Gun Control Now

by Sarah Willson

I have had my heart broken by the news over a thousand times. This time, by far, was the worst.

As a journalism major, I am always buried up to my eyeballs in information. Most of the time I love it, but there was something particularly difficult to watch about the Las Vegas massacre that undoubtedly shook me to my core.

In the deadliest mass shooting in modern United States history, 58 innocent souls were taken and over 500 more were wounded. Like most of the world, I watched in sheer horror as the mass carnage that took place unfolded right in front of my eyes on the television screen before me.

This was a scene, one I had witnessed so many times, that looked all too familiar to me.

Even before this catastrophe, I had always known the U.S. had a problem with weapons, particularly guns. But the moment I realized that America was one of the most developed countries in the world with one of the biggest problems in the world, was when my 13-year-old cousin shook this incident off, an event that seemed all too common to her, and called it “normal.”

At that exact moment, I knew America was facing one of the most underrated, under-talked about problems out there: gun control.

Without question, the new normal of a mass shooting taking place on a day-to-day basis should be both alarming and terrifying to every American citizen, as it ultimately poses a danger to themselves and the ones they love.

In order to understand the large threat gun violence poses to American society, it should be noted that the catastrophe in Las Vegas marked the 273rd mass shooting in America since Jan. 1, 2017.

And like so many, I find it amazing that Americans are forced to live in constant fear of gun violence.

Like most things, the solution to solving this problem is not an easy one. Of course, banning weapons all together is entirely unrealistic, as it does not mean people will no longer find a way to get a hold of them.

What is more realistic is passing a law that prohibits any and all Americans from purchasing semi-automatic and automatic weapons, which are ultimately used to kill large groups of people. Although it is understandable to keep a gun in the house to protect yourself or your family, no one needs an AK-47.

When our Founding Fathers wrote the Second Amendment, which states that an individual “has the right to keep and bear arms,” guns at the time could only shoot one bullet per minute. Today, they can fire over 600 or more rounds per minute. Our guns have changed; why should our laws stay the same?

Like President Donald Trump said, it is a “miracle” how fast the Las Vegas Police were able to find the shooter, but Americans should not have to depend on miracles to save them from being slaughtered by gunfire as they go about their daily lives.

In order to combat the large scale of gun violence that takes place every day in America, Congress needs to stop sleeping with the National Rifle Association, do the right thing and pass meaningful gun control laws immediately.  

But if this gruesome act that claimed the lives of so many does not scream action for gun control, nothing ever will.