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Texas School Shooting: Gun Control Issue or Mental Health Issue?

On May 24, 2022, 18-year-old Salvador Ramos shot and killed 21 people, 19 of which were elementary students. Before this, Ramos killed his grandmother. The shooter lived with his grandparents in Texas and had been demonstrating signs of aggression and violence. Stephen Garcia, Salvador Ramos' childhood best friend gave some insight into the shooter's behavior. He mentioned that Ramos was heavily bullied in and out of school, for a speech impediment and other reasons, but was generally shy and sweet. However, his behavior drastically changed as the boy grew. Ramos began heavily self-harming, in fact, Garcia mentioned that he cut slashes on his own face. Ramos was also said to begin dressing in all black and demonstrate aggressive behavior towards his mother. A plethora of disturbing happenings took place before the actual shooting, including Ramos posting three different Facebook posts. The first said, "I am going to shoot my grandmother." The second said, "I shot my grandmother." Lastly, Ramos posted, "I'm going to shoot an elementary school."

10-year-old Uziyah Garcia, shooting victim. Photo creds: CNN

The guns Ramos used to commit these heinous acts were legally purchased, and many seem to believe that this is an issue of gun-control. After all, an aggressive 18-year-old boy simply being able to go out and purchase ammunition is indeed

concerning. As violent acts occur all over the US, many would view this as a call to action. A call to protest for safer and stricter gun laws. A call to do something about gun violence. However, others disagree. Others do not see this as an issue of gun control. For instance, Alabama Senator Tommy Tuberville stated, "Its a people problem. It's not a gun problem." He went on to say, "You can't do away with all the guns. We have to start treating people." Senator Tuberville believes that the best and most effective way to stagger the school shooting rates is to focus on mental health and treatment. What do you think?



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