Voices: Kim Kardashian: I am heartbroken, disgusted and furious about Texas

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‘Someone who is not old enough to buy alcohol should not be allowed to purchase a firearm’  (LightRocket/Getty/Reuters)
‘Someone who is not old enough to buy alcohol should not be allowed to purchase a firearm’ (LightRocket/Getty/Reuters)

Five years ago, almost to the day, I wrote an essay for my blog about my thoughts on gun control in honour of National Gun Violence Awareness Day.

I asked, “Is it more important to protect the second amendment than to protect our own children?”. Then, on Tuesday, 19 children were murdered by an 18-year-old – and I find myself heartbroken, disgusted and furious about how little has been done by lawmakers to enact gun laws that protect our children.

There is no excuse and no justification for what happened. The current laws in our country around gun control are not protecting our children. We have to push lawmakers to enact laws that are fitting in today’s world.

Semiautomatic weapons, assault weapons, weapons of war, should not be legally sold or owned by American civilians. They should be banned. Period. AR-15 style semi automatic rifles were used in Newtown, Parkland, Aurora, San Bernardino, Orlando, Parkland, in the Buffalo shooting 10 days ago and reportedly in Tuesday’s shooting.

Assault weapons are not a self defence tool. They are sophisticated weapons, designed to kill. Assault weapons didn’t even exist when the Second Amendment was written. We have to stop allowing people to use a sentence written centuries ago when technology, times, humanity were completely different, to dictate how we regulate gun ownership and how we protect our kids today.

The legal age to purchase a firearm is also a serious issue and needs to be addressed and increased. The Parkland shooter, the Buffalo grocery store shooter, the Texas shooter: they were all under 21 and reportedly purchased weapons legally.

These are teenagers. Someone who is not old enough to buy alcohol should not be allowed to purchase a firearm. There is no world in which an 18-year-old needs a semi automatic weapon, or any weapon, and no world in which the outcome can be anything other than tragic. As I even type these words I am seriously dumbfounded that this is something considered normal, acceptable – and legal.

There is no question that mental health, racism and deep-seated hatred have played a role in the motivation for mass shootings in recent years. And at a community level, as parents and teachers, there is a lot that can be done to help teens and young adults that isn’t being done. But the one thing that lawmakers can and should control now is access to weapons.

There are, of course, people over 21 who cause harm, and other shootings in recent years have been carried out by people over 21, but if we increase legal age to purchase – coupled with a ban on assault weapons – we can without a doubt reduce the number of senseless tragedies and save children’s lives.

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We can’t accept this as normal anymore. It’s not normal for a teenager to kill children. It’s not normal for our kids to be practising active shooter drills in schools. It’s not normal to be shot while shopping for groceries. I’m not numbed by it. I will never be numbed by it. We can’t accept it.

We can’t have another five years go by without effective, impactful laws put in place to protect our kids. We are parents, we are mothers, we are begging and pleading for action.

Imagine the entire classroom of children who witnessed their friends die in front of them. The trauma will last a lifetime for everyone involved. Words can’t express my heartbreak for the parents whose babies didn’t come home from school.

I’m urging our leaders to come together and put politics aside and put children first.

Reproduced from Instagram with the permission of Kim Kardashian