OP-ED: Politicians Need to Protect Our Right to Live Free From Fear of Mass Shootings, Not Gun Lobby Interests

We all deserve the right to feel safe in our homes, in our schools, in our places of worship, in our local bars and restaurants, and everywhere we visit.

But as we were brutally reminded in the wake of yet another deadly mass shooting attack this weekend – this one targeted at an LGBTQ+ nightclub in Colorado – our right to be safe in our communities and the freedom to live without fear of gun violence is sorely lacking.

News of this attack broke on the morning of Transgender Day of Remembrance, a horrifying reminder that transphobia and gun violence are deadly in America.

As we join in mourning another senseless gun violence massacre, standing in solidarity with the murdered, the injured, and everyone who lost a loved one, we also join in raising our voices and demanding action.

President Biden rightly asked earlier this year, when will we stand up to the gun lobby?

While Colorado can seem far away from us here in Wisconsin, the gun lobby is working to influence Wisconsin politicians and derail common sense gun safety laws here, too.

Politicians like Republican Sen. Ron Johnson, who as of 2019 had received more than $1.2 million in NRA-affiliated support, and is still in Washington D.C. opposing measures to keep deadly firearms out of dangerous people’s possession.

Those who have been granted the privilege of governing in our names, whether it be in federal, state or local office, need to put constituents over greed, listen to our voices, and they need to act.

Together, we can demand that our legislators, our senators, and every elected official pass common sense legislation and denounce bigotry and transphobia – to help ensure that every Wisconsinite and every American can live in freedom and without the fear of gun violence.

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A Better Wisconsin Together is a state-based research and communications hub for progressives and is an affiliate of ProgressNow.