By Melanie Haid
It seems that nearly every week a new headline about yet another mass shooting surfaces. It feels as though most of us are becoming desensitized the more and more it happens. It’s not shocking anymore, and that’s the worst part. Whether there are five deaths from gun violence or 58, we are turning our heads less and less with each one. We almost expect, week after week, for another group of people to be gunned down. Not only is it disgusting, it doesn’t say much about our country and what we value.
When you’re growing up, you generally live in this faux bubble of safety, because all of the “bad” things happen to other people, it’s never you, and it never really happens to people you know. But college is a real slap in that face in that you’re suddenly IN the world, a world where things like this can happen to anyone, anywhere, and you realize more than ever before that the world isn’t going to protect you from anything. Even in high school, these things seem far away, and although we’re conscious of how dangerous the world care be, it barely ever sinks deeper than that.
I realize this more and more as I am exposed to the world and the reality of this country in college. My dad was in the same hotel in Las Vegas just a few days before the deadliest mass shooting in American history, and that woke me up more than anything. You know it happens, and you know it can happen to anyone, but it doesn’t cut as deeply as when it happens – or almost happens – to you. My bubble has popped, probably much later than others, but it has popped nonetheless and there’s no going back.
Out of the top nine deadliest shootings in American history, four of them have occurred in the past three years, including the two with the most casualties in history. This is only becoming more and more of a problem, and the more prevalent and frequent these attacks are, the less we seem to be taking them into consideration and what major problem they represent in our country.
What people don’t like to realize is that this is a problem that can be fixed, and if we took gun control as an important issue, it could be prevented more than it occurs.
The background checks are not thorough.
No average citizen needs an automatic rifle, for literally any reason. Especially 23 of them.
Why is it that the more this is happening, the more we let it become the norm?
Once you get over the fact that the world is not a safe place and realize that you can’t ignore these events just because you aren’t directly affected, that’s when you grow up. Of course, it would be ridiculous to live your entire life in fear of being caught in a mass shooting, but the point is that it could literally happen to anyone, anywhere and the more it happens, the more likely it is that it could happen to you or someone you know.
Rather than living in your bubble, and staying safely naïve, you need to recognize what’s going on right under your nose, sooner rather than later. There is something wrong with this country that this happens so often, because it should not be happening so frequently, if at all.
Wake up and smell the real world; it may not be pretty, but the sooner we each acknowledge these issues, the better we can make it for everyone.
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