Last week, after scrolling through various news articles about the two most recent mass shootings in Dayton and El Paso, I silently shed tears. I had never shed any tears over the news of a shooting before, because I never understood the vast and devastating effects each shooting has on so many lives. It feels as if these mass shootings are becoming normalized in America, and I will not accept that.

My hope is fading in this country. I do not mean that in an unpatriotic way by any means, because I truly do love my country and what it was founded on. But, the bizarre ways of thinking of those in power have dragged me down. It feels as if our country is regressing. Outlawing certain types of women's healthcare, turning a blind eye to the victims of mass shootings and their families, and the president of the United States even laughing at a suggestion to "shoot them (immigrants from Mexico)" who try to enter our country.

Just recently, an Ohio lawmaker claimed that the recent shootings are to be blamed on video games and gay marriage (?). Every day, I read a headline that sounds so strange and complex that it has become a normal part of the day. I feel as if sudden discrimination toward everyone who is not like those in power has become very prominent.

Aside from that, the "thoughts and prayers" method has been tried over and over, and at this point, I am very positive that thinking about the victims of shootings will not stop another one from happening. There must be a change because every day, lives are at stake. It is sickening that the number of lives lost is not a shock to anyone enough to reform gun laws. How many lives does it take? We are not supposed to feel unsafe in our country. So, just as some food for thought, there have been 255 mass shootings in America in 2019 alone. At this point, it really should not matter what party you classify as, there must be reasonable gun laws put into place, and I will do all that I can to promote and support those laws being put into place. There are no more excuses.