Philadelphia Union player makes plea for Congress to end gun violence
This comes during one of the deadliest weekends of the nation’s history, where two separate mass shootings resulted in 29 lives lost.
In the midst of one of the deadliest weekends in U.S. history, Alejandro Bedoya has seen enough.
After scoring the first goal of the Philadelphia Union’s match against D.C. United, the midfielder shouted into a sideline mic, calling on Congress to do something to end the gun violence that is plaguing our country.
— Goal (@goal) August 5, 2019
The gun control debate in the U.S. has once again entered into the forefront after two separate mass shootings on Aug. 3 & 4 took dozens of lives. On Saturday morning, a gunman entered into a Walmart in El Paso, Texas, and killed 20 people, while injuring 26 more. Just 13 hours later, a mass shooting in Dayton, Ohio took the lives of 9, and injured 20 others.
After the game, Bedoya expanded on his thoughts:
“I’m not going to sit idly by and watch this stuff happen and not say something,” he said. “Before I’m an athlete, before I’m a soccer player, I’m a human being first.”
The @PhilaUnion's captain @AleBedoya17 decided to use his platform to challenge lawmakers to end gun violence after two mass shootings over the weekend. His challenge to Congress: "Become united and make something happen." Full story: https://t.co/GoUFAcwBjc
: @thegoalkeeper pic.twitter.com/XYTMno7Y7D
— The Philadelphia Inquirer (@PhillyInquirer) August 5, 2019
This isn’t the first time Bedoya has used his looked to use his platform to support this particular cause.
In March 2018, less than a month after the Marjorie Stoneman Douglas High School shooting in Parkland, Florida, Bedoya wore a shirt under his jersey, that read: “MSD Strong,” in support of the 17 individuals who were killed during that mass shooting.
That tragedy was close to home for Bedoya, who was raised 17 miles away from Parkland in Weston, Florida.
This weekend’s two mass shootings brings the number of mass shootings in the U.S. in 2019 to a total of 251.
As high as that number is, the question remains just how many mass shootings need to occur before President Trump and the U.S. Congress move forward with gun control legislation that in other countries has been proven to drastically reduce these occurrences.
In recent years — whether it was the mass shooting in Las Vegas, Nevada, the nightclub shooting in Orlando, Florida, or the Sutherland Springs church shooting in Texas — there has been constant talk about gun control reform, but very little action.
If history tells us anything, it is likely that more solutions in the form of gun control legislation will be offered in the wake of these two mass shootings, but little to nothing will actually be done to address the issue head-on.