Uvalde school shooting demands action

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When news started to trickle out about the horrific shooting in Uvalde, I was on my way to preside on the Senate floor. On the dais, I snuck quick glances at my phone and a pit began to form in my stomach. It was happening again. Another Sandy Hook. And all the questions began to arise. How did this happen again? Why can’t we do something to stop this slaughter?I immediately went to the Senate floor and asked my colleagues a simple question: what is the point of serving in the Senate if not to try to solve a problem as serious as this one? I begged my fellow Senators to sit down at the table with me to work out a compromise that could save lives.But before I could take my seat, the campaign had begun to try to make conservative gun owners believe my offer wasn’t sincere – that I really had a secret agenda to take people’s guns away. That isn’t true. That’s never been true. I believe that the Second Amendment protects a citizen’s right to buy and own firearms. But I also believe that like every constitutional right, there are limits. I don’t believe the Constitution protects the right of criminals or people with serious mental illness to own weapons. And while all of us might draw the line in a different place, I think we all agree that the Constitution allows Congress to decide which weapons are so dangerous as to be kept exclusively in the hands of the military.And as I said on the Senate floor last week, I also acknowledge that in order to find common ground, I will need to agree to a smaller set of reforms than I would prefer. I’m willing to pass incremental change, like tightening up our background checks system and helping states pass laws to allow law enforcement to temporarily take guns away from individuals who pose a threat to themselves or others. I’m also very supportive of providing more mental health resources to help young men in crisis and more funding to pay for security upgrades at our schools.TEXAS SCHOOL SHOOTING: CRUCIAL WEEK FOR POSSIBLE GUN CONTROL BILL AFTER DECADES WITHOUT MAJOR FEDERAL ACTIONFor me, the only thing we cannot do is nothing. I’m a parent of two school-aged kids. I have a fourth grader who is just like so many of those students who lost their lives in Uvalde. It’s so hard being a kid these days, between social media and the pandemic. We should not accept that our children also have to deal with the anxiety of feeling unsafe every time they set foot in their school. Parents and children are scared, and Congress needs to do something about it.The changes I’m suggesting aren’t radical. Almost 90 percent of people – including Republicans and gun owners – support requiring background checks on all gun sales. You’d be hard-pressed to find something more Americans can agree on – not even apple pie is that popular. Red flag laws and investments in mental health are just as popular.I don’t know if any of these reforms would have stopped the massacre at Robb Elementary or at Tops Friendly Market in Buffalo. But here’s what I do know: gun violence kills more than 100 people every single day. There’s no other country in the high income world with this level of gun violence.And here’s something else I know. No matter what the defenders of the status quo say about people like me, our agenda isn’t radical. My desire is simple – to find a way for Republicans and Democrats to come together around a small but meaningful set of changes to our nation’s gun laws, along with major investments in mental health, that will make it less likely that another Sandy Hook or Uvalde ever happens again.CLICK HERE TO GET THE OPINION NEWSLETTERNo parent should have to go through what those Texas parents are dealing with right now. No mother or father should have to bury their little child.CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APPShooting after shooting after shooting has proved our current system is broken. There’s no perfect antidote that will save every life, but even a small step forward will save thousands.My Republican colleagues and I don’t agree on much, but this time, I’m hopeful we can agree on this: inaction cannot be our answer. 

Mojtaba Sadira

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