My name is Claire, I’m 19 years old and I was born and raised in Germany.
Thank you for reading my article, this is my opinion:

When I was a child I had very little knowledge about the USA as we didn’t learn anything about it at school. However, what I knew was that it is a big country, it’s far away, the people there speak a different language and they have guns. They have access to deadly weapons and for them it’s normal. That shocked me. And even being only a child I knew that guns are dangerous and that they are even more dangerous when they are in the wrong hands. I also couldn’t quite understand why people were allowed to own a gun in the first place.
Back then I did not know anything about gun violence or mass or school shootings because those issues were simply not that present in Germany and especially not in the world of a 6-year-old.
I think I was 15 or 16 when I slowly started to become actually aware of it through presentations at school but mainly social media. Ever so often shootings in the USA made headlines but I would not think too much about it as it did not affect me directly or personally.I would only shake my head and wonder how people could be so cruel and heartless and take the lives of so many innocent people. And I still wonder. I wonder what can be done to put an end to gun violence and shootings. I wonder why there are no changes. I wonder why politicians are not taking action. I wonder how many more victims it takes until things will change. I wonder if things will ever change.

I’ve come to the conclusion that there won’t be any changes if we don’t take action.

In one of her songs Taylor Swift sings
"Band-aids don’t fix bullet holes"
and she probably did not think about gun violence when she wrote her song but this line really got stuck in my head and I started to think a bit more about it.
Band-aids – whether they are thoughts and prayers that we send to the family and friends of victims or empty promises that are made by politicians – are simply not enough to fix issues – bullet holes – like gun violence and shootings.
It is time to raise our voice, speak up and demand changes. And it is important that we do so even if those issues do not directly affect us because every single voice counts. It doesn’t matter in what part of the world you live because if we come and work together we will be heard. Together we are powerful and strong and loud. Together we can make a difference.

I am sure that I am not the only one who is tired of waking up to find out that there was another shooting that could have been prevented if we only had taken actions a little earlier. I just want children and teenagers to feel safe again when they are at school, because they should really not worry about being shot in a place were they are supposed to be safe.
And their safety surely is more important than having the right to own a gun, isn't it?

// Please feel free to send me a message to tell me your thoughts about this topic!