Clarksburg, Maryland, U.S.A. – I studied government in school this year. I know the Second Amendment never justified the murder of innocent children.
The right to own guns does not equate to the transformation of elementary schools into slaughterhouses.
I can remember being five years old in kindergarten, ducking behind rows of cubbies filled with crayons and coloring pages with the lights off and the doors locked. The principal would knock on our doors and rattle the knobs to make sure that we were following the protocol.
The children at Robb Elementary School did not have the luxury of knowing that it was a trusted adult knocking the door. They were ambushed by bullets, murdered in the hallways and classrooms where they should have been playing.
But the most terrifying thing about this tragedy is that we all saw it coming. How long would it really be until another gunman shot up a school? Was it truly that shocking? Have we not seen this countless times?
It seems like there’s always another post about a school shooting, a massacre in a place of learning.
We have grown complacent to this violence. The outrage seems to last for a few hours, days, or months, but then another person purchases an assault rifle and kills unsuspecting children and the cycle begins again.
When will our government finally decide that enough children have died, that the right to own a rifle is simply less important than preventing the bloodshed of school kids?
When will there be active change to prevent blood from painting classroom walls?
It has been too long, too painful. Far too many parents have sent their smiling children to school on a yellow bus only to see them hours later in a hospital, bloody and dying.
We are children! We should be learning to count, to read – not how to hide from a gunman. We should be playing with our friends and writing stories about fantastical new lands, not holding hands as gun shots echo through the building.
Our country needs to change. The right to own a gun simply isn’t worth risking the lives and safety of children.
We cannot continue to brush off this horrific travesty as a facet of American identity. Guns do not define this country – the people do.
Bullet wounds in seven-year-olds are not American. Dying school children in ICUs are not American. Uncle Sam must stand for the people: not for pulling the trigger.
Sreehitha Gandluri is a Senior Reporter with Youth Journalism International.
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