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Calling for new gun laws, Biden says American children are suffering as soldiers in war – UnlistedNews

President Biden strongly defended stricter gun laws Friday, saying American children caught up in school shootings suffer the same trauma as soldiers in war.

Speaking at a gun safety summit in Hartford, Connecticut, attended by victims of gun violence, Biden marked one year since the passage of a bipartisan bill aimed at preventing dangerous people from accessing guns. But he said there was more to do.

“What is the difference between the post-traumatic stress a soldier encounters in the hills of Afghanistan,” Biden asked, and the kind of trauma a “fourth grade kid encounters in a classroom when they have to drop and cover?” .

Mr. Biden’s call to action comes at a time of deep pessimism about the prospects for meaningful legislative action on gun control, despite one mass shooting after another in the United States.

Even with majorities in both houses of Congress during Biden’s first two years in office, Democrats were unable to pass an assault weapons ban. Any effort now is almost certain to fail in the Republican-controlled House, as the party has largely coalesced against the new gun control measures.

But Biden said Friday that Congress must find a way to make the laws tougher.

“If this Congress refuses to act,” Biden said, “we need a new Congress.”

A year ago, a bipartisan group of lawmakers came to a close compromise, prompted by a mass shooting at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, that killed 19 children and two teachers.

The bill expanded background checks for gun buyers and set aside millions of dollars so states can pay for intervention programs like mental health and drug courts and carry out red flag laws that allow authorities to temporarily confiscate the weapons of any person found by a judge. be too dangerous to possess.

Mr. Biden said Friday that the Department of Justice has provided more than $230 million for states to expand such laws, and the Department of Health and Human Services has also provided more than $1.5 billion to states to hire 14,000 health professionals. mental health for schools.

Biden said the legislation was already having an effect on violent crime in the United States, but called it merely a “first step.”

The nonpartisan Criminal Justice Council examined trends in 35 cities and found that homicides, firearms attacks and domestic violence reports were down slightly in 2022 compared to the previous year. The Gun Violence Archive, a nonprofit research group that tracks gun violence using police reports, news coverage and other public sources, has counted more than 260 mass shootings as of the end of May. Last year, the group tallied 647 mass shootings, which it defines as incidents in which at least four people were killed or injured.

“I don’t know how many times I’ve met people at events across the country who shake my hand and say, ‘I’m concerned there was another shooting not too far from where I live. I’m afraid to send my son to school,’” Biden said. “It has had a profound impact.”

Peter Ambler, executive director of Giffords, the gun control organization founded by former Arizona Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, said gun control is an important issue as the 2024 campaign intensifies.

“I think the White House realizes how important this issue is to the American public and is drawing a contrast between who has gotten results on this issue, Joe Biden and the Democrats, and who hasn’t,” Ambler said.

Mr. Biden said in March that he had “used the full extent of my executive authority to do, on my own, anything with regard to guns,” adding that the burden to act rested with Congress. Karine Jean-Pierre, the White House press secretary, this week left open the possibility that the White House could take additional steps, but she did not provide details.

“We are always going to find out what else we can do to protect communities,” said Ms. Jean-Pierre. “So that’s something we’re on, that our team is certainly going to consider.”


Sara Marcus
Sara Marcushttps://unlistednews.com
Meet Sara Marcus, our newest addition to the Unlisted News team! Sara is a talented author and cultural critic, whose work has appeared in a variety of publications. Sara's writing style is characterized by its incisiveness and thought-provoking nature, and her insightful commentary on music, politics, and social justice is sure to captivate our readers. We are thrilled to have her join our team and look forward to sharing her work with our readers.


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