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The lessons of Sandy Hook

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By Wednesday, Dec 12, 2018 Letters

To the editor:

This Friday [December 14] marks the sixth anniversary of the Sandy Hook Elementary School tragedy. That day, my eldest grandson sat in his kindergarten classroom in Vermont, as innocent and excited to learn as those Sandy Hook children who were never to see their families again. I was shaken to my core.

Since that day, we have seen an ever-increasing rise in incidents of gun violence at schools and mass shootings in this nation. As we reflect this holiday season, let us honor all victims of gun violence by turning tragedy into transformation. There are many seemingly simple — yet incredibly powerful — things we can do today to prevent gun violence. We must advocate for sensible gun safety laws and support access to programs in our schools and communities that help us identify the signs and signals before a shooting might happen. We need to get help for at-risk individuals before a tragedy.

We have also seen that more and more people are uniting to bring the change we need. The phones in Congress are ringing off the hook with calls for “common sense” gun reform. The brilliant Parkland students have rallied youth across the country. Peaceful rallies are growing in cities across the country, and families and friends are gathering together in their own living rooms to talk about bringing violence prevention programs to their schools. The movement is growing, and we must keep the momentum.

I take my inspiration from the Sandy Hook Promise families. Bearing their unimaginable pain with beautiful dignity, they work endlessly so that others will not have to suffer as they have.

To keep this hope alive and bring the change we need, there are three things you can do now. First, call our members of Congress and ask them to support gun violence prevention legislation to keep guns out of dangerous hands. Second, “Know the Signs” that can prevent gun violence that are listed at www.sandyhookpromise.org. And third, “Make the Promise” at www.sandyhookpromise.org/promise and truly honor victims by turning tragedy into transformation. Thank you.

Susan Olshuff


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