Summary and Reflection: A press for change on gun legislation and executive action after the Parkland school shooting. (1) The first proposal for gun control is background checks, fix the NICS act, which aims to fill the holes in the national instant criminal background check system. Even with the regulations we have now on background checks, 22% of gun sales occur without a background check. (2) The next proposal is raising the age to buy firearms, both President Trump and Florida Governor Rick Scott have brought up raising the minimum age from 18 to 21. (3) The Assault weapons ban. In 1994 President Clinton signed the Assault Weapons Ban, restricting features on semi-automatic firearms, and expired in 2004. Though the likelyhood of the ban being passed again are slim, the argument for it is that rifles like the AR-15 gives mass shooters “the best killing tool in the Army”. (4) The bump stock ban, bump stocks are a modification to a semi-automatic weapon that can increase the rate of fire that makes it function more like an automatic weapon. Lawmakers in both parties are in support of banning bump stocks, and Trump has pushed forward for this to be passed. (5) “Red flag” laws, another approach is to provide more authority to the courts to confiscate weapons from people who are considered a threat to either themselves or others. The problem with this is that it takes away that persons Second Amendment rights. This proposal has being specifically in the light after the Parkland attack, because the shooter has had the cops called on him multiple times and yet still had access to a firearm. (6) The last proposal is to arm teachers, Trump's most “unique” contribution to the debate over gun control is encouraging teachers who have proper training and education to carry a weapon to protect students against a mass shooter. Yet, just having the knowledge that teachers are armed, could deter shooters from coming in. This article is extremely informative, easy to follow, and seems to be unbiased. These are the 6 most talked about proposals against gun violence at the moment. The debate over gun violence seems to always be really pushed in the media after these devastating mass shootings. MLA Citation: Sarlin, Benjy. “ 6 proposals to reduce gun violence and how they work.” NBC News, 28 Feb. 2018, www.nbcnews.com/politics/white-house/6-proposals-reduce-gun-violence-how-they-work-n851736.
Summary and Reflection: This article talks about how the weeks after the devastating Parkland shooting have been full of emotional with grief, anger, and shock running through america. This anger and emotion is being directed at the NRA, who supports the Second Amendment. By doing this, we’re doing more harm than good according to the author. This author has a different view than from what I have seen doing this research, he believes that trust and respect for both sides is necessary for any progress to be made. I one hundred percent agree with him, it is our constitutional right to bear arms, you can't just take it away from everyone because there are messed up people in this world. Cars are as much as a weapon as guns are, after vehicle-ramming attacks there aren't protests to get rid of cars. Yes, I know that they're not on the same level but it's the principle. MLA Citation: Brooks, David . “Respect First, Then Gun Control.” The New York Times, 19 Feb. 2018, www.nytimes.com/2018/02/19/opinion/parkland-gun-control-shootings.html.
Summary and Reflection: These photos show the pure devastation of gun violence specifically in Chicago. Memorials of these victims, including children as young as 17 months, are all over the city and in homes. Each picture has a caption of the story behind the death, mostly caused by drive-by shootings. Bullet holes in the window of restaurants and peoples homes only confirming the reality of this issue. These pictures are extremely heartbreaking, they capture the rawness of the pain that comes with gun violence. I can't even imagine having to worry about my children playing on the street, not because of inattentive drivers, but of them being shot and killed. MLA Citation: Young, Jim . “Gun violence in Chicago kills hundreds every year – in pictures.” The Guardian , 28 Feb. 2018.
