2006-06-23 / Editorial/Opinion

It's My Turn

By Liz Bishop-Goldsmith Founder, Mothers Against Guns

By Liz Bishop-Goldsmith Founder,
Mothers Against Guns

Liz Bishop-Goldsmith, who lives in Rosedale, is the founder of "Mothers Against Guns," a group fighting gun violence among young black men in this area. She is also campaigning for the office of New York State Senator in the 10th Senatorial District.

Not to long ago, while enjoying a backyard bar-b-que in St. Albans, New York, an 18 year old was shotin the neck and paralyzed. Around the same time, an innocent four-year-old girl was shot and killed in Brooklyn allegedly by a family friend who was under the influence of alcohol.Easter Sunday, an innocent three year old in New York City was shot and killed by a stray bullet while riding in a vehicle with his family.

Gun violence continues to take its toll on all of our lives. It does not matter who we are, or where we are. Family members and friends are beingslaughtered, and police officers are losing their lives to this unnecessary evil. When does it stop?

This country is facing an epidemic of gun violence, andourelected officials must come together andagree to stop this madness."My organizationhas been advocating and lobbying for "common sense" gun legislation for the past 12 years.

In 2005, legislation that I proposed to the New York City Council (sponsored by NYC Councilman James Sanders, Jr.) became a law when signed by NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg. The law places restrictions on the purchase of ammunition and increases the age from 18 to 21 for anyone seeking to purchase a firearm or rifle in New York City. I commend NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg for recently stepping forward and addressing the need for federal gun laws.If all our elected officials came together and passed common sense federal gun laws, this nonsense would stop.Gun control is out of control.

Taking a stand against gun violence is not about violating the "legal rights" of law-abiding citizens to bear arms, it's about keeping guns out of the hands of our youth and others with criminal intent. It's about the NRA joining the CSA (Common Sense Association) and help stop this cruel and brutal act.Our elected officials (all of them) throughout this country must come together and make it difficult(if not impossible) to stop the flow of "illegal guns" across state lines.It's about stopping the flow of“illegal guns" across state lines and punishing those who go to other states, purchase the guns legally there and then sell them illegally in our community. It's about common sense! 

When do we say enough is enough?" in most instances of gun violence, there are signs when a personis about to commit a crime - but many choose to turn their heads.We all have to get involved and stand up for what is right. If we have knowledge ofa family member or anyone whopossesses an illegal firearm, we must do what is morally correct and contact law enforcement.Doing nothing could result in their death, the death of an innocent person or your own. Everyone must get over the fear of getting involved and do what is right.

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