Aka some 4th of July American bullshit.
  1. During the summers, I work at an outdoor venue in Buffalo, NY called Canalside.
  2. Its a big stretch of boardwalk area along a section of the lake between the harbor and the canals.
  3. It's a really cool, pretty area that hosts a weekly concert series as well as tons of other random events and concerts throughout the summer.
  4. Yesterday there was an all day event for Independence Day. I worked from 1pm-12am
    I work at the beer tent there, so don't worry…I got to day drink.
  5. Anyway, it was a great event and went relatively smoothly for the most part all day. Then the sun went down.
  6. The fireworks were delayed an hour.
    First of all, I personally think fireworks are pretty dumb. But of course they are super popular in America.
  7. People got pretty restless. And then some of them got rowdy.
    Now, most people were just agitated and that was it. Fine. But there were also several fights that broke out. Like, legit fights. And not really because of the fireworks. But just tensions were high + alcohol.
  8. But it was nothing security couldn't easily handle. And soon the fireworks were off. The worst was yet to come though.
  9. Shortly after the fireworks show started, right in front of the beer tent where I worked, there was an armed shooter scare. People started screaming and running. We were told by security to get down under the tables where we were serving people. The sound of the firework blasts did not help the situation.
  10. I'm not quite sure what ever ended up being the case with this situation. But it was by far the scariest moment of my life.
  11. It was 97% smooth sailing all day and pretty enjoyable. But then it all was almost completely ruined because someone had the ability to walk into the crowd with a gun.
  12. There were thousands and thousands of people there. Families. Friends. Strangers. Lovers. Humans.
  13. My heart nearly pounded through my chest. And it was only an armed shooter scare. No one was actually shot.
  14. So I can't even imagine what it was like to be at Pulse in Orlando.
  15. Or Virginia Tech.
  16. Or Aurora Colorado.
  17. Or Newton.
  18. Or literally countless other times and places. Too many times and places.
  19. And it didn't just take me being involved in this situation to take notice. I've been a staunch supporter of heavy gun control for as long as I've known what guns were. I'm relatively vocal about it on Twitter, but I haven't been on List yet.
    It's one of several very glaring things about this country that I really just can't stand. I won't go into full detail here on my disdain. Just know it exists. And honestly it comes from a place of love. I know how far along we could be as a nation, but we just aren't there yet. In so many ways. And we're kinda far away, too.
  20. I don't want this really minor incident to seem like it's my tipping point. It's not. That happened long ago. When children were shot in their school. I just want the conversation to continue, every day, even on days when a mass shooting isn't commanding every news headline.
  21. I don't want to hear the arguments. I don't want to hear the excuses. I'm beyond tired of it all.
  22. Gun control.
  23. We need it. We've been needing it.
  24. Happy Independence Day, everyone.