It seems ridiculous to even say that, as I am sure that in the time it took for me to type that hashtag some insane number of people just going about their daily lives have been shot by some lunatic with a legally acquired assault style weapon that he/she is allowed to have in hand at all times while cruising the aisles at the local Target looking for someone to show how GUNS DON’T KILL.

And I am ANGRY. And seemingly powerless and therefore even more ANGRY.

And scared. So freaking scared.

I watch the kids get on the bus in the morning and wonder what’s in the violin case or the backpack of that random kid who looks a little nervous this morning.

I sit in the movies and wait for the part where the entire place bursts out in gunfire.

I sit in restaurants and hope no one comes busting in to take us out.

I live in one of the most civilized countries in the world and I am ALWAYS SCARED TO DEATH. That can’t be right.

And don’t tell me that the only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun (I’m sure someone is going to tell me that and I am cringing waiting for it).

How do I tell the difference? How do the gun sellers tell the difference? If we don’t check and screen and license and insure and train and do WHATEVER THE HELL WE NEED TO DO to make sure (as sure as we can anyway) that the people who have guns legally aren’t intending to blow away movie watchers, and party goers, and restaurant visitors, and school children – HOW DO WE KNOW?

“Guns don’t kill, people do. People are just bad and they’ll find some way to hurt each other anyway.”

Maybe – but I am pretty sure it’s harder to take out 15 people and injure a bunch more with a hunting knife.  Or hell, even a handgun that only holds 10 bullets. WTF kind of “hunter” needs an assault weapon to go get dinner?

“Bad people won’t follow the laws anyway.”

Seriously? Why do we have laws at all then? Have we totally given up? I don’t want to live in a society where are bets are off due to the existence of bad people.

“Don’t make it political.”

Why on earth IS it political? How is it possible that it is politically DAMAGING to stand up and say THIS SHIT IS WRONG. This is NOT the American dream. This sucks. We need to FIX THIS. How is there ANY OTHER CONCEIVABLE STANCE???

Yes, I am a raging, terrifying liberal. But I can’t get my head around how anyone can look at these events happening on a DAILY BASIS and say, “Meh, but I kind of like having a gun.”

Close the loopholes. Common sense background checks.

Mental illness with delusions and violent tendencies = no gun.

Criminal history = no gun.

On the terror watch list = no FREAKING GUN.

Treat guns like we do cars (although seriously – shouldn’t something that is INTENDED TO HURT AND KILL be MORE regulated than transportation?) Permits, training, licensing, periodic re-examination, medical screenings, insurance. Invest in safety improvements. Allow people who don’t want their guns anymore a safe way to dispose of them.

Yes, some people will still suck and will hurt other people. But let’s reign this travesty in and put some brainpower behind solving the problem and stop denying that it is a problem.

I’m tired of being scared. I’m tired of being angry. And my right to safety and my “pursuit of happiness” comes BEFORE your right (as part of a well regulated militia, technically) to play with deadly toys.

People Magazine (please feel free to give me a hard time about using them as a source…) published a list of all 535 voting members of the House and Senate so that people like me, who are tired of this sh*t, can write letters (and most likely be ignored).  So, I’m going to do that.

Because someone has to do something.  And it might as well be me.

About Kristen

Me: Kristen, more than 40-something (don't make me face the number), suburban mom of 2, working girl, therapeutic writer, proprietor of an emptying nest Addictions: Iced Coffee, FOMO resulting in twitchy compulsion to check FB/Instagram/Pinterest in an unending loop, texting, hugging my one child while Snapchatting the other and yelling at my dog

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