The recent shootings in Buffalo and Texas have led to renewed calls for “common sense” gun control measures in America. President Biden called on Congress to act on several proposals in a Thursday night primetime message, The Hill reports. Some of which are banning assault-style weapons and high-capacity magazines and raising the purchasing age from 18 to 21.
“How much more carnage are we willing to accept?” Biden said in the address from the White House. “Let’s meet the moment. Let us finally do something.”
Biden also pushed to expand background checks, pass “red flag” laws and safe storage requirements, and repeal the liability shield for gun manufacturers and dealers. The President noted that these measures aren’t about “taking away anyone’s guns” or “vilifying gun owners” but rather about protecting children and communities from gun violence.
“We spent hours with hundreds of family members who were broken, whose lives will never be the same,” Biden said. “They had one message for all of us. Do something. Just do something ... After Columbine, after Sandy Hook, after Charleston, after Orlando, after Las Vegas, after Parkland, nothing has been done. This time that can’t be true. This time we must do something.”
Biden’s message comes after the news where Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) stated the House will vote on a gun violence package next week. Democrats will also bring up “red flag” laws sometime in June. Still, things like re-enacting the 1994 assault weapons ban will most likely not get the 60 votes required in the Senate. The President spoke to potential Republican obstruction to any of these safety measures.
“The fact that the majority of the Senate Republicans don’t want any of these proposals even to be debated or come up for a vote I find unconscionable,” he said. “We can’t fail the American people again.”
“The American people aren’t asking for much—they just want to go to the grocery store, send their kids to school, go to church, and walk the streets without getting shot down. If the Senate can’t meet that basic need, this country is in deep trouble,
Since Uvalde, there have been 20 mass shootings across the country and 233 in total in 2022, as noted by the Gun Violence Archive. Recent polls have shown that most Americans favor universal background checks and “red flag” laws that temporarily limit gun access to people deemed “dangers to themselves and others.”