Let’s Talk About Gun Violence

I grew up in a small town outside of Raleigh.  Like most good old southern boys, I bought my first 22 single-shot rifle when I was about 12. We all grew up around guns and our parents instilled in us the rules of gun safety.

I never knew my grandfather. He was the first Deputy Sheriff in Wake County to be shot in the line of duty.  My brother-in-law was shot in a hunting accident.  My brother was shot twice by a drunk, disgruntled employee.  One of my first really, really sad memories as a five-year-old child was my hero, Superman, killing himself with a pistol.  All of our lives have been impacted by gun violence. 

In an average year, 1,588 people die and 3,530 are wounded by guns in North Carolina. North Carolina has the 14th-highest rate of gun violence in the US. Gun deaths and injuries cost North Carolina $19.5 billion each year, of which $471 million is paid by taxpayers.

Gun violence is a complex issue, but the one variable that is clearly a game changer in this country is the ready availability of guns.

Every year, the gun industry rakes in approximately $9 billion as they continue to manufacture increasingly deadly products, including military-style, high-capacity weapons and those designed for concealment. 

I believe in the Constitution and the Second Amendment.  What I want is to work with communities to find solutions to reduce – actually, to end gun violence. I invite you to join me because “We are Better Together” and we will find better solutions “Together”

– Ben