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Protect kids, not guns

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Protect kids, not guns

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By Sophie Driscoll ’19

 

First, it was never again Columbine. Then, it was never again Virginia Tech. Then, it was never again Sandy Hook. Now, it’s never again Parkland.

 

The murder of 17 students and faculty members at a high school in Parkland, Florida on Valentine’s Day marked the 18th mass shooting in the United States this year.

 

However, the crisis remains unresolved.

 

Each day, an estimated 93 Americans die from gun violence. Each year, an estimated 115,000 Americans are shot.

 

As a high school journalist, the heartbreak, fear and frustration that results from the constant mass shootings in our nation are unbearable. The fact that we have grown accustomed to such devastation is crushing.

 

I wish I were not growing up in a society where students can’t feel safe going to school each day. I wish I were not growing up in a society where gun violence is becoming normalized.

 

However, deaths resulting from gun violence are preventable; it’s time for politicians to offer more than “thoughts and prayers.”

 

Terrorists, the mentally unstable and other dangerous persons should not be allowed to buy deadly weapons. That is why 90 percent of Americans support background checks.

 

At the same time, we must note that the gun violence epidemic is not a mental health issue. While mental health undoubtedly plays a role in the problem, the core issue is lack of sensible gun control legislation. Do not let opponents of sensible gun control legislation dangerous rhetoric fool you; the problem at hand is that our government has failed to implement sensible gun control legislation. Our government has failed to keep us safe.

 

Despite the horrific events of the Florida shooting, Donald Trump and other Republican politicians have continued to accept donations from the National Rifle Association (NRA), an organization that is working to make deadly assault weapons easily accessible to the public.

 

It seems illogical that this small group values protecting guns over protecting kids. There is no reason to continue to allow preventable deaths to ravage our nation.

 

How many deaths will it take for our nation to realize that the senseless killing must end? How many of our loved ones will be shot before we put an end to this madness? Now is the time to act.

 

To end gun violence, constituents must vote for political candidates who support sensible gun control legislation. Organizations such as Everytown for Gun Safety and the Brady Campaign can help individuals identify senators and representatives to contact and provide a script to help guide conversation and requests.

 

This time, when we say “never again,” let’s act on it.

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2 Comments

2 Responses to “Protect kids, not guns”

  1. stailuan on March 9th, 2018 11:14 pm

    The fallout from the current Valentine’s Day Massacre (it has a different meaning for those of a certain age) makes me happy that change, and a new ways of adaptation, seem to be coming vis a vis gun ownership. As my longtime readers are aware, I am not a gun person. Personally, I don’t believe anyone needs a gun–and the rest of the civilized world agrees. The presence of a gun in a household means that the weapon is more likely to end up in the hands of someone who’s not going use it properly, and an innocent person is more likely to be a victim of gun violence than a bad guy. But ownership of guns in America is way, way out of control—thanks to the manipulation of the National Rifle Association over the past three decades–and frankly I do not believe we’ll be able to do anything to correct that situation. It is what it is, and Americans have been brainwashed into believing that a gun has to be part of your household toolkit. Unless our Congress gets rid of their money addiction funneled to their campaigns by the gun manufacturing lobby, the National Rifle Association will continually manipulate us into believing that without a gun in every hand, we are in danger.

  2. Anonymous User on March 14th, 2018 8:10 pm

    Banning assault weapons and having background checks isn”t taking away your right to bear arms. You can”t own a machine gun, is that infringing on your rights? You speak of statistics, well statistics show that if you have a gun in your home its more likely you”ll hurt yourself or someone in your family then use it against some bad guy. Go ahead, find me one statistic that shows you and your family are SAFER with a gun in your house, you won”t because your not. I choose not to have one because I don”t live in fear and I”ll accept the small chance something does happen that I could have prevented with a gun then the bigger odds that my kids somehow get a hold of it or accidentally shoot someone. So if you like statistics so much you should go check out what they say about guns. And lastly, you PREPARE because you are AFRAID of some outcome you want to prevent. You don”t bother PREPARING if your not AFRAID. Are you preparing for an alien invasion, being attacked by a swarm of locustsguessing no because these aren”t things you”re AFRAID of happening.

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