COVID-19 has taken 800,000 American lives, and at the beginning of this pandemic, when the death toll was much lower, each death was discussed with care, reported and chronicled with a richness that brought strangers to life and gave voice to those often forgotten in nursing homes. The national mood was somber, collaborative and change-driven, largely colored by national and local reporting.
This is how we should discuss gun violence, its victims and their stories. Focusing on the people impacted by the bullet and those impacted by the residual echo of the shots fired that live on well beyond those fateful seconds. By doing so, we can curb gun violence with creative policies and storytelling that doesn’t criminalize victims. We will no longer be working to solve a problem for them, we will be working to solve a problem for us.
We must be committed to ending gun violence in all forms with sustained advocacy and community investments that will make a lasting impact. This work naturally extends to lawmakers and policy experts to reshape gun violence prevention policies, as well as storytellers and journalists, who must recast how we contextualize and chronicle the lives of those impacted by gun violence. Together, we will author a narrative of innovative policymaking and storytelling that works to reduce gun violence and boldly break the mold of upholding the status quo.
Jackson: We Should Discuss ‘Gun Violence’ the Way We Used to Discuss COVID is written by Dan Zimmerman for www.thetruthaboutguns.com