Guns in a Small Town

What does it take for Americans to see?

There’s this guy, same age as I am, who is a very proud American.

His Facebook is full of posts of protecting his second amendment rights to a gun, respecting the American flag, and supporting our troops.

I can’t stand to look at how hypocritical it all is.

He was a security guard at a mall nearby me. A mall I have gone into countless times. A mall where my sister and friends have worked. A mall that I was left alone in many times as a young adolescent girl.

Coral Ridge Mall in Coralville, Iowa was the sight of a shooting around 7:30 P.M. yesterday. Only one was shot and fatally wounded. She worked at the Children’s Museum. The same place my sister used to work.

This guy who had just gotten fired from his job earlier that day opened fire and killed this girl.

It’s all so senseless I can’t wrap my brain around it.

I wonder how she felt. You go to work one day not knowing you’re not going to come back home. So many missed goodbyes. So many dreams and wishes left. So much pain.

I only know a couple of people who knew her. I can’t imagine their loss as they try to make sense of this.

No one can, though.

America is the laughing stock of the world. We’re fat, loud, and obnoxious. We love our guns and have a peculiar obsession over our flag. We spend more money on national defense than most countries do combined.

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It’s staggering. It’s absurd.

When is America going to wake up and try to fix this problem?

What is the solution to this problem? The killer at Coral Ridge had made a post not even more than a month ago stating how he needs to have a gun to protect himself and others if there is an at-large shooter.

THE GOD DAMNED SHOOTER WAS THE SHOOTER AT-LARGE.

I AM SHAKING BECAUSE I CANNOT TAKE THE HYPOCRISY OF IT ALL! I AM SO MAD THAT SOMETHING LIKE THIS COULD HAVE HAPPENED!

I’m thinking about how that girl felt as she took her last few breaths. I’m thinking about how others nearby felt as they ran for their lives. I’m thinking about how this is going to hurt the community. I’m thinking about how most people will now opt to shop elsewhere for Christmas even though this is one of the largest shopping centers in Iowa out of fear. I’m thinking about all the people that have been emotionally scarred after being witnesses to such violence.

I know so many people don’t want to take a stance on gun issues because it is so politically charged. You say you’ll pose stricter laws and require background checks and people say you’re infringing on their rights. You say you want your gun to protect people but you have to answer to the families of those hurt by gun violence. There is no winning in this game. It shouldn’t be a game. Death by violence is not a game.

Do you ever hear of someone who has a gun shooting the shooter except for policemen or the shooter themselves? No! Because it simply doesn’t happen!

The second amendment is archaic. It no longer fits into our society. We are not living in a place where people come with weapons to steal our land. The right to carry a gun was relevant 200 years ago, but it is outdated. Now, we live in a place where a short fuse can be the end of a person’s life. We live in a place where it is too easy to obtain firearms and the laws surrounding them are too loose.

I am all for people having a gun in the home if they are properly licensed, have had a sufficient background check, and use guns for hunting purposes or simply keep the god damned thing in the house. But I think people with guns should need to pass mental health screenings on a regular basis and kept under close eye. Obtaining a gun should be a lot harder than it is.

I understand this man had a gun because he was a security officer, but why wasn’t he forced to hand over his gun at the time he was terminated from his position? That’s another thing I can’t wrap my brain around. Obviously, the shooter is responsible for his actions, but shouldn’t those who made this tragedy possible be held accountable? Isn’t our society so incredibly messed up?

I’m trying to make sense of this but it is senseless. I don’t think that girl was killed at random since she was the only one shot and the scum fled from the scene. To think, that man could be right across the street from me now in jail.

This isn’t right.

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