Early last Saturday, Jan. 20, Wake Forest experienced something that is unfortunately not all that uncommon in the U.S. — a school shooting.
Najee Ali Baker, a student from Winston Salem State University (WSSU), was shot on Wake Forest’s campus and passed away soon after.
This tragedy is something that has been normalized in recent years, and in 2018 alone (as of Jan. 24), there have been 11 school shootings, one shooting every other day. Even more alarming is that the shooting at a Kentucky school on Tuesday, Jan. 23 was the 50th of the academic year.
What happened on our campus may seem like a rarity to us, but the reality is that this happens all of the time.
Now that our community has become part of the discussion surrounding this grave issue of gun violence, it has become, even more so than before, our responsibility to question the problem, and to further question why it seems to be growing.
A recent New York Times article reported that since 2013, there has been approximately one school shooting every week. This fact should be as startling as it is heartbreaking.
The editorial board of the Old Gold & Black believes that gun violence needs to be stopped, and that the best way for us to contribute to stopping it is to pay attention and talk about it. What happened here, in Kentucky, in Seattle, in New Orleans, in Iowa, in California and in Texas needs to be addressed.
The U.S. is often referred to as an innovator, as a leader, but when it comes to gun control, the U.S. has not earned those titles. According to the New York Times, in the U.S., Americans are killed by other Americans with guns more often than in any other countries — gun violence is significantly worse here.
In the U.K., 50 to 60 people are killed yearly by guns, but in 2011, 11,000 Americans were killed, not including those by suicide, according to the New York Times.
The important takeaway here is to keep discussing it. It may be hard or uncomfortable, but at the end of the day if we’re not talking about gun violence and what is happening across the country, no solution will be found.
We don’t know what the best solution to gun violence is, but something close to it is out there. If we don’t address the issues and all come together, conservatives and liberals alike, our country will continue to face tragedy, loss of life and loss of liberty.
Gun control shouldn’t be a partisan issue; the safety of our nation should not be partisan. We should all work together to find the best way to ensure that every person is safe.
Students should not have to fear going to school, and Americans should never fear leaving their homes.