The Gun Show

Today as my daughter played around on the floor I was reading the October issue of MORE Magazine. I “read” many magazines, mostly look at the pictures and products, but this time as I flipped the page an article caught my eye. The Accidental Activist. To be truly honest it was the quotes after the article that caught my eye, quotes from Celebrities and Politicians. The article talks about gun violence in America and Shannon Watts, an activist for “Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America”. I wish I could link you the article, but you will have to pick up a copy for the full story. The quote that touched  me most was from NY congresswomen Carolyn Maloney.

“…Since 1968 more Americans have died from gunfire in America than have died in all the wars in our country’s history. Guns kill twice as many children as cancer. Next year they are predicting that for the first time gun deaths will exceed traffic fatalities….”

WHOA!!!!! That is mind blowing! I’m going to continue by first saying I am not a believer that people should not have guns. As they say “Guns don’t kill people, people kill people”. But we do need a change. The amount of school shootings that have occurred in America is unacceptable. As a Country we are quick to react when a tragedy strikes. But we suck at working together for a common interest.

The Media. October is Domestic Violence Awareness month, and it is a big topic in pop culture right now with all the NFL publicity. While the publicity is good for awareness, the way the media delivers the information is doing more harm than good, in my opinion. I was absolutely appalled that we as a Nation felt it was ok to share that elevator video. When a school shooting occurs or any shooting for that matter, the media is quick to cover it and go on and on about till there is nothing more left to say. In many cases putting the spotlight on the gunman. Young people do not understand the gravity of devastation these instances create. Many characters on TV shows and in the movies walk away from a shoot out or a gun wound. That is not real life. I don’t believe that we need to remove the violence from our entertainment, but I do believe we need to educate our youth on violence and death in a very serious way.

Schools. We learn all about the history of the country and other countries and wars in school, but why aren’t we teaching about the dangers and wars currently going on in our country. Gun violence and domestic abuse are only a few the hot topic issues they should be learning. Poverty. Starvation. Homelessness. Addiction. Debt. Mental Illness. All of these are currently happening on our own land. The children are our future. Let’s educate them so they can make a change. Take them to the Morgue. Volunteer at a local shelter. Give them a fighting chance. Stop allowing our government to make budget cuts so the teachers can teach and get the kids inspired. If we can get the classroom sizes down maybe more teachers would be able to see the warning signs of children that are depressed, bullied, hungry, abused, and struggling, and we can address these issues so they don’t feel that violence is their only option to be heard.

Reform. I agree with our “Right to Bear Arms”. I also agree their needs to be a change in who has that right. Previous offenders/abusers and the mentally ill should not have access to guns. We regulate who can operate vehicles for the safety of the public, who can adopt a child for the safety of the child, the age of alcohol consumption for the safety of the drinker and those around them. Why is it so crazy to expect that we intervene for the safety of everyone to regulate guns? Because it’s in the constitution as an amendment? GET WITH IT PEOPLE!!!! The only people that should be upset about not being able to own a gun are people that wouldn’t pass the ownership application.

Parents. If you are a gun owner, everyone in the house should have taken a gun safety class. If you have young children, even if you don’t, the guns should be in a locked case and the key should be somewhere only those who have taken the gun safety class know. Be a responsible gun owner. Talk to your kids about reporting suspicious behavior at school. Let them know they won’t be considered a tattle-tale if they have a true concern. If anyone mentions having or bringing a gun to school, report it. If anyone talks about suicide, report it. If anyone is the target of bullying, report it.

As I watch my daughter play on the floor I can’t help but wonder what the world will be like for her children. Can our generation be the voice that ends gun violence? Can we fight for gun safety? Can we come together as a Nation to protect our children’s future? Even the last episode of SCANDAL on ABC voiced their opinion on a need for gun reform during a Presidential address. Get educated! Follow the movement on Mom’s Demand Action for a Gun Safe America’s Facebook page. Be a part of getting every state to require a background check with Everytown for Gun Safety on Facebook.

Thank you MORE magazine for the article The Accidental Activist and bringing light to the community of Mom’s that are motivated to make a change.