America, We're Missing The Point On Mass Shootings

America, We're Missing The Point On Mass Shootings

This issue starts and ends with us.
Livia
Livia
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It's been over a week since the latest school shooting in the United States and people are talking, which is great, I'm glad the dialogue is still flowing on this topic. I wish along with the rest of you that this issue gets resolved and does not slowly go off the radar like past mass shootings. The problem here is that nothing will be accomplished if we remain divided. Half of this country wants to ban guns, create stricter gun laws, etc. while the other half wants to arm the teachers that educate their children. At the end of the day, we're still debating guns while going in circles. Both issues can be argued for and against forever, but that is not what I am here to do.

We are not a country made up of guns, we are people. This is a fact that I think both sides of any argument can agree on. We are all human beings who need to start by loving and caring at the most basic levels. Until we come to our senses that tragedies begin and end with us, I think we could continue to fight and be divided for years to come on this issue.

Would we be mourning hundreds of victims each year from senseless acts of violence if people did the right thing? No.

Would we need to be talking about gun laws if people would just do the right thing? No.

Would we need to be talking about arming teachers in the schools if people did the right thing from the beginning? No.

My point here is to not make this a political speech, argument, or gun talk. I want to get back to the basics and remind people why we are in this predicament. What changed in just 50 years that people do not feel safe going about their daily lives to school, church, concerts and events? What has changed in the fact that we hate more than we love? And at what point did we have so many people believing that their opinions and outlooks are superior to others?

So what exactly is, "the right thing?"

The "right thing" is holding people accountable for their actions, walking in other's shoes, thinking before we speak, combating mental illness and loving more than we hate.

Doing "the right thing" is taking responsibility as a parent to make sure that you are truly doing the right things with your child and acknowledging when little Johnny is in the wrong.

Doing "the right thing" is reaching out and helping others or offering assistance large and small when you know someone is struggling.

Doing "the right thing" is finally putting others before your own personal agenda for once.

Gun laws would not be being discussed if people used them for hunting purposes and not out of hate. Mental illness would not be brought to the point of murders, suicides and horrible acts in between if the illness was identified, along with treated before it was too late.

We as a society have become so accustomed to doing things for ourselves, blaming problems on others and ignoring issues when we don't want to deal with them. The media loves to take an event, twist it, publicize it in the wrong ways and get rumors flying while people don't even have their facts straight on the issue. Even the people who are delivering the news, simply playing messenger are not being honest and kind.

Reality check: we're dealing with these issues whether we want to or not.

We continue to bury and mourn ones who lost their lives while we fight on social media about left vs. right-wing policies and conspiracy theories, all along while we fail to acknowledge the problem right in front of us.

US.

We are the problem.

And until we get back to the basics of what it means to be an American citizen who is a positive contributor to society, we could fight about it all day.

Who are American citizens? Let's look at the Parkland students. It has taken countless mass shootings in America for something to be done and I think they will finally be the change- a change drawn because of a group of high schoolers. These kids are barely old enough to buy lottery tickets, much less purchase alcohol and are peacefully trying to create change — what a concept!

They are not letting a silly president or the money hungry NRA bring them down. They could lie down and mourn, be sad and angry due to what happened on Valentine's day, but instead, they chose to do something about it. Just watch, if any turning point comes from all of this it will be because of them. Hats off to you, Parkland.

Fix the problems from the start and there will be fewer problems in the end.

It doesn't take being a democrat or a republican to be a good person and if we were all good people I would not be writing this right now.

Cover Image Credit: Pexels

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10 Abnormally Normal Things About College

Some stuff just doesn't fly in the real world.
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College is a weird, weird place. For whatever reason, the young adults who are supposed to be cultivating their minds with all of the worldly knowledge available to them, seem to get away with quite a bit using the justification "it's college." Even the best students live abnormally while on the alien planet that is a university. So, while to us college students it may just seem like another day, here are ten things that are only normal in college.

1. Straight up theft.

In the future, if I walk into my forty-something-year-old neighbor's home and see a collection of stolen signs, stuff from the local restaurant, and property from the construction site down the road, I would definitely be concerned about the character of my neighbor. However, in college, people proudly display campus signs, traffic cones, or dining hall napkin dispensers that they have impressively commandeered - it's a cheap decoration and a great conversation starter.

2. All-nighters.

Maybe with the exception of parents of little babies, very few people willingly stay up for close to 24 hours on end. In the real world, if a friend came to you and said that they literally did not sleep the previous night, it's completely logical to be worried. On the other hand, when a friend in college says that he was up all night you laugh a little, give him an understanding pat on the back, and walk with him to the coffee line.

