For quite some time now the gun laws have been in question because of the unnecessary killings related to them. The fact is that kids can access them easily, simply because adults can. The idea that any man has the right to purchase a firearm with the proper credentials is sadly the reality. But when will people realize that guns aren't necessary to begin with. 

Back in the day a man was judged by how he handled himself in a fight. Those who opted for tools were weak, and those who could defend and win with their hands were the strongest and most manly. Today, our men hide behind weapons, almost as if it is imperative to keep their lives. This is me just speaking on behalf of my city, but there are similar incidents happening all over the world.  

Here is what I found...  

 Mass shootings: There were 372 mass shootings in the US in 2015, killing 475 people and wounding 1,870, according to the Mass Shooting Tracker, which catalogues such incidents. A mass shooting is defined as a single shooting incident which kills or injures four or more people, including the assailant.

Source: Mass Shooting Tracker

School shootings: There were 64 school shootings in 2015, according to a dedicated campaign group set up in the wake of the Sandy Hook elementary school massacre in Connecticut in 2012. Those figures include occasions when a gun was fired but no-one was hurt.

Source: Everytown for Gun SafetyResearch

All shootings: Some 13,286 people were killed in the US by firearms in 2015, according to the Gun Violence Archive, and 26,819 people were injured [those figures exclude suicide]. Those figures are likely to rise by several hundred, once incidents in the final week of the year are counted.

Source: Gun Violence Archive

How the US compares: The number of gun murders per capita in the US in 2012 - the most recent year for comparable statistics - was nearly 30 times that in the UK, at 2.9 per 100,000 compared with just 0.1.

Of all the murders in the US in 2012, 60% were by firearm compared with 31% in Canada, 18.2% in Australia, and just 10% in the UK.  

Homicides in Boston (by location) - 2015

Homicides in Boston (by location) - 2015

Given the statistics for 2015, gun violence was the leading cause of death in all age groups for the year. I ingested this information but then got insanely upset for the numbers Boston accounted for personally. Though in 2015 we had 14 homicides less than the previous year, it is still unacceptable and should not be the norm. Last year there were 38 total homicides in the city. Some of us can remember faces, friendships, and memories, but to me it is more than that. Boston is so small as it is, imagine how significant losing almost 40 people is for us?... 

I am not writing this hoping it will get to the right hands, or to have gun laws reconsidered. I am writing to somehow get everyone on the same page. Every life should be valued, whether it is one of a child, a man, a woman, an animal etc. All life is precious, and all life should be accounted for. 

Whether the gun laws change or not, we need to be better as a people. We are in a generation of great change, innovation, and new beginnings. Roles are different, and people are now able to modify their lives in ways they were never able to. This alone expands our world diversely, giving us more freedom. This freedom involves having an open mind.  

USA is known as the land of the free. We take this quite literally a lot of the time on the crime side of things. Americans take matters into their own hands for what is right and wrong. And why wouldn't they be able to? Any US citizen of age and licensed can buy a firearm. This reality gives these purchasers a sense of entitlement. They then feel that they can do whatever justice (or injustice) they want because they have been given all of this power. I don't support the gun policy simply because of what has happened due to the leniency in acquiring a firearm. I do think possessing a firearm is a privilege and anyone who is able to have one should be trained, psychologically evaluated, and accountable. 

Nowadays we give people respect because of what they have, but rarely give people respect because of who they are. Weapons are weak, and anyone, man or woman, who feels that they need one is weak. Protection is definitely a risk, but if we work on ourselves, and our morals, we wouldn't need protection. I'm crying out for Boston because I know we're better than this. Let's make a change for our future. I know my words don't have the power to change an entire city, but I hope that in reading this article you have a new respect for yourself and the people around you. 

As a city we are all apart of a family that no one really understands but us. Let's change from the inside out, and be better for the next generation to come. Stop resorting to violence and talk things through. Be more patient with people and become a better version of yourself. That is how you make change.  



The Beautiful Bostonian

Jazzy RoulhacComment