Hello my friends, it has been a bit since I posted but as stated I am working on my new book so do not have so much time for blogging and the like, but this is an important topic so I make time. The issue I speak of is the issue I am most passionate about and that is gun violence prevention and the movement to fight for gun violence victims.
Now, as many know, the one year anniversary of the worst mass shooting in the history of this country is coming up in early June and that shooting was the massacre in Orlando, Florida at the Pulse Nightclub. This was hard in more way than one on me as I am a member of the LGBTQ community and an advocate for laws to prevent gun violence as well as someone who has lost someone from a bullet from a gun.
The issue relating to gun violence that I want to talk about today is the fact that it is a public health issue and the current administration of Donald Trump refuses to state this fact. The previous administration of Barack Obama did fight for gun reform and Obama did tireless work on the issue and made some strides despite GOP obstruction that existed. The times have changed since he left office and Trump took over but that does not mean that we the people who believe in stopping gun violence, we will not back down and the hope is that things can finally change and lives can be saved.
Make no mistake, this is a public health issue and must be addressed as one for things to change in relation to gun violence. Those in pro-gun circles do not agree with this assessment but every major medical and psychiatric organization in this nation say the same thing, it is one. Firearms are the only product that isn’t subjected to federal regulations and recalls yet it is the one that causes the most deaths.
For us to understand this public health issue we just need to listen to any medical professional speak on the topic or spend a few minutes in the emergency department of your local hospital to see how this issue impacts these communities because besides the 33k killed per year there are tens of thousands more injured by firearms and this is a strain on our health system costing billions per year, but the real cost is in the tragic loss of life.
There is something wrong with this, guns cause more damage than several other highly regulated products that are much less dangerous, especially for innocent children. For instance, Teddy bears and swimming pools are more regulated than guns in the home yet guns are what kill scores of children per year. There is not a law that requires owners to lock up their firearms and there should be as guns cause many children to die. Insurance is required for car owners and even some landlords will not rent you an apartment without apartment insurance and on down the line.
Firearms are a threat to the safety of our children as well as adults in this country and yet there are very few regulations on them. The gun people claim that there are over 20,000 gun laws on the books but that is simply not true at all, there are between 300-500 federal gun laws and not many more state and local gun laws but nowhere near the false 20,000 number they like to repeat over and over. There are some simple laws we can pass universally that will have a positive impact on this public health crisis we are facing in this nation and none of these measures will hurt gun owners.
As I stated in my first book on the issue Gunsense Nation, there are five simple measures we can pass on a national level that will reduce the carnage guns cause and have caused for some time now. The pro-gun people call me everything from a “traitor” to a “tyrant” when I mention these life-saving steps we can take but I am neither, I am a concerned American who is tired of seeing precious lives stolen from us due to gun violence which is entirely preventable. The following measures do a few things, they prevent gun deaths as a whole but they also help out law enforcement by reducing the ammo and weapons the public can have, both have worked in other places. Some of the following have been passed in some states but we need them and more in every single state.
– Ban high capacity magazines (above 10 rounds)
– Require liability insurance on all firearms
– Ban assault type weapons and all semi-autos
– Require home owners to secure firearms and ammo separately
– Mandatory mental health exams on all gun purchases
– Home inspections for gun owners
– Ban public carry (open and conceal)
These are just some steps we can take now to reduce gun deaths and make life easier for our law enforcement officers, since the right claims to support the blue (cops) then they should want to prevent them from being outgunned, you would think right?
Unfortunately, the pro-gun people just care about keeping their toys, they do not care about preventing gun violence or about the many lives lost to it on a yearly basis nor have they ever. This is a public health crisis of epic levels and there are things we can do and we must do to change it and save people from dying. Thousands die every year due to gun murders, accidents, and suicides but that can change, it is up to we the people to change it though. I talk about this issue often but even more so with the anniversary of Orlando coming up as well as June 2nd which is National day to Prevent Gun Violence.
I will be indeed wearing orange on that day to spread awareness on this issue and when I am done with my current non gun control book I will be writing my third book on the issue. I am not sure just yet what that one will focus on but it will speak on the issue that the others spoke on and that is the epidemic of gun violence that must be dealt with in this country and it very soon as even in the thirty minutes or so I have taken to write this blog post countless of our innocent citizens have been shot and killed by a bullet from a gun and that is unacceptable.
Over a million Americans have lost their lives since John Lennon was gunned down some 37 years ago. Over a MILLION! Now if that is not a public health crisis then I do not know what is. Gun violence has reached epidemic levels and yet the pro-gun people like to lie and say that gun violence is at a “50-year low”, it is not but even if it was it doesn’t matter to the families that do lose loved ones to this health crisis. After the tragic attacks on September 11th, 2001 steps were taken to prevent that from happening again, we secured the cockpits on commercial aircraft and upped airport security.
There are steps to fix almost every issue in this country, laws are changed to reduce drownings, to reduce auto fatalities, drug overdoses, and so many more public health issues yet with gun deaths we do nothing. In fact, we have made it easier to get a gun not harder over the years and now with Trump in office the laws are becoming even more lax. There is something wrong with this and it must change, it must change now too. The lives of Americans are at risk and while Trump wants to demonize Muslims and immigrants and build walls and deport people to make us “safe”, we the people know who the real threat is and that is those with guns and the National Rifle Association.
The American Medical Association and countless other medical organizations state the obvious and that is that gun violence is a public health issue and it must be addressed now. No, we are not “Anti-American” for wanting to restrict who can have guns and what guns they can have, no we do not want people to die, no we do not hate the constitution. What we do want is to save precious lives and prevent people from dying, we want to fix this health issue and prevent even more violence and death.
We must keep fighting to end gun violence and I hope on June 2nd you will do your part, wear orange, and have your voice heard. I also hope that you will contact your representatives and senators and demand change on this issue because our children, our parents, our friends lives matter and this will not change without action, massive action!
NOT ONE MORE!