What's on our Mind 3-31-2023

Seat belts became a federal requirement in every vehicle starting in 1968. As a result in 2012, the average vehicle’s fatality risk for drivers and passengers was 56 percent lower than in the 1960s.
Annual opioid deaths more than doubled between 2010 and 2017, presenting a very dire public health crisis. Americans were getting unnecessary and unregulated access to opioids, a highly addictive drug, that was causing thousands of deaths.
Congress stepped in to enact federal laws to prevent and treat opioid misuse. JAC’s candidates in Congress have introduced legislation to strengthen the prohibition on illegal marketing and distribution of opioids. Congress has also passed other measures to address this health crisis.
Today, more people die from firearms than auto accidents in this country. Firearms are the leading cause of death for youth, teens, and college-aged people in America. Yet nothing is being done to address this.
When polio struck our country, resources were directed to deal with this health crisis. The same held true with COVID. Gun violence is a public health emergency. A comprehensive approach, which we have used to successfully deal with other problems, is needed to deal with the gun violence epidemic.
We count on our government to ensure our health by ensuring that the water we drink, to the food we eat, and even the medicine we use is safe. But the GOP has weaponized our health, using it to curry support from an industry that is filling our streets with instruments of war and their campaign war chests with millions of dollars from gun manufacturers.
The GOP’s answer to gun violence is to turn our schools into fortresses with armed guards, bulletproof bunkers inside classrooms, and shooter drills. There were no drills to escape polio when that disease was a public health crisis. The GOP is treating gun violence with a run, hide, and arm approach.
If the GOP won’t finally step up to save lives, then we will step up to defeat them at the ballot box. Get involved with JAC. Support candidates. Help turn out the vote. We can change this moment of ongoing national crisis.
Elections have consequences.