By Jueseppi B.
President Barack Obama, with Vice President Joe Biden, delivers a statement and takes questions about the Administration’s gun policy process in the wake of the shootings in Newtown, Connecticut, in the James S. Brady Press Briefing Room of the White House, Dec. 19, 2012. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)
President Obama: “Words Need to Lead to Action” on Gun Violence
By Colleen Curtis December 19, 2012 White House Blog
Five days after the tragic shooting at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, President Obama said that he is committed to reducing the epidemic of gun violence that plagues this country every single day.
At a press conference in the James S. Brady Press Briefing Room at the White House, the President announced that Vice President Joe Biden will lead a new initiative that has been tasked with identifying concrete proposals for real reform by January. The Vice President, who wrote the 1994 Crime Bill that helped law enforcement bring down the rate of violent crime and included the assault weapons ban, will work with members of the Cabinet and outside organizations on this effort, and President Obama urged the new Congress to hold votes on the proposals early next year:
The good news is there’s already a growing consensus for us to build from. A majority of Americans support banning the sale of military-style assault weapons. A majority of Americans support banning the sale of high-capacity ammunition clips. A majority of Americans support laws requiring background checks before all gun purchases, so that criminals can’t take advantage of legal loopholes to buy a gun from somebody who won’t take the responsibility of doing a background check at all.
The President made clear that this is a complex issue, and that solutions must be wide-ranging and include everything from access to mental health services to confronting a culture that at times glorifies violence. But he also made clear that the price of doing nothing is much too high for our country to bear:
Since Friday morning, a police officer was gunned down in Memphis, leaving four children without their mother. Two officers were killed outside a grocery store in Topeka. A woman was shot and killed inside a Las Vegas casino. Three people were shot inside an Alabama hospital. A four-year-old was caught in a drive-by in Missouri, and taken off life support just yesterday. Each one of these Americans was a victim of the everyday gun violence that takes the lives of more than 10,000 Americans every year — violence that we cannot accept as routine.
So I will use all the powers of this office to help advance efforts aimed at preventing more tragedies like this. We won’t prevent them all — but that can’t be an excuse not to try. It won’t be easy — but that can’t be an excuse not to try.
President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden talk in a West Wing hallway of the White House, following the President’s statement to the press, Dec. 19, 2012. (Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)
We Are Better Than This:
We are 32 families who have lost loved ones in many of the most infamous and deadly mass shootings our nation has ever seen.
We know we are far from alone in our grief. Every day in America, 32 more families lose loved ones to gun murders, most in tragedies that do not make national headlines because they are so common.
We believe we are better than this. And we are calling for a respectful and civil public conversation, focused simply on making this the safer nation we all want and deserve.
We are Republicans and Democrats, from “red states” and “blue states.” We live in cities, suburbs, and rural areas. We are from many different walks of life. Some of us own guns. Some of us don’t.
We know that the overwhelming majority of Americans support sensible solutions that would have prevented many of our tragedies, and can prevent many more every day. We are prepared to hold our elected leaders accountable to do everything they can to enact such solutions.
We invite every American who shares our vision of a safer nation to join us, and add your voices to ours, by signing this letter.
Without you, we are a group of families bound by the fact that we have been through something terrible. Together, we can all be the voice of real and lasting change!
Jessica Watts, cousin of Jonathan Blunk, killed in a movie theater, Aurora, CO, July 20, 2012
Teresa and Dave Hoover, mother and uncle of Alexander J. “AJ” Boik, killed in a movie theater, Aurora, CO, July 20, 2012
Sandy and Lonnie Phillips, mother and step-father of Jessica Ghawi, killed in a movie theater, Aurora, CO, July 20, 2012
Jerri Jackson, mother of Matt McQuinn, killed in a movie theater, Aurora, CO, July 20, 2012
Greg and Rena Medek, parents of Micayla “Cayla” Medek, killed in a movie theater, Aurora, CO, July 20, 2012
Anita Busch, cousin of Micayla “Cayla” Medek, killed in a movie theater, Aurora, CO, July 20, 2012
Carol and Tom Teves, parents of Alex Teves, killed in a movie theater, Aurora, CO, July 20, 2012
Robert Wingo, ex-husband of Rebecca Wingo, killed in a movie theater, Aurora, CO, July 20, 2012
Brian and Camella Seymour, children of Judith O. Seymour, killed at Oikos University, Oakland, CA, April 2, 2012
Amardeep and Pardeep Kaleka, sons of Satwant Singh Kaleka, killed at the Sikh Temple, Oak Creek, WI, August 5, 2012
