In the wake of the latest mass shooting, I found myself in an unfortunately familiar place in which tears poured from a reservoir of pain and empathy for those whose lives were torn apart. But my sorrow quickly turned into anger and frustration over the back and forth debate on this topic that has divided this nation on something that shouldn’t even have sides.

I have school-aged children. A mass shooting could happen at their school. It hasn’t yet, but because elected officials continue to do nothing legislatively in response, it could.

While people are sorting through their emotions and pointing fingers in a childish game that yields no winners, someone is planning the next mass shooting. And, statistically speaking, that someone is planning on using an assault-style rifle because that is the weapon of choice that is tragically unique to this country.

This we know. This we can’t dispute. And yet, here we are. The same debate. The same political rhetoric. The same stakeholders using the same bank accounts to influence policy makers. The same thoughts and prayers. The same reservoir of tears.

The problem with the same is that if you always do what you have always done, you will always get what you have always gotten.

We can’t have more of the same. We need policy action now. We need to end this broken-record gun debate once and for all, because nobody’s interpretation of the Second Amendment is worth another life lost to a mass shooter.

Coleen Elias, Buckfield

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