Firearms play a role in our culture, but death accompanies them

There are a lot of traditions and good times and honest enjoyment of this beautiful land based around owning and shooting firearms. We need to accept as a country, though, that there is also a lot of death that accompanies our firearms.

Coming out of nationwide restrictions for a pandemic that has killed over half a million of our fellow countrymen, we’ve just been presented with two of America’s most unique events, mass shootings. Being in Oregon, I don’t think we can ignore the anti-Asian and race-laden elements of the shooting in Georgia. And then in Boulder there is just that great randomness that terrorizes schoolchildren and communities across the country. It isn’t likely to happen anywhere, but it happens somewhere all too often. As schools open up, we are lying to ourselves if we don’t know that somewhere, in some community, that is going to be accompanied by terrible news and tragedy.

Firearms play a role in hunting, bonding, providing and enjoying the abundance of our open lands. They are one of man’s most impactful and terrible inventions, and we wouldn’t be here without them. But there are also so many people who aren’t here because of them — I think we need to address that in a real way, and people in a community like this can help with that.

Ask your representatives to support gun control that doesn’t enable these continued tragedies. Create a culture that doesn’t support all this death.

Ben Crawford

La Grande

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