“It is increasingly challenging when people have AR-15s (a type of rifle) slung over, and shootings occur in a crowd. And they begin running, and we don’t know if they are a shooter or not,” Brown said. “We don’t know who the ‘good guy’ versus who the ‘bad guy’ is, if everybody starts shooting.”
The deaths of five Dallas police officers and Alton Sterling and Philando Castile have exposed the fissures in American society, bringing together some of the toughest issues the nation faces into one week: mistrust of police within the Black community, gun violence, and hyper-partisanship.
To the extent that banning people on an arbitrary terrorist watch list from buying guns temporarily will prevent terrorism — which, as history has borne out, it may not — that merely provides an answer to mass shootings. The kind that make their way onto television and spur the gun debates that revolve around the 24-hour news cycle.
Veterans’ groups are criticizing the National Rifle Association for releasing a pro-Donald Trump ad that was apparently filmed at a national cemetery in violation of government policy, calling for the ad to be taken down and accusing the gun group of “using our dead to score political points.”
In April 2015, Roof walked into Shooter’s Choice in West Columbia to buy the handgun. When the store submitted the background check to the FBI, the purchase was initially flagged. But through a series of mishaps, the clerk did not deny the sale of the gun before the required three-day waiting period ended.
According to the site’s home page, the organization supports a “Buy One, Give One” policy aimed at arming less fortunate families and individuals across the country. Like a perverse cousin of Tom’s Shoes, Share the Safety promises to match each purchase of a handgun by donating an additional weapon to an in-need neighborhood of the buyer’s choice.
The time has come for extraordinary change. We need a new vision, a manifestation of the moral intelligence that is also part of who we are: a vision of how this nuclear-armed, gun-saturated nation can disarm itself and, in the process, become a force for real peace.
I still remember then-Florida state lawmaker Dorothy Bendross-Mindingall weeping over your coffin, then-Congressman Kendrick Meek standing there in speechless anguish, and then-Florida House Speaker Marco Rubio deploring the violence that took you away at just nine years of age. “In our very midst,” he said, “we sit on a crisis of epic proportions” that we fail to recognize.
Their protest didn’t work, but that shouldn’t be counted as defeat. Lewis and fellow Democrats — who even sang, with slightly revised lyrics, the old standby “We Shall Overcome” — succeeded in highlighting the cruel and crazy intransigence of the gun lobby and its claque of political water-carriers.
Among gun some gun rights advocates, talk of “control” and “regulation” can eventually end up at “conspiracy”. Some are convinced national political leaders want firearms confiscation. But why would the U.S. government want to take everyone’s guns?
Something’s happening here in the People’s House. What’s going down seems exactly clear: a stage of our democracy, men and women players speaking unscripted lines that could wait no more.
In the aftermath of the outright slaughter of 49 LGBTQ people in Orlando, Fla., the pairing of gays and guns is beginning to take on a far different meaning. Gays and lesbians saw the murders at the Pulse nightclub as an attack on their community — one that was facilitated by easy access to guns by someone who clearly shouldn’t have had that right.
“Enough is enough.” That was the message of an intensely emotional speech by Rep. Debbie Dingell during the #NoBillNoBreak sit-in for gun control legislation, as she invoked her childhood with an abusive, gun-owning father.
Speaker of the House Paul Ryan said the sit-in was a “publicity stunt.”
It probably was — but is there anything wrong with that?
As Paul Ryan moved through the standard procedure for a vote, meant to interrupt the protest, Democrats chanted “No bill, no break!” and began to sing “We Shall Overcome” with altered lyrics, like “We shall pass a bill some day.”
The scene, including chants of “No bill, no break!” was like nothing that has occurred in Congress in recent years, more reminiscent of the civil rights battles of the 1960s than today’s often predictably scripted debates.
“Now is the time for us to find a way to dramatize it, to make it real,” Lewis said after the daily recess, as Democrats took over the floor. “We have to occupy the floor of the House until there is action.”
Barely more than a week after 49 people lost their lives in the worst mass shooting in American history, Congress has once again voted against gun control. The GOP-controlled Senate rejected four measures that would’ve made background-checks mandatory and prevented names on the terror list watch list from buying guns
A day after the Senate rejected four gun control measures in the wake of the Orlando shooting, a bipartisan group of 9 senators expressed their willingness to compromise on gun control. Specifically, legislation meant to prevent people on the no-fly list and the selective screening list from buying guns.
In the wake of the mass shooting at Orlando’s Pulse gay nightclub, Donald Trump suggested that the solution would have been allowing clubgoers to carry hidden firearms. Research on gun control, however, demonstrates that allowing concealed carry is anything but the answer in order to prevent more horrific, violent incidents.
When has there been such a burst of sickening headlines from one place? First, the killing of singer Christina Grimmie by an unhinged stalker with a handgun. Then the vicious slaughter at the Pulse nightclub by a homophobic wannabe jihadist with an AR-15. And, finally, the snatching of a toddler by an alligator roaming a Disney lake. All three stories are datelined Orlando, Fla., a stunningly freakish coincidence.
The effort to keep firearms away from people on terrorism watch lists faced an uphill battle, with critics in both parties skeptical about its chances. “What am I going to tell the community of Orlando?” asked Democratic Senator Bill Nelson of Florida after the votes. “Sadly, what I’m going to tell them is the NRA won again.”
The laws in New York and Connecticut, among the strictest in the nation, were enacted after a gunman with a semiautomatic rifle killed 20 young children and six educators in 2012 at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut.
Wayne LaPierre blamed political correctness for Mateen’s ability to buy weapons. “We all mourn from what happened, but we face a terrorist challenge,” he said on CBS News’ “Face the Nation.” He accused the administration of attempting to divert attention away from terrorism and said the issue of gun control had been politicized.