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This morning we all woke up to the news that 50 Americans have been killed by a gunman. The news is almost too much to take in.
50 peple dead at the hands of a gun extremist.
50 mothers whose children have been murdered in our national epidemic of gun violence.
An act of terror and hate, the largest single act of violence against the American LGBTQ community and yet, just one of many shootings that occurred in this country over the weekend. I can’t say I am broken hearted over this incident because my heart hadn’t healed yet from the gun violence I heard about yesterday, and the day before, and the day before that.
Today, I am outraged. OUT. RAGED. Clenching my teeth and pounding my fists and yelling what is the matter with us? How did we let this happen?
Our country is being dominated by ideological extremists. Extremists who represent a tiny, but vocal minority but the rest of us stand by and don’t speak up. Gun Extremists have led us to believe that gun violence is inevitable. Part of American life and a sad side effect of the 2nd Amendment. So what do we do? When something terrible happens we cry and pray and then go back to our daily lives. But not today. Today I am calling on you to act. As one of my sisters in the gun violence prevention movement said in the face of this terrible violence:
The only thing that will stop a bad guy with a gun is a good guy willing to act.
Gun extremists don’t care how many people die as long as they can buy any gun they want anytime and anywhere they want. And they feed the profits of the gun manufacturers, who get richer when we are scared.
Gun Extremists are dominating news cycles and driving the hate and fear that is killing our children. I know that they do not represent the beliefs of most responsible gun owners, even though they act as if they do.
Gun extremists have purchased politicians all over our country who block legislation that would save lives, or worse, who promote irresponsible legislation like guns in bars, guns on campus, or no background checks for any gun sale. Every day dangerous people are able to buy guns legally thanks to these guys. Every 36 hours a child shoots another child because these extremists can’t seem to lock up their guns, or those kids kill their brother, or their mother, or the neighbor kid.
I know a LOT of hunters and responsible gun owners here in Minnesota and I know the Extremists don’t represent their views. So I am calling on you good guys to act – help us save lives.
How can we do it?
The reality is that the overwhelming majority of Minnesotans and Americans support common sense legislation that will keep guns out of the hands of dangerous people and keep our kids safe. The EXTREMISTS who lead the politicians would have you think there is nothing to be done, but in reality there is everything to be done. Here in Minnesota our requests are so simple that many people think they are already the law.
- Criminal background checks on all gun sales. Right now, in Minnesota, dangerous people can LEGALLY buy guns with no background checks at gun shows, on the internet and through private sales. That is not safe or responsible, and we need to change that in our next legislative session.
- Keep guns away from children. Simple stuff like locking your gun and keeping amunition locked and separate is all it takes – but adults fail children too often. This made the local news on Friday as Ramsey County officials announced a program to hand out gun locks. My friends and I have been promoting the Be SMART program for the past year or so – these are simple solutions, but too many people don’t follow them.
- Keep guns away from people in crisis. People who are suffering from a mental health crisis and are at risk of hurting themselves or someone else should not have access to guns. Seems like a no-brainer to everyone – except the gun rights extremists.
That’s it – three simple things that will save lives and will not violate gun rights. The EXTREMISTS think this is the first step down a slippery slope that will end with someone taking their guns. They are wrong, thats all there is to it. Just wrong, but people are dying because they will not listen to reason. They cling to their ideology in spite of all available evidence that they have become the bad guys.
And heads up to the politicians who are too busy bowing down to NRA lobbyists instead of keeping our kids safe. Hey you — We are not coming for your guns. We are coming for your JOB!
We will make a difference here in Minnesota. We will make a better world for our children. We will end the epidemic of gun violence.
But we need every good guy to act!
Sources for stats and facts in this post can be found at Everytownresearch.org