On February 14, 2018 seventeen young lives were lost tragically to gun violence. A past student who has had the cops called on him 20 times came in and caused one of the most deadly school shootings. Now only 9 days after the mass shooting, the survivors and parents of those who were lost stand in Sunrise, Florida to push for change and question Marco Rubio, Florida Senator Nelson, rep Ted Deutch and the NRA national spokesman. Most of the questions and responses were similar, bringing up the Assault Weapons Ban, raising the legal age to buy a firearm, Bump Stocks Ban, “see something say something”, and more in depth background checks. Fred Guttenberg, who lost his daughter in the shooting, spoke up and his question was directed for Marco Rubio. He started out by criticizing Rubio and Trump's response to the tragic event saying it was pathetic. Then proceeded with, “guns were the factor of the hunting of our kids in this school… tell me you will accept it and work with us to do something about it”. Rubio's response was that one, gun laws alone aren't going to solve the problems were facing today, but what we can do to start the process of addressing these problems are, raising the age to legally buy a firearm to 21, supporting the Bump Stocks Ban, more in depth background checks, the ability to report someone you believe is capable and at risk of a shooting. In response to the Assault Weapons Ban, he believes it wont work due to the fact that it only bans certain semi-automatic guns, and that there are 2,000 identical models on the market that are still legal and capable of the same destruction. At this point, the crowd is booing at Rubio to the extent that he wasn't able to finish a sentence. After being questioned about strengthening background checks, Senator Nelson responds with fixing the Gun Show Loophole. Ted Deutch touches on a temporary ban/restraining order against someone who might do damage, by providing the opportunity for law enforcement to take away that person's firearm. Now the NRA representative is on stage, being questioned from a student from the shooting, “do you believe it should be harder to obtain semi-automatic and fully automatic firearms” was the question. The spoke women's response was that the shooter was “nuts” and should have never been able to get his hands on a firearm in the first place. She also touched on that states are responsible to report convictions to the “NICS system” and that it is not being regulated. Marco Rubio's overall opinion on what this debate is about is that almost every gun sold in America is capable of doing what the gun in the parkland shooting did. My response to this source is mixed, I’m against the fact that this tragic situation is being used to push any kind of agenda, especially with the use of the students. It corners these politicians because if they try to fight back or even defend their opinion they are look at as insensitive towards the survivors. Personally, I believe that guns are important in our society, now with that there should of course be regulations to keep us safe. I also understand that there is a time and place for when we need to discuss this conflict, it's not just going to go away. Gun violence isn't just going to stop, but I really don't think that 9 days after the worst school shooting our nation has endured is the best time to blow this up. Especially, not using the survivors to push any kind of agenda left or right. I agree with all the regulations that are in question, background checks are so important. How did we let this 19 year old get his hands on a gun, how come when people did express their concerns nothing happened, how come the trained law enforcement at the school didn't do anything to stop this murder? These are questions I have surrounding this tragic event, and i believe there are things we can do to prevent this from happening again. MLA Citation: CNN, Cable News Network, 22 Feb. 2018, www.cnn.com/videos/politics/2018/02/22/gun-town-hall-full-version-parkland.cnn.
Summary and Reflection: The first lady Melania’s speech shows that she is proud of the brave students that are coming out and speaking up. She also talks about how children are our future and it is up to the adults now, raising them, to prepare them to being in this world. Doing that by bringing awareness to drug use and the internet. Overall she wants to commit to promoting values that respect our children, so that they have a solid foundation to survive in the real world, with all the evil we have. I really like this speech, every time I have heard Melania speak I just can't take her seriously because she doesnt sound super smart, especially with the context of her basically copying Michelle Obama's speech. But I completely agree with what she is saying, and I appreciate that she is speaking out. MLA Citation: “Melania Trump 'heartened' by student activ.” CNN, CNN, 26 Feb. 2018, www.cnn.com/videos/politics/2018/02/26/melania-trump-gun-control-nga-spouses-luncheon-children-deserve-more-sot.cnn.
Summary and Reflection: Sue Klebold is the mother of one of the two shooters involved in the Columbine shooting. The first large school shooting in 1999, resulting in 12 deaths. She comes out and speaks on the reality of being the mother of a school shooter and the hardships she's had to deal with on top of the tragedy of losing her son and members of her community. She didn't know about his severe depression or thoughts of suicide, until after his death. She questioned how his suicidal thoughts turned into homicidal thoughts and going through with this devastating shooting. Sue has done research on overall mental health, the issues in our mental health systems, and the struggles of those who go their whole lives undiagnosed. When someone is planning their suicide they are in a stage 4 medical emergency, their reality of truth is 100% distorted. But her son's death was not just suicide it included mass murder, he had a perfectionist and independent personality making it even less likely for him to reach out for help. Sue Klebold now lives her life in fear, of meeting family of someone Dylan had killed, fear of hearing about her on the news how bad of a mother she was. She started getting panic attacks after her son's death, “it felt as if my brain was trying to kill me”. This Ted Talk really gave me another perspective of school shootings that I have never thought of or heard of in the press. Its devastating to see what this mother has had to go through and she deserves only sympathy and understanding. It is very inspiring for her to be able to come up on stage in front of just that room of people but also for the whole world and share her story. MLA Citation: Klebold, Sue. TED: Ideas worth spreading, Feb. 2017, www.ted.com/talks/sue_klebold_my_son_was_a_columbine_shooter_this_is_my_story.