As a fifth-grader, I know I have many years of school ahead of me. The one thing I do not know is how safe schools will be in my future or how safe any simple public place will be.

In recent years there have been many tragedies related to shootings caused by young adults. The one that affected me the most was the shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary school in Newtown, Conn.

Twenty first graders and six staff members woke up that morning starting their day like every other day not knowing the horrible events that awaited them. Many families' lives changed forever on December 14, 2012 because of the senseless act of one person, a 20-year-old who for some unknown reason shot his own mother before heading to Sandy Hook and causing such devastation. 

I ask myself, how did this person have access to a semi-automatic rifle. Did he get it from home or did he buy it? Either way, stricter gun laws need to be applied in order to help prevent future tragedies. Approximately 30 school shootings have occurred since Sandy Hook. 

In Canada, our gun laws are federally regulated, which means the same rules apply to all the provinces. In the U.S., each state has its own gun laws therefore making it easier to purchase a firearm. The U.S. has the most gun owners in the world with about 43 percent of American households owning firearms and handguns. Many firearms are bought online, making it very easy for anyone to get one.

Changes should be made, such as enforcing stricter background checks and requiring all guns to be registered with police departments and governments. No firearms or handguns should be accessible for purchase online, and families who own guns should gave gun locks on them and store them out of reach of children.

A world that is safer is a world I would like to see in my future. Nobody should feel scared going to school or to the movie theater or anywhere else for that matter.  I do not want to see another Sandy Hook Elementary school shooting in my future or the future of my family.

— Justin Judge, Quebec, Canada