A lot of people have — perhaps understandably — put it out of their minds, but yesterday was the anniversary of one of the most horrific events in American history. It was eight years ago yesterday that a deeply troubled 20 year-old walked into a Connecticut elementary school with a semi-automatic assault rifle and systematically executed 20 first graders and six women educators who were trying to save them.
If ever there was an event that demonstrated the utter insanity of laws that allow dangerous military-grade weapons to be made readily accessible to virtually anyone strong enough to pick one up, this was it.
The massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary proved once and for all that the so-called Second Amendment advocates who oppose even modest gun safety laws in our country – the kinds of laws that virtually every other advanced democracy takes for granted – are not defenders of freedom, but defenders of terror and death.
As President-elect Biden noted in an obviously heartfelt statement yesterday:
“Every year, more than 30,000 people die from gun violence across America—a statistic we would associate with war in a far-off place. Countless more are left with a lifetime of injuries and trauma.
Eight years later, there have been plenty of thoughts and prayers, but we know that is not enough. Together with you and millions of our fellow Americans of every background all across our nation, we will fight to end this scourge on our society and enact common sense reforms that are supported by a majority of Americans and that will save countless lives.”
In other words, no one is safer or freer because our nation allows millions of mass killing machines to proliferate into every corner of our nation – least of all those young first graders who would just be starting high school today.
We profane their memory every day we allow this outrageous situation to continue.