Mel Wilson

Mel Wilson is a former Metro board member and current candidate in the LA mayoral race.

The nation has mourned the loss of 19 children and two teachers who were killed in a shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, on May 24. The students were 9 to 10 years old.

“When is enough, enough?” asked Mel Wilson, mayoral candidate and businessman, in a May 25 statement. 

“No parents, grandparent or family should ever suffer the pain and grief from the loss of a child, grandchild or sibling. Politicians, we need more than your hope and prayers, your public mourning, your political rhetoric about gun control. We have a duty to protect our children from senseless gun violence.”

According to reports, there have been 274 mass shootings in the United States since 2009, resulting in over 1,500 people killed and over 980 wounded. The shooting in Uvalde is the 27th school shooting that resulted in either injury or death this year and occurred 10 days after another mass shooting at Tops supermarket in Buffalo that killed 10 people.

“Politicians utter statements about hope and prayer on one side and gun control on the other side and taking a moment of silence on both sides without doing anything meaningful to stop gun violence,” Wilson said. “While I believe in the Second Amendment right to bear arms, I also believe that we need to take prudent actions to screen out the mentally ill and criminals from having easy legal access to military-style weapons. Guns alone do not cause mayhem; deranged people do.

“What about our rights or the rights of children to grow up to be adults? As parents, grandparents or older siblings, we have a right to expect our children we dropped off at school to be safe until we return to pick them up. The USA has over 320 million people, but Americans own 400 million guns. Where in the Constitution does it say that reasonable gun background checks are a breach of our Second Amendment?”

Along with shootings over the past two weeks, Los Angeles has seen its own increase in gun violence as the number of gun-related homicides reached a 15-year high in 2021. According to reports from the LAPD, the pace of killings has been even higher this year.

“There needs to be an intersection of common sense between private citizens having the right to bear arms and sworn public safety officers having the ability to be stationed on our school campuses to keep our children safe,” Wilson said. “Voters have a right and duty to demand common sensical policies, procedures and laws that the overwhelming majority of Americans want.”