A WORLD WITHOUT GUNS
By Richard Davis
June 20, 2055- After more than 30 years of grassroots activism a constitutional amendment has been passed in the United States that will make it illegal for most citizens to possess firearms. The 28th amendment is short. It states that, “No citizen, with the exception of military, law enforcement and certified hunters shall be allowed to possess and use firearms. Hunters must be subject to a federal certification process requiring background checks and verification by one mental health professional of suitability to hunt.” The amendment also describes provisions for removing guns from circulation.
The organization No More Dead Children was created in the wake of deaths of 19 children and two teachers in Uvalde, Texas in 2022. Chapters of the organization formed in communities throughout the U.S. and became the voice for gun reform. Many of the leaders of these organizations were survivors of mass shootings at schools.
Legal scholars believe that the 28th amendment will nullify the second amendment. Legal experts who are in the camp of those who believe in a strict interpretation of the constitution as it is written fought against the amendment on the grounds that it would undermine the strength of democracy.
But as the wave of mass shootings continued unabated in the U.S. Americans were unable to ignore the fact that strict gun control needed to happen if the wave of lawlessness was ever going to be stopped.
In 2030 more than 500 children were killed in shootings in schools and in the streets of America. One incident in particular seems to have sparked the No More Dead Children movement. On a Friday night in a small Texas town 150 people were murdered as they sat in the stands of a high school football game.
A gunman, upset that his son was not getting enough playing time, opened fire with two automatic weapons. Many of the bodies were unable to be identified because they were ripped into pieces by the weapons.
The 28th amendment marked the first time in the nation’s history that a constitutional convention was called for by two-thirds of the state legislatures. This process was deemed to be the only way to create the amendment because it was clear to most Americans that the deadlock and posturing in Washington would not allow such an amendment to pass if it was subject to a vote in the House and Senate.
Organizers of the amendment also realized that they had to take the constitutional convention route in order to minimize the effect that the gun manufacturer lobby would have on the process. The passage of this amendment is considered to be a turning point in the interpretation of the U.S. constitution. A federal judge who asked not to be identified noted that, “ Perhaps passage of the 28th amendment will make it clear that the constitution is a living document that needs to adapt to changes in the world.”
Although the 28th amendment is now law, it will still be a number of years before the U.S. is able to significantly decrease the number of guns in use. The amendment describes a process for the states and the federal government to buy back weapons over a two year period. Some supporters of the second amendment have vowed not to accept the new gun laws and said that they will find a way to keep their weapons. It will be up to law enforcement agencies to ensure that guns are only possessed by those who have a legal right to do so.
As one of the founders of No More Dead Children said, “The amendment has passed but we still have a lot of work to do to make it real.”