One Child's Story of Gun Violence

In a piece for Ebony, teenager Tania Williams recounts how the gun violence in Chicago has affected her own life and her family's, including the time a friend was shot on her porch.

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A 9mm pistol and ammunition (Andy Clark/Reuters)

As politicians tussle over weapons legislation, the gunshots continue to fly in cities like Chicago, eventually landing on someone's doorstep. Young Tania Williams writes at Ebony that after the first time she experienced a friend being shot, she couldn't stop shaking.

As my mom called the ambulance, she told me to get him some water, but I couldn't because I was shaking so bad.  I was in shock. When the ambulance came, they took him to the hospital. That night I was so glad my little sister and big sister were asleep, because I wouldn't have them go through what I what I did.

This event has really affected my mom and me. That was the first time we both witnessed someone being shot.  To make it even worse, it was on our porch.  Every day I have to walk out of my house and see the gunshots in the doors.  Sometimes I wonder, what if my mom was shot?  I know I would cry every day, and my life wouldn't be the same.  I was glad to find out my mom's friend didn't die, but I was still sad about what happened to him. To witness a person being shot is not a good experience.

In my neighborhood, I've witnessed a lot, such as when I saw some kid probably 15 or 16 years old shoot down the street and hit an old man.  This made me feel my neighborhood isn't safe, like the streets are a war zone. 

Read Tania Williams' entire piece at Ebony.com.

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