We, the People, Are Responsible for Ending Gun Violence

H. Michael Harvey, JD
4 min readMar 30, 2023

In Schools, Churches, Grocery Stores, and Neighborhood Drive-by Shootings

Max Okhrimenko on UpSplash

I’ve not written a great deal lately. The muse, which has spoken to me occasionally, hasn’t whispered in my ears or shaken my dungeon and set the spirit free to express what has been bottled up inside me for months, albeit years.

Columbine shocked the nation to its core. The unthinkable had happened to children in such a massive way in their secure space. Aurora left us numbed, Trayvon Martin stunned us, and Mother Emanuel momentarily sucked the hope out of our collective beings.

The cry for help is always the same: “We need sensible local, state, and federal gun control legislation.”

The answer to this posit is nonsensical: “The Second Amendment gives me the right to gun ownership. What we need to do is legislate mental help.” You can insert the name of any conservative here.

Jason Leung on UpSplash

Nothing gets done. Each deadly encounter we end up with no sensible regulation of weapons of war in the hands of private American citizens nor an influx of federal or state dollars into mental health. And the rapid automatic clip of an AK-15 (otherwise known as Avtomat Kalashnikova), Russian for automatic Kalashnikova, so named after its Russian designer, Mikhail Timofeyevich Kalashnikov) goes “skrrrahh, pap, pap, ka-ka-ka Skidiki-pap-pap, and a pu-pu-pudrrrr-boom Skya, du-du-ku-ku-dun-dun Poom, poom.” Leaving more innocent Americans who left the safety of their homes for the haven of school dead, never to return home to loved ones again.

Could it be we are approaching the gun violence problem wrong?

In the past, we directed the public outcry at elected officials, many of whom control the power levels in the statehouses and congress but are beholden to the National Rifle Association (NRA). Even if they want to do something, they can’t because they depend on financial contributions to their political campaign war chests to remain in office.

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H. Michael Harvey, JD

Harvey is Living Now Book Awards 2020 Bronze Medalist for his memoir Freaknik Lawyer: A Memoir on the Craft of Resistance. Available at haroldmichaelharvey.com