Talking About Gun Violence in California Now Means You're Already Late to the Game
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Talking About Gun Violence in California Now Means You're Already Late to the Game

A perspective on the recent headlines of mass shootings, and the "new" gun violence that has been happening in California

pen, newspaper, glasses
Image by Steve Buissinne from Pixabay

Sidenote: While the plot in this story is false, its background is true

"Happy New Year!" my friends and I shouted. It was 2019, and this year was going to be a good year! As we celebrated with grape juice, we heard gunshots ringing outside.

"I guess they're celebrating the new year" Anna said. This always happens on New Years, you get used to it; it's honestly funny after awhile.

At about 2am, we see on the TV,

"First murder of the year, the shooting death of…"

My friends and I saw this, but continued with our party; we were used to this.

I mean, it was sad to hear about people getting shot, or killed, but it's always what we saw on the local news.

About 2 weeks later, I was walking to class when I received a notification from this national newspaper app, writing "Mass Shootings Happening Everywhere in California". I clicked on the article out of curiosity.

It listed about 2-3 other shootings happening in California, then the one that happened by a cousin's house in my hometown.

"3 shot dead in backyard " the writer wrote, "ideas such as foul play and gangs are being looked into".

However, the article at the end connected this with the other incidents of mass shootings in California; this I had a problem with.

In fact, I even told myself, "These murder incidents like the one in the backyard have been happening for years, not that high, but it's not jaw-dropping".

"Good afternoon everyone, my name is Rose Giles from the ___ news, and we are here today to talk with students about the string of mass shootings that have been happening in California recently" the reporter said in front of a California high school.

"Miss, what do you think of the mass shootings that have been happening recently? For example, like the one that just happened last week near here?" the reporter asked.

"It's sad and it's scary. It also really shows the need for gun control in this country" she said; the reporter smiled and nodded her head in approval as she heard this.

After interviewing this female student, she saw a young male student, and approached him.

"Hi sir, we're from ____ news, and we wanted to get your opinion on the mass shootings that have been happening recently in California" she said. "Likes the ones in San Bernardino and Santa Clarita" I asked.

"Yeah, but also the one that happened recently here. The one where 3 people were shot dead in their backyard. Doesn't that show the need for gun control?" she then asked.

" I mean yes, but shootings like the last one, the one nearby here; I don't want to say that that is normal at all, but there are many problems with gangs and gun-related crime here already. We've been dealing with it for awhile, the other shootings you just mentioned were brand new" I responded.

"What?" she asked.

"What I mean to say is, if you're trying to push for gun control, while pointing out mass and school shootings, such as those of San Bernardino and Santa Clarita, then I get that. However, by pointing out the gun violence that's already been happening here for awhile, and blaming it on gun control, honestly points out your long ignorance on this issue" I continued.

"What are you saying?" the reporter asked.

"What I'm saying is, only now, after many years, since I've been born, so about 18 years, this issue about guns in my town has been going on. Gangs shooting each other over clothing, or simply walking into the wrong neighborhood at night. And now your national news site finally comes here, telling us about the need for gun control, like it's a new thing? No, we've needed it for awhile, and your national news site just got wind of that.

The reporter remained silent.

"Also, I saw your piece on police brutality too, you didn't talk about the police brutality here either. Did you know that local police here have shot and killed teens… children? Did you know that there have been cases where the police here have been too trigger-happy, and take their guns out in less than a blink of an eye, instead of thinking "Hey, before I shoot this person, I should talk to them first". No, you didn't. You're using this shooting that was not seen as abnormal, and making it so to prove your own point about gun control. You're using this story for you own gain, and that is horrible" I said, then walked away.

The reporter and her cameraman were stunned for a couple of minutes, but soon the silence was broken with the words "you deleted that segment right? Let's go find another kid to interview"

For Further Reading

Del Real "New Video Shows That Fresno Officer Shot Teen as He Fled"

Fultin, Fuller, Zaveri "Fresno Backyard Shooting Leaves 4 Dead and 6 Injured, Police Say"

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