Days after the deadly attack on a mosque in New Zealand, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced that the would be moving towards a national ban on a type of weapon used in the attack. Even the opposition party ended up supporting the ban. This was the first mass shooting in New Zealand since 1997, and days later they move to ban all the military-style semiautomatic weapons and the high capacity magazines in the country. 

At the same time, America is facing the suicides of two Parkland shooting survivors and the dozens of other shootings in the recent years including in Las Vegas, Sandy Hook and Orlando; however, there have been no definitive moves towards banning the semiautomatic rifles used in some of the deadliest shootings or even tightening gun restrictions. No matter the death toll, the country continues to grip tightly onto the lax restrictions and unnecessary gun types in the name of the Second Amendment.

The New York Times compared 16 countries based on how one can purchase a gun. Most countries have six to seven step which generally includes a waiting period or even a training course, but America ties with Yemen in the least number of steps. Both require only two steps.

It is understandable that our outstanding amount of freedoms is what sets us apart from other countries, but what about the ability to walk into a store and get a gun an hour later makes our country so great? Allowing persons with a background of mental illness induced violence and dishonorable discharge does not make a country great again; it makes us lose even more innocent lives. 

Instead of continuing with our ignorance we need to learn from other countries. We are a great country, but admitting that a policy of ours is wrong and someone else is doing it better does not make us worse or weak. Change is crucial for growth. If nothing else, New Zealand teaches us that tragedy can breed a positive change. Now we need to listen.

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