We Need to Ban Semi-Automatic Firearms

Mourners in El Paso hold a vigil to honor the victims of Saturday's mass shooting.Roberto E. Rosales/Albuquerque Journal via ZUMA

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As usual, I don’t have a lot to say about our latest series of mass shootings. I’ll just repeat my standard prescription: the only real answer is to ban semi-automatic firearms. This is obviously not going to happen anytime soon, but it should be the goal. The only way to move public opinion on this issue is to start saying this clearly, loudly, and persistently.

And let’s all forget about the NRA, OK? Sure, they’re a terrible, corrupt organization, but they aren’t the root problem. Public opinion is. There are just too many people in America who like their guns and too few people who feel strongly about getting rid of them. To make a difference, that has to change. Like gay marriage, it will change maybe one percent a year and it will take 20 or 30 years to finally come to fruition. But what other way is there?

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Thank you!

We didn't know what to expect when we told you we needed to raise $400,000 before our fiscal year closed on June 30, and we're thrilled to report that our incredible community of readers contributed some $415,000 to help us keep charging as hard as we can during this crazy year.

You just sent an incredible message: that quality journalism doesn't have to answer to advertisers, billionaires, or hedge funds; that newsrooms can eke out an existence thanks primarily to the generosity of its readers. That's so powerful. Especially during what's been called a "media extinction event" when those looking to make a profit from the news pull back, the Mother Jones community steps in.

The months and years ahead won't be easy. Far from it. But there's no one we'd rather face the big challenges with than you, our committed and passionate readers, and our team of fearless reporters who show up every day.

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