Sorrow and rage

Another day, another mass shooting. It was the 998th one since the devastating attack at Sandy Hook Elementary School in December 2012.

I cried that day and I cried again Sunday as I watched the news about 49 people killed and scores more injured in a mass shooting at a gay nightclub in Orlando, Fla.

They’re tears of both sorrow and rage.

But tears aren’t enough. Like others, I’m tired of the “thoughts and prayers” (however well-meaning) that go out even as some say now is not the time to politicize such a tragedy.

Actually, now is the time to politicize the hell out of this tragedy— and the others that came before it. Here’s how: Call or write your elected representatives to demand change. Visit to get started. Learn more about other ways to help in the effort to end gun violence at

On Tuesday, California lawmakers were scheduled to vote on a package of 11 gun control bills designed to close the loopholes that allow the sale of semi-automatic rifles with detachable magazines. The bills were introduced in the wake of the 2015 San Bernardino shooting that killed 14 people and injured 22 others. An illegally modified AR-15 was used in that attack—the same gun that the assailant legally obtained and used in Orlando’s shooting.

It’s time to stop talking about self-defense needs and hunters’ rights. No one can defend the “need” or “right” to own the kind of high-caliber assault weapon that can destroy the lives of so many in an instant. No one.