The Paw Print
At 12:30pm on Tuesday, January 22, yet another school was put into emergency evacuation when an unidentified gunman opened fire on students at Lone Star College in Houston, Texas.
At the time of the report, three students were confirmed injured. A person of suspect has been taken into custody, and as of 1:30pm Tuesday, there was still a search for a second gunman taking place.
In the past 15 years, there have been 323 lives lost to 31 different school shootings in America. At the beginning of the New Year, 2012 was declared one of the most violent years America has witnessed. Along with school shootings, there were several attacks on public places such as movie theatres and malls. Many shooters of these crimes are mentally ill and have either illegally obtained or secretly owned their gun of choice.
The sudden spark in crime has many wondering if gun laws should be enforced, or at least rechecked. Sensitive attacks, such as the Sandy Hook Elementary shooting, which took the lives of 20 children and six staff members, is a strong argument against gun ownership. Many gun-control advocates say that they do not want to have to experience another tragic shooting that could have been prevented.
Nicole Hockley is strongly against gun violence, and supports gun control to the fullest. Her son, 6-year-old Dylan Hockley, was one of the 20 students killed in Connecticut.
“I do not want to be someone sharing my experience and consoling another parent next time. I do not want there to be a next time,” she said in one interview about the newly formed group, the Sandy Hook Promise. The Connecticut-based group is centered on the desire for tighter gun control. It is composed of several devoted speakers who lost their children, friends, and family to the Sandy Hook shooting.
However, many of those wishing to stop such violence find themselves siding with pro-gun advocates. Daniel Marsh, a supporter of the second amendment, has made his views very clear when it comes to the right to bear arms.
“If we take guns away from citizens, if we make it illegal for normal people to own weapons like that, then the only people left with guns will be the ones we need to stop. Think about it- drugs are banned, but still people sell and use them. People that don’t care about the law; people that don’t care about illegal paraphernalia. So then who would be left with guns? The people who don’t care about the law. And if those are the only people with guns, we’re in serious trouble.”
Many parents, even, are supporting the right to bear arms. Teachers are being urged by friends and family to get gun training in preparation for situations like Sandy Hook or Columbine.
“If teachers had been armed, the tragedy at [Sandy Hook] could have been lessened, if not prevented. We do know that armed citizens defend themselves all the time, in all kinds of different contexts,” said Steve Dulan, a board member for the Michigan Coalition of Responsible Gun Owners. He is supporting a bill that would allow concealed weapons in schools. Though it is a controversial topic, Dulan believes that if teachers and other school faculty were armed, school shootings would be less likely, and in the case of one occurring, the situation would be better handled.
Gun control is still being heavily debated at the Capitol, but whether or not bills like Dulan’s are passed or not, it is certain gun laws will be changing, one way or another.