Entertainment And News

‘We’re Not An Outlier On Mental Illness’ — Senator Murphy Begs For Honesty About The Real Cause Of Mass Shootings

Photo: Al Teich | Shutterstock | Twitter
Senator Chris Murphy, Uvalde school shooting victims

Senator Chris Murphy took to the Senate floor on Tuesday following the devastating school shooting in Uvalde, Texas, pleading with his colleagues to finally pass legislation that addresses the ongoing issue of gun violence in this country.

"I’m here on this floor to beg, to literally get down on my hands and knees and beg my colleagues. Find a path forward here. Work with us to find a way to pass laws that make this less likely," Murphy tearfully said.

Murphy, who was elected to the Senate just weeks before the 2012 mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, which killed 20 children, added that what happened was "inevitable."

RELATED: There Have Already Been 203 Mass Shootings In 2022 — Are Guns The Problem Yet?

Speaking to reporters afterward, Murphy didn't hesitate to slam Republicans who would go on to blame the Texas shooting on mental illness rather than on the obvious problem: guns. 

“Spare me the bulls--t about mental illness,” Murphy said. “We don’t have any more mental illness than any other country in the world. You cannot explain this through a prism of mental illness because we’re not an outlier on mental illness."

"We’re an outlier when it comes to access to firearms and the ability of criminals and very sick people to get their arms on firearms. That’s what makes America different.”

When it comes to mass shooters, they don't wake up one day and suddenly snap, but made a conscious decision to kill.

According to the Gun Violence Archive, there have been 212 mass shootings this year. There have only been 144 days in the year so far. 

RELATED: It's Been 4 Years Since I Was At UCSB When 'Incel' Elliot Rodger Killed 6 People — And Male Supremacy Is Still Killing Us

The excuse that "mental illness pulls the trigger, not the gun," does a horrible disservice to people who have lost loved ones in mass shootings, to the parents who lost their children in Texas, and to the survivors of mass shootings.

As Senator Murphy said, people with mental health issues in America don't differ from people who suffer from the same mental issues in other countries. 

Many studies have shown that a relatively small percentage of violent crimes are carried out by people with diagnosed mental health issues. The primary factor of firearm violence is gun access - not the mental health symptoms.

When it comes to ending the issue of gun violence, better mental health resources and access to mental care are one piece of the puzzle, but the biggest and most effective one will be regulating gun purchases and creating policies for more in-depth background checks, among other things.

The perpetrator of the Texas school shooting, Salvador Ramos, purchased two assault rifles on the day of his 18th birthday, the first legal thing he was able to do.

We can no longer ignore the problems associated with such liberal gun access. A freshly-turned 18-year-old shouldn't have access to firearms, period.

That was only made possible by the expanded gun rights signed into effect by Governor Abbott just last year, one of which allows people to legally carry handguns without licenses.

When will it be enough? How many children, elderly people, and everyone in between, will have to die horrifically from gun violence before lawmakers step in and do something about it?

RELATED: How The Terrifying Normalcy Of Mass Shootings Affects Our Kids (& How To Help Them Cope)

Nia Tipton is a writer living in Brooklyn. She covers pop culture, social justice issues, and trending topics. Follow her on Instagram.

Sign up for YourTango's free newsletter!