Following the tragic terrorist attack in Orlando, Florida it is quite clear that the American public is split into two very distinct camps: half of the country believes the recent mass-murder is a result of the religious war being waged against the western world by radical jihads, while the other half believes it exemplifies guns gone wild.

In order to stop the barrage of terrorism the western world has now become used to, it is important for us to realize the root of the problem. There are radical forces that despise the freedom of the western world; they want to murder westerners in large quantities. The terrorists involved in the tragedies of Orlando, Fort Hood, and San Bernardino all studied under the same religious leader. As a country we need to specifically target and monitor radical religious leaders and networks in order to prevent more attacks. By refusing to address the true problem we will only continue to suffer the same horrific attacks.

Gun law advocates are quick to claim that by heavily regulating these weapons home-grown terrorism will decrease. That simply isn’t the case. Radicals don’t follow laws.  The only people disarmed are those that are simply trying to live peacefully. Disarming the public makes them larger targets. The radical terror attacks in Paris that claimed the lives of 130 innocent people happened in a severely gun-restricted city.

Radicals will use whatever they can get their hands on to carry out their mission of destroying westerners. The 2016 Brussels terror attack, the 2013 Boston marathon attack, the 2005 London bombings and 9/11 are just some of the many horrific incidences in which mass destruction was carried out without guns. As a country, we must remain focused on the root problem: There are people who wish to destroy western civilization in its entirety. They receive training and support from the middle east, either in person or through connections; recently often through the terror organization ISIS. By refusing to understand this connection and by instead blaming the weapons radicals use to perpetrate terror, the attacks will only get worse.

It is not “racist” or small-minded to monitor specific communities and networks during trying times. We must identify the enemy: radical jihadists who want to destroy western civilization. Preventing Americans from arming themselves, when clearly the government struggles to protect its citizens, is the wrong approach. We must admit what these terrorists’ true motives are and root out where those ideas come from and stop them from spreading in order to prevent future attacks and lives lost.