On Wednesday afternoon, Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida became the site of the latest gun massacre in America, in what seems like a never-ending cycle of violence. It’s only been four-and-a-half months since the deadliest mass shooting on U.S. soil, which the news cycle seems to have already forgotten about. On Wednesday night, CNN’s Don Lemon asked why we, as a country, are still letting this regularly happen.
“This is a sickness that has infected the country. Unchecked, and unfettered gun violence. Today 17 lives are over, 17 families are torn apart. Parents who sent their kids to school this morning — imagine that. Many people send their kids to school, just like they’ve done every other day for years. They trusted their kids would be safe. Teachers went to work this morning, trusted that they would be safe in their space. In their work environment. The way we all should be safe in our work environments every day, everywhere, in our schools, our churches, our offices, at concerts, at nightclubs. Do you feel safe tonight?”
Lemon then made a point that should resonate with all Americans, regardless of political leaning: each and every one of us is “just playing the odds” at this point. “Are you really willing to keep playing those odds?” he asked.
“This is who we are right now,” Lemon said, after running through a list of tragic mass shootings. “But is this really who we want to be? A country where anyone, at any time, could be shot to death.” He also agreed with those who might say that today is not the day to talk about gun control. “Because the time to talk about it was weeks, months, years, or decades ago.”
“I know we are better than this,” he said, closing off his powerful monologue. Let’s just hope he’s right.