Let’s make the Parkland shooting the last school shooting said one of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas high school students interviewed after 17 of his school classmates were slaughtered.
The last school shooting took the lives of 17 Parkland, Florida students and educators and traumatized the entire nation. The injured will recover, some with life long debilitating injuries, others left with only the trauma. We are all traumatized.
The thing is, Columbine should have been the last school shooting. Virginia Tech should have been the last school shooting. Sandy Hook for sure should have been the last school shooting. Our kids are sitting ducks. But ducks are better protected from bullets than kids given that duck hunters must use a plug to prevent a hunter from using more than 3 shots at a time. It’s to sustain the duck population for future hunters.
Who is sustaining the population of our children?
Something is different this time. Teachers, students, parents, law enforcement and the media- all speaking out in stronger and more urgent voices asking the “adults” in Congress to act on behalf of our children.
Insanity is the word that comes to mind.
We are all exhausted but we are not numb and we are not stupid. We understand what is going on here. We get that our loose gun laws are killing our precious human resources and snuffing out the potential of dozens of kids to live a productive life with their friends and family.
Last night 300 people came out for a vigil outside of NRA headquarters in Fairfax, Virginia. Some of my friends were there.
1000 people came out in Parkland to honor the victims. But without action, none of this matters.
Speaking of the NRA, I can’t even begin to add up the media articles and stories about how much that organization has contributed to the mayhem and carnage. The time has come to turn on the corporate gun lobby, whose profit motive has become the main reason for existence. It is not your father’s or your grandfather’s NRA any more.
Listen to the voices of gun owners and former NRA members.
Listen to the voice of just one teacher:
Don’t tell me teachers should be carrying weapons in the classroom — we’re not police.
It’s our job to assign books, create lessons and lead discussions that make students think critically and help them see the world a little differently: I want them to read “The Outsiders” in my class and remember it when they’re adults and their kids are reading it.
Don’t tell me there’s nothing we can do about guns. Yes, Americans have a constitutional right to bear arms — but it’s not limitless. And we all have the right to live.
Listen to the voice of the Broward County Sheriff:
““If you’re an elected official, and you want to keep things the way they are ― if you want to keep gun laws as they are now ― you will not get re-elected in Broward County,” Israel told a crowd that erupted in cheers.”
Listen to the voice of just one parent:
“Stop accepting blood money.”
Listen to the students. They are our future. They are being massacred in every more frequent mass shootings. But they are fighting back:
“Please, this is the 18th one this year. That’s unacceptable. We’re children. You guys are the adults,” David Hogg said during an interview on CNN.
And well they should. Read this frightening article about real and not so real threats made by students after the Parkland shooting. My God. What is going on? Where are the adults in the room?
Remember that every gun in the hands of a child must first pass through the hands of an adult.
Talk about the influence of even the Russians in our gun violence epidemic in America.
The NRA has a connection with the Russians.
The NRA has connections with our President. The Brady Center went to court to get a white paper written with the help of the NRA presented to the President right before his inauguration.
So can we talk?
Talk about Brady background checks.
Talk about Extreme Risk Protection Orders.
Talk about Assault Rifles:
Equally important for a gunman looking to do a lot of damage in a hurry: AR-15-style weapons are fed with box magazines that can be swapped out quickly. The standard magazine holds 30 rounds. Equipped in this way, a gunman can fire more than a hundred rounds in minutes.
The Parkland shooter had “countless magazines” for his AR-15, the local sheriff said. And there is still one more reason the weapons are so popular in states like Florida: They are easy to buy — and for Nikolas Cruz, 19, the shooting suspect, far easier to obtain than a handgun.
The Washington Post goes further about another assault weapons ban:
He calls the results “staggering.” Compared with the 10-year period before the ban, the number of gun massacres during the ban period fell by 37 percent, and the number of people dying from gun massacres fell by 43 percent. But after the ban lapsed in 2004, the numbers shot up again — an astonishing 183 percent increase in massacres and a 239 percent increase in massacre deaths. (…)
On a scale of effectiveness ranging from 1 (not effective) to 10 (highly effective), the expert panel gave an average score of 6.8 to both an assault weapons ban and a ban on high-capacity magazines, the highest ratings among the nearly 30 policies surveyed. (…) More strikingly, substantial numbers of gun owners supported the measures as well: 48 percent of gun owners in that poll said they would support a ban on assault style weapons, and 44 percent said they favored a ban on high-capacity magazines. A Quinnipiac poll conducted later in the year showed similar numbers.
Talk about research on the causes and effects of gun violence.
Talk about how much money our leaders are getting from the NRA.
Ask all candidates what their plans are for preventing shootings and saving lives.
And yes, talk about the Second Amendment:
Ideally we would also rethink the Second Amendment in an age where firearms are far more lethal than in the 18th century and where we no longer require minutemen to protect our liberties from the redcoats. But it’s not necessary to repeal the Second Amendment. The courts have consistently upheld gun regulations in the past, including a federal assault-weapon ban that was in effect from 1994 to 2004 and a Maryland ban that went into effect in 2013.
Yet instead of instituting such common-sense safeguards, Congress is moving in the opposite direction. Early in 2017, Congress passed and President Trump signed a bill that revoked an Obama-era regulation that would have made it harder for mentally ill people to buy guns. Toward the end of the year, the House passed legislation that would force every state to honor concealed-carry permits — meaning that a resident of Oklahoma could pack heat in the District of Columbia or New York City.
And talk about all of these things with common sense conversations and actions.
Talk about the insanity of American gun laws and shootings as the rest of the world is watching this insanity unfold. This article highlights an Australian perspective into our shootings.
Do we love our children as much as we love our guns? That is a very important question that needs an answer.
Make this the last school shooting. Because the last one has started a movement and a conversation that is not going away. The accumulation of bodies and inaction by Congress and state legislatures if finally just too much for a nation that sees more gun violence than any other democratized country not at war. Our kids are the victims of knock-off military style weapons used in war. As one friend said, our children have become war correspondents, live streaming a shooter killing their friends and texting parents as the shooting occurs.
With the help of adults, students are going to take national action as the Women’s March has organized a national student walk-out set for March 14th.
We shouldn’t have to do this. This is an American tragedy.
Listen up Mr. President. Spend more than 6 minutes “listening” to the victims of the shooting at the Parkland hospital. Your tone deaf anemic, robotic statement a day after the shooting did not even mention the word guns or gun violence. Your lack of passion and empathy was disheartening and disturbing. Have a nice week-end on the golf course at Mar-a-Lago.
We are better than this.
We have had #Enough.