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Opinion: We need to face the facts about gun control and mass shootings

How much longer can we sit idly by and guard our gun rights while children face down shooters in schools?

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A red brick sign reads “Welcome, Robb Elementary School, Bienvenidos.” A state trooper walks behind the sign.

A state trooper walks past the Robb Elementary School sign in Uvalde, Texas, Tuesday, May 24, 2022, following a deadly shooting at the school which left 19 children and 2 adults dead.

William Luther, The San Antonio Express-News via Associated Press

On May 14, a young white supremacist walked into a supermarket in Buffalo, New York, armed with a high-powered rifle with which he proceeded to murder 10 people, including an armed security guard who tried to confront him. Six days later, a teenage boy was killed and eight others were injured, including children as young as 10 and 12, during a shooting at an after-prom party in San Bernardino, California. And today, in yet another incredibly tragic, pointless, preventable massacre, 19 students and two adults were murdered by a gunman in an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas.

We have reached the point where arguments in favor of loosely regulated gun access sound very hollow. Good people with guns don’t stop bad people with guns — just ask the grieving family of the dead security guard in Buffalo. Increasing access to mental health resources is a good idea, but as often as conservatives bring those resources up as a solution, they also don’t want the tax increases and government programs necessary to implement them.

I am a registered Republican. I believe in many of the Republican Party’s principles. But the U.S. is the only developed country in the world where these things happen so regularly, and that is not acceptable. It baffles me that for all of its talk about protecting children, the GOP sits back and does literally nothing to prevent these tragedies. How many innocent people— how many children — have to die in the name of libertarian gun policies?

J.M. Floyd

Provo, Utah