A new federal assault weapons ban and background checks of all gun buyers, which President Obama is expected to propose on Wednesday, might have done little to prevent the massacre in Newtown, Conn., last month. The semiautomatic rifle that Adam Lanza used to shoot 20 schoolchildren and 6 adults complied with Connecticut’s assault weapons ban, the police said, and he did not buy the gun himself. But another proposal that Mr. Obama is expected to make could well have slowed Mr. Lanza’s rampage: banning high-capacity magazines, like the 30-round magazines that the police said Mr. Lanza used, which have been factors in several other recent mass shootings. – [New York Times]
THE CULMINATION of V.P. Joe Biden’s conversations on what can be done in the aftermath of the Newtown massacre has now manifested in a direction that the White House intends to take. President Obama is “set to go big on guns.”
Letters from children the approximate ages of those slaughtered at Newtown have been released by President Obama as part of his campaign for new gun safety measures.
But what is the right focused on? The Weekly Standard is upset that there were no rebuttal letters to the kids released as well.
The focus of the right isn’t safety. They also want to ignore that in the United States we don’t even know all the people who have guns, including those who are illegally purchasing them.
Hiding behind the Second Amendment, which offers absolutely no guarantee for an assault weapons or high-capacity clips, the minority NRA community and their facilitators on the right continue to believe that a smaller group of Americans should make policy for the overwhelming majority of Americans who believe in mandatory background checks for all gun purchases, as well as a limit to high-capacity clips.
The White House shared three such letters with The Associated Press, from youngsters who seemed in agreement that Obama should do what’s necessary to make it harder for people to get guns. None of the writers, including Grant, who is closest in age to the 6- and 7-year-olds who were killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School, said they were against efforts to tighten access to guns.
[...] Eleven-year-old Julia, who lives in the District of Columbia and dotted the “I” in her name with a heart, wrote that she has four brothers and sisters and “I know I would not be able to bear the thought of losing any of them.” She said it should be “very hard” for people to buy guns and closed by acknowledging that Obama can’t make changes by himself.
“I know that laws have to be passed by Congress but I beg you to try very hard to make guns not allowed. Not just for me, but for the whole United States,” Julia wrote, signing the letter with “my love and regrets.” She will also be at the White House on Wednesday.
But again, it is up to every citizen to make sure that your congressperson and senator knows where you stand.
The most committed wins.
THE DETAILS… Hashtag on Twitter #whatwecando.
The rest is up to you.
On January 15, 2013, Vice President Biden delivered his policy proposals to President Obama. The package of recommendations, released publicly January 16, 2013, details ways we can help keep guns out of the wrong hands, make our schools safer, and increase access to mental health services.
Require background checks for all gun sales
The single most important thing we can do to prevent gun violence and mass shootings is to make sure those who would commit acts of violence cannot get access to guns. Right now, federally licensed firearms dealers are required to run background checks on those buying guns, but studies estimate that nearly 40 percent of all gun sales are made by private sellers who are exempt from this requirement. A national survey of inmates found that only 12 percent of those who used a handgun in a crime acquired it from a retail store or pawn shop, where a background check should have been run.
Congress should pass legislation that goes beyond closing the “gun show loophole” to require background checks for all firearm sales, with limited, common-sense exceptions for cases like certain transfers between family members and temporary transfers for hunting and sporting purposes.
- Strengthen the background check system for gun sales
- Pass a new, stronger ban on assault weapons
- Limit ammunition magazines to 10 rounds
- Finish the job of getting armor-piercing bullets off the streets
- Give law enforcement additional tools to prevent and prosecute gun crime
- End the freeze on gun violence research
- Make our schools safer with new resource officers and counselors, better emergency response plans, and more nurturing school climates
- Ensure quality coverage of mental health treatment, particularly for young people