When Will Enough Be Enough?

Sunday, June 12, 2016


This post isn't going to be like any other post I've done on my site. But given the events that have happened this weekend, I felt compelled to get a few things off my chest - to share a burden I deal with on a daily basis.
I pray this is the only post I'll ever write like this....
The mass shooting that occurred in Orlando nightclub, Pulse, left 50 dead and over 53 wounded. Those numbers continue to rise by the hour. It’s the deadliest mass shooting to ever happen in America. At this time, it is unclear whether or not this was a hate crime, as the club targeted was a gay joint, or whether it was an act of terrorism.
Over a hundred innocent people, who wanted nothing more than to have fun on a Saturday night, were mowed down in a matter of minutes. Slaughtered, killed, maimed. People woke up early this morning to hear that their loved ones would never return home. They woke up to anxious calls from their family’s friends, claiming that their loved one was in the hospital, bleeding out and in pain. Tonight, a mother will never hear her son’s voice again. Tonight, a sibling will no longer have a sister or brother to playfully tease. Tonight, someone is mourning the loss of their best friend.
For some people, their loved ones were shot but they did not sustain life threatening injuries. For some people, their loved ones were able to flee from the scene, garnering nothing more than a good scare. People all across the country are claiming these people are lucky. “Lucky” in that they will forever carry the scar of a gunshot wound. “Lucky” in that, whenever they close their eyes at night, all they will see and hear are blood, horrific screams and the barking of guns.
I, however, beg to differ. These individuals were not lucky.
This shooting comes just one day after singer Christina Grimmie was shot and killed at her concert in Orlando. She was at the merchandise table, meeting fans and signing autographs. The shooter, Kevin Loibl, was 27 years old. He had two guns and a knife on him and after shooting Christina, he shot and killed himself. As of now, the motive for his act of violence is unknown.
Back in March, I had the pleasure of meeting and seeing Christina perform as an opening act for Rachel Platten’s Wildfire tour. She had a phenomenal voice and a bubbly, fun personality. I had my picture taken with her at the merchandise table following the concert. As you can probably guess, this particular shooting struck very close to home. Compounded with the shooting at Pulse, my heart aches. I’m physically nauseated as I write this. I’ve spent an exorbitant amount of time this weekend wondering whether or not it’s alright for me to leave my house. Anxiety, which I deal with on a daily basis, has built up and all I can ask myself and you… is why? When will enough be enough?
I work in a government office where hundreds of people come and go on a daily basis. There isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t ask myself what I would do should someone come into the office and open fire. When I go to concerts, I wonder who might be there with intensions other than to listen to good music. When I pass schools, I wonder how easily it would be for someone to get inside undetected.
I live in a country where just about anyone can get access to a deadly firearm. Just about anyone can walk into a gun shop and back out with a shiny new toy. Even more have illegal access to these weapons.
I live in a country where there is little regulation concerning background checks for acquiring guns, as this is believed to be a violation of rights.  
I live in a country where you aren’t required to attend even one gun-safety class to own a weapon, but you are allowed to keep that weapon in your home and in your childrens’ reach.  
I live in a country where people who have a history of violence are allowed guns, but people who are trying to adopt a child and have been on antidepressants are treated with skepticism.
I live in a country where you can legally buy an assault weapon, one that dispenses spent shells and automatically reloads bullets for you, making it possible to shoot several rounds before even needing to think of reloading. But citizens believe we need these types of guns to protect ourselves from others and the tyranny of our government.
I live in a country where children have fire drills in school one week, then partake in active shooter drills the next. Where employees are given more training on what to do in a hostage situation than they are when a tornado touches down.
I live in a country where access to guns is ridiculously easy, but access to mental and physical healthcare is a battle with your insurance agency.
You might think I’m being dramatic. And that is your prerogative. But here are some numbers to help put things in perspective:

Orlando’s mass shooting was the 174th to occur in America this year

13th this month.
7th this week. (massshootingtracker.org/data)
Whereas elsewhere in the world:

The United Kingdom has only had 13 since 2009.

Canada has had only 6.

France has only had 4.


 

As I write this, I can help but ask myself how long? How long before I’m driving to work, minding my own business, and I’m shot by someone with a severe case of road rage? How long before I’m gunned down walking from one class to the next on my college campus? How long before I’m shot at a peaceful protest?
And it doesn’t end there.
How long before my father is shot for saying that everyone, regardless of race, religion or sexual orientation, should be treated equally? How long before my mother is shot by a disgruntled customer at the local market? How long before my friend is shot for wearing a hajib? How long before my buddy is shot for having a pro-gay bumper sticker on his car?
This is the country I live in, the America I’ve grown up in.
And it’s a scary place to be this day and age.
So I ask you once more: when will enough be enough? How many mass shootings have to occur before something is to be done?
How many innocent lives have to be lost before people are convinced that their “right” to own a deadly firearm might not be as important as another person’s right to live?

7 comments :

  1. It breaks my heart that our world is coming to this. That it has become so common for these type of horrors to happen. It seems like every time we turn the news on there is something heartbreaking happening somewhere.
    I feel for everyone involved and pray for the best for them all.

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  2. Damn. This is so well said girl. I agree 100%. It's sad that this is the way our country is. Terrifying.

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  3. Such a powerful post. The public murder of Grimmie and the mass shooting at Pulse are absolutely sickening. Change MUST come. It's so discouraging though, how people in our country have such disparate ideas of how to solve our violence epidemic.

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  4. Today's cover of the Daily News summed things up pretty well:
    https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CkypA1nWUAQngY7.jpg:large

    I'm well placed to understand your anxiety issues; I wish you a lot of courage! I know you have it.
    And don't worry; despite this horrible shooting, the odds of getting shot remain rather low...

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  5. This post sure felt like you put my own thoughts down. When I first heard about the shooting, my first thought was 'First Christina Grimmie and now this?' It seems like this world just gets more heartless everyday. Such a powerful post!

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  6. I don't have anything to add to your post, but I wanted to tell you that this was beautifully (and heartbreakingly) written. You expressed my sentiments exactly.

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