On U.S. Gun Law Reform
How does one make a difference?
With most causes, we’ve been told to ‘think globally and act locally.’
How does that work, however, when you want to end gun violence in America?
A simple Google search of “gun law reform in America” produces over three million links regarding changing what has become a national health crisis (see www.huffingtonpost.com Politics “Top Medical Groups Say Gun Violence Is A Public Health Crisis” posted 02/24/2015/updated 02/25/2015 ~ Sabrina Siddiqui). Nicholas Kristof, journalist and op-ed columnist for the New York Times wrote, on August 26, 2015, “Lessons From the Virginia Shooting”, in which he calls us to action to “move from passive horror to take steps to reduce the 92 lives claimed by gun violence in the United States daily.” Interestingly, he previously (December 15, 2012) wrote a very similar piece, “Do We Have the Courage to Stop This?”
America’s answer seems to have been a resounding, “NO” or “not yet,” anyway.
So when, then?
I recently shared Democratic Presidential Candidate-hopeful, Hillary Clinton’s Facebook commentary, “We have to do something about gun violence in America…” on my own Facebook page with this header: “My vaca pix get lotsa likes. Political views not so much. I wonder which platform is best to be involved…how can we make a difference…how can we help fix this problem?” I received four ‘likes’. And, it’s not the ‘likes’ I wanted. It’s the conversation. It’s the answer to ‘how do we fix the problem?’ Where does one American (of 320.09 million) go to fight?
Well, apparently not Facebook. After all, it was TBT.
Facebook, like the movies, is better left for entertainment purposes, an escape from real life…
I had a conversation with someone who is not on Facebook and chooses not to watch the news: “The media and daily news sources in their reporting of each and every incident are sensationalizing and perpetuating the violence. It’s blatant advertising, which appeals to a killing culture. So, I choose not to participate and suffer guilt by association.” Now that’s an opinion, and yet, it’s also action. Action of boycott.
So, if opinions are good on their own and we should keep our own, what then are our other choices to make an active difference? To keep quiet, excepting to hope or pray, maybe, for change or to initiate an all-out, full-time-job-style devotion to the cause or perhaps several options somewhere in the middle.
And, what about expressing one’s opinion, what purpose does that even serve? Will it really change someone’s mind? Doubtful, just as someone else’s opinion that there’s ‘no truth to Global Warming’ will not alter mine, that it is a very real problem.
Get on board, sign up, join in, fill a spot, dig in. Any one of these slogans are easy to apply to other causes where we can think globally and act locally.
For example, if I wanted to help the homeless, I could work in a soup kitchen; I could donate coats and blankets to a former co-worker who, every Christmas Eve with other members of his family, delivers these items to the homeless in Philadelphia; or I could volunteer at a shelter. If I wanted to feed the hungry, I could (and have) donate to Heifer International. Over many Christmases, our family selected chicks or bees or half a goat that would help a family eat and earn some income toward a better life. Or, I could, again, serve at a soup kitchen, bring non-perishables to the local food pantry, or donate my earned turkey, at Thanksgiving. And, because I do think Global Warming is real, I recycle, re-use and re-purpose to the point that my pantry is full of empty jars of every size (afraid to throw anything away); combine driving errands into one-trip, and use CFL light bulbs.
So, again, I ask: On U.S. gun law reform, how does one make a difference?
Well, another simple Google search for U.S. gun law reform organizations produces:
- The Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence smartgunlaws.org
- Brady Campaign bradycampaign.org
- Everytown for Gun Safety everytown.org
- Million Mom March (affiliated with Brady Campaign)
- Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense (affiliated with Everytown for Gun Safety)
- Coalition for Peace Action peacecoalition.org
- Coalition to Stop Gun Violence csgv.org
- Heeding Gods Call heedinggodscall.org
I can try.