Roxanna Green, mother of Christina-Taylor Green, killed outside of a Safeway store, Tucson, AZ, January 8, 2011
Paula Caouette, Paul Caouette, Katie Caouette, and Cristin Caouette-Gaskil, wife and children of David Caouette, killed at Salon Meritage, Seal Beach, CA, October 12, 2011
Paul Wilson, husband of Christy Lynn Wilson, killed at Salon Meritage, Seal Beach, CA, October 12, 2011
Nardyne Jeffries, mother of Brishell Jones, killed in a drive-by shooting on South Capitol Street, Washington, D.C., March 30, 2010
Eric and Mary Kay Mace, parents of Ryanne Mace, killed at Northern Illinois University, DeKalb, IL, February 14, 2008
Carolyn Tuft and Kaitlin, Parker, and Scott Hinckley, mother and siblings of Kirsten Hinckley, killed at Trolley Square Mall, Salt Lake City, UT, February 12, 2007
Uma and Abhi Loganathan, children of G.V. Loganathan, killed at Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA, April 16, 2007
Peter and Catherine Read, parents of Mary Read, killed at Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA, April 16, 2007
Joe, Mona, Omar, and Randa Samaha, parents and siblings of Reema Samaha, killed at Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA, April 16, 2007
Paul and Susan Turner, parents of Maxine Turner, killed at Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA, April 16, 2007
John Woods, boyfriend of Maxine Turner, killed at Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA, April 16, 2007
Annette Nance-Holt, mother of Blair Holt, killed on a city bus, Chicago, IL, May 10, 2007
Pamela Bosley, mother of Terrell Bosley, killed outside Lights of Zion Missionary Bible Church, Chicago, IL, April 4, 2006
Tim, Christian, Genevieve, and Jeff Heyne, husband and children of Janice Heyne, killed in a shooting spree, Thousand Oaks, CA, May 30, 2005
Jose Guzman and Guadalupe Sanchez, parents of Guillermo Rodriguez, killed at a Subway, Phoenix, AZ, November 5, 2005
David Cariens, father-in-law of Angela Dales, killed at the Appalachian School of Law, Grundy, VA, January 16, 2002
Nick and Amanda Wilcox, parents of Laura Ligon Wilcox, killed at the Nevada County Behavioral Health Clinic, Grass Valley, CA, January 10, 2001
Suzanne and Casey Glimstad, mother and sister of Derek Glimstad, killed during a shooting spree, Sacramento, CA, September 8, 2001
Tom Mauser, father of Daniel Mauser, killed at Columbine High School, Littleton, CO, April 20, 1999
Sherialyn Byrdsong, wife of Northwestern Basketball Coach, Ricky Byrdsong, killed during a shooting spree, Skokie, IL, July 2, 1999
Paul Ercolino, brother of Steve Ercolino, killed at the Empire State Building, New York City, NY, August 24, 1997
Geraldine Hills, sister of Officer Adam J. Hills, ambushed and killed off-duty, Seney, MI, October 18, 1994
We Are Better Than This: Mark Ruffalo
Published on Dec 19, 2012
Mark Ruffalo, Mariska Hargitay, Anthony LaPaglia, Rosanne Cash, Liev Schrieber: We Are Better Than This: A national conversation on how we can prevent gun deaths and injuries. Join and sign on here:http://www.wearebetterthanthis.org
We Are Better Than This: Colin Goddard
Published on Dec 19, 2012
Colin Goddard: We Are Better Than This: A national conversation on how we can prevent gun deaths and injuries. Colin Goddard is a survivor of the Virginia Tech mass shooting and a staff member at the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence. Join and sign on here:http://www.wearebetterthanthis.org
We Are Better Than This: Lonnie and Sandy Phillips
Published on Dec 19, 2012
Lonnie and Sandy Phillips: We Are Better Than This: A national conversation on how we can prevent gun deaths and injuries. Lonnie and Sandy lost their daughter Jessica, who was killed in the Aurora mass shooting when she was 24 years old. Join and sign on here:http://www.wearebetterthanthis.org
SHARE YOUR STORY
As an American who was shocked and horrified by the mass shooting in Aurora, Colorado, I am committed to joining a meaningful conversation about how we can prevent the future loss of innocent life.
We Are Better Than This was created to foster a meaningful national conversation on how to prevent tragedies like the one that occurred in Aurora, Colorado. Join us.
Give Now to the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence
We need your support to make the changes to our gun laws and policies that will make us the safer nation we all want and deserve. Thank you.
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ROCK HILL — Winthrop University men’s basketball coach Pat Kelsey received national attention Tuesday night after delivering an emotional message about the need for change in America following the mass shooting in Newtown, Conn.
Sports fans across the country are praising Kelsey for using the opportunity after the Eagles’ loss against nationally-ranked Ohio State to challenge political leaders and parents and other coaches to “step up.”
After briefly discussing the game, in which the Eagles lost by 10 points to the heavily-favored Buckeyes, Kelsey changed the topic.
“I know this microphone’s powerful right now, because we’re playing the fourth-best team in the country,” Kelsey said. “I’m not going to have a microphone like this the rest of the year — maybe the rest of my life.”
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