Gabby Giffords Won’t Back Down

A love story that magnifies our country’s gun violence epidemic.

Gabby Giffords Won't Back Down

U.S. Representative Gabby Giffords was shot in the head while holding a campaign stop in Arizona in 2011. A judge, a little girl and a member of her staff were killed. She was shot 2 days before she was to start IVF.

The U.S. has had more than one mass shooting every week so far in 2022 and no week without at least four shootings. As I write this, two mass shootings took place on the same day in Greenwood and Beech Grove, Indiana.

While this moving documentary focuses on gun reform, it centers on her recovery with the help of her husband, former astronaut Mark Kelly. While she lost the use of her right arm and leg, Ms. Giffords had to learn how to talk again. Mr. Kelly was there at every turn and was soon elected U.S. Senator following the death of John McCain.

As to gun reform, it is important to note that our couple are gun owners. Leading a gun safety reform group known simply as Giffords, they want our country to focus on gun violence, not just gun possession. President Obama spoke on behalf of Ms. Giffords in this film.

As I watched this film, I couldn’t help but notice Indiana officials praise the young man who shot and killed the Greenwood assassin. Not only did they overlook how the killer was able to buy his weapon but how a similarly armed good citizen came close to shooting the wrong person when Ms. Giffords and others were gunned down.

In that regard, we cannot let politicians advocate turning our country into a daily gunfight at the OK Corral. Certain weapons like AR-15s serve no other purpose other than to kill innocent people and they must be banned so Americans can live full, healthy lives. Keep in mind that AR-15s or similar weapons were used in the 2012 Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting, the 2015 San Bernardino attack, the 2017 Las Vegas shooting, the 2017 Sutherland Springs church shooting and the 2018 Stoneman Douglas High School shooting. And then there was Uvalde and Buffalo.

Ms. Giffords’ ordeal must be both admired and remembered. We need a gun policy where we can erase American ridicule and earn international respect. We need to do this in the name of Ms. Giffords.