Hot Seat: The Forgotten 79

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My name is Emily Penrod, I am a 22 year old college student and I was born on November 3, 1994. Since then, there have been 79 considered “mass shootings” in the United States. Now, 13 of those incidents included over ten fatalities and 66 of those had ten or less and more than likely you didn’t hear about them until now.

Between 1994-2018, there has been 23 years with 79 mass shootings in that time span meaning there hasn’t been a mass shooting each year but almost three shootings per year since 1994.

 

Let that sink in.

I haven’t even hit my prime age of 25, 28, or even 30 years old and there have been about three shootings per year since 1994 and 66 of those were reported but were rarely circulated through the media. These consisted of no more than six fatalities, but nonetheless someone came into an establishment with the intention to kill groups of people.

On the other side of the token, 13 of those incidents ended in over ten fatalities and quite frankly, thirteen too many.

Just recently America was struck with a heavy silence on February 14, 2018 when a former student from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla. brought a semiautomatic rifle on campus and killed 17 innocent students and faculty, bringing up the total to 79.  

Hearing about these incidences haven’t gotten any easier on America and as the years go on and the shootings persist, the people are getting progressively angrier. It’s easy to “send your condolences and prayers” when it isn’t happening directly to you but if we do not resolve this epidemic now, it may become more common than we could ever imagine and hit closer to home. Even simply reading the words “79 mass shootings” is a hard pill to swallow.

Concerts, hospitals, churches, schools; these have all been places that have experienced devastation and places we should be able to consider as safe zones, and it’s even more of a harder pill to swallow knowing that a place of education or worship have been victims of unsafe territories in America.

The topic of gun control has always been a sensitive conversation but I believe now more than ever does the government need to lay this topic out on the table and discuss our next step and more than ever, do they need to take honest action…because everyone knows actions speak far louder than words ever could.

To bring you up to speed, students from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School are taking the first steps (more like strides) for gun reform and have already initiated future marches.

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March For Our Lives in Washington D.C. on March 24 and March 14 is National Walk Out of School Day in protest in the aftermath of the shooting – walk out is scheduled at 10 a.m. local time for 17 minutes, to honor the 17 lives.

Bottom line: We should no longer fear for our lives when you go to places of worship or education, we should feel safe when we drop our kids off at school and they should feel safe, as well. It’s time we honor the fallen and start making moves for a better future for not only ourselves but our future families and future children.

 

What steps are you going to take in your town?

 

In remembrance of the 17 fallen students from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, as a whole we promise to always remember you and never forget this nation’s recent tragedy. We will fight to make a change for you, your family, and future children of America, #neveragain. 

 

Photo Credits: Mother Jones

Photo Credits: Tampa Bay Times

 

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