We Will Not Accept This “Routine”

President Obama's use of the word "routine" during his briefing on the mass shooting in Roseburg, Oregon has haunted me. "The way our society reacts to mass shootings has become far too routine", he said. "The reporting is routine. My response here at this podium ends up being routine. The conversation in the aftermath of it …" It has all become routine.

The day after the shooting as I embarked on my morning, I wondered how many victim families in Roseburg Oregon shared routines like mine prior to that fateful day? Get up, have breakfast, rush off to school and work - "Goodbye, have a good day!" - fully intending that you would see that person in 8 hours. Later, you will catch up, have dinner, talk all about what you did that day. 10 families' lives were unspeakably shattered yesterday – their routines are broken – possibly forever. Many more surviving victims will endure years of anguish, surgeries and psychological trauma. I agree with President Obama. Our thoughts and prayers are not enough. They do not "capture the heartache and grief and anger we should feel…"

My routine after a mass shooting is to work on locating the data – how did the shooter get his gun? Should he have been able to? What could have prevented the incident from happening? Write press releases. I'm breaking my routine this time, and I'm asking you to do so as well.

I'm not going to focus on the shooter or how he got his gun. Instead I'm going to work on asking everyone in my reach, to get out of your comfort zones, break your routine – for just 4 minutes. Click on the link below – type in your zip code and – send a message to your local elected officials.


Tell them you want a comprehensive background check bill implemented into law. Tell them you are only willing to elect courageous and responsible officials who make their positions known and who take actual steps to implement common sense gun laws.

If your routine is one of silence or one of inaction after public shootings - break it! Join our collective voice.

Julia Wyman |  Executive Director

States United to Prevent Gun Violence