The award-winning voice of North Cobb High School in Kennesaw, Georgia.

The Chant

The award-winning voice of North Cobb High School in Kennesaw, Georgia.

The Chant

The award-winning voice of North Cobb High School in Kennesaw, Georgia.

The Chant


Hands Up!: an article about gun violence

Jasmyn Mitchell
With easy access to guns, gun violence has increased in America and fear continues to rise. Current legislation does not act on solutions to this issue. Due to legislators’ lack of help, citizens conduct studies and express solutions that dive into this issue. With continuous lives taken, society has grown tired and strives to end this issue.

Despite countless debates and protests, gun violence in the United States persists as a pressing issue. With the recent shooting in Philadelphia September 11, gun rights evidently deserve further discussion. Just this month, the U.S. witnessed shootings in Florida, Michigan, Indiana and South Carolina. These incidents raise suspension around guns, and how easily citizens can access these weapons. In 2023, the U.S. witnessed numerous incidents related to the misuse of these weapons. These incidents cover several situations, including accidents, altercations and incidents involving law enforcement.

The right to own a gun dates back to the Second Amendment. Americans continue to exercise the right to bear arms since the amendment’s ratification in 1971. This epidemic of extreme gun violence seemed to have surged since the 2000s. With mass shootings at locations such as Columbine High School and Sandy Hook Elementary School, experiencing terror with these weapons does not surprise American citizens. These shootings took numerous lives; together, both shootings took 39 innocent youth and injured over 20 people, threatening vulnerable citizens. 

The misuse of guns causes commotion, rallies crowds and fuels protests, but does not seem to push any legislation. A limited amount of bills regarding gun control pass. The lack of bills further regulating gun safety allows violence to persist. While President Joe Biden did sign the “Bipartisan Gun Safety Bill”, this bill makes one out of hundreds of steps for reducing gun violence. The bill restricts guns to those in crisis and provides help for victims.

Congress holds traditional bicameral values, meaning both the House and Senate must agree on a bill before passing it. Political gridlock could occur, or the bill heads toward the pigeonhole, which implies that the bill can not pass, or the bill moves down the hole to die. This proposes challenges for the legislative body in addressing gun violence properly by making it difficult to pass laws and policies. 

Inconsistencies within policy between states create struggles for Congress. Due to different policies and rules, beneficial regulations will not reach each state. National supremacy prevents amicable solutions between states and the federal government. For example, California’s gun policies oppose Georgia’s, therefore legislators cannot properly enforce gun restrictions in both states due to possible conflicting outcomes between governments. 

Those who oppose gun restrictions believe that guns do not kill, people do. Building laws around gun violence would present legislators with a difficult case because guns do not cause violence on their own.  Pulling a trigger involves a human, so guns alone should not be blamed. A gun can not pull its own trigger, so it can not cause the issues they get faulted for. 

Protesters of gun restrictions do not just fault the weapon, but guns contribute to the problem just as much as humans do. Though gun owners do add to the issue of gun violence, the percentage of gun possession in the United States shows the country as a visible outlier and a problem compared to other countries. The government cannot regulate all firearms, so they throw in the towel. The government’s failure to properly cover this issue leads to increased violence and heightened numbers of shootings. With three months left in 2023, America managed to surpass 400+ mass shootings even after Biden signed the safety bill in 2022. 

When looking at the Gun Violence Archive, approximately 40,000 reported incidents of gun violence took place. These events resulted in 20,000 deaths and over 40,000 injuries just in 2023. These incidents include homicides, suicides and mass shootings. This amount of death and injury contributes to the issue. This should concern the public and if it does not, society will not progress past gun violence. Taking a deeper look at the archive, these numbers constantly increase, painting gun violence as a never-ending issue. Whether these acts of violence occur on purpose or accidentally, a gun should not cost someone’s life. 

“We’re not the only place in the world with mental illness. [When talking about gun violence] We’re not the only place in the world where people are paranoid. But only in America are we so casual about access to weapons of mass destruction and only in America do we fetishize violence so much that we end up with all the mass shootings,” Democratic Senator Chris Murphy of Connecticut said.  

Though these incidents can not come undone, and regulations can only come from these events, analyzing the factors behind these events helps society understand how this violence occurs. Exposure to violence, unsupervised access to guns, a low sense of community and drug dealing all contribute to gun violence. Though stable legislation cannot be passed to prevent gun violence, teaching proper gun safety could help combat this issue. 

“Gun violence is an issue we can reduce. My generation fears guns and the potential outcomes that come from their actions. Seeing all these school shootings scares me. Sometimes it scares me to go into public. I shouldn’t feel like this. We need to end this violence,” senior A’myra Mitchell said. 


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About the Contributor
Jasmyn Mitchell, Reporter
Jasmyn “ Jazzy” Mitchell is a junior at NC. Mitchell adores expressing herself through photography and writing. She navigates every day through a critical lens and plans to change the world. Journalism gives Mitchell the opportunity to express her feelings, critics and opinions. Writing is something she's always been shy about, but this gives her the privilege to show the world her abilities. 

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