The American Health Crisis That Isn’t a Virus

The American Health Crisis That Isnt a Virus

This article contains mentions of gun violence against minorities and children. Certain details have been omitted for the sake of the victims and for readers alike.

Gun Violence in America is something many minorities don’t have the luxury to ignore. From targeted shootings to assailants getting excused, the world has become a significantly scarier place to anyone BIPOC/POC, or LGBT. Not even children are safe from these encounters, as there have been 13 incidents regarding school locations in 2021 alone. Even if you do survive these encounters, the trauma that is left behind in a victim’s mind is nothing to laugh at. It can cause lasting psychological damage for the rest of their life. What is gun violence and why aren’t we doing anything to stop it? Gun violence, according to Wikipedia, is “violence committed with the use of a gun.” It can be anything from an armed robbery to a mass shooting, though in this instance most of the discussion will be directed towards mass shootings. The issue with gun violence as a conversation in politics, is that it heavily relies on the topic of gun control. Gun control in America is a strongly contested subject, especially between the right and left. Because of this, any lasting efforts to end gun control has come to a complete stand still. In 2020, 611 mass shooting events had been recorded. These resulted in 513 deaths, and 2,543 injuries. In 2019, there were 434 mass shootings that resulted in 517 deaths, and 2,160 injuries, which is 111 more incidents than the previous year. Though they’re more likely to happen at schools, they can happen anywhere. Peaceful protests, rallies, grocery stores, malls, even massage parlors. Gun control and gun violence can be labeled as political topics, it’s very clear that something needs to be done about it. 

So The Blue and White asked what students thought should be done. PWe asked for their political opinions, how America should move forward with this, and why racial minorities are more impacted than other groups. 


“I believe gun violence is so prevalent in America itself because of overwhelming hatred being normalized, and lack of accessible therapy,” one anonymous student explains, he continued by saying that, “I believe it is fixable, but in the very long term… America isn’t moving forward at all.” When asked if gun violence personally affects him, he details, “Gun violence doesn’t necessarily affect me, because I don’t care much about it… [gun violence] is prevalent in low income neighborhoods because those places are systematically made poorer… so [they] take what they need by whatever means necessary.” He finishes off by adding, “Mental health services need to be made free along with other health services… and blatant undercover racism, ableism, white supremacy and all the like need to be handled with proper education and punishment.”


Pryn’cexz Rivera, another student at Apopka, explains her views on the matter. “[Gun violence] makes it difficult to go outside of town unless I were with my parents… I always worry about it… I [especially] get anxious in public.” She continues, “For America, I do have hope and doubt infused into one mindset. I think America can make a positive change [against] gun violence, but… people may just go behind the law and avoid charges. [However], it is better to have something to protect us than nothing at all.” 


“I think the rise in [untreated] mental illness is a large cause of gun violence… Generally, I do believe that there are many reasons why gun violence is still prevalent, like racial issues, economic issues, and [again] mental health. Also the availability of firearms and ease of use means that many people can get and use a gun.” Connor Rowe replies, before adding how he personally thinks this could be fixed. “[We] definitely need more improvements in background checks. The main reason gun control is so poor at the moment is because the wrong people get their hands on guns in the first place, [as] they are very easy to require…preventing those that even so much as seem mentally ill from obtaining a gun, and removing the ability to obtain automatic weapons for any average citizen.” He finishes by saying, “I do believe it will be a struggle, but can definitely be done. We already see so much of a pushback from those that own guns against gun control, but many of the best fixes are… keeping people from getting them so easily… it has to be an international effort.”