on the tool and start looking at criminal behavior,” said Nash, “what I think we should be focused on is suicides. 24 thousand a year then I would be open to background checks or better mental health measures to prevent those people from owning firearms.”

If Chipman is confirmed, it is unlikely an assault weapons ban would get passed with a 50 -50 split in congress. Even with these odds Chipman supports the ban, impart because of his history with AR-15s saying, “the AR-15 is a gun I was issued on ATF SWAT team, and it's a particularly lethal weapon, and regulating it as other particularly lethal weapons. I have advocated for as ATF director, if I'm confirmed, I would simply enforce the laws on the books. And right now, there is no such a ban on those guns."



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