A cry for help | Guest View

By Mike Nelson | Feb 23, 2018

No parent can ignore the sound of a child crying for help.

Having a child changes you; it changes what is important in your life and what is not. What is so horrifying now is that we have a whole nation of children crying for help. They are not hurt from a fall or a sick from the flu. They are crying for help because they are the victims of gun violence.

It is time us grown-ups act like grown-ups and take action to prevent our kids from being killed by guns.

We can start by acknowledging that the one thing that connects every single school shooting death of a child in this country is the ease of access to a gun.

Just walk into any gun store and you will see the vast arsenal on display and what little it takes to get one. Tragically, I am not the only one who thinks it is too easy to purchase a gun.

Listen to the shooter who murdered three teenagers in Mukilteo in 2016. At his sentencing he said, “I’d like everyone to hear loud and clear that it was the ease of acquiring a gun that enabled me to act.”

Or just last week an Everett student was arrested for plotting a school attack with an assault rifle he purchased. He wrote in his journal, “I can’t wait for the carbine to come. It’s too easy to buy a gun.”

It is too easy.

In America there may be a debate about guns but there is not a debate about the systematic removal of gun laws at the local, state, and federal level. Ask yourself, if our gun laws have no impact, then why has the gun lobby spent the last 40 years removing and blocking these laws.

Our weak gun laws have enabled this violence for far too long. It is time we strengthen our gun laws. We need responsible gun laws that prevent weapons of war from being used against our babies. We need laws in place that prevent children from accessing guns. We all need to be working together to ensure our communities are free of gun violence.

Our children deserve the freedom to go to school to learn, to play and to grow up to be a force of good.

But to do that they need our help. Our children are standing on the front lines, alone.

They are screaming for change.

It is time we heard them.

Mike Nelson is an Edmonds City Councilemember.

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