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Fatal shootings become the norm in the US

by HALEY MILLAN Editor-in-chief

It seems as though shootings have taken over the media. Within the last month alone, the media has been replaying stories about the recent movie shooting in Florida, the shooting at the Mall of Columbia, and several school shootings.

On Monday, January 13, Chad Oulson and his wife went to see a 1:20pm showing of “Lone Survivor” at a movie theater in Wesley Chapel, Florida. Oulson and the shooter allegedly began arguing over the use of a cellphone, which continued to escalate. No one predicted that the end of the argument would come from gun shots. The suspected shooter, Curtis Reeves, is a retired Tampa cop.

Another recent tragedy took place at the Mall of Columbia in Maryland on January 25. The mall was sent into a lock-down after it was confirmed that there was a shooter on the premise. The shooter, 19-year-old Darion Aguilar, walked into the popular skate store Zumies and shot and killed two employees. Aguilar then committed suicide by turning the gun on himself.

He was able to legally buy the 12-gauge shotgun at a United Gun Shop in Rockville, Maryland. The person who sold the gun to Aguilar said that he showed no red flags. There has been no clear motive for Aguilar’s actions.

“I think we need major changes in our country’s laws. There should not be so many shootings happening around us; they happen too often to be considered a rare event. It shouldn’t be on the news every time you put on your TV, and it seems like shootings are the only things on TV,” says senior Lisa Sowinski.

There have been seven school shootings within the first three weeks of 2014. On January 9 at the Liberty Technology Magnet High School in Jackson, Tennessee, one student was shot, but did not suffer any life-threatening injuries.

Some other school shootings include: one student shot on January 17 at Albany High School, two students shot on January 17 at Delaware Valley Charter Elementary, one student shot on January 20 at Widener University, one person shot and killed on January 21 at Purdue University, and another at Wakefield Elementary on the same day.

Senior Viki Daninska says, “I think its really scary that there are so many school shootings. School is supposed to be a safe environment where learning is the main concern, but now in today’s world, we have to be concerned about the safety of our lives.”

According to a crowd-sourced count on the site Reddit, there have been a total of 365 mass shootings in 2013 alone. USA Today reported that over seven years there have been 934 people killed because of mass shootings.

With so many shootings taking place in our country, there is no question about why gun laws are being debated. Whether people are pro- or anti-guns, everyone can agree that there should be some action taken in order to protect citizens; too many lives have been taken.

How do you feel about gun laws? What should our country do to put an end to this growing problem?

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