Over the past few days, I’ve gotten to be a part of something I’m really proud of - #WhoAgainstGuns. I’d like to tell you about it. I know that this is a divisive issue, and because no one has ever been converted on an idea via no-name blogger (and, honestly, because I’m a little cowardly), I’m turning off comments for this post. If you’d like to take reach out to me about it, please send a message – but please read through my full post first.
TL:DR*: I don’t want to take away your guns. I promise, promise, PROMISE. I would like to see increased gun control measures. Visit the linked site for information on how to donate to worthy organizations, or maybe DO keep reading on…
As you can see from recent posts, I went to Los Angeles last month for a Doctor Who convention – something I’ve done for four years now, and an event that I look forward to so much. While the convention is for a particular fandom (Doctor Who, that is), they provide so much more – a chance to reconnect with old friends, make new friends, gain new perspectives, and as far-fetched as it may sound in reference to “just another TV show,” be challenged to be a better member of a local, national, and global community.
In response to the recent shooting at MSD High School in Parkland, FL, a group of Doctor Who podcasters, writers, and fans came together to advocate for gun legislation through the #WhoAgainstGuns campaign. I’ve been privileged to help in a small way by logging donations. Regardless of your familiarity for and appreciation of Doctor Who, please click to read about the campaign, the organizations we suggest supporting through donations, and other ways you can spread the word. (Bonus: If you are a fan, you will receive access to special content – details on the linked page!)
Now for my personal experience, and why I am supporting this campaign with my time, and specifically the Brady Center with my money:
I would say that I didn’t grow up around guns, which is weird because my family has hunters on one side and law enforcement officers on the other. Members of all branches of the armed forces practically everywhere in my family and community. I recognize that just by saying that, I was around guns a lot more often than I ever noticed I was, but it’s because I was privileged enough to grow up around people who knew the responsibility involved with owning and using them. Education, ear protection, clothing identifiers for hunters, etc. – the appropriate precautions were taken – including gun cases, identifying and demanding safety around the location of guns in storage/bags, etc.
I grew up in a place where responsible people made responsible decisions and took responsible action to ensure responsible practices.
But that can’t always be the case. One argument being made is that gun violence would end if parents stepped up and raised their children “right.” I don’t disagree with that, in cases where children turn out exactly as anticipated based on how they were raised. There is so much to be said (about so many issues, but I’ll stick to gun control here) about family and society and the future. But that is SO BIG. And children aren’t raised overnight. And parents aren’t raised, or trained, or supported, overnight. So what happens in the meantime? Should there not be regulations in place to provide an immediate and enforced stopgap to protect citizens, most importantly, children?
Now, I know that this can be divisive, too. “If people are going to shoot up a place, then they’re going to do that whether or not there’s a lot there’s a law or restriction in place at all.” Yes, you’re right, and that’s so, so sad. But think about medication, and housing, and food – have regulations not been put in place to keep us safe while advances are made? Warning labels, exposure and dosing restrictions, monitors – we’ve learned that by changing our habits on everyday…I’ll just call it consumption…consumption, we can lead longer and healthier lives. (Seat belt laws spring to mind, actually…) If we’re willing to make those strides for the things that cover our basic needs, why not adapt to new measures to obtain something that is – by nature, not by judgment – destructive?
I am NOT saying take away guns, or hand over guns; I’m saying that I hope there comes a time when a temporary inconvenience – a form, a doctor’s visit, a background check – becomes an understood responsibility.
So, to get back to #WhoAgainstGuns – if any of this sounds interesting to you, Doctor Who fan or [Facebook]friend of a Doctor Who fan, again, you can listen to a promo that’s been playing on various podcasts and available on blog posts all week, as well as find links for donation-worthy organizations, here: http://www.realitybombpodcast.com/whoagainstguns/. If you decide to donate, even as a non-Who fan, please consider emailing your confirmation/receipt to the team so we can track who we've reached through the campaign. Thanks much!
*TL:DR: This means “too long: didn’t read” for those unaware…I know this was a long post to read through!
I'm very sneakily yet pointedly posting this as What I'm Into in February and March, 2018, through Leigh Kramer's monthly round-up.