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CURRENT IT TOPIC - My Inarticulate 2 Cents

Yesterday's horrific terrorist act in Florida evoked a tsunami of emotion across the United States of America. At least, I hope it does. I hope we still feel when mass shootings happen. And they keep happening. School shootings like the one where 17 people were slaughtered yesterday scare parents. Each time one occurs, we realize that they aren't once-in-a-generation events. That reality frightens the stuffing out of parents. 

In addition to fearing our youngest son could be a student casualty in a school shooting, my husband and I fear for our son, the educator, who may die one day while protecting other people's children. That's not his job. That job belongs to those responsible for gun legislation. That job belongs to men and women who occupy positions of power and influence.  


If countries like Australia can institute gun control and take almost all weapons off of the street, the U.S.A. can. We're a larger, more complex nation, but we can also solve our problems. Gun violence is a long-standing problem we haven't committed to fixing holistically. There are certain people we don't want to own guns, but others we'll allow the right. Life doesn't work that way. Gun violence is a contagious virus. It cannot be contained in specific geographic/socio-economic areas. It must be eradicated when we understand that mass shooting pontificators will stop marveling when it happens in a nice neighborhood. They will yearn for the day when kids of the future relate to guns as today's students do abacuses. Some things should be archaic relics stored behind museum glass. What could we do with existing guns and bullets? Let's melt them and make school benches, furniture, sculptures, and other worthy items. This isn't fantasy. It's doable. What about the Right to Keep and Bear Arms? Currently, it's conflicting with life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.  


So, what do we do? We support political candidates who have concrete plans to reverse this deadly trend. We stop allowing the N.R.A. and like-minded groups to hold us hostage. We stop buying guns. Like all businesses, the gun trade is supply and demand dependent. We do not put detectors everywhere so that the nation resembles a prison. We do not arm ourselves to the hilt so that our weapons can be accidentally discharged or stolen. We act. And yes, we send up thoughts and prayers. This is a huge problem; we'll need all the nonviolent backups we can get. 

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