As an elected leader, it is my responsibility to speak out and lead on the most urgent and pressing issues of our time. Sadly, one of those issues is gun violence, which is why I wrote an op-ed, published today in the Seattle Times, sharing my personal story.
Anyone who knows me has heard me talk about when my former boss Arizona Congresswoman Gabby Giffords was shot in the head outside a Tucson grocery store. Six people were killed that day, including my friend and colleague Gabe Zimmerman, and thirteen others were wounded. I often tell the story because that day’s grief, confusion and anger have not left me. But, unfortunately, guns are responsible for more deaths today than ever before and 2021 is shaping up to be the worst year for gun violence in our nation’s history.
I know that an op-ed won’t fix the problem of gun violence in our communities. But I also know that standing by silently waiting for things to get better won’t work either. As a state representative, I have the power to make my voice heard, to lead on advocacy and legislation, and to do everything I can to ensure we pass common sense gun responsibility measures in Olympia. I genuinely believe that we can build a safer future together.