Kids Talk About Helping the President Announce New Gun Control Proposals
“I felt really happy,” 8-year-old Hinna Zeejah told the New York Daily News, reflecting on her day at the White House.
But it was something that made her feel “really sad” that led to her visit on Wednesday – the deadly shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut.
“I love my country,” Hinna wrote, in a letter to the President. “And I want everyone to be happy and safe. No guns!”
After reading Hinna’s letter, the White House invited her to join the President at his news conference on Wednesday – the news conference where he announced new proposals aimed at preventing gun violence.
So she and her parents traveled from their home in Oceanside, New York, to be there.
Three other kids were invited to the news conference as well – 11-year-old Julia Stokes from Washington, DC, 10-year-old Taejah Goode of Douglasville, Georgia, and 8-year-old Grant Fritz from Maryland.
After listening to the President on Wednesday, Taejah told Atlanta TV station WXIA he was “thinking of excitement that people (are) not going to be suffering anymore … that people will have peace in the world and won’t have to be fighting all the time.”
“You don’t want to lose your life over one little thing like a bullet,” he added.
The President read all of the kids’ letters at the news conference.
“These are some pretty smart letters from some pretty smart young people,” Mister Obama said.
“I am writing you to ask you to STOP gun violence,” Taejah wrote.
“Please don’t let people own machine guns or other powerful guns like that,” Grant wrote.
“I have four brothers and sisters and I know I would not be able to bear losing any of them,” Julia said in her letter. “I may not (be) that into politics but my opinion is that it should be very hard for people to buy guns.”
“I feel terrible for the parents who lost their children,” Hinna wrote in another part of her letter. “Mr. President, can we do something which will STOP all of these terrible problems?”
“I don’t like guns,” Hinnah added Wednesday, in an interview with Newsday, her hometown newspaper. “I’m really scared of them.”
According to Newsday, Hinna never would have made it to the White House had her father not suggested she write the letter.
After the news conference, the President gave her and each of the other kids a high-five.
“Today’s been an exciting day,” Taejah told WXIA reporter Jon Shirek.
“I am proud of myself,” Hinna said, according to the Daily News.
And their families are proud of them, too.
As Hinna’s uncle Ozair Barlas asked Newsday, speaking as a grownup, “If a kid can think like that, why can’t we?”