What happened in Vegas is devastating. There’s no way around it. We live in a world where anyone can go out to have fun or just to school—and end up shot. It’s sad and pathetic and tragic and heartbreaking. In the face of this total insanity, there are so many heroes and first responders who step up to help in the wake of violence. They are angels and proof that there is hope—no matter what. The good in people will always outweigh the darkness.

Watching the play-by-play of events come in on the news today was sickening and frustrating. Mainly because this is all preventable. A natural disaster, not so much. But another f*cking mass shooting? Are you f*cking kidding me?

How many more people need to die before we realize guns are….killing lots of people? What exactly are we waiting for? The armed militias we got a glimpse of in Charlottesville to take charge?

Let’s pretend there was an alien who’d never been to the U.S. before and we had to explain what happened yesterday:

What is a mass shooting?

A person who most likely has experienced severe trauma and should be getting mental health treatment is, instead, purchasing mass amounts of weapons. He then shows up in a public place with lots of people and kills as many humans as he possibly can.

How does he kill people?

With the shit ton of guns and ammunition he bought.

What’s a gun?

A weapon incorporating a metal tube from which bullets, shells, or other missiles are propelled by explosive force, typically making a characteristic loud, sharp noise. Ammunition is a supply of bullets. Just to be clear, the bullets that the shooter buys go inside the gun and then end up inside people, with the purpose of killing them.

Where does he get the guns?

Anywhere. It’s as easy as buying a Happy Meal.

Where does he use the weapons?

Anywhere. At concerts, in schools, at the movies, in nightclubs.

Who does he kill?

Anyone. Toddlers, the elderly, teenagers, mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, cousins, friends, lovers, boyfriends, girlfriends, teachers, grandmothers, grandfathers, priests, rabbis, criminals, students.

Why does he kill?

Because he’s hurt and angry and lonely and sick.

What do all the mass shooters have in common?

Own guns.
And ammunition.
Need mental health treatment.
Feel Isolation. Fear. Hate. Anger.

How many times has this happened?

Well, there’s more guns than adults in America. Like we literally have more weapons than adult people. And there’s been 1,516 mass shootings in the U.S. since Sandy Hook (when 20 children and 6 adults were killed)

Why does it keep happening?

Because mass shooters have access to guns. But watch out, once you say the word “gun,” people are all the sudden more concerned about their right to carry one than all the people who were just tragically shot. The entire country splits in two and the issue becomes not about the tragic event, but whether you are anti- or pro-gun? When really the answer should be, we’re all anti the mass shooting of people. But people get caught in the fight over who should have guns, so everyone still has them and this keeps happening. Sounds pretty insane, right?

Why do you even still have guns?

Over 200+ years ago, a small group of men wrote and signed a piece of paper that they called the Constitution—a.k.a. “the Law of the Land.” It established our government and became our fundamental law. Part of it says that people are allowed to possess weapons for their own defense….from each other?

What do we need to do?

The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and over again. And if we keep letting people buy guns over and over and over again, then they’re going to keep shooting them over and over and over again.

Some potential solutions:

  • Offer help to people who are in so much pain that they want to kill others.
  • There’s no reason for assault rifles to even exist. Burn them all.
  • Make getting a gun a really, really, really hard thing to do. Declare a war on guns.
  • Stop making guns. Stop using guns. Stop selling guns.
  • Let the Constitution evolve with humanity. It’s 230 years old and was written by 39 white men (btw—I have nothing against white men. I love many of them! But this is definitely a situation that led to taxation without equal representation…which is ironic because that’s exactly what those men were fighting against. BOOM! Crunch on that.)
  • Maybe it’s time to invite some people of all genders and colors to create the rules we govern our society by. Just a CRAZY, radical idea!

What can I do though? I’m just one human / metaphorical alien.

  • Be kind.
  • Rise above negativity.
  • Reach out to someone who is lonely.
  • Help your neighbor.
  • Stand up for what’s right.
  • Support our first responders.
  • Send lots of love and prayers.
  • Follow them with action.