A few days ago, I watched a documentary about the lone suvivor of Virginia Tech’s on-campus massacre which killed a total of 32 students and faculty members. Featured is Colin Goddard and his fight to tighten existing laws regarding gun shows. HR 2324, Gun Show Loophole Closing Act of 2009 would require participants at gun shows to follow the law to require background checks of those purchasing guns at said shows. The VT gunmen, Cho, purchased his weaponry at a show despite his documented mental health issues.
A mixture of chilling and inspiring, the documentary follows Goddard and friends to gun shows around the country revealing how easily they can purchase military-grade artillery with no identification, let alone a background check. It also shows Goddard’s work with the Brady Campaign to push forward the proposed bill by educationg Congress on his experience and gaining co-sponsors. Goddard’s mother and select friends also speak candidly about the campus tragedy.
I was at work when the news began to trickle in about the shooting. Most of us abandoned projects to follow the updates and were scarmbling for more information. I cannot imagine being a parent of a VT student on that day. I shudder about the violence that unformatunately continues on college campuses. Not to minimize the everyday violence in neighborhoods and communities, but I think that once you get your kid off to college, you think that the future is theirs to grab- that they will be safe.
If you have the opportunity to view the documentary, do so. But if you do nothing else, contact your representative and urge them to re-introduce and/or sponsor this legislation. I know that this country has so many critical issues to address right now, but this is an easy one. It is an easy step to ending some of the gun violence; it is enforcing what is already on the books.