Why Are We Letting These Mass Shootings Happen?

Why Are We Letting These Mass Shootings Happen?

These tragedies will continue to happen and soon, we'll be powerless to stop them.
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If this article doesn't scare the shit out of you, we're doomed.

That's right ladies and gentlemen; unless we get off our pedestals and stop trying to spite one another in the name of politics, we don't stand a snowball's chance in hell. Last week, I woke up to Twitter blowing up with horrific news. The worst mass shooting in U.S history happened in Las Vegas during Jason Aldean's set for the Route 91 Harvest Festival. The 64-year-old shooter named Stephen Paddock opened fire from his hotel room and according to the latest report from the New York Times posted on 10/2/2017 at 2:23 P.M., at least 58 people are dead and hundreds are wounded. And the sad thing is, I wasn't even surprised.

Think about it, mass shootings have been in most of our lives since we were born. Two days before my first birthday, Dylan Klebold and Eric Harris walked into Columbine High School and murdered 13 people and injured 21, and it shook America, but everyone was convinced "this won't happen again". Then in 2007, Seung- Hui Cho initiated a massacre at Virginia Tech that took the lives of 33 people and wounded 17, and once again you heard "this can't happen again" and "I'm keeping them in my prayers". And while that's a good sentiment to have, prayers don't stop bullets from flying.

Only two years after that, Nidal Hassan carried out a massacre at Fort Hood, killing 13 people and wounding 33 people. Before any of you start talking about "of course it was a Muslim, all Muslims are terrorists!!!", realize that the majority of mass shootings in the last 10 years in America have not been committed by Muslims from the middle east, but from white Christian men. We don't call all white people terrorists, do we? Exactly. Adam Lanza was not Muslim, he was a white man who murdered his mother in her home before walking into a first-grade classroom at Sandy Hook Elementary School and murdered 26 people, 20 of them were 6-7 years old. Little children, waiting for Christmas and wondering what Santa was going to get them that year, gone.

The Dark Knight premiere shooting in Colorado, San Bernadino, Pulse Night Club in Orlando, Charleston, and now this. This is our reality now ladies and gentlemen, a world where we can't go out anywhere without that voice in the back of our heads telling us to watch out. Where in the ISU dining center, we have a guide on what do in the case of an active shooter, or a bomb threat, or any other catastrophe you can think of. We as a society need to realize that terrorism is not exclusive to one race or one religion and unless we come together, these tragedies will continue to happen and we'll be powerless to stop them.

Cover Image Credit: Antonio Grosz

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The Trump Presidency Is Over

Say hello to President Mike Pence.

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Remember this date: August 21, 2018.

This was the day that two of President Donald Trump's most-important associates were convicted on eight counts each, and one directly implicated the president himself.

Paul Manafort was Trump's campaign chairman for a few months in 2016, but the charges brought against him don't necessarily implicate Trump. However, they are incredibly important considering was is one of the most influential people in the Trump campaign and picked Mike Pence to be the vice presidential candidate.

Manafort was convicted on five counts of tax fraud, two counts of bank fraud, and one count of failure to file a report of a foreign bank account. And it could have been even worse. The jury was only unanimous on eight counts while 10 counts were declared a mistrial.

Michael Cohen, Trump's personal lawyer, told a judge that Trump explicitly instructed him to break campaign-finance laws by paying two women not to publicly disclose the affairs they had with Trump. Those two women are believed to be Karen McDougal, a Playboy model, and Stormy Daniels, a pornstar. Trump had an affair with both while married to his current wife, Melania.

And then to no surprise, Fox News pundits spun this in the only way they know how. Sara Carter on Hannity said that the FBI and the Department of Justice are colluding as if it's some sort of deep-state conspiracy. Does someone want to tell her that the FBI is literally a part of the DOJ?

The Republican Party has for too long let Trump get away with criminal behavior, and it's long past time to, at the very least, remove Mr. Trump from office.

