On three separate occasions I’ve been in an airport on the same day as a shooting that occurred there. I’ve also performed in locations that had an active gunman later that day or the next. My wife once performed at Pulse Nightclub, which later became the scene of one of the worst mass shootings in American history.
Recently we were at the movies and another patron stood up and loudly started running towards the exit. My first instinct was to duck for cover.
This is the new normal.
I live in fear that my next trip might be to the scene of our next mass shooting. Crowded spaces seem terrifying now and, perhaps worst of all, even people in a darkened theater - a place designed for escape and entertainment - have to be on high alert.
I don’t know what the solution is, but I am so tired. Every day or so I read about another act of gun violence in another corner of the U.S. and it’s exhausting. I wasn’t designed to experience so much pain.
The emotional weight of these tragedies is too much to bear. They’ve directly affected close friends, communities where I’ve lived, and places I’ve been. Something has to be done.
I met someone on tour this summer who told me that “voting is selfish” and they “always vote for what’s best for me”. Well, I selfishly think everyone deserves a chance to see another day and feel safe wherever they go - myself included. I don’t know about you but that’s the world I want to live in.
For ways you can make a difference, check out Everytown For Gun Safety.