In the aftermath of the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary in December 2012, British political commentator Dan Hodges tweeted, "Sandy Hook marked the end of the U.S. gun control debate. Once America decided killing children was bearable, it was over."
As yet another shooter armed with an AR-15 took the lives of multiple children and teachers on May 24, 2022, the impotency and the unwillingness of American legislators to do even the most basic of gun reforms, like an assault weapons ban and background checks have once again been thrown into sharp prominence. And we know exactly who are to blame for Uvalde and why. Here is Steve Kerr, legendary coach for the Golden State Warriors, himself a victim of gun violence, laying it out in black and white.
There is really nothing more to be said. We know that GOP senators representing 21% of the American population are stymying any efforts to address the epidemic of gun violence in the country. So let's talk about what we, each and every American citizen, can do about it.
- HR-8, the Bipartisan Background Checks Bill, passed in the House twice, but the Senate has still not voted on it. Call your senator, Republican or Democrat, and ask them to force a vote on this so they can be on the record with their opposition to background checks, which are supported by 90% of Americans. You can find the number to call your senator here. Better still write to them , the how-to is on this site. Hand-written letters from constituents have a huge value.
- Make sure you vote in the midterms and vote GOP senators out. Democrats with a filibuster proof majority in the Senate can be persuaded to enact sensible gun reforms at the federal level, because state-level law, however strict are not enough because of interstate traffic. ( though this chart on firearm mortality from the CDC is pretty clear that states with lax gun laws have a distinctly worse statistic on deaths by guns.)
- Find an event against gun violence in your state. Or start one.
- If you are in North Carolina, Madhavi Karat of Moms Demand Action is helping organize a Triangle Wear Orange picnic on Saturday, May 28, 2022. Survivors and volunteers will gather at John Chavis Memorial Park at 10 a.m. The Wear Orange events continue on Sunday with a walk through downtown Raleigh with state representatives. The event starts at 11 a.m. at the General Assembly. Other Moms Demand Action events in your state can be found here.