I’m so tired…

I’m so tired. I’m tired and ashamed. I’m ashamed that my government cannot figure out that life is more valuable than guns. I’m ashamed that there are people in my country, who feel that their right to own a gun, supersedes the right to life. Our children are dying. Our teachers are dying. Our friends are dying. They are dying because people who own guns are killing them. Stop saying it’s not the time to talk about gun control! Stop saying it’s all about mental health! The murderer of those children in Parkland, owned his gun legally. The murderer of those concert goers in Las Vegas, owned his guns legally. That’s the problem. Automatic weapons have no place in a civilian’s home. The only purpose of an automatic or semi-automatic weapon is to kill. You don’t use these guns for sport. You don’t use these guns to protect yourself. You use these guns to kill. No one has a chance against one of these weapons. Children in schools should be safe. What is our country representing if we can’t protect our most innocent?

It’s time for our Congress people to stand up for the innocents. Stand up for the children. Stand up for those who need our protection. Our government regulates driver’s licenses but not who can own a gun. I need to take a special test if I want to drive a school bus, but not to own a gun. If the killer had a knife he wouldn’t have killed so many people, but he had a gun… and he owned it legally. Stop taking money from the NRA and put that money into saving lives! Guns are meant as weapons. Weapons are meant to kill. Take the guns off the streets and there will be less opportunity for murder. I’ve read about gun laws in other nations. When the UK had a mass school shooting, they enacted gun laws, the shootings stopped. When Australia had a mass school shooting, they enacted gun laws and the shootings stopped. Take heed America! Learn from others and stop putting your children at risk!

I am a teacher. I teach in a Jewish day school. I have a huge responsibility to care for and educate young children. We now have lock down drills to practice for these situations. Five years ago, after Sandy Hook, the kids took these drills very seriously. It was scary. They paid attention. Now these drills are as routine as fire drills. Who wouldn’t think you should leave during a fire drill? Children were killed in Parkland because of the false alarm. Then the teachers went into lock down mode. Some of those hero teachers were killed saving their students, their children. That could be me… my first response is to save the children…nobody gets left behind…

We have armed security guards in our school now. We started with one. Now we have two. On Thursday, we had the local police in our parking lot during our dismissal. We live more like prisoners, than those people who legally buy guns in our country. They feel free to do what they want, because they have the guns.

Pikuach Nefesh means to save a life. This is one of our mitzvot. We, Jews, try to follow this mitzvah in many different ways, whether through medical research, organ donation, security systems. Can the government of the United States start following this mitzvah? Can the government of the United States pass laws to save lives. Owners of guns have the ability to take lives. Whether they intend to kill or not, simply having a gun presents the possibility of using it and killing.

We need to be protected. This is America, the “Land of the Free, and the Home of the Brave”. Is it bravery that makes a civilian take an assault weapon and walk into a school to shoot up innocent children? Let our Congress people be brave and take those guns off the streets and out of the hands of civilians. Civilians don’t need automatic weapons. Save our children and save lives.

About the Author
Stephanie Z. Bonder was born and bred in the Garden State of NJ. She developed her deep love for Israel when her father first started talking to her about Israel when she was a little girl. Her love for Israel continued in her college years, when she studied at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. Currently, Stephanie enjoys her career as a general studies teacher at Golda Och Academy, a Solomon Schechter Day School in West Orange, N.J. In her volunteer hours, she is a 5th generation life member of Hadassah, the Women's Zionist Organization of America. As a past region president, she currently is involved in the Membership department of National Hadassah. Stephanie also works to educate adults on Jewish Peoplehood and current events in Israel through her involvement with the Jewish Federation of Greater Metrowest.
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