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Carolina Fernandez:
2013 Winner
Long Island City High School

Carolina Fernandez

Winning Essay

Recently I have heard the world discussing Gun Laws very passionately. I simply not could help but to overhear the opinions shared on this subject. As I always say, you learn a lot more being the listener rather than the active talker. Gun Laws have been an issue in this country for quite some time, but it has only become a popular topic amongst my classmates in these recent months. I guess you can say that the reason for this would be the tragic shooting that occurred at Sandy Hook and so I thought that it was my turn to finally give my two cents. I am a pacifist, it is what I am, it is not what the world is. Therefore who am I to enforce my morals and beliefs on someone else? I do not condone the use of guns. But this does not change the fact that we have to right to defend ourselves. Where exactly do I stand then? I stand on the side of justice.

When the Framers signed the Constitution on September 17th, 1787, I’m sure that they were absolutely aware of what they were signing. The right to keep and bear arms need not be argued. It is clearer than the midday sky, and written in plain and simple words. The people shall have the right to keep and bear arms! The framer’s added this amendment because they wanted the people to have a way to defend the freedom granted to us in this country in case the government ever became tyrannical. My question is; what has changed since then to make the government want to limit this amendment? I suppose it seems silly to provide an answer to my own question but the truth is that the modern world is an unsafe place and the Framers did not imagine the modern world to be this way. Of course the world was unsafe in the past as well, but not to the extent of mass murders and use of weapons to kill our own people.

Why then, do I stand against Gun Law limits? January 9th, 1979. San Diego, California, Cleveland Elementary School, 16 year old Brenda Spencer, killed 2 people with the gun her father had given her for Christmas, legally, and wounded 8 young children. July 18, 1984. James Oliver Huberty killed 21 people and injured 19 in a McDonalds, with legally acquired weapons, before being shot dead by the police. I could keep naming cases, like the Virginia Tech incident, or the James Holmes trial. What good would it do? Why now do we choose to take action, after innocent children have paid the cost? You wish to make a change to America NOW? Now that the children are dead. Why didn’t America do something earlier, to prevent these killings? The only reason it is happening now is because children died, and yes children’s lives are extremely important but so were the lives of those other people. Had the Sandy Hook incident never happened would the government be pushing as hard to get these laws passed? I suppose it is the trigger that they needed to pursue their goals. Does government really value the lives of these children, or are they just concerned with their own benefits? They know that this was the trigger needed to get the people’s support and they are manipulating the public to get what they wish.

It is not right to go around killing people; I’m not saying it is. But a madman is a madman regardless and therefore does not need guns or permission to carry out evil. I’d like to introduce you all to a little fun fact: Did you know, that guns are sold illegally all over America? Good, I knew you were smart. Just because the cases that I named above had guns that were obtained legally, it does not mean that every shooter has a legal gun. Well what do you think? That if a killer wants to kill, that he will not find an illegal gun store and shoot everything up? You know what I find ironic, that while the common people are busy trying to get past all the necessary requirements to obtain a gun because they are good people and want to be protected and want to be loyal to the government, criminals, already have guns because they don’t care about loyalty, more simply put, they do not care about laws. Not only would gun laws be endangering the lives of innocent citizens but also expanding gun trafficking. What happens when something is made illegal? People get rich selling it. Examples: Marijuana, cocaine, heroin, fireworks, etc.

Citizens should be allowed to own guns. They should have background checks, but not to an extreme extent. Mentally ill people should not be allowed guns. Parents with kids under 18 should not be allowed guns. Owning a gun should be a privilege awarded to those who have proven their loyalty to this country. The government should make sure they know who is selling their guns and where the guns are ending up. As for the crimes that occur, I’m not sure that guns are the reason and I don’t think that they will be stopped with these laws. Everything should remain as is, mankind shall be the death of mankind.


My name is Carolina and I will be a freshman in college at SUNY Geneseo starting this upcoming fall. My favorite color is green because it represents life and looks great against my color of skin. I grew up listening to Sum 41, Greenday, The All American Rejects, and Linkinpark on the streets of Brooklyn, New York. I love to drink tea and milkshakes and I don’t know why it feels as though I can express who I am just by telling you my favorite drinks.

I was nominated bookworm in my school which is only because it is what I am. Right now I am enjoying the work of Anne Rice, I have just recently finished her book “Pandora,” it is a fiction about an ancient vampire who tells her story about the world before Christ. I usually consider vampire fiction too common for my taste, but the way she writes allows me to fall in love with the Roman Empire. My mind is easily changed by the smallest of things, because I over think everything. Confidence is within me but not to the extent where I could look people eye to eye as we have a conversation. I’m insecure about everything I say and do. I laugh at everything, and have the occasional blonde moment. I enjoy almost all music, as of late i find myself enjoying Frank Sinatra in the mornings. I have a cat that I am in love with. I come from the Dominican Republic therefore I love to dance, everything. My brother is currently in Korea right now as part of the military, which makes me nervous because of all the issues going on there.

My beliefs consist of peace and hatred of bloody things.

Writing is my passion, but it is also my skill and I am working on refining it. My brother is my role model, my mother is my strive towards success, my father is the voice of reason, words are my weapon and the world is my journal. I aspire to be, not a novelist, but a journalist with hopes to expose the truth behind all actions and to fight ignorance.

“Green is made of yellow and blue, nothing else, but when you look at green, where’ve the yellow and the blue gone?” -Black Swan Green, David Mitchell

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