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The Kids Aren’t Alright


I remember listening to “I Want It That Way” the minute news of Columbine broke. I’ll forever associate the song with that deep confusion, sadness, and desire to know why? that went through my 4th grade mind. I was in 7th grade when a few 8th graders threatened to bring guns to school the next day. I remember deciding to go to school the next day and surrounding myself with my closest friends as we moved quickly through the halls. I was terrified even though nothing happened. I remember the day that a student had a gun at a nearby high school that went off in a locker bank. I was overcome with fear that my best friend was hurt; relief swept through my body when she returned my text and told me she was alright. I remember hearing about Virginia Tech as I walked to Safeway for a 5-hour shift during my first year of college. I wrote this a couple days after the shooting in Tucson, Arizona in January 2011. I remember sitting quietly and sadly with some of my friends who were visiting me in Fairfax, VA.

These are memories that come to mind everytime I hear about more gun violence. I don’t want to have these memories. I don’t want to compare numbers; hear that the latest atrocity is or isn’t “worst since…”; I don’t want to hear that if more people carried guns, these ...

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