How many kids have to die before America makes a change? When will people stop commenting “thoughts and prayers” on a Facebook post and actually DO something? When will we stop doing the same thing and finally decide that enough is enough?

To keep doing the same things and expecting different results is insanity. The 19 year old who killed 17 people on Wednesday legally bought an AR-15 a year prior to the shooting. I know this won’t be a popular opinion in a town that is so conservative, but America, it’s time to talk about stricter gun laws.

Now don’t get me wrong, I’m all for responsible people owning guns, but I’d love to see the argument on why an 18 year old who was kicked out of school for being violent and was put on a watch list at the school should be allowed to buy an AR-15, or any gun for that matter.

Apparently though, many Americans believe there is just nothing we can do. When 9/11 happened, airports created tighter security and made restrictions on what was allowed on a plane, but when mass shooting after mass shooting happens, there is just nothing we can do.

We have normalized mass shootings. We have made them acceptable by doing nothing. We are allowing innocent people to be killed by complacency. And every time we do nothing, we are telling people that we value easier accessibility to guns over their lives.

It’s beyond time for a change, whatever that may be.

Maybe if that change doesn’t come from stricter laws, then it comes from better education. When you get a drivers license you have to know how to drive that car and prove it. You are required to know about the laws and how to be safe using that car. Why don’t we require the same for guns? Why doesn’t owning a gun come with educational courses?

Don’t like that idea? Then maybe it’s time we pour more money into our schools to make sure they have all the security needed. Maybe it’s time to arm trusted individuals in our schools. Maybe it’s time we hire police officers for our schools.

Is it the gun’s fault that a kid was able to kill 17 other kids? No. It’s ours – It’s our own fault for letting this happen.

We need to run tight background checks on all people who buy guns – even if we sell them as personal property. We need to tighten restrictions on those with mental health issues, not deregulate the laws like Donald Trump did a year ago. We need to hold the FBI accountable when they look into these risky people (like they did with this shooter) and do nothing. We need to do something, because at this point, any little change is better than nothing, which is exactly what our congress is doing now.

I’ve heard the congressmen – they say it isn’t a good time to talk about gun laws, and apparently it wasn’t a good time for them to talk about it when 20 kindergartners were killed in Sandy Hook; it wasn’t a good time for them to talk about it when 58 people were murdered and 500 were injured in Las Vegas, and now it isn’t apparently a good time to talk about it when 17 more kids are dead.

Congress, when is a good time to talk about guns? Maybe when the lobbyist stop giving you so much money to play favorites? Or maybe when your own children are the next victims?

I know what will happen after this school shooting. In a few days, after people have had heated debates about how Democrats want to steal everyone’s guns and how Republicans value guns over lives and after someone reading this has emailed me to call me some offensive name for having an opinion, everyone will forget all about this shooting, congress will continue do nothing, and we will have silence for a few days until the next mass shooting. Wash, rinse, repeat.

Just remember, this may have been a school in Florida, and it may not affect you now, but how long do we keep doing nothing until it does affect Van Wert? People will start to care only when it is their child who is killed by a maniac with a weapon that is meant for war.