Within a 24-hour time period, there was a mass shooting in El Paso, Texas, and another in Dayton, OH that resulted in a combined total of 31 deaths and numerous injuries.
The truly terrifying part is that it's only the tip of the iceberg.
In 2019 alone at least 71 people have died in mass shootings, not including the two people killed in Southaven, MS and the woman killed in Poway, CA, or the countless others that have occurred outside the U.S. The following is a list of the mass shootings in the U.S in 2019 from Time Magazine.
January 23rd; Sebring, FL 5 dead.
January 24th; State College, PA 3 dead, 1 wounded.
February 15th; Aurora, IL 5 dead, 6 wounded.
May 31st; Virginia Beach, VA 12 dead, 4 wounded.
June 23rd; Abbeville, SC; 3 dead, 1 wounded.
July 28th; Gilroy, CA 3 dead, 15 wounded.
August 3rd; El Paso, TX 22 dead, 24 wounded.
August 4th; Dayton, OH 9 dead, 14 wounded.
That's a combined total of 71 people dead. 71 lives lost. 71 sons and daughters, boyfriends and girlfriends, mothers and fathers who won't ever see their families again, who won't get the opportunity to experience the next chapter of their lives or see what lies ahead in their future.
We debate and argue for hours and hours over the proper way to handle it. We try to categorize it and point fingers as to who is responsible in an attempt to understand it and prevent it.
"It's a mental health problem."
"It's a gun control problem."
Does putting a label on it change anything? The bottom line is that it's a problem, it's our problem, and it's up to us to come up with a solution. Enough pointing fingers. Enough trying to control guns and the people who buy them.
Controlling arbitrary things like who owns guns, how many guns you can have, and even the type of gun you can have isn't going to fix it. People will still find a way to commit these horrible crimes if that's what they want to do.
It's not a gun problem or a mental health problem - it's a people problem.