3. Atrocious eating habits.

Sometimes you don't have time to eat. Sometimes you order pizza at 2 in the morning. Sometimes you eat three dinners. Sometimes you diet. All I can say, is thank goodness that our metabolisms are decently high at this age.

4. Breaking and entering.

In high school, you hopefully knew everyone who entered your home. After college, hopefully, that's still the case. However, when you live in the middle of thousands of bored college students, people knock at your door, walk into parties, cut through your yard, and stop by without invitation or hesitation. It keeps life fun, but still not normal.

5. Calling mom when stuff goes down.

I really doubt a time will ever come that I don't need to call my mom for guidance on how to do something. But, hopefully the frequency of those calls with go down a little bit post-graduation. Maybe after four years of doing it on my own, I'll know how to fill out government forms, cook real dinners, and get stains out. But for now, I'm going to keep calling while I still can without seeming totally pathetic.

6. Being intoxicated at weird times.

Drunk at noon on a Friday is the quintessence of an alcoholic at any time - unless it's college. Not that this is necessarily a good thing, and it certainly doesn't apply to everyone, but there aren't many other places where people would instantly assume someone is intoxicated if they're acting even a little weird. I've even seen people drink in the library....

7. The messed up dating scene.



There are people who meet the love of their life at college and live happily ever after. They are people who meet the supposed love of their life at college and never talk to them again after Sunday. There are people who use Tinder. Hormones are high, freedom is bountiful, and football players are cute - what else needs to be said?

8. A warped sense of time.

The career I'm pursuing will require me to be at work by 7 am, five days a week. I am fully aware of this. Now, will I enroll in an 8 am next semester? Absolutely not - I'm not a demon. In college, nights often start at 10 p.m., dinners are eaten at 4, and mornings can begin anywhere from 8 to 2. We don't get that whole 9-5 idea.

9. Costumes... for no apparent reason.

High schoolers have a dress code. Adults have dignity. College students have fun. Here, people will wear a corn costume to get on ESPN, a fanny pack to get into a fraternity, or a tutu to match a theme party. Is it actually a weird thing, though? No one even blinks an eye.

10. Insanely close friends.

Name another point in your life when you live with your friends, study with your friends, drive with your friends, eat with your friends, go out with your friends, and even grocery shop with your friends. I'll wait. At college, it's easy for friends to seem like family because you're with them constantly. Love it or hate it, it's weird about college.

So, enjoy this weirdness while you can - it won't last forever!


ALSO SEE:

Uncensored Roommate Confessions!

Cover Image Credit: Matthew Kupfer

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18 Ways To Live Stress-Free Days

Being stress-free doesn't mean you're carefree, it means you're getting it together.

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It's no joke that life can sometimes get the best of us when we are not on top of things. Personally, if I don't take the time to gather my thoughts and get a little organized, my life becomes chaotic.

Have you ever noticed your room or workspace getting cluttered and once you took a step back you realized your head was also a cluttered mess?

This happens to the best of us but instead of being down on yourself and letting it stress you out, take a deep breath and try to work a few of these ideas into your daily routine.

1. Spend quality time with the people you love 

2. Set a weekly goal 

3. Make a list of the things you need to get done (and actually do them one by one)

4. Don't make plans or commitments you know you can't do 

5. Break things down and take it one day at a time, don't overwork yourself 

6. Set weekly or monthly budgets and stick to it 

7. Pay attention to the people who surround you and if you notice ones who put you down- let them go 

8. Find one thing that relaxes you and do it every day before you go to bed 

9. Prioritize your plans 

10. Stop procrastinating 

11. Take a mental health day and let yourself recuperate 

12. Be optimistic about things even if your day started on the wrong foot 

13. Make a separate chores list for things you need to get done around the house 

14. Find something you can do/ have all to yourself and embrace it 

15. Talk yourself through situations that give you anxiety 

16. Communicate with others and don't be afraid to ask for help 

17. Get a coffee and get to work on the things you keep putting off 

18. Be your biggest fan and always reassure yourself 

It's time to stop letting stress bring you down. When the world around us gets us in a funk the best thing to do is stop, breathe and focus on yourself. Getting your things together before freaking out and letting the stress eat you alive is crucial.

Being busy and stressed out 24/7 doesn't get you anywhere. See how much happier you become when you find your triggers and remove stress factors out of your life.

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