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Op-Ed: Reflecting on the Anniversary of Gun Violence: Pain, Tragedy, and the Continued Trauma

By Georgia State Representative Kim Schofield


As this is the season for graduations, weddings, family reunions and more we find ourselves saddened and caring daily grief of these lost lives. As another somber anniversary of gun violence passes, our nation finds itself mired in the pain and tragedy caused by this ongoing epidemic. Families torn apart, communities still shattered, and lives forever changed by acts of senseless violence. Despite the growing demand for action, it is disheartening to witness the Republican Party’s refusal to pass common-sense gun reforms that could save lives. Nowhere is this call for action more urgent than in the state of Georgia, where residents are demanding a change.

The Lingering Pain:

The pain inflicted by gun violence is not confined to the moment of the attack; it ripples through time, leaving indelible marks on survivors, families, and communities. With each passing year, we are reminded that the wounds do not heal easily. As legislators, we are reminded of our constituents that we have lost. We must not allow ourselves to become desensitized or complacent in the face of these tragedies. It is incumbent upon our elected officials to address this issue with the urgency and seriousness it deserves.

A Call for Common-Sense Gun Reform:

Common-sense gun reform is not about infringing upon the rights of responsible gun owners; it is about implementing measures that can help prevent tragedies from occurring in the first place. Universal background checks, closing loopholes, and banning military-style assault weapons are just a few of the measures that could make a significant difference. These are not radical ideas; they are practical steps that have been proven effective in other countries and even in some states within our own nation.

The GOP’s Resistance:

Sadly, despite the mounting evidence and the pleas of countless Americans, the Republican Party continues to resist meaningful gun reform. Their allegiance to partisan ideology and special interests has prevented progress on this critical issue. It is disheartening and disgusting to witness elected officials prioritizing political games over the safety and well-being of their constituents.


Georgians Demand Action:

Georgia has been particularly hard hit by gun violence, with tragic events like the recent shooting in at a Northside Hospital facility in Midtown, the 2021 Atlanta spa shootings serving as painful reminders of the urgent need for action. The citizens of Georgia are not content to sit idly by as their communities suffer. They are demanding change, and their voices cannot be ignored. It is time for all lawmakers to listen to their constituents and act in their best interests.


As we reflect on yet another anniversary of gun violence, the pain, tragedy, and trauma persist. The GOP’s refusal to pass common-sense gun reform is a grave disservice to the American people. The demand for change is palpable, and nowhere is it more evident than in Georgia. No more excuses! We must come together, across party lines, to prioritize the safety and well-being of our communities. It is time for action, for empathy, and for the realization that the lives lost to gun violence are not statistics but loved ones who deserve and demand a better future.

Georgia State Representative Kim Schofield is a Democrat from Atlanta, representing the 63rd District. The views and opinions expressed by Georgia State Representative Schofield are her own.

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