El Paso and Dayton: Start Doing Something

el paso and dayton

I’m furious.

So furious that I believe my small little body cannot contain the amount of anger I feel when it comes to the issue of gun control.

I’m not the only one who’s angry – millions are. Millions of people who’ve felt the direct impacts of gun violence, people who’ve watched it on the news, and people who are terrified to even leave their house in fear of getting caught in a mass shooting.

Everyone should be angry. Everyone should be absolutely fuming.

If you haven’t heard from the news, there were two mass shootings during the weekend of August 2nd and 3rd. One in El Paso, Texas, the other taking place in Dayton, Ohio. Barely a day apart, the two shootings killed a total of 29 people while injuring 53.

At this point, it’s hard to even view this as shocking.

el paso and dayton
via upi.com

There were 346 mass shootings in 2017, with gun violence killing 15,590 people. In 2018, there were 340. We’ve seen the horrors wrecked by Sandy Hook, by Las Vegas, by Parkland. We know these names so well they’re seared into our memories.

And each time one of these shootings comes about, we host memorials. We pray. We get angry at politicians. We push for gun legislation. Then a month passes, and we forget.

We move on.

And the cycle continues.

We are stuck in this eternal loop of reading numbers on the news and caring a bit until something more important, like the Kardashian’s newest season, captures our attention instead.

But the families don’t forget. The people struggling with PTSD and a myriad of other mental health issues can’t forget. It’s hard to even fathom what these people must be feeling now, watching the U.S. continue to go through this endless loop, never seeming to care enough to do something.

This should’ve ended after the first time. But apparently, none of those deaths were enough to get the government to step up to the plate and install genuine, useful gun control laws that will stop what’s happening. This is all of our fault, and all of our responsibility to bear.

I know I’m not the only one frustrated. I’ve spent the past couple years also stuck in this infinite loop. I would rant about it to anyone who’d listen, write slam poetry, and look up statistics that only fueled my burning fire. No matter what I did, it felt like I was screaming at a wall. There was nobody to listen.

I know I wasn’t the only one feeling so lost. And that’s why I’ve researched a couple ways for you to actual do something. Because it’s great to be furious at this, but it doesn’t matter unless you actual use that fury to create change.

el paso and dayton
via popsugar.com

First, get involved with organizations. This doesn’t even mean committing your heart and soul to them. It could be donating a couple dollars, signing a few petitions, and showing support. There are so many organizations aimed at helping to create these laws. Some examples include the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, the CSGV (Coalition to Stop Gun Violence), Everytown for Gun Safety, Giffords Courage to Fight Gun Violence, and plenty more. Look up one that speaks to your particularly. Contact them and see if you can volunteer.

Second, you can talk to your state representative or senator. If you don’t know who that is or where to find their contact information, use this. Tell them your beliefs and urge them to help get legislation passed through Congress. There are so many bills that have been delayed, that are in the works, and so many more that need to be passed. We need something big that will actually impact the number of mass shootings occurring yearly in the United States.

And last, vote. You need to vote. There are so many people who don’t take voting seriously, who don’t care for it, or who simply don’t know enough to do it. We are coming upon a big election, that could actually change the way things are going in our country. We all need to do our research and vote for someone who is actually willing to take big action and make a difference in the United States.

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I’m tired of this overdone rhetoric about how we need gun control. I’m tired of talking and talking and never seeing anything change. I’m tired of watching people, senators, legislators, posting their hopes and prayers for the victims while allowing the problem to continue. While allowing gun violence to proceed as normal in our country.

We cannot forget. We cannot continue this cycle of watching so many die and allowing their deaths to be in vain. We cannot let this weekend pass into history, as we wait for the next national tragedy to come this way. Nobody’s exempt from gun violence. It could hit anyone at any time. I’m not going to sit back and wait to see what fate decides.

I’m aware that people only read the articles they wish to with so many options on the Internet. I’m aware that what I’m saying is mostly aimed at those who actually care to stop this issue, not those who are a part of the problem. And that’s why, even if you agree with everything I’ve said so far, your job now is to move beyond just reading articles online. It’s to fight back. It’s to take a stand and force the media to recognize the massive movement of people willing to do anything to stop this issue.

I’m done being stuck in this loop.

I’m done waiting.

Photo via latestcanada.com