Take a breath. The end of May and the start of June have been brutal. Ten Black citizens died in the white supremacist mass shooting in Buffalo, New York. Nineteen children and two teachers died in the Uvalde, Texas, elementary mass shooting. And despite the pandemic that has become a smoldering backdrop, the shootings have not stopped. We are already up to 233 this year. It’s . . . a lot. So much grief. So much of the same rinse cycle when gun violence makes the headlines. Grieving. Handwringing. Pleading to our public officials to pass stricter gun laws. Forgetting . . .
If we’re ever going to wake up from our gun control nightmare, we have to look head on at the facts, at the stories of the survivors and victims directly affected. That’s why Beacon Press is offering these three books below for free as eBooks through June 2022. Beacon is also offering more resources that speak truth to those with the power to influence gun legislation for the safety of all our communities. This page on our website lists organizations you can donate to and get involved with.
It is still up to us to hold our policymakers accountable for ending gun violence in our country.
“The gun lobby’s mythology has lethal consequences. But it has those consequences only because the American people have yet to demand a different national discussion of guns and violence. They have yet to insist on more from their elected officials than rote repetition of empty slogans. Ultimately, if we continue to allow bumper-sticker mythology to dictate gun policy to deadly effect, we have ourselves to blame.”
—Dennis A. Henigan, “Guns Don’t Kill People, People Kill People”: And Other Myths About Guns and Gun Control
“It would be delusional to think that every congressman in this country would suddenly have a change of heart after reading this suite of poems, but it would also be delusional for writers of every color and creed to remain silent. The poetic instinct almost invariably sways toward the just. We have to speak up. Otherwise we are doomed. Silence, as Tahir Djaout says, equates to death. An untold poem would indeed be its own form of suffering.”
—Colum McCann, from the introduction of Bullets into Bells: Poets & Citizens Respond to Gun Violence
“The question is not whether children should receive education about death, but whether the education they are receiving is helpful and reliable. Understanding death is a life-long process that continues from childhood through old age.”
—Earl A. Grollman, Talking about Death: A Dialogue Between Parent and Child
About the Author
Christian Coleman is the digital marketing manager at Beacon Press and editor of Beacon Broadside. Before joining Beacon, he worked in writing, copy editing, and marketing positions at Sustainable Silicon Valley and Trikone. He graduated from Boston College and the Clarion Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers’ Workshop. Follow him on Twitter at @.