A heated debate in the US

On February 14th, 2018, 19-year-old Nikolas Cruz walked into Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, and killed 17 people with an AR-15. This tragic event, considered to be one of the deadliest school shootings, has caused outrage throughout the country, just 6 years after a 20-year-old man killed 26 people in the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut, with an AR-15.

The similarities between both cases has led people to question whether or not it is safe for people that young to be able to buy a semi-automatic weapon that easily. The 2nd amendment of the American constitution allows for people to “keep and bear arms”, and many consider this as one of their primary rights that should not be attacked, just like their freedom of speech. However, it should be noted that weapons at the time, in the 1770s were not enough for someone to kill 17 people in a school and wound 17 more. For one month already, a heated debate about assault rifles and the right to buy arms has been taking place in America: one side argues that weapons are necessary to the American people, to defend themselves as they cannot trust anyone else to do so.

The other side calls for a ban of weapons like the one used in Parkland, in Sandy Hook, as well as Columbine and too many other shootings, background checks for people willing to buy firearms to check for any mental health issues, past problems with the law, to ensure that tragedies like these never occur anymore. Some survivors of MSD, like Emma Gonzalez, have been calling out lawmakers and politicians to tell them that this all needs to stop, and that they do not want to live in a country where you do not know if you will even make it to graduation. To this day, no measures have been taken to ensure this: many are blaming the NRA, which provides heavy checks for politicians to make sure they can still sell their weapons and not lose any money.

On March 14th, walkouts were organized all over the country, and students from everywhere called on every person able to vote to do the right thing and, on November 8th, to vote for someone who has not been paid by the NRA. High school students feel like their lives are less important than a check for a reelection campaign, and I personally fail to understand that something like this is happening in a country like America.

Now, President Trump wants to arm teachers so that they can protect their students; yet, a teacher in California accidentally wounded three students with his firearms just a few days ago. Adding more arms to the equation will not lower the body count, it can only increase it. The blood of those students in Parkland, and the ones to come if you do not do anything, is on your hands, Mr. President.

by Louise V.