I am humbled by the immediate and quick action from faculty and staff to create safe and honest dialogues on these sensitive, complicated, and deeply rooted issues that require us to look honestly at our core believes and long held stereotypes.
Thirty years ago today the inviolate right to self-defense and the battle over firearm civil liberties were joined in one of the unlikeliest of battle zones -- New York City.
What do you think is more important -- to protect the right of Americans to own guns or to control gun ownership?
The increased demand for more gun rights predates the election of President Barack Obama. Sure gun control support increased as the overall crime rate fell in the 1990s, but also fell as the crime rate continued to decline in the following decade.
In a majority of states, it is completely legal to open carry a loaded gun in public without any training, permitting, or a background check.
We cannot ignore this simple truth: Too many shootings occur because improper weight is given to the risks that come with gun ownership, particularly in homes with children and teens. A gun in the home increases the risk of an unintentional shooting, suicide and homicide.
Two years ago this Sunday, 20 children and six educators were brutally gunned down in Newtown, Connecticut, the town where I grew up. Our nation rightfully has not been able to forget that day. Nor have we stopped fighting for effective policies that would dramatically reduce gun death and injury.
In the past two years, there have been 95 additional school shootings. Another 60,000 Americans have died by gun violence. Is the cross lobby no match for the gun lobby?
As we mark the anniversary of that heart-breaking event of Dec. 14, 2012, her words echo in my mind and prompt me to re-post the meditation I wrote at the time, "Light in the Darkness."
This year, I ask you all to honor my mother's life with action. I ask you all to take one small step to honor her, and all of the others whose lives were taken far too soon by gun violence.
I'm not saying that the Gun Control Act of 1968 is a perfect law. Far from it. But at the very least it does codify the idea that certain types of people simply should not be allowed to get access to guns.
When voters pass minimum wage hikes in four of the reddest states--Alaska, South Dakota, Nebraska, Arkansas--but still reject Democrats nationally and, perhaps more troublesome, even locally, that should tell you something. It also provides more clarity in terms of the lessons of this election.
Since Sandy Hook, there have been at least 92 school shootings in America, and too many individuals killed with guns to count.
What a different world it could have been if we were able to heed the Pope's call to action before tragedies like Newtown and stop isolating and discriminating against those who have all types of brain differences.
Most politicians have made their stances on gun control laws widely known. Republican Illinois Gov.-elect Bruce Rauner has said he supports the rights of Illinoisans to own guns while some Democrats have expressed support for stricter gun control laws as a way to stymie violence in the state.
There is nothing inevitable about gun violence. And while the scandalously high rates of murder in both Brazil and South Africa are treated by many as "normal," there are encouraging signs of change. Targeted crime prevention measures and public health interventions pursued in both countries are cause for cautious optimism.