I was appalled to hear Rick Santorum’s comments on CNN criticizing our young people and telling them to “learn CPR” as one of the “solutions” to end gun violence. Since many physicians have spoken eloquently about the fact that CPR cannot save someone who is bleeding to death, I will speak as a person of faith.

For Jesus said, “I was sick, I was a stranger, I was hungry … Whatever you do for the least of these who are members of my family, you do unto me” (Matthew 25)

The next time there is a protest, I hope Santorum will go to listen to our teens and children who are “the least of these,” for they are calling our nation to change its addiction to violence. Our children are out in the street calling for change on all levels — for more mental health support, for an end to bullying, and yes, for a ban on assault weapons and for universal background checks.

If he had been there to listen, he would have heard that they understand that this is a multifaceted problem that must be tackled on every level possible. And yes, even then, there will still be tragedies. But I speak as a mother who has lost a child — if one life is saved, it will be worth it.

Our children are beautiful, scared, and courageous. They are calling for common-sense gun laws. The lethality of these weapons is nothing that Jesus would defend. Santorum’s talking point about “phony gun laws” is clearly a calculated and tragic effort to get NRA money the next time he runs for office. His allegiance is misplaced.

It’s time for Santorum to come to Jesus. Jesus is out in the street with our children calling us to change.

The Rev. Allison Smith


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