The Precedent

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Unsigned: What will it take for change in gun-related violence?


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18 times this year a gun has been discharged on a school campus. 18 times, lives were put at risk whether the gun’s presence was an accident or intentional. But 18 does not include the amount of times guns made headlines this year. 30 is the amount of times that a gun has been used as a device to end lives on a mass scale. 30.

How can we stand by idly while a daunting pattern emerges?

The venues no longer affected by gun violence are dwindling. Concerts are not safe. Political rallies are not safe. Movie theaters are not safe. Growing up, we were told we were safe at school and at home. Columbine in 1999 shattered half of that statement. Since then, Sandy Hook, Red Lake, Virginia Tech, Parkland, and so many more have taken away that statement’s truth.

So now, schools aren’t safe.

What will it take? How many more parents will have to bury their children because they were in the wrong place at the wrong time? There has been so much violence and destruction at the hands of guns that were secured too easily. So much violence that could have been prevented, and yet nothing has changed.

It is time for something to change.

Lawmakers have watched report after report of a mentally unstable person using a firearm to wreak havoc and take lives. So why hasn’t anything changed? People still walk into gun stores and with little scrutiny can walk away with an AR-15, or as it is also called, a weapon of war.

The same weapon that was used to force 17 families to grieve and mourn after a loved one was ripped from them on a day that was supposed to be filled with love. The same weapon that forced 59 families different to do the same.

Enough is enough. Something has to change.

Even President Donald Trump, who has managed to disappoint people on the left and the right for almost half a term, has put his foot down. Trump has promised to eliminate bump stocks, endorse legislation that will restrict ownership for abusers, and advocate for raising the age for AR-15 buys. In addition, he says police officers should confiscate guns from dangerous people, and he called out lawmakers for fearing the politically-powerful National Rifle Association (NRA).

This is the type of action that needs to be taken. Initiated during the aftermath of Parkland, the state of Ore. has recently passed legislation banning those convicted of stalking, domestic violence, and those under restraining orders from owning guns.

This is a huge step in the right direction. It is frightening that it has taken this amount of loss for those with previous histories of violence to be deemed unfit to own a firearm.

There does not need to be a recall of all guns on American soil. Some guns, the guns known for being weapons of mass human destruction, but not all.

But something needs to change.

If it does not change, people will continue to rise and once again change will be made by those who refuse to lower their voices to those who stood idly by.

The future is coming in the form of student voters and protesters, and as the age comes for these same students to be elected into office, no longer will we have to wait for change to come.

We will make the change ourselves.


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The student voice of Perry High School
Unsigned: What will it take for change in gun-related violence?