And then Trump should face the consequences for the crimes he has committed. Yes, Democrats have a role, too. But Republicans have control of both chambers of Congress, so they head every committee. They have the power to subpoena Trump's tax returns, which they have not. They have the power to subpoena key witnesses in their Russia investigations, which they have not.

For the better part of a year I have been asking myself what is the breaking point with Republicans and Trump. It does not seem like there is one, so for the time being we're stuck with a president who paid off two women he had an affair with in an attempt to influence a United States election.

Imagine for a second that any past president had done even a fraction of what Trump has.

Barack Obama got eviscerated for wearing a tan suit. If he had affairs with multiple women, then Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell would be preparing to burn him at the stake. If they won't, then Trump's enthusiastic would be more than happy to do so.

For too long we've been saying that Trump is heading down a road similar to Nixon, but it's evident now that we're way past that point. Donald Trump now has incriminating evidence against him to prove he's a criminal, and Special Counsel Robert Mueller is just getting started.

Will Trump soften the blow and resign in disgrace before impeachment like Nixon did? Knowing his fragile ego, there's honestly no telling what he'll do. But it's high time Trump leaves an office he never should have entered in the first place.

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Beto O'Rourke Is The Future For The Democratic Party

Democrats need a new voice, and now they have him.

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As a self-professed progressive, the 2016 presidential election was one of the darkest days of my life. Every day I wish that the election had turned out differently. But if there's a silver lining, the Democratic Party has almost completely reinvented itself and has a chance to move forward.

Barack Obama was an amazing leader for the party for a decade. Hillary Clinton was arguably the most-flawed candidate the modern-day Democratic Party has ever nominated, and she lost to the most-flawed Republican ever nominated. So now the Democrats need someone to look up to and lead the way past the regressive presidency of Donald Trump. That man is Beto O'Rourke.

O'Rourke is a representative of Texas's 16th congressional district, which covers the city of El Paso. But right now people in the political world know him as the guy who is running against arguably the most-hated man in the Senate, Ted Cruz. Former House Speaker and fellow Republican John Boehner once said that Cruz is "Lucifer in the flesh."

Cruz prides himself in being hated by Washington politicians, but hatred from his current colleagues could come back to bite him. "If you killed Ted Cruz on the floor of the Senate, and the trial was in the Senate, nobody would convict you," said Lindsey Graham, Republican senator from South Carolina.

If O'Rourke wins in November, he'll take down Cruz, who is one of the most powerful and influential Republicans in Washington despite being hated. And it could launch Beto to even higher office someday.

Even if he loses to Cruz, Beto has an extremely bright future ahead of him because he's just what the Democratic Party needs right now. He's young, passionate, communicates extremely well and is a perfect representation of what the face of the party should be.

This year, O'Rourke has been setting an example of how Democrats should run their campaigns. Beto has traveled to every single one of Texas's 254 counties. Ever since the Supreme Court's decision on Citizens United v. FEC (2010), Democrats have pushed for campaign finance reform, and O'Rourke is leading by example with his campaign. Beto has taken $0 from Political Action Committees (PACs). All of his money comes from individual donors. Cruz has taken PAC money, but O'Rourke still holds a significant advantage in fundraising.

O'Rourke in his campaign emphasizes that Texas has among the highest immigration populations in the United States, but the senators from Texas, Cruz and John Cornyn, do not accurately represent the diversity of the state. O'Rourke has separated himself from Cruz by speaking out against the proposed border wall and the separation of immigrant children at the border.

I'm not from Texas, but I'm just as excited for this senate race as I was when Doug Jones won in my home state almost a year ago. Beto O'Rourke has an opportunity to make positive change in our country and actually bring people together. If he doesn't win in November, Beto should make plans for 2020 because he can become the face of the Democratic Party.

If you'd like to learn more about, join, or donate to the campaign, here is a link.

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