In the wake of another heart-wrenching episode of gun violence in Maine, America finds itself in a somber reflection once again.

The new House Speaker, Mr. Johnson, voiced the sorrow and hope of many when he said, “This is a dark time in America… We have a lot of problems, and we’re really, really hopeful and prayerful. Prayer is appropriate at a time like this — that the evil can end, and this senseless violence can stop.”

Yet, as the echoes of gunfire fade into the somber chants of prayers and hopes, I can’t help but recognize the glaring chasm between our hopes and actionable solutions, and hope is not a strategy, Mr. Speaker.

Teen shooters at Columbine High School, April 1999. Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

As a Navy SEAL, I’ve been intimately acquainted with firearms, understanding their destructive capabilities yet also respecting them as tools when placed in responsible hands.