The facility to buy guns in the US surprises almost everybody coming from another culture, as is my case. “In Florida, to buy a gun you do not need a permit, you do not need a gun license, and once you buy it you do not need to register it. You do not need a permit to carry a concealed rifle or shotgun. You can buy as many guns as you want at one time.”
While politicians in the US continue to enact laws that make it easier for anybody to buy guns, even the mentally ill, other countries enact tougher laws that make these events less possible. As Emma Gonzalez, a surviving student, says, “Because Australia had one mass shooting in 1999 in Port Arthur (and after the) massacre introduced gun safety, and it hasn’t had one since. Japan has never had a mass shooting. Canada has had three and the UK had one and they both introduced gun control and yet here we are, with websites dedicated to reporting these tragedies so that they can be formulated into statistics for your convenience.”
“If the President wants to come up to me and tell me to my face that it was a terrible tragedy and how it should never have happened and maintain telling us how nothing is going to be done about it, I’m going to happily ask him how much money he received from the National Rifle Association….If you don’t do anything to prevent this from continuing to occur, that number of gunshot victims will go up and the number that they are worth will go down. And we will be worthless to you.”
In the 2016 election, the NRA spent over $31 million in the last presidential race. Presidential candidates, however, aren’t the only ones who benefit from the NRA’s donations. Representatives from both parties, although mostly from the Republican Party, receive tens of millions of dollars from the NRA. They will never bite the hand the feeds them.
In February of 2017, one year ago, President Trump and American lawmakers repealed an Obama-era regulation that would have made it easier to block the sale of firearms to people with certain mental illnesses. Thus, they made it easier for tragedies to occur.
Emma ended her speech saying, in a voice almost trembling with anger, “The people in the government who were voted into power are lying to us. And us kids seem to be the only ones who notice and our parents to call BS. Companies trying to make caricatures of the teenagers these days, saying that all we are self-involved and trend-obsessed and they hush us into submission when our message doesn’t reach the ears of the nation, we are prepared to call BS. Politicians who sit in their gilded House and Senate seats funded by the NRA telling us nothing could have been done to prevent this, we call BS. They say tougher guns laws do not decrease gun violence. We call BS. They say a good guy with a gun stops a bad guy with a gun. We call BS. They say guns are just tools like knives and are as dangerous as cars. We call BS. They say no laws could have prevented the hundreds of senseless tragedies that have occurred. We call BS. That us kids don’t know what we’re talking about, that we’re too young to understand how the government works. We call BS. If you agree, register to vote. Contact your local congressperson. Give them a piece of your mind.”
Emma and her fellow students showed to have more guts than a meretricious Congress.
This has been excerpted from: ‘A Student’s Message To Politicians About The Florida Massacre.’