On August 3, 2019, 22 people were tragically killed and 24 were injured in a mass shooting in a Walmart complex in El Paso, Texas. Less than 24 hours later, a gunman in Dayton, Ohio, killed 9 people while injuring 27 others outside Ned Peppers bar.
Police have recently released the motives of the El Paso shooter. 21-year-old Patrick Crusius told authorities that he was targeting “Mexicans”. 20 minutes before he went on the rampage, he published a white nationalist, anti-immigrant manifesto on social media platform, 8chan. Connor Bettis, the 24-year-old shooter in Dayton had no clear motive for the attack.
With so many mass shootings over the last few years, many citizens of the US have called for stricter gun control laws. The US has an unusually large number of firearm homicides compared to many developed countries in the world. Since the Sandy Hook shooting in 2012, there have been more than 2000 shootings across the United States.
Many shootings have taken place at schools, most notably the Parkland High School shooting and the previously mentioned Sandy Hook shooting. As the 2020 Democratic Party presidential debates are taking place, gun control laws should be a hot topic of debate between the presidential candidates. Many people believe that stricter gun laws should be enforced in the future regardless of the candidate or what political party they belong in.
Countless other countries in the world have established gun control laws that restrict the purchase of firearms and also require certain identification in order to buy and use them. After the attacks, the communities of the two cities have been trying to recover from the incidents. Rueben Martinez, a 11-year-old El Paso native has created a hashtag called #ElPasoChallenge which is to do 22 good deeds, honoring the 22 people who have died in the shooting. John Legend a singer who is an Ohio native, made a surprise visit to the families who were affected by the shooting. He talked with the families and held a surprise concert afterwards.
Jonathan Chun, 10th Grade
West Ranch High School