I've Heard the Word "Shooting" Enough

I’ve heard the word “shooting” enough.

Each evening I am home, my parents and I turn on the news before dinner and too often I see the scrolling pictures of loved ones lost after yet another shooting. I’ve had enough. I know these are rocky waters to talk about these issues but what everyone needs to understand is this issue is not black and white.

We are constantly falling into a pit where people are either right or wrong about the 2nd amendment. But this boils down to the point that it is not about having guns or taking them away. It comes down to the point that people are unnecessarily dying at the hands of other people. I do not want citizens to get their guns taken away, so before you point fingers at my opinion, I am okay with citizens owning guns. But the arguments and voices need to get louder to promote change in our country. We need better background checks.

 

But how loud do our voices need to be to be louder than the gunshots?

 

When will we start hearing the protests, and the cries of families over lost loved ones? When will leaders in our country show humility enough to admit that change is needed before another life is lost? This is not all or nothing, a more in depth and restrictive background check will not take away guns, but make gun-owning more safe for everyone.

We can agree to disagree about this topic. I am not looking to shove my opinion in your face, as you should not shove yours in mine. You may take mine with a grain of salt if necessary. But taking any step right now is still movement. Movement to a better country and a better tomorrow. As gun death rates increase in our country, so should our voices. Our voices should speak for those who had their voices silenced too soon. We should not be defining ourselves as black and white, democrat and republican, gun owner and not. We need to look at each other and join hands as Americans, as people, as human beings.

I long for the day where shootings aren’t a common news thread, where I don’t look at the television and say, “not again..” On a daily basis, in crowded areas, a glimpse of tragedy flashes in my mind. I think of where the next shooting will occur. Will it be close to home? Someone I know? What if I am there? I think of those who have found themselves in these dreadful times, and never thought they would then become a victim. I’ve seen the threads that read “thoughts and prayers should now be policy and change.” People will always have my thoughts and prayers, but policy and change is needed. And change is needed before another memorial candle has to be lit.

 

To victims and loved ones of these awful shootings, my prayers and love are sent to you.