Mia for Senate

The “new” normal

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One year ago today, nine beautiful souls were gunned down in cold blood as they studied God’s Word together at Mother Emanuel in Charleston.

With heavy hearts, we came together in the spirit of Christian love, compassion and forgiveness, tinged with unspeakable heartbreak, devastation and grief.

Countless prayer vigils, marches, memorial tributes and moments of silence were held in remembrance of those who were slain and by His grace, we were finally able to bring the Confederate Flag down.

But what have we done since?

We’ve missed opportunities to engage in real talk about race and its impact, so that we can begin to work towards true reconciliation and healing.

We’ve refused to take action or even debate…let alone pass, common sense gun reforms.

We’ve blamed mental health, terrorists–inspired or radicalized, and each other for this “new” normal…citing the fact that guns and assault rifles are already on our streets.

We’ve refused to look in the mirror or accept responsibility and accountability for their actions and our inaction.

With each new massacre, the rhetoric becomes more ridiculous. So do the arrogance and indifference. Pro-gun legislators and lobbyists insist that guns are not the problem. They want us to believe that if we close the loopholes or create common-sense restrictions, the “bad guys” will have more ammunition than the “good guys.”

How then, will everyday people defend themselves against these radical, racist, deranged, hate-filled, home-grown terrorists who gun down innocent, unsuspecting children, teenagers, women and men at our schools, college campuses, movie theaters, workplaces, churches, malls and clubs?

They won’t. They haven’t. They can’t.

Meanwhile, more Americans are murdered on their home soil by those who have unrestricted access to these weapons of mass destruction, than ever before in our nation’s history.

And we continue to argue about the real problem. Some say it’s guns. Others say it’s terrorism.

I say it’s us. How can it not be?

Our rhetoric reeks of hatred, indifference and intolerance. But while we’re pointing fingers, they’re pulling triggers.

And people are dying.

The Dylann Roofs can still buy guns before a background check clears because gun dealers have the legal discretion to sell them.

There still isn’t enough collaboration and cooperation at every level of government to ensure that pertinent databases and data-entry personnel are privy to critical updates and accurate information.

Those on “terror watch” and “no fly” lists can still purchase firearms and assault rifles.

Everyday people, including home-grown self-radicalized, ISIS-inspired, wannabe terrorists can still buy assault rifles and gun down women, men and children whenever, wherever and however they want.

It’s their 2nd Amendment right.

So while they’ve got the National Rifle Association (NRA) and Republican leaders at every level of government fiercely protecting their rights, who’s protecting ours?

We’ve had enough thoughts and prayers, candlelight vigils, make-shift memorials, moments of silence, and heartfelt condolences.  It’s time for action.

Demand that your elected officials work together to pass common sense gun reforms that will help put an end to this senselessness. If we really live in a democracy, then “we the people” have the power.

Use it. Now. And for God’s sake, use it in November…like the future of our country and the lives of our loved ones depend on it.

If not, we’ll have this conversation again soon. Different day. Different time. Different city. Different venue. Different targets. But the weapons of choice will be the same.

We’ll go through the same motions and emotions in response to these heinous, foreseeable and often, preventable acts.  We’ll play the blame game. A little more time will pass. We’ll continue to settle for this “new” normal.

And do absolutely nothing…