Colin Goddard: "I was shot 10 years ago"
Colin Goddard, a victim of a vicious gun shooting, speaks out about his frightening experience and how that affected his life forever. He offers an important perspective on how we should tackle the pressing issue of gun violence in America.
Ten years ago, I was sitting in my French class at Virginia Tech when I was shot four times. 32 of my classmates and teachers were killed that day by somebody who should have never gotten his hands on a gun.
I remember that horrifying day like it was yesterday. I was in the right place at the right time, doing what I was supposed to do. Like countless Americans, I was just going about my daily life when a man with a gun changed my life forever.
Back then, I had every reason to believe that a classroom is a safe place. Yet school shootings continue to happen with an astonishing frequency in our country: Just last week, a man opened fire in an elementary school in San Bernardino, California, claiming the lives of a teacher and an eight-year-old boy.
None of us can afford to sit on the sidelines so long as our classrooms remain places where our kids can get shot and killed. After I was shot, I realized I could no longer stand idly by as more and more families were ripped apart by weak laws that let guns fall into dangerous hands.
After the Virginia Tech shooting, people spoke up and lawmakers in my state took commonsense steps to close fatal gaps in our background check system. Virginia is just one of the dozens of states that have made it harder for dangerous people like my shooter to get their hands on guns.
Yet there is still so much more we must do as a country to prevent gun violence. We always knew that this fight to end gun violence would be a marathon, not a sprint. As I reflect on the last decade, I'm filled with hope from the many victories we've achieved -- and filled with resolve for the road we still have to travel.
Thanks to the grassroots power of this movement, we've closed the background check loophole in states like Oregon and Connecticut. We've made it harder for dangerous domestic abusers to get their hands on guns. And we've made gun safety a bread-and-butter issue for politicians, rather than a "third rail" in American politics.
Progress like that can help save lives. When people like you and me speak out and demand our lawmakers listen, we can make our families and communities safer. That's why I'm not giving up on this fight -- and I hope you aren't either.
Thank you for your commitment to this fight,
Everytown Survivor Network
Source: Everytown For Gun Safety