I was sitting in a nail salon when the news broke of the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. It made me angry. All the women in the salon were angry. When are we going to wake up and do something to make this STOP!
I have a friend who works for Facebook. As most of these jackasses take to social media, prior to committing these heinous crimes, I reached out to ask him what they are doing to help. They are helping. However, the ball is dropped once they hand it off to authorities. Five months! The words five months keep ringing in my ear. The FBI and local authorities knew something was awry for five months. I heard from numerous news sources that the FBI is understaffed and they get thousands of tips per day. Well, what do we do to fix that? How do we provide better monitoring? How do we change this? Or do we allow this vicious cycle to keep repeating over and over where more people die, tragic unnecessary deaths as a result?
This asshole, which I won’t call out by name, because he deserves nothing for committing such a heinous and inexcusable act, posted a threat on YouTube that read: “I’m going to be a professional school shooter.” My Facebook friend informed me that they do have a task force that monitors complaints and when they see something, they say something and report it to the local authorities and the FBI. What happens then? It’s out of their hands.
We have to be able to do more. What can we do? We can’t and should not stop living our lives and we should not be afraid to go to a concert or drop our children off at school. So let’s put our heads together people and work together to figure this out regardless of what side of the aisle you live on.
And yes, this is a mental health issue just as much as it is a gun control issue. Neither takes precedence. Both are equal. I’m so sick and tired of hearing politics thrown into the mix here. It’s a human issue. It’s a national issue. It’s a personal issue! ENOUGH IS ENOUGH! We have a duty and a fundamental right to keep our families, friends, schools, businesses, events and public places safe from whack jobs who easily gain access to AR-15s or AK-47s and target and kill massive numbers of innocent people. I don’t care if they are mentally unstable or sound as a bell.
No one is saying get rid of the second amendment. Bear arms all you want. But please remember when the 2nd amendment was written, the guns available were muskets and flintlock pistols, not high profile semi-automatic or automatic weapons. Are those truly necessary? And why do you need them? Do you enjoy collecting? Do you plan to kill an entire herd of animals in one pull of the trigger? Or do you just like shiny, long, black things that go bang? That may be another fetish altogether.
I saw this posted on Facebook and it put it all in perspective:
Have you seen the tweets and images from the students at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School? If you haven’t, take a look. The tweets are begging for change. Begging for help. Begging that this never happens again. There is talk about tearing the school down. This is a good neighborhood. This was the type of a school you wanted your children to attend. There are no boundaries anymore. There are no more safe houses.
I have never held a gun in my hand. The thought of holding one makes me shiver. I have two, very personal stories that explain why I am not a fan of guns which frame my beliefs. I’m okay if you don’t agree with me. It doesn’t change my views or opinions. My grandmother committed suicide with a gun and shot herself in the chest while her five, young children played outside on the front porch. My grandmother was in a bad place, that is a given, but had there not been a gun in the house maybe things would have been different. Who’s to say? My mom was nine years old. The impact on my mother has lasted her entire lifetime. When I was 13 years old, my brother-in-law, then a deputy sheriff in Los Angeles, was involved in an officer-related shooting and was shot three times. He survived…thank god. However, the mentally unstable, individual murdered the other sheriff on the scene. It was such a terrible time. I also have a dear friend who was at the Route 91 Harvest Music Festival in Vegas, and we all know what happened there. So, guns scare the shit out of me and always will.
I know that people will argue with me that if we regulate our gun rights, we are falling prey to criminals. I call bullshit. I know people say this is a mental illness problem. Well then, let’s do something about it. Not by allowing those with a mental illness the clearance to purchase guns. How does that solve anything? I know the NRA has a tight handle on their lobby, they are a beast and have enormous support. I wonder if the top echelon at the NRA would feel the same way if they had children harmed at that school. Would they? You are entitled to your opinion but don’t sit back on your laurels and assume this issue will sort itself out.
I’m not saying that we should get rid of the 2nd amendment or guns for that matter. Just because I’m for gun control does not mean I’m a hardcore, liberal who wants them banished. It does mean that I’m a human being and see a problem that we need to solve or at least make our voices known that something, ANYTHING needs to be done. Get off your soapbox and do something! If you have a gun to protect yourself, so be it. I dated a Colonel in the Marine Corps once. He told me that the only gun he needs to protect his family is a shotgun. When an intruder hears that puppy cocked back, they will run for the hills or they will end up with a massive hole in one of their legs. And know this, he’s a good shot.
You don’t need a high-powered rifle to hunt or protect yourself. But we do need protection from anyone who is able to purchase a high-powered rifle down the street at the local Walmart who plans to use it to cause harm. Hell, after 9/11, we had to take our shoes off at the airport…still do. So, why is it so easy to buy an AR-15 or AK-47? When it comes down to it, is this just a business to sell guns? And if so, when are we going to stand up and say NO MORE! Aren’t we the people more important?
My Facebook friend and I are looking for ways to get more involved and find a march in DC to attend. Want to join us? Let me know.