Forum Post: How Many More Shootings Will It Take? YOUR Child, Spouse, Sibling, Parent, Neighbor, Friend???
Posted 10 months ago on Nov. 6, 2013, 6:35 a.m. EST by WSmith
from Cornelius, OR
This content is user submitted and not an official statement
What's Our Government Doing To Stop Daily Deadly Shootings? Not Much
Gun legislation stalls as violence becomes a daily part of our lives.
["It's the people, not the guns." BULLSHIT! No Gun, No Shootings!!]
Peter Zachariadis | November 1, 2013
The .223-caliber Bushmaster rifle is similar to one of the primary weapons used in the tragic Sandy Hook School massacre in Newtown, Connecticut. (Photo by Christopher Lane/Getty; Design by Lauren Wade)
For many Americans, the names of the locations alone have become synonymous with painful memories of gun violence and mass murder: Newtown. Aurora. Ft. Hood. Virginia Tech.
Add Los Angeles International Airport to the list of public places rocked by gun violence, after a 23-year-old man shot and killed a Transportation Security Administration officer with an assault rifle while trying to breach a checkpoint on Friday morning. Whether the man had a permit for the assault weapon has not been determined, but a ban on such weapons may have prevented the attack.
Despite an ever-growing and ever-troubling number of deadly shootings, getting any momentum on an issue like gun control is going to be a tough sell within a Congress that forced a government shutdown, said Ladd Everitt, a spokesman for the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence.
“We’re all victims of a process that is broken,” Everitt said. “The reason they’re reluctant to do anything is gridlock... You have to have a level of crisis to get anything done. What moves the Republican Party is their own survival.”
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That survival might depend on a populace that is fed up with gun massacres—and willing to act on it.
Despite polling that suggested 90% of Americans favored more stringent background checks for gun buyers, a renewal of the assault weapons ban and a limitation on high-capacity magazines, the U.S. Senate failed to pass the measures last April. That, despite President Barack Obama making it one of the cornerstones of his second term after 20 children and six adults were murdered at Sandy Hook Elementary School on Dec. 14, 2012.
But Republicans aren't alone in opposing gun control.
Earlier California's Gov. Jerry Brown, a leading Democrat, vetoed bills to restrict the sale and posession of semi-automatic assault weapons saying they won't reduce criminal activity enough to warrant infringement on gun owners' rights. And other Democrats may be scared off of backing tougher controls after Democrats in Colorado were recalled from office for doing so.
The last concrete legislation that addressed the issue of controlling guns was the federal Assault Weapons Ban of 1994. As the ban was set to expire in 2004, the Violence Policy Center in Washington D.C. recommended ways to extend and expand the legislation by including more types of assault weapons in the ban, that the definition of “assault weapon” be improved to include more dangerous weapons, and that the import of high-capacity magazines be banned.
Those recommendations went unheeded, the ban expired, and there has been no move to renew it. Efforts to expand background checks to include gun shows and online sales has met heavy resistance. Even the prospect of limiting high-capacity magazines sent gun rights advocates scrambling to amass them amid fears of stricter legislation. Those fears proved to be unfounded due in no large part to a Congress that refused to bow to a majority of Americans in favor of tighter rules.
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President Obama called for the formation of a Gun Violence Task Force headed by Vice President Joseph Biden after the school massacre to make recommendations on proposed legislation. When the legislation faltered with a majority of GOP leaders opposing it, he called the failure a “shameful day for Washington.” A phone call and questions submitted to the Vice President’s office about the task force’s future role in gun control legislation went unanswered Friday.
At first, Everitt and his supporters were surprised by the quiet death of the federal Assault Weapons Ban, but now he sees the problems in Congress as something far more serious than ideology.
“Compromise is not a dirty word,” Everitt said. “It’s something far broader than guns. It’s the inability of government to function on routine matters.”
His organization continues to work on promoting gun control legislation, but that might not happen until after the mid-term elections of 2014.
Those elections might prove pivotal in voting out members of Congress who are completely against gun control, he said. Those elections may be the only way to relieve the gridlock.
“We have to go into the mid-terms by supporting those people who voted the right way and withholding support from those who were wrong,” Everitt said.
Demand and End to Gun Violence: http://takeaction.takepart.com/actions/demand-end-gun-violence?cmpid=tp-ptnr-tab-d84909c52edcceb20c7bba62052b1b01