Gun Problems: We Are in Desperate Need of Change


Sophia Steen, Staff Writer

Content warning: This article is going to discuss school shootings, which by nature are devastating and upsetting. Please read with caution. 

On Monday, 6 individuals were killed in a Nashville school shooting. Three of them were children. Covenant school is a private Christian school located in Southwest Nashville that teaches kids from preschool to 6th grade, with about 200 kids enrolled in the school. From what we know, the gunman was armed with 2 rifles and a handgun. 

All 3 children were 9 years old. It should not have to be said that this cannot keep happening. We are in desperate need of change regarding gun safety. 

The first amendment is regulated. Yes, we have freedom of speech, religion, press, and assembly. However every single one of those have limitations for the safety of our citizens and the security of the country. The first amendment doesn’t protect speech that creates a “clear and present danger.” Freedom of religion is not a catch all for breaking the law. In most places you have to have a permit to protest. The second amendment should be no different. We need universal background checks and safe gun storage legislation coming from the federal government.

Over the next few weeks we are going to hear politicians say “there is nothing we can do.” or “the problem is not guns, the problem is school security.” or “the problem is the mental health crisis in this country.” For this specific school shooting, they might even throw out an argument saying transgender people are dangerous. All of these remarks are simply ignorant tactics to distract from the fact that there is a gun safety issue. These politicians cannot come out and say there is a problem because they are profiting off of it. The NRA funds their campaigns, holding money in front of them like a bone in front of a dog. Except these are not dogs. These are adults who we elect to run our country. 

It is unbelievable to me that these politicians, most of whom have children, can look at a school shooting and shrug their shoulders. 3 sets of parents have to bury their children. The children of the teachers who were killed have to bury their parents. I am not a parent. I do not know what it is like to have a child. However I do understand that a parents love for their children is like no other, no parent should have to bury their child. How can anyone look at this and say, “there is nothing we can do.” Does it have to be the school of a politician’s child for there to be change? How many more teachers and children are we going to traumatize before there is a real change?

The number one killer of children used to be motor vehicle accidents. To combat this issue, wearing seat belts became federal law. Car seats for children changed to become safer. Weight and height requirements were created for a child to no longer need a car seat and to sit in the front seat of a car. Now, guns are the leading cause of death in children and teenagers. It is utterly ridiculous that we will create laws to make cars safer, something that’s purpose is not to kill, but we will not create laws to make guns safer, whose whole purpose is to kill. 

It is selfish to not want to do something about the gun problem we have. If you are more worried about your gun than the lives of fellow citizens, you are selfish. I am not suggesting we take guns away. I am suggesting we tighten up our gun laws on a federal level. I have heard the question asked over and over again over the past few days, how does this keep happening? This is such a complex question. I think the best answer is that we have money and power hungry politicians who are funded by the gun lobby and cower at the thought of taking any action that could put them out of power, even if that action could save lives. As much as I hope this doesn’t happen again, it will.

My heart goes out to every family and every friend who was affected by Monday’s shooting.