Reflecting on the Parkland shooting anniversary and gun violence in America, I have an observation. I am an engaged citizen and voter, and I believe in common sense gun laws.
I refuse to believe nothing can be done about the public health crisis of gun violence in America, whether it be school shootings, inner city violence, domestic violence, or accidental deaths or suicides aided by easy access to guns by children and teens.
If you read most of the materials put out by gun violence prevention organizations, you will rarely see the phrase “gun control.” These groups know this phrase is upsetting to law-abiding gun owners, and gives the impression that we are trying to to take away their right to own guns or literally take away their actual guns.
We are not. We simply believe in reforming gun laws to make Americans safer, such as expanding background checks and keeping guns away from the mentally ill and convicted domestic abusers.
In fact, the more I have become involved in this issue, the more I have come to understand the feelings of gun owners and to realize that we need the help of responsible gun owners to solve this problem. I personally would prefer if you called me an “anti-gun violence advocate” or an “advocate for gun sense legislation,” and not use the term “gun control.”
It may seem like semantics, but I think the words we use can help bridge the gap and stem the animosity between the two sides so we can actually find common ground to solve this problem.