It must have been a Friday. I’m really not sure. But I am sure it was a counselors’ day off. Richly deserved and greatly appreciated. We were the counselors at Camp Shawnee, near Waymart, Pa., not to be confused with another Shawnee somewhere along the Delaware.
Banning the sale of long guns will not stop someone hell-bent on killing large numbers of people in one horrific event.
Most who have committed mass shootings (the Oct. 1, 2017, Las Vegas massacre excluded) are young males in their teens or 20s.
I have no doubt if AK-15s or AK-47s were banned, the mass killings would continue, perhaps on a much larger and deadlier scale.
Take away the guns and bombs could be next.
Instructions for making bombs are readily available on the Internet and the components can be purchased easily at local hardware stores.
My first run for office came in 2002 as a 23-year-old Allentown kid.
I ran because I was concerned about education funding and job creation, labor rights and veterans’ health care.
But when talking to voters, it was clear their biggest concern was — wait for it — property tax relief.
So here I was, someone who never owned a home, talking to voters about how I was going to address the rising costs of property taxes.
To no one’s surprise, I lost that race.
A few weeks ago, I had the pleasure of seeing children learn a plethora of critical life skills in less than an hour’s time. I spent part of my morning volunteering at the summer breakfast camp in Coplay.
Here are the facts as we know them as of this past weekend:
There was another shooting – the 250th of the year.
Aug. 4: Dayton, Ohio –mass shooting in historic district, nine dead, 27 injured.
Aug. 3: El Paso, Texas – mass shooting in Walmart, 22 dead, 24 injured.
Aug. 2: Pomfred, Md. – domestic shooting, three dead, one injured.
Aug. 2: Suffolk, Va. – multiple crime scenes, two dead, three injured.
Mass shootings in the United States this year, according to the Gun Violence Archives include:
January – 28 mass shootings, 50 killed, 86 wounded.
To the Editor:
We would like to extend our sincere thanks and appreciation to everyone who came to our assistance after our SUV was hit by a truck at the intersection of Lincoln Avenue and Cedar Crest Boulevard July 26.
Immediately people came to try to help us but our SUV was on its side and we were trapped.
“The mass shootings in El Paso and Dayton are the latest, horrific examples of the violent scourge that is gripping America.
“The perpetrators of these murders are cowards.
“We must do more to keep guns out of the hands of psychopaths.
“While no law will end mass shootings entirely, it’s time for Congress to act to help keep our communities safer.
“We should start by passing bipartisan proposals such as my legislation with Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., to expand background checks to all commercial firearm sales.
“Frances and I are mourning an especially horrific 24 hours of gun violence in America. We’re praying for the victims of El Paso and Dayton and two young women shot in Philadelphia last night. Many ills contribute to this rising violence. We can and must take action.
“We can ban assault weapons and institute stricter background checks. We can make communities safer. We can target white nationalism and promote tolerance. We can invest in mental health care and help those struggling.
“We cannot accept this violence as normal.
“We must act.”
It’s Sunday afternoon, and my phone has already rung a handful of times.
It could be Microsoft, alerting me that my software license has expired.
Or PECO, suggesting I stay on the line to talk to a representative about lowering my energy bill.
Or a credit card company, stressing that my credit is fine but I might be able to lower my interest rate.
Or the federal government, advising me that I owe income taxes and a warrant has been issued for my arrest.
It’s maddening, right?
I am the summer intern for the Lehigh Valley Press weekly newspapers. I am 19 years old and entering my sophomore year at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
This summer has been an exciting one.
Obtaining my driver’s license, securing an internship and seeing my brother graduate from an Ivy League university, which has not only caused him stress for four grueling academic years, but physical pain as his studies at Cornell University once forced an ulcer to burn through the wall of his stomach and allow digestive juices to leak into his abdominal cavity.