SERWAN ZANGANA: The Legislature is Obligated to Serve The People of Virginia

Democrats in the Virginia legislature were displeased with Gov. Glenn Youngkin’s vetoes of two bills: SB 2 sponsored by Sen. Craig Deed, (D-Charlottesville) and HB 2 sponsored by Del. Dan Helmer, (D-Fairfax County).

The Bills would ban assault firearms and some types of ammunition. However, while Democrats are pushing to restrict assault firearms, they are failing to restrict cigarettes as the leading cause of death in America. According to Florida Atlantic University’s Schmidt College of Medicine, in 2021, 480,000 people died because of tobacco use, and firearms were a second leading cause of death, 40,000.

Therefore, the harm and devastation that firearms are causing are undeniable, but by focusing on one issue and ignoring the other raises many questions. Democrats’ argument regarding the safety of people does not stand on a solid foundation. In fact, Democrats have always twisted reality to defend their legislation. Indeed, just by explaining the capability of assault firearms and the damage they can cause, it draws a horrific image in people’s minds. And this is what Democrats attempt to do to push their legislation to be passed. But firearms are not America’s only nightmares per se.

Sadly, Virginia’s legislature is taking a different route to ignore many issues in Virginia. Regardless of their political affiliations, Virginians are sharing the same concerns about their safety and security in the community. Democrats seem to be dishonest in sponsoring some legislation and ignoring what is not favoring their political agenda.

Virginians’ lives are too valuable to lose regardless of the cause. Whether caused by firearms or tobacco use, the loved one’s death is a devastation for the family, friends, and indeed, the community. The legislature is holding the accountability to point out every issue without undermining people’s concern.

However, both Democrats and Republicans in the General Assembly should free their minds from the political conflict so they can concentrate on Virginians without the impact of Washington, DC. Democrats and Republicans continue arguments based on different perspectives regarding defending the Constitution and protecting people. In fact, the Constitution of the United States is the road-map to protect Americans. Therefore, it should not be impossible for Democrats and Republicans to find a common ground based on the Constitution so that they can protect the Citizens.

Gov. Youngkin deserves some credit as he signed HB 22, which prohibits the manufacture, transfer, and possession of an auto sear which is an illegal tool that converts a gun to an automatic weapon. HB 22 was sponsored by Del. Michael Jones, (D-Richmond).

Sponsoring legislation to benefit Virginia is an ethical duty of the legislators as they were elected to serve Virginians. Understanding their responsibility and legal duty of Virginia’s legislators can make it clear to all Virginians that the legislature is obligated to serve the people – not their own politics.

– Serwan Zangana supported Operation Iraqi Freedom as a U.S Army translator before coming to the U.S from Kurdistan, Iraq in 1997 to seek political asylum. He was granted asylum status and years later proudly became a U.S citizen. He currently serves as a correction officer in Roanoke.

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