I just read a report online that said that since the Sandy Hook massacre in December, aproximately niney-nine hundred shooting deaths have occurred in the United States. Yes, that’s correct. 9,900 deaths have occurred in the United States since the Sandy Hook massacre ten months ago. And that’s just the reported deaths. According to Slate.com, which keeps a tally of gun deaths in the United States, suicide by firearms aren’t usually reported in terms of gun deaths by police and the media, so the official number of firearm-related deaths may actually be much higher.

But still, 9,900 deaths is pretty steep. It’s over three times the number of deaths that the United States sustained during the September 11th attacks. And what has been done about it? Have any laws been passed that aim to stop gun deaths? States like New York, Vermont, Maryland, and Colorado have adopted much more stringent gun control measures in order to prevent more tragedies, and President Obama issued over twenty executive orders regarding gun control in the wake of the tragedy. However measures to fight gun violence have dried up somewhat, especially on the national level.

Why? Because a small but extremely vocal and well-funded group of people, some of whom are very out of touch with the organizations they head, believe that any measure to curb the sales or ownership of guns is a violation of the Second Amendment. Yet we still fund millions of dollars to take out terrorists overseas who in recent years have caused far less American deaths than guns have.

I’m not arguing we shouldn’t go after terrorists. But guns are causing more deaths than terrorists right about now, and it’s only going to get worse if nobody does anything. And I know that for certain Americans having a gun is a way of life. It’s consider sacred. But guess what? The United States is losing innocent lives because people are using firearms in ways they shouldn’t be used or have access to firearms that, in other nations, would be restricted to use by military personnel only.

And don’t say that gun restriction will lead to a totalitarian state. Governments are more capable of incompetence than controlling every aspect of the citizens of an entire nation. Look at the shutdown if you want proof. And don’t say gun control led to the Holocaust, because numerous factors led to the Holocaust, and so far in my Holocaust class I haven’t seen a single reference to gun control being apart of Hitler’s rise to power. And saying gun control laws don’t work because anyone determined to get a gun can is like saying traffic laws or stealing laws don’t work because people will still speed through red lights and will still take money from your wallet if they can get it.

Besides, Australia has done very well with gun control, so why can’t the United States do well? We’re both a nation that overthrew British rule, have had or still do have problems with people of certain ethnicities, and have had massacres in the past that have devastated our people.

So I’m asking anyone reading this that if you think gun violence is out of control in the United States, please say something. On your blog, to your congressman or senator, to the local newspaper or in your church/synagogue/mosque/temple/whatever. Try and make your voice heard if you’ve had enough of people dying and want the killing to stop.

We need a change. We need to be the change. And I’m not going to stop shouting about this till I see some change for the